Let’s Talk About Duvall
[The pics are above are members of the Duvall MVP Conversation, all of them holding something they could hurt you with.]
So Adam Duvall has 114 hits and 109* RBIs with a week-and-a-half to go in the season. He has the chance to join a very small group. There is only one player ever to have over 100 hits in a season and more RBIs than hits: Mark McGwire in 1999. Adam will not reach either 145 hits or 147 RBIs, but let’s look at everyone else with at least 40 hits and RBIs equaling or exceeding hits.
Jason Giambi, 2006: 113 hits and 113 RBIs. The only other guy to have over 100 hits and as many RBI as hits. Adam is certainly within reach here.
Mark McGwire, 1995, 2000, 2001: This category is McGwire’s. Of the 13 times this has happened with over 40 hits, McGwire has four of them. 90 RBIs with 87 hits in 1995, 73 RBIs on 72 hits in 2000 and 64 RBIs on 56 hits in 2001.
Josh Gibson, 1937 and 1939; Esteban Montalvo, 1925; and Buck Leonard 1939. Now that the Negro Leagues are official Major Leagues, these three performances pop up on the list. I had no idea the seasons were so short in those leagues.
Paul Sorrento, 1995: Another strike-year product. 79 RBIs on 76 hits.
Matt Olson, 2020: 42 RBIs on 41 hits, in a Covid-shortened season.
Rhys Hoskins, 2017: 48 RBIs on 44 hits.
Yasmani Grandal, 2021: This year has a chance to find two players reach this combination. Grandal has 58 hits and 60 RBIs for the White Sox so far this year.
I just looked of BRefs comparables for Adam. They list Joc Pederson as second most comparable and Jorge Soler as fifth most. Interchangeable indeed. It says something more about AA’s strategy. A certain type of player was obviously available at the deadline, and AA took all three of them. And Rosario’s most comparable batter is Yasiel Puig, who was almost a Brave last year. Only Duvall cost the Braves anything close to a MLB-ready player. The new arbitrage opportunity?
Also on the list of comparables for Duvall are Miguel Sano (3rd), and Bo Jackson (6th). I have no idea what that means, and I’m pretty sure Duvall would never play for Auburn. Kyle Schwarber is the highest comparable, which sounds about right to me.
A Note For The Ad Seller At MLB.TV
If I ever encounter one of the Peloton Plant Dads who are “crushing it on the leaderboard,” I will see to it that he withers on the vine and dies. No ego, amigo. Just die. We’re getting to that time in the season for some ads where I really can’t bear hearing (or seeing) them at all. It’s bad enough that they are repeated every game… but 15 times a game is just too much. I’m sure there’s some theory under which all that repetition helps sell the product, but please run more than one commercial for your product. I’m reduced to begging. Liberty Mutual has four or five different ads, and at least they rotate them. (Haven’t seen the wet teddy bears for a month or so.) They all suck, but I wouldn’t actively campaign to see the company go bankrupt, like I’m doing with Peloton right now.
“If it weren’t for Riley, Freeman would be in the MVP conversation.”
Words fail me.
Chip: “Youngest player to have 30 homers and 100 RBI”
Glavine: “Yeah, a lot of people have played 2nd base”
Chip: “That’s the caveat… for 2nd basemen.”
That’s a pretty big caveat. First off, among second basemen 24 and younger, Ozzie leads in neither HR or RBIs. Rougned Odor hit 33 as a 22-year-old in 2016, but had only 88 RBIs. He also hit 30 as a 23-year-old in 2017, with 75 RBIs. Joe Gordon had 111 RBIs for the Yankees as a 24-year-old in 1939, but hit only 28 homers. But yes. For the combination, Ozzie stands alone.
If you relax the “caveat,” there are 188 player-season at 24 or younger with 30 or more homers, and 119 of them had over 100 RBIs. Every one of those was a great season, as is Ozzie’s. Why strive for artificial “bestness?” It just invites ripostes like: “Among second basemen from Curacao who played at least 140 games, Ozzie is the only one who hasn’t hit 32 home runs or gotten 105 RBIs.” (Jonathan Schoop hit both these marks in 2017, though as a 25-year-old. The total games caveat is to eliminate Jurickson Profar and Ralph Milliard.) Ozzie is a much better ballplayer than Schoop, but this is what happens when you’re allowed free rein with “caveats.”
Broom Vs. Bumgarner
So in the final game, the immovable rock meets the unstoppable force. A clearly superior Braves team met Madison Bumgarner, who gave up no hits when they met back in April. First time through the order, the Braves managed a hit, so the dam was beginning to break, right?
Second time through, Ozzie began his chase of the Curaçoan second baseman RBI title with a long drive that scored Freddie from first after a replay consultation for fan interference. Riley followed with a homer. (If Riley hits 50 homers, I’m just going to call Chip prescient.)
After a shaky first inning, Charlie Morton was Charlie Morton. I was not a huge fan of the Morton signing. I was wrong. He left, however, after surrendering two singles to lead off the 7th. One pitch later from Jacob Webb, the game was tied. Two doubles and a sac fly later, the Hammers trailed by 2.
But, as Chip always says, it’s the late innings when the Braves bats really get going. Three straight strikeouts in the 8th and three flyouts in the 9th suggest that Chip is wrong… probably for the first time in his life.
Adam Duvall is ruining my plans for baseball history by getting two RBI-less singles in this game. Stop it! Either just hit homers or wait until guys are in scoring position to get singles. He came up a little lame and was replaced by Rosario, but to my expert medical eye I don’t think it’s anything serious.
On to San Diego…. But the series against Philly next week is going to be really important. There’s no getting around that now no matter what happens in San Diego.
- Yes, yes we all know it’s 110, but that’s the way it’ll look in the official records.