Archive for October, 2011

Cardinals win world series in plunk-record breaking fashion

Saturday, October 29th, 2011

Congratulations to the 2011 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals, but more importantly, congratulations to Albert Pujols who is now the most plunked batter in World Series history. Pujols got his 4th World Series plunk in the 5th inning on a pitch from Scott Feldman. That makes him the first batter to accumulated 4 career plunks in World Series play, moving him ahead of 13 batters who were tied with 3 World Series plunks.
Pujols also became the first batter in post season history to reach base on a plunk, and then score a run being driven in by an RBI plunk. Rafael Furcal got the RBI plunk that same inning from CJ Wilson, making him only the 2nd player ever to get an RBI plunk in game 7 of a World Series. Bill Robinson was the other, for the 1979 Pirates. That 1979 game was also the only other game World Series game 7 in which a team got hit by two pitches in the same inning.
Adrian Beltre also got hit by a pitch last night, on a pitch from Chris Carpenter, and that makes last night’s game the only World Series game 7 in which 3 batters were hit by a pitch. Carpenter is now up to 6 hit baters for his post season career, making him the 10th pitcher to reach that total for postseason plunks, joining Greg Maddux (9), Tim Wakefield (9), Pedro Martinez (8), Tom Glavine (7), David Wells (7), Orel Hershiser (6), Matt Morris (6), Roger Clemens (6) and AJ Burnett (6 – in one year).

Craig gets game 5 plunk

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Allen Craig took the 32nd plunk in the history of World Series game 5. Neftali Feliz hit Craig to lead off the top of the 9th inning, but it wasn’t enough to spark a rally for a Cardinals comeback. Feliz closed the door and the Rangers won 4-2. It was the first postseason plunk for both Craig and Feliz, but it was the 45 postseason HBP in Cardinals history, and the 15th ever thrown by the Rangers in postseason play.

Pujols plunked in World Series game 1

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

Albert Pujols was hit by a pitch in the 4th inning last night’s game 1 of the World Series, giving him 4 postseason plunks for his career, and 3 plunks in the World Series. That puts Pugols in the company of Yogi Bera, Frank Robinson, Frank Chance, Fred Snodgrass, Willy Taveras, Max Carey, Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Reggie Jackson, Honus Wagner, Bert Campaneris, Derek Jeter and Elston Howard as the only players who have been plunked 3 times in World Series games. No one has been hit 4 times in World Series games. Pujols now has been hit in the World Series in three different years, and only Derek Jeter and Elston Howard had done that before this year.
Pujols was eventually driven in for the first run of the 2011 World Series, making this the 7th year in which the first run of the World Series was scored by a batter who reached base on a plunk. 3 of those have now involved the Cardinals. The first such World Series was the infamous 1919 series between the Reds and the White Sox. Morrie Rath was plunked by Eddie Cicotte leading off the first inning and scored the first run of that series – but that famous plunk was later said to be a pre-arranged signal indicating that the White Sox were throwing the game. Rudy York of the Red Sox scored the first run of the 1946 series after getting hit by Howie Pollet of the Cardinals and Al Smith of the Indians scored the first run of the 1954 World Series after an HBP against Sal Maglie of the Giants. In 1988, Steve Sax of the Dodgers scored the first run of the World Series after reaching on a plunk from A’s ace Dave Stewart. Both Sax and Al Smith were leading off the first inning, but as far as I know nobody has asked if those plunks were pre-arranged signals that the series was being thrown (the Giants won the series in ’54, so probably not).
In 2001, Derek Jeter got hit by Curt Schilling and came around to score the first run of that year’s series, and in 2004 Orlando Cabrera scored the first run for the Red Sox after being hit by Woody Williams of the Cardinals*. Albert Pujols got his first World Series plunk in that same game.

*Correction – it’s been pointed out to me that Johnny Damon was on base ahead of Cabrera and they both scored on the Ortiz double – so Damon actually scored first, not Cabrera.

Gomez plunked, but Brewers fall to Cards

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Carlos Gomez got hit by a pitch in the 7th inning of NCLS game 6 last night, making the Brewers the 12th team ever to get hit by 8 pitches in the postseason, but that didn’t provide quite enough offense to overcome the Cardinals. The Cardinals move on to the World Series as the 23rd team ever to hit 6 batters in postseason play, against the Rangers who have been hit 6 times so far this postseason.

Brewers defy the odds with NLCS game 4 plunk

Friday, October 14th, 2011

Prior to last night, 7 batters had been hit by pitches as visitors in NLCS game 4. One visiting team got hit twice, and they lost. Five visiting teams got hit by one pitch, and four of those lost. The only team to get hit by a pitch on the road and win in NLCS game 4, prior to last night, was the 2001 Diamondbacks, when Luis Gonzalez got plunked by Greg Maddux in the first inning with Craig Counsell on first base. So apparently it’s only possible for a road team to get hit by a pitch and win NLCS game 4 if Craig Counsell is on the team, because Nyjer Morgan got hit for the Brewers last night, and the Brewers won 4-2 to tie the series 2-2.
Morgan is now tied with Rickie Weeks and Prince Fielder for most postseason plunks in Brewers history, with 2 each. The Brewers have now been hit 7 times in postseason play this year. They’re the 7th National League team to be hit that many times in a single postseason, and the 16th if you throw in the American League.

Cards throw 60th postseason plunk

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

When Chris Carpenter hit Ryan Braun in the first inning of NLCS game 3 last night, it was Carpenter’s 5th postseason plunk, but it was also the 60th plunk ever thrown by the Cardinals in a postseason game. Only the Yankees and Red Sox have hit more batters in postseason games than the Cardinals.

Austin Jackson got hit by a pitch in the 10th inning of ALCS game 4, making him the 3rd batter ever plunked in an extra inning of an ALCS game. Don Baylor got plunked in the 11th inning of ALCS game 5 in 1986, and Sandy Alomar junior got hit in the 12th inning of the 1998 ALCS game 2.

Lance Berkman was also plunked yesterday, for his 3rd career postseason HBP. He was also just the third batter plunked by the Brewers in a postseason game.

125 plunks in the ALCS (not in one game)

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

Ian Kinsler’s 6th inning HBP in last night’s ALCS game 3 was the 125th HBP in ALCS history. Kinsler was hit in the 6th inning by Doug Fister. It was the first postseason HBP for both of them. The Tigers have now hit 6 batters in the postseason this year, and that ties their franchise record for hitting batters in a postseason. They hit 6 batters in the 2006 postseason, and 6 batter in the 1909 postseason. The Rangers have been hit by 6 pitches this postseason, and that makes them the 24th team to get hit by 6 pitches in a postseason campaign.

Postseason plunk rates by team

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

When the Arizona Diamondbacks lost their NLDS series to the Brewers, they didn’t just lose the series, they lost their claim as the franchise with the highest plunks per plate appearance rate in the postseason. Prior to this year, they’d been hit once every 73.1 postseason plate appearances, but against the Brewers they only got plunked once in 193 plate appearances, bringing their all-time rate down to one plunk every 80.1 plate appearances.

Here are the all-time postseason HBP rates for each franchise:

Team PA per HBP HBP PA
White Sox 73.3 28 2051
Diamondbacks 80.1 17 1362
Astros 95.5 23 2197
Angels 101.3 23 2330
Brewers 101.9 10 1019
Rockies 103.9 7 727
Indians 105.4 31 3266
Pirates 114 29 3305
Phillies 124.8 31 3867
Mets 127.2 23 2925
Yankees 127.7 111 14176
Tigers 130 26 3379
Marlins 130.3 10 1303
Red Sox 134.2 44 5906
Twins 137.2 23 3156
Padres 140.4 9 1263
Mariners 144.2 9 1298
Rangers 146.6 8 1173
A’s 152 36 5472
Giants 152.7 37 5650
Cardinals 173.8 41 7126
Blue Jays 175.1 9 1576
Braves 180.1 34 6124
Reds 182.7 18 3288
Orioles 186.4 17 3168
Rays 186.4 5 932
Cubs 196.8 16 3148
Dodgers 199.9 32 6396
Royals 399.4 4 1597
Nationals never 0 356

The Rangers have been hit once every 44 plate appearances this year, which is the 10th best rate for a team in a postseason campaign. The eliminated Yankees got hit once every 51.5 plate appearances this year, which is good for 19th best all time, and the Brewers have been hit every 52.8 PAs through NLDS game 2, making that the 20th best rate for a postseason.

Martinez and Cruz plunked in ALCS game 2

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Victor Martinez got his 2nd career postseason plunk yesterday when Derek Holland hit him in the 3rd inning of ALCS game 2. His only other postseason HBP was in game 2 of the 2007 ALDS when he played for Cleveland. That plunk put Martinez on base to score a run that briefly tied the game before Ryan Raburn finished rounding the bases on his home run. Nelson Cruz got hit in the 9th inning to load the bases with no outs, but the Rangers failed to score a run that inning (though they did finish the job in the 11th. He’s the 4th batter to be plunked in the bottom of the 9th inning of an ALCS game.

Prince Fielder gets 2nd postseason HBP

Monday, October 10th, 2011

Prince Fielder took a 1st inning HBP from Jaime Garcia in NLDS Game 1 last night, and that moves Fielder into a tie with Rickie Weeks for the most plunks in Brewers postseason history. They have 2 each. The Brewers have now been hit 5 times this postseason, and that makes them the 39th team to have been hit 5 times in the postseason in a single year. The record is 12 by the 2005 White Sox. Overall it was the 10th postseason HBP for the Brewers and the 59th postseason plunk thrown by the Cardinals. The Cardinals have the Brewers once before, in the 1982 World Series, and it was also the first inning of game 1. Prince Fielder got plunked after the Brewers took a 2-0 lead in the first yesterday, and back in 1982, Roy Howell got a first inning HBP from Bob Forsch after the Brewers took a 2-0 lead.

That was the 112th plunk in NLCS history, the 24th in a NLCS game 1, and the 3rd in the first inning of NLCS game 1. Prince Fielder is the 2nd batter whose last name starts with F to get hit in an NLCS game (joining Tim Flannery), and he’s the first batter whose first name starts with P to have an NLCS plunk. Batters born in California have now been plunked 25 times in the NLCS.