With his 12 home runs this season, Milwaukee Brewers’ outfielder Ryan Braun now has 242 career home runs, all with the Brewers. He is currently second on the team’s career HR list and is just nine homers away from tying Robin Yount for the franchise career mark.
Braun is one of two current players who may take over his team’s career lead for home runs this season. While Braun is 10 HRs away from the Brewers top spot, the New York Mets’ David Wright is 22 four-baggers away from taking over the Mets’ career HR mark. Wright currently has 231 home runs, 21 behind Darryl Strawberry who holds the record.
While Braun and Wright may be the only two current players who could take over their teams’ career HR in the immediate future, here’s a look at the franchises that have a current player within 150 home runs of the team HR record. (Numbers reflect totals through games of May 25)
HRs needed to tie club record for career homers
9: Milwaukee (Ryan Braun 242, Robin Yount 251)
21: New York Mets (David Wright 231, Darryl Strawberry 252)
45: Washington/Montreal: Ryan Zimmerman 189, Vladimir Guerrero 234)
107: Boston (David Ortiz 414, Ted Williams 521)
126: Toronto (Jose Bautista 210, Carlos Delgado 336)
129: Arizona (Paul Goldschmidt 95, Luis Gonzalez 224)
136: Detroit (Miguel Cabrera 263, Al Kaline 399)
138: Miami (Marcell Ozuna 29, Giancarlo Stanton 167*)
142: Tampa Bay (Desmond Jennings 47, Evan Longoria 189*)
* Team leader is still active with team
One final thought: As the title of this blog may indicate, I have some doubts whether or not Ryan Braun will be around to break Robin Yount’s career HR record. Two factors play into my thought; first, the Brewers currently have the worst record in baseball and there are very few signs that a turn-around this season is imminent. That could lead to the club looking to trade some of their higher-priced talent in a rebuilding plan. Braun would be a logical candidate, plus he would have value to teams looking for added punch for the pennant drive. Secondly, Robin Yount is a beloved player in the Brewers history. Braun, on the other hand, had seen his reputation tarnished over the past couple of seasons. It’s possible that some people in the Brewers organization will not want to see Braun take over the career HR mark from Yount. The career HR mark is a very visible record for any franchise. The thought may be that the club would rather have Yount retain that record than see Braun overtake him. Keep an eye on this as the season progresses and Braun gets closer to the record.
I’m just saying…
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Miguel Cabrera made his major league debut at age 20 in 2003 with the Florida Marlins by hitting a walk-off home run, at that time the third player in MLB history to hit a game-winning HR in his big league debut. Since then Cabrera has been a nine-time All-Star, two-time league MVP and a triple Crown winner. Recently, Cabrera, who now plays for Detroit, hit his 400th HR and collected his 1,400th RBI within five days of each other.
Following are a few stats you may not know about Cabrera.
1. Cabrera on May 16th became the 53rd player in MLB history to reach 400 home runs. Of the 53 players with 400-plus HRs, Cabrera has the sixth highest career batting average (.320), the ninth highest slugging percentage (.565) and the 12th highest OPS (.962).
2. Cabrera became the 28th right-handed hitter to reach the 400-HR mark. Of the 53 players with 400 career HRs, 25 are already in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
3. Cabrera became the 45th player in baseball history to reach 400 HRs and 1,400 RBI. He was the 70th player to collect 1,400 career RBIs.
4. Since his debut in 2003, Cabrera’s 400 HRs ranks fourth behind Albert Pujols (457), Adam Dunn (417) and David Ortiz (414). His 1,400 RBIs are the most of any player in baseball since ’03. Of players with at least 5,000 at-bats since 2003, Cabrera’s .320 career batting average is first on the list.
5. Cabrera has played for two teams in his 13-year career, five seasons with the Marlins and eight with the Tigers. He ranks fifth on the Marlins all-time list in home runs with 138 and third on the RBI totals with 523. His .313 career batting average in a Marlins uniform is the best in the franchise’s history. He is fourth on Detroit career HR list with 262 four-baggers, 13th on the list with 877 RBI, and sixth in the team’s history with a .326 average.
6. Cabrera is one of only four players to appear in the Top Five in career home runs with two franchises. The four: Cabrera (4th with Detroit; 5th with Florida), Vladimir Guerrero (1st with Washington/Montreal; 5th with L.A. Angels), Rafael Palmeiro (2nd with Texas; 5th with Baltimore), Barry Bonds (2nd with San Francisco; 4th with Pittsburgh)
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With their overtime win last night, the Cleveland Cavaliers have a 3-0 lead in their Eastern Conference Final series against the Atlanta Hawks. The Golden State Warriors have a 3-0 lead in their Western Conference Final series against Houston and will try for the four-game sweep tonight.
Since 1958 when the NBA went to a seven-game series for their conference finals, the NBA has never had two teams reach the NBA Finals with both winning their conference finals series via a sweep. Should the Cavs and Warriors both sweep their foes in the conference finals, it would be the first time in NBA history.
In 1958 the two teams that met in the NBA finals, the Boston Celtics and St. Louis Hawks, both won their conference finals series with a 3-0 sweep of their opponents. That was the last time NBA finals opponents each won their previous series with a sweep.
The last time a team won a conference title with a 4-0 sweep was in 2013 when the San Antonio Spurs defeated the Memphis Grizzlies. The Spurs went on to lose the NBA finals to Miami. In fact, of the 15 teams that swept their conference finals to reach the NBA Finals, only eight of those teams won the title that year.
Here’s a look at the 15 teams that have swept their conference finals series to reach the championship series and how well they did in the NBA Finals that year.
2013: San Antonio (lost NBA finals)
2003: New Jersey Nets (lost NBA finals)
2001: L.A. Lakers (won NBA title)
1999: San Antonio (won NBA title)
1998: Utah (lost NBA finals)
1996: Chicago (won NBA title)
1991: Chicago (won NBA title)
1989: L.A. Lakers (lost NBA finals)
1987: L.A. Lakers (won NBA title)
1986: Boston (won NBA title)
1982: L.A. Lakers (won NBA title)
1977: Portland (won NBA title)
1974: Milwaukee (lost NBA finals)
1970: L.A. Lakers (lost NBA finals)
1968: L.A. Lakers (lost NBA finals)
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After eight-plus seasons in Boston and a short stint in Oakland, Jon Lester became a free agent last year and eventually signed with the Chicago Cubs. Lester was one of the most sought-after free agents last year as a three-time all-star, a 116-67 pitching career record and three World Series victories. One thing, however, is that Lester’s bat was not one of the aspects of his game that attracted potential suitors in the off-season.
Lester went 0-for-three last night in the Cubs’ 5-4 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Big deal, right? Well with his 0-f0r-three night Lester is now 0-for-57 in his career as a batter. Add in an 0-for-five in post-season appearances at the plate and Lester has 62 career at-bats in his major league career without a hit.
Lester’s 57 at-bats in the regular season without a hit are currently the most of any player in MLB history. Of course, should Lester scratch out a hit in the near future his name will disappear from this list. But for now, Lester is the worst hitter in MLB history.
Following are the players who have had the most at-bats in MLB history without ever getting a hit.
Most career at-bats without a hit (last season they played in the majors)
57: Jon Lester (active)
41: Randy Tate (1975)
37: Tony McKnight (2001), Bo McLaughlin (1982)
31: Armando Galarraga (2012), Ted Davidson(1968), Charley Stanceu (1946)
29: Jose Contreras (2013), Andy Hassler (1985)
26: Daniel Carbrera (2009), Tony Pierce (1968), Von McDaniel (1958), Harry Ables (1911)
23: Brandon Morrow (active), Larry Littleton (1981), Mike Potter (1977), Nellie King (1957)
21: Carl Bouldin (1964)
20: Geraldo Guzman (2001), Eral Stephenson (1978), Dad Hale (1902)
* Of the players listed above, all are/were pitchers except for Littleton and Potter
The Minnesota Timberwolves will have the first overall pick in this year’s NBA Draft. It will be the first time in the team’s 26-year history that get to choose first among the NBA’s 30 franchises. Prior to Tuesday’s lottery selection, the T-Wolves were one of eight current NBA franchises that had never had the number one overall pick in an NBA Draft. Can you name the other seven teams? (More on that in a minute.)
The Timberwolves had the NBA’s worst record this year at 16-66. Getting the number one overall pick is the highest they have chosen in the draft since 2011 when they selected Derrick Williams from the University of Arizona with the second overall pick.
Since 1947 when the Pittsburgh Ironmen selected Clifton McNeeley from the University of Texas-El Paso with the first pick of the draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers have had the most overall number one picks in draft history with six. Four of them have come this century.
Here’s a look at the franchises that have had the most overall number one picks in the history of the NBA Draft. (Note: Teams listed below are the current NBA franchise location.)
5: Houston, Sacramento
4: Milwaukee, New York Knicks, Portland, Washington
3: Atlanta, Golden State, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Orlando
2: Brooklyn, Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia, San Antonio
1: Boston, Charlotte, Dallas, New Orleans, Toronto
0: Denver, Indiana, Memphis, Miami, Minnesota (have number overall pick in 2015), Oklahoma City, Phoenix, Utah
Of those franchises that have had the number one overall pick in the NBA Draft, the Boston Celtics have had the longest wait for another shot at the number one pick. The Celtics had the overall number one pick in 1950 (they chose Chuck Share of Bowling Green University). Next longest wait are the Detroit Pistons, who last had the overall number one pick in 1970.
Having the overall number one pick has been a good omen for a handful of teams. In fact, four teams had the overall number one pick in a draft and then won an NBA title within first five years of that pick. They are:
* The Milwaukee Bucks chose Lew Alcindor with the #1 pick in 1969 and then won the championship in 1971.
* Portland selected Bill Walton with the first pick in the 1974 draft and won the title in 1978.
* The Lakers chose Magic Johnson with the #1 pick in 1979 and went on to win the championship in 1980, 1982. The Lakers took James Worthy with the first pick in 1983 and also won the title in 1985 and 1987.
* San Antonio selected Tim Duncan with the number one overall pick in 1997 and won titles in 1999 and 2003.
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