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Monday, October 01, 2018

Matt Carpenter Achieves the Rare Feat of Going an Entire Season Without Grounding into a Double Play

Matt Carpenter’s 2018 season will be largely remembered for enduring the worst slump of his career and the seemingly salsa-fueled hot streak that followed.  However, the St. Louis Cardinals infielder also quietly achieved a rare feat during his excellent 2018 campaign when he finished the season without grounding into a double play.  By doing so, Carpenter became just the tenth hitter to go an entire campaign without being doubled up while amassing the required number of plate appearances to qualify for the batting title.

...

Over the course of his 2018 campaign, Carpenter had 91 plate appearances in which there was an opportunity for the slugger to ground into a double play.  Carpenter’s 91 opportunities rank second highest among the ten hitters to achieve the rare feat, trailing only Reiser’s incredible total of 148.  Reiser’s presence at the top of the leaderboard is not surprising, as he was the only one of the ten hitters regularly batted in the heart of the order.  With his 2018 season included, Carpenter’s career average for grounding into a double play when he had the opportunity do so dropped from 6.1% to 5.2%.  Among the ten hitters, only Reiser and Deer have career marks lower than Carpenter’s impressive 5.2%.  Despite not being recognized as a fast baserunner, Carpenter’s 5.2% is well below the career averages of Henderson and Biggio—two Hall of Famers renowned for their speed on the basepaths and expertise at batting leadoff.  In 2018, the average major league hitter grounded into a double play just over ten percent of the time that they came up with the opportunity to do so.  Thus, a hitter with Carpenter’s 91 double play opportunities on average would have grounded into a twin-kill nine times.


 

 

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