Thursday, May 29, 2008

Can Chipper Jones hit .400 this year?

Well we've been so busy with summer, the NBA Conference Finals, and the Stanley Cup Finals that we haven't been going a lot of MLB posting. So here's something for you!

So when do we start the Chipper .400 Watch? The Sports Flow is starting now and so should you! Only three times in the past 50 years has any hitter had as high a batting average as Chipper has now (.418), Rod Carew (1983), Rico Carty (1974) and Hank Aaron (1959). So why not start the speculation?

I realize it's been 67 years and counting since Ted Williams hit .400. And it's 28 years since George Brett even became the last man to carry a .400 average into September. But why not Chipper? He's a switch-hitter who's batting .409 left-handed and .431 right-handed. He hit .422 in April. He's stayed hot in May hitting .429. And over the past year, he has had only one month when he's hit lower than .364. This leads me to believe this is no fluke.

In fact, if you look back over that year, Chipper batted .376 (with a .459 OBP and .622 SLG) for a full season. How close is that to hitting .400? Well, if he'd just gotten one extra hit every two weeks, he'd be a .400 hitter for the equivalent of one complete season. So obviously this isn't just coming out of no where.

I'm not going to lie. Sure, I'm a little surprised by Chipper putting up softball-type numbers thus far this year. However, I think it's time we start to watch carefully. Lance Berkman has also been having a great year and does pose some .400 threat. However, I think Chipper has the best chance to do it. As I've stated the stats show that Chipper is locked in from both sides of the plate right now, and has been for a while. This is no fluke. Plus, Berkman has never hit over .318 in a season.

Chipper is for real and I think it's going to be really fun to watch him make a run at .400 this year. My only concern would be his durability being a bit older now. But as for now I'm along for the ride!