Some Things You May Have Missed

by Asher B. Chancey

 

Sure, we all know about Bonds and Ichiro. But here are some things that may be off your radar . . .

 

 

1. Neither League had a player hit 50 home runs for the second year in a row. Manny Ramirez led the American League in home runs with 43, which was the lowest total to lead a League in a non-strike year since 1992, when Fred McGriff led the NL with 35 and Juan Gonzalez led the AL with 43

 

2. Ben Sheets finished with a 12-14 record for the Brewers despite finishing fourth in the Majors with a 2.70 ERA, while Bartolo Colon of the Angels finished fourth in the Majors with 18 wins despite his 5.02 ERA.

 

3. On September 7th, Carlos Beltran hit his 38 home run and looked like a lock to become the fourth player ever to go 40-40. He failed to hit another home run all season.

 

4. For the third straight year, Eric Gagne pitched EXACTLY 82.3 Innings.

 

5. While Barry Bonds single season walks record was broken (by Bonds himself), his father Bobby's single season strikeout record was broken by Cincinnati's Adam Dunn.

 

6. Bobby Abreu joined Carlos Beltran as this season's only 30-30 men, while Alex Rodriguez came within two steals of rejoining the club. Sammy Sosa, a two time member of the 30-30 club, as well as a one time 300-300 sure thing, managed to steal 0 bases in 0 attempts.

 

7. For the fourth year in a row, Orioles SS Miguel Tejada played every single game, and for the second year in a row, he struck out fewer than 75 times. 2004 marks the first time since 1997, Tejada's rookie year, that an Orioles shortstop has played in every game.

 

8. Barry Bonds joined a different kind of 40-40 club for the second time: Bonds had 45 home runs and 41 strike outs. Bonds became the first player in, well, a long time to hit more than 20 home runs and strike out fewer times than he homered. Albert Pujols just missed joining Bonds (46-51). Ted Williams accomplished the feat 3 times, Yogi Berra did it five times, and and Joe DiMaggio accomplished the feat an astonishing seven times. FYI In 1932, in 503 AB, Joe Sewell hit 11 home runs and struck out just 3 times.

 

9. Randy Johnson set career standards for walk/IP, home runs/IP, pitches/inning, and his opponents average of .197 was his career second best, while his opponents' OPS numbers were BY FAR his best ever. His win percentage, however, was the third worst of his career.

 

10. Pedro Martinez's career ERA went up an astounding 13 points (2.58 to 2.71) in what was by far his worst season ERA-wise by about 20 points.

 

11. Darren Dreifort made S11.4 million for 50.1 innings of work during which his ERA was 4.44 and his WHIP was 1.56. Carlos Zambrano made $450,000 for 209 innings of work during which his ERA was 2.75, and his WHIP was 1.22. Alex Rodriguez, who made $21.726 million this year, had the second lowest hits, home runs, RBI, AVG, and SLG numbers of his career, while setting a career low in doubles with 24. He did manage to set a career high, however, for strikeouts.

 

12. The Texas Rangers put together one of the most productive infields in recent memory:

 

Player

AB

H

R

HR

RBI

AVG

OBP

SLG

Mark Tiexiera

545

153

101

38

112

.281

.370

.560

Alfonso Soriano

608

170

77

28

91

.280

.324

.484

Michael Young

690

216

114

22

99

.313

.353

.483

Hank Blalock

624

172

107

32

110

.276

.355

.500

 

13. For the fourth straight year, Vinny Castilla hit into exactly 22 double plays.


to be continued . . .