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Hit streaks by position (and hitless streaks too!)

Posted by Andy on November 13, 2007

Using the PI batting Streak Finder, here are the longest hitting streaks by position since 1957. The player needed to have appeared at the position (though not necessarily have started there) in each game to qualify.

                   StreakStart  Streak End Games    AB    R    H   2B  3B  HR  RBI  SO   BB   SB   CS   BA   OBP   SLG   OPS  Teams   Position
+-----------------+-----------+-----------+-----+----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Benito Santiago    1987-08-25  1987-10-02    34    136   17   47  12   1   5   19   23    2    5   3  .346  .360  .559  .919 SDP     C
 Hal Morris         1996-08-27  1997-04-03    32    124   24   47   6   1   7   29   15   15    1   3  .379  .451  .613 1.064 CIN     1B
 Luis Castillo      2002-05-08  2002-06-21    35    154   24   62   4   0   2   14   16    8   11   5  .403  .436  .468  .904 FLA     2B
 Pete Rose          1978-06-14  1978-07-31    43    178   30   69  14   0   0   11    5   11    4   2  .388  .422  .466  .888 CIN     3B
 Jimmy Rollins      2005-08-23  2006-04-05    38    169   36   64  22   4   3   23   18   17   15   1  .379  .437  .609 1.046 PHI     SS
 t- Ken Landreaux   1980-04-23  1980-05-30    31    125   13   49   5   1   2   19   10   10    3   2  .392  .441  .496  .937 MIN     LF
 t- Rico Carty      1970-04-08  1970-05-15    31    113   31   51   9   0   8   30   10   20    0   1  .451  .530  .743 1.273 ATL     LF
 t- Ron LeFlore     1975-09-27  1976-05-27    31    134   22   53  12   3   1   15   25    9   12   6  .396  .434  .552  .986 DET     CF
 t- Willie Davis    1969-08-01  1969-09-03    31    124   20   54   7   1   1   23    8    7   11   3  .435  .463  .532  .995 LAD     CF
 Kirby Puckett      1993-08-26  1994-04-30    36    162   23   58  14   1   4   30   17    9    0   0  .358  .399  .531  .930 MIN     RF
 Paul Molitor       1987-07-16  1987-08-25    39    164   43   68  17   3   7   33   22   25   15   1  .415  .495  .683 1.178 MIL     DH
 t- Rick Rhoden     1984-07-20  1984-09-11    11     32    6   16   4   0   0    3    2    0    0   0  .500  .500  .625 1.125 PIT     P
 t- Gary Peters     1966-05-10  1966-07-17    11     33    6   12   1   1   0    4    6    0    0   0  .364  .364  .455  .819 CHW     P
 t- Jerry Walker    1961-09-27  1962-05-31    11     34    7   14   1   0   3    4    8    0    0   0  .412  .412  .706 1.118 KCA     P
 Dave Philley       1958-09-09  1959-04-16     9      9    2    9   3   0   1    9    0    0    0   0 1.000 1.000 1.667 2.667 PHI     PH

Items of interest about this:

  • Most of these streaks are pretty memorable, but I was really surprised by Hal Morris.
  • Truly odd that Kirby Puckett makes it at RIGHT field, not centerfield. I didn't realize he ever played many games in RF. Any Twins fans out there know the breakdown of games he played at each position?
  • There are ties at LF, CF, and pitcher, as listed.
  • I assume that the outfield streaks don't go all the way back to 1957 since there isn't detailed data on which outfield position played all the way back.
  • I even managed to include pinch hitting on there! Nine straight games with a successful pinch hit is damned impressive, if you ask me.

Now, here is the opposite. Longest game streaks without a hit, by position.

                   StreakStart  Streak End Games    AB    R    H   2B  3B  HR  RBI  SO   BB   SB   CS   BA   OBP   SLG   OPS  Teams   Position
+-----------------+-----------+-----------+-----+---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Tim Spehr          1995-07-13  1996-06-08    17     24    2    0   0   0   0    0   12    0    0   0  .000  .040  .000  .040 MON     C
 Dan Meyer          1983-05-25  1983-09-10    15     48    0    0   0   0   0    0    3    2    0   0  .000  .040  .000  .040 OAK     1B
 Gus Gil            1967-05-01  1967-07-04    18     39    5    0   0   0   0    1    8    3    0   0  .000  .071  .000  .071 CLE     2B
 t- Robin Ventura   1990-04-21  1990-05-09    15     39    2    0   0   0   0    1   10   10    0   1  .000  .204  .000  .204 CHW     3B
 t- John Kennedy    1965-08-18  1966-05-21    15     19    2    0   0   0   0    0    7    1    0   0  .000  .050  .000  .050 LAD     3B
 Ray Oyler          1968-07-14  1969-04-08    19     39    1    0   0   0   0    1   15    3    0   0  .000  .071  .000  .071 DET-SEP SS
 Mike Huff          1993-05-01  1994-04-26    16     21    1    0   0   0   0    1    6    4    0   0  .000  .154  .000  .154 CHW-TOR LF
 Mike Felder        1987-08-12  1989-05-07    14     24    1    0   0   0   0    2    4    4    0   0  .000  .143  .000  .143 MIL     CF
 Mel Queen          1966-05-05  1966-09-10    15     23    1    0   0   0   0    1    5    5    0   0  .000  .172  .000  .172 CIN     RF
 Willie Norwood     1979-07-05  1980-06-20    15     35    0    0   0   0   0    0   11    1    1   0  .000  .028  .000  .028 MIN     DH
 John Wyatt         1962-08-20  1967-08-03    48     50    0    0   0   0   0    0   32    0    0   0  .000  .000  .000  .000 KCA-BOS P
 Mike Mordecai      1997-04-25  1999-06-16    43     47    0    0   0   0   0    2   13    1    0   0  .000  .020  .000  .020 ATL-MON

Notes:

  • Pretty much all of these streaks cover times when the given player also played other positions in between, where he usually got some hits. For example, Mike Felder's hitless streak in CF happened over 3 years, when the majority of his games were actually played in LF. But it just so happened that every time he appeared in CF in that period, he went hitless.
  • Mike Mordecai's streak is absolutely mind-boggling to me. First, I think of him as being a good pinch-hitter. But I guess he was actually just used a lot as one, even though he apparently was terrible. This streak covers 43 games in which he pinch hit, plus a few more PAs for games that he stayed in after pinch-hitting. In a total of 49 PAs, the guy managed one walk. Why in the hell did his managers keep pinch-hitting him? In fact, in his career, Mordecai hit just .164/.252/.213 as a PH over 263 PAs. Ugh!
  • John Wyatt pitched mainly in relief, and his hitless games came sporadically when he got an AB here and there.
  • There's our man Ray Oyler again.
  • Robin Ventura's streak is the only one that really came from an everyday player playing the same position. I remember that hitless streak quite well.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, November 13th, 2007 at 8:33 am and is filed under Streak Finders. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

11 Responses to “Hit streaks by position (and hitless streaks too!)”

  1. On the hitting-streak list, two are HOFers (Molitor and Puckett) and one should be a HOFer (Rose). Santiago, Castillo, and Rollins all seem to have a decent shot at the Hall.

    That Dave Philley stat is really interesting. Could you run a more complete list of PH hitting streaks?

    P.S. It's hard to believe Hal Morris wound up with only 1216 career hits.

  2. There is no way that Santiago or Castillo makes the Hall, and it's too early to say on Rollins, but he'd need to perform at the same level for at least another 10 years.

    Santiago would have an outside shot, except that he is also implicated in Game of Shadows as an alleged steroids user.

    Here is the full list of leading streaks by pinch-hitters:
    http://www.bb-ref.com/pi/shareit/6CAA

    Santiago makes that list too!

  3. Check out Randy Bush's streak on that link in #2 above. 7 games, 8 ABs, 8 hits, 2 HR, 2 2B. Not bad.

  4. Puckett first played RF in August of 1990, but didn't move over there full-time until 1994. I don't have a breakdown of games at each position though.

    From http://bioproj.sabr.org/bioproj.cfm?a=v&v=l&pid=11497&bid=1518

    Puckett was a fixture in center field for the Twins, but that began to change in 1990. Before an August game in Cleveland, manager Tom Kelly told Puckett to check the lineup card carefully. When he did, he saw he was starting in right field--the first time in his major-league career he'd be somewhere other than center field. Before this game was out, though, Puckett would be playing three other positions. Shortstop Greg Gagne was removed for a pinch hitter in the top of the eighth. Kelly had a couple players who could play the infield, but he wanted to save them for possible pinch-hitting duty in the ninth. So, to keep the infield together, Puckett was moved to shortstop in the last of the eighth. Before the inning was out, he also played third base and second base as Kelly shifted him around, trying to put him where the ball was least likely to be hit. After the game, Twins' utility ace Al Newman joked, "I'm glad Puck's one of us utility guys now. Maybe he'll raise the salary structure a little." Kelly did use Puckett in the infield again but not regularly. The move to right field was different. The Twins were concerned about how much center field might be wearing Puckett down. They wanted him with them for many more years and thought an occasional move to right might help preserve his legs. Over the next few years he played both center and right field (and even left field on a couple of occasions), but it wasn't until 1994 that he moved to right field for good.

  5. Awesome info...thanks for posting!

  6. I'd be interested to see "reached-base" streaks by position as well, if you have time.

  7. sure...i'll try to get to that on Friday.

  8. OscarAzocar Says:

    This got me interested at longest hitting streaks at different stadiums. Jeter is is tied with Palmeiro for the record at Camden yards. I wonder how many other stadiums have an opposing player as the record holder.

  9. Hal Morris' 32 game streak is NEVER listed whenever there's a list of 30 game hitting streaks, and that's always bothered me. It was swept into the dustbin of history because it overlapped two seasons (29 in 1996, 3 in 1997), though that never seems to stop the listmakers from putting Jimmy Rollins' full 38 gamer there from 2005-06. Glad to see the all-knowing PI gives Hal the props he deserves...

  10. Morris really gets a bum rap. The Yankees traded him, essentially for Tim Leary, because they needed pitching. It was one of those standard trades the Yankees made in the 80s and early 90s, of sending away their top prospect for a washed-up veteran. Morris didn't pan out like many had expected, but the guy did have a pretty good career. He hit over .300 6 different times, and had 4 seasons with an OPS+ better than 120. He's a career .304 hitter. He may not have had the desired power stats for a 1B, but he was a good hitter for sure.

    I often lump that Morris trade in with another NYY-CIN trade from the same era...Roberto Kelly for Paul O'Neill. And another trade between those two teams year later: Drew Henson to CIN for Denny Neagle. And then CIN traded Henson back to NYY for Wily Mo Pena, who was later traded to BOS for Bronson Arroyo and then to the Nats for a bag of balls.

  11. He'd be a good candidate for that consistency data you were talking about last month.