(A weekly look at several sports stats you may not know)
- Can you have a home field advantage in baseball if there are no fans in the stands? Interesting question. Based on some numbers from the early games played in this year’s abbreviated version of Major League Baseball, it appears that maybe cheering fans do play a role in their team’s success at home. Through games of August 8, MLB home teams are 105-100, a .512 winning percentage. Last season home teams had a winning percentage of .529 for the season. We’ll have to see how this stat plays out the rest of this season.
- In the Brewers’ 8-3 win over the Chicago White Sox on August 6, Christian Yelich had a home run and walked four times. Yelich became the 100th player in MLB history to have at least one home run and four or more walks in a game in baseball history. It was the 123rd time this feat was accomplished. He also became the first Brewer player to reach these numbers in a game. Yelich also scored three runs in the contest; it was the 43rd time in MLB history that a player had a home run, four or more walks and three or more runs scored in a game in MLB history. Barry Bonds accomplished the feat of a home run and four walks in a game six times in his career… Ted Williams did it five times… Edgar Martinez did it four times… and Babe Ruth and Mark McGwire did it three times each in their careers.
- The Milwaukee Bucks were the only NBA team this season that had a shot at winning 60 games when the season resumed play in late July. They would have become the 14th team in NBA history to have back-to-back 60-win seasons, but will fall short of the 60-win season this year. The 13 teams that accomplished the feat of back-to-back 60-win seasons: Philadelphia (1967-68), Milwaukee (1971-72-73), L.A. Lakers (1972-73), Boston (1981-82-83), Boston (1984-85-86). L.A. Lakers (1985-86-87-88), Chicago (1991-92), Chicago (1996-97-98), Utah (1997-98), Dallas (2006-07), Cleveland (2009-10), Golden State (2015-16-17), San Antonio (2016-17).
- The Chicago White Sox have a Rookie of the Year (ROY) candidate in centerfielder Luis Robert. Through the first 15 games of this season, Robert is batting .322 with nine runs scored, six RBI and four stolen bases. The Sox have had six ROY in their history: Jose Abreu (2014), Ozzie Guillen (1985), Ron Kittle (1983), Tommie Agee (1966), Gary Peters (1963) and Luis Aparicio (1956).
- Did you know that based on a player’s age as of June 30, Prince Fielder hit the most HRs with the Brewers in his 20’s? Fielder hit 230 home runs with the Brewers in seasons age 20-29. Second on the list is Ryan Braun, who hit 211 home runs with the Brewers in his 20s. Robin Yount hit 11 homers as a teenager with the Brewers, tops in that age group (Gary Sheffied is second with four dingers). Most home runs by a Brewer player in his 30’s? Ben Oglivie with 158 followed by Cecil Cooper (144). Hank Aaron has the most HRs by a Brewers player in his 40s with 22. He is followed by Jim Edmonds with eight. (Source: Research on baseball-reference.com).
- There has been speculation in the media that the Packers might take a look at former Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Antonio Brown to upgrade their receiving corp. Might not be a bad idea based on this stat: Brown holds the NFL record for most consecutive games with seven or more receptions with 14 games. He is followed by Michael Thomas (New Orleans) and Demaryius Thomas (Denver) who each caught seven or more passes in eight consecutive games. The Packers record is held by Davante Adams who caught seven or more passes in five straight games.
- When Aaron Rodgers throws his first TD pass in the 2020 regular season, he will become the second Packers QB to have thrown a regular season TD pass in three different decades. Rodgers had his first TD pass in 2007, tossed a bunch of them in the 2010s, and will likely throw a few this decade. The other Packers QB to have a TD in three different decades is Bart Starr. He had his first TD pass for the Packers in 1956 and then threw TD passes in the 60’s and 70’s.
- The Brewers 1-0 win over the White Sox on August 5 was their first 1-0 win since April 3, 2019 when they defeated the Cincinnati Reds, 1-0. It was the 80th 1-0 win for the Brewers in the team’s history. Since 2015, there have been 213 1-0 games in the majors. The San Francisco Giants have won 14 of those games, tops in the majors. The other teams with 11 or more 1-0 wins since 2015: L.A. Dodgers (13), Chicago Cubs (13), Milwaukee, Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay (each with 11).
- San Diego’s Fernando Tatis Jr. recently became the ninth player in MLB history to hit 30 home runs in the first 100 games of his career. The others: Mark McGwire (he hit 37 in his first 100 games), Cody Bellinger (34), Rudy York (33), Pete Alonso (33), Gary Sanchez (33), Jose Abreu (31), Tatis Jr. (30), Aaron Judge (30) and Ryan Braun (30).
- The Brewers have gotten off to a relatively slow start which may not bode well in this shortened season. They may have to depend on another September charge to make the playoffs. In September of 2018 and 2019, the Brewers had the second-best record in the majors. The Brew Crew was a combined 40-14 (.741) in regular season games after September 1 in 2018 and 2019. The Houston Astros were 40-12 (.769) those two seasons in September contests, tops in the majors. If you go all the way back to 2010, the Brewers were 159-123 in September games, fifth best in the MLB.
- One final thought: Aaron Rodgers and Danica Patrick are no longer dating… Patrick said she was a Bears fan before her and Rodgers started dating… former Bears QB Jay Cutler and wife Kristin Cavallari are headed for divorce… does it make sense for Jay Cutler to start dating Danica Patrick? Just wondering.
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Yelich, Moustakas challenging Brewers record for most HRs before the All-Star break
Through games of June 9, the Brewers have a pair of players near the top of the list for most home runs this season: Christian Yelich leads the majors with 24 long balls while Mike Moustakas is tied for third with 20.
Yelich and Moustakas became the 15th and 16th players in Brewers history to have 20 or more home runs before the All-Star break. When you consider there are 25 more games remaining on the schedule (as of June 10) for the Brew Crew before this year’s All-Star Game on July 9, Yelich and “Moose” could put up some pretty impressive home run numbers before the All-Star break.
Yelich has 24 HR’s in 59 games and is on a pace to have 34 homers at the All-Star break; Moustakas has 20 HRs in 59 games and is on a pace for 28 home runs before the All-Star Game. Prince Fielder holds the Brewers record for most home runs prior to the All-Star Game with 29… he did it in 2007. That means that Yelich has a very real chance of surpassing Fielder’s record of 29 and Moustakas could certainly make a run at that number as well.
Fielder is currently one of four Brewers players to have 25 or more HRs before the All-Star Game. The others: Jeromy Burnitz (26 in 1999), Carlos Lee (26 in 2006) and Richie Sexson (25 in 2003). There are three players who are tied with Yelich with 24 home runs before the All-Star break… Jesus Aguilar (he had 24 last season), Greg Vaughn (24 in 1996) and Ryan Braun (he had 24 in 2012).
Yelich could make a run at becoming one of only a handful of MLB players to have 35 or more home runs before the All-Star Game. As noted above, he is on a pace to have 34 before the All-Star Game. The MLB record is 39 held by Barry Bonds; he did that in 2001. Here are the six players who had 35 or more home runs before the All-Star Game in baseball history.
Barry Bonds, 39, 2001
Mark McGwire, 37, 1998
Reggie Jackson, 37, 1969
Chris Davis, 37, 2013
Luis Gonzalez, 35, 2001
Ken Griffey, Jr., 35 in 1998
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Who’s on first… for the Brewers on Opening Day?
If you are a diehard Brewers fan, you may find it hard to believe the following stat.
Did you know…
… from 2011-18, eight straight seasons, the Brewers have had a different starting first baseman on Opening Day. Yes, the Brew Crew’s Opening Day lineup has featured a different starter at first base for the last eight consecutive seasons.
Go back to 2011; Prince Fielder was the starting first baseman that season, the sixth straight year he was the Opening Day starting first baseman for the Brewers. After that, however, the Opening Day starting first basemen has looked like this…
2012: Mat Gamel
2013: Alex Gonzalez
2014: Lyle Overbay
2015: Adam Lind
2016: Chris Carter
2017: Eric Thames
2018: Ryan Braun
Conventional wisdom is that Jesus Aguilar, last year’s regular at first base for the Crew, will hold that spot on Opening Day in 2019… that is baring any injury that would prevent him from that honor.
So… if Aguilar mans the first base spot on Opening Day in late March this season, we could see yet another different first baseman on Opening Day for the Brewers, the ninth straight year that has happened.
Prior to this season, that longest stretch where the Brewers had a different Opening Day starting first baseman was 1998-2001. John Jaha was the Opening Day starter at first in 1998; the following year it was Sean Berry, followed by Kevin Barker in 2000 and Richie Sexson in 2001.
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TODAY’s SPORTSTAT-October 11, 2018
This is the fifth year in the Milwaukee Brewers 50-year franchise history (one year in Seattle as the Pilots, 49 seasons in Milwaukee) that they have made the playoffs. The National League Championship Series (NLCS) versus the Los Angeles Dodgers is the eighth different playoff series the team has played in those 50 seasons: they played in one post-season series in 1981, two in 1982, one in 2008, two in 2011, and face the Dodgers in their second playoff series of 2018.
Here are several stats about the past history of the Brewers in the playoffs and some stats about Brewers players in the post-season.
- The Brewers have never won a Game 6 or a Game 7 in the playoffs in their history. They are 4-3 in Game Ones; 2-5 in Game Twos; 4-3 in Game Threes; 4-2 in Game Fours; 3-2 in Game Fives; 0-2 in Game Sixes; and 0-1 in Game Sevens.
- The team has a playoff record of 17-18 (through the 2018 Colorado series). They are 12-6 (.667 winning percentage) at home and 5-12 (.294) in road playoff contests.
- The Brewers are 6-8 after a loss in the playoffs… 7-7 after a win.
- If the Brewers have lost two straight games in a playoff series, they are 6-0 in the next game after a two-game playoff losing streak. If they have won two straight in a playoff series, the Brew Crew is 2-3 in the next game.
- Milwaukee is 5-2 in their first home game of a playoff series.
- The Brewers have won three playoff series in their history (1982, 2011 and 2018) and have lost four series (1981, 1982, 2008 and 2011).
- Ryan Braun holds the Brewers team record for most career post-season hits with 27. He is followed by Robin Yount (22), Paul Molitor (22), Charlie Moore (17), Cecil Cooper (15) and Jerry Hairston (15). How many of you had Hairston on this list?
- Prince Fielder has the most career HRs in the post-season for Milwaukee with four. Molitor and Ted Simmons follow with three each, and Braun, Corey Hart, Ben Oglivie, Gorman Thomas and Rickie Weeks (two each) are the only other Brewers players to have two or more career post-season home runs for the club.
- Cooper tops the list with 13 career post-season RBI for the Brewers. The only other Brewer with 10 or more is Braun with 12.
- Mike Caldwell is the only Brew Crew pitcher to win more than one post-season game for the Brewers.
- Shaun Marcum is the only Brewers pitcher to lose three or more post-season games for the Brew Crew. He was 0-3.
- John Axford (3), Bob McClure (2) and Pete Ladd (2) are the only relief pitchers to have more than one save for the Brewers in the post season.
- Yovani Galardo leads the Brewers pitching staff with the most career post season strikeouts with 20. He is followed by Pete Vukovich (16), Don Sutton (140, Zack Greinke (13) and Chris Narveson (13).
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A carousel at shortstop; 30-100 Brewers
Are there any more players who will take a shot at shortstop for the Brewers this season? So far in 2018, the Brewers have had six different players who have taken a turn playing short: Orlando Arcia, Brad Miller, Nate Orf, Hernan Perez, Tyler Saladino and Eric Sogard.
The six different players at shortstop are tied for the third most by the team in a season (six players also played short in 1986, 1978 and 1971). The most shortstops used by the Brewers franchise in a season was eight. That happened in 1969 when the team was in Seattle as the Seattle Pilots. The second most shortstops used was in 2012 when seven players played short for the Milwaukee Brewers.
Here are the names of the shortstops used by the franchise in those 1969 and 2012 seasons.
1969 (eight shortstops used): Ron Clark, John Donaldson, Gus Gil, John Kennedy, Gordy Lund, Ray Oyler and Fred Stanley.
2012: (seven shortstops used): Jeff Bianchi, Brooks Conrad, Alex Gonzalez, Cesar Izturis, Edwin Maysonet, Cody Ranson, Jean Segura
In case you were wondering, there has never been a season for the Brewers where they used only one shortstop the whole season. There have been, however, six different seasons where they used only two shortstops in a campaign… 1970 (Ted Kubiak and Roberto Pena), 1976 (Tim Johnson and Robin Yount), 1981 (Robin Yount and Ed Romero), 1991 (Bill Spiers and Dale Sveum), 1998 (Mark Loretta and Jose Valentin) and 2005 (Bill Hall and J.J. Hardy).
Last season Travis Shaw became the first Brewers player since 2012 (Ryan Braun) to have 30 or more home runs and 100 or more RBIs in a season. Shaw had 31 HRs and 101 RBIs in 2017.
Through games of July 20, Shaw has 18 homers and has driven in 55. He is on pace to end the season with 29 HRs and 90 RBI.
If he can reach 30-100 again this season, Shaw would become the first Brewers player since Braun (2011 and 2012) to have back-to-back 30-100 seasons for the Brew Crew.
There have been five Brewers players who had back-to-back 30-100 seasons: Gorman Thomas (1979 and 1980), Cecil Cooper (1982 and 1983), Jeromy Burnitz (1998 and 1999), Prince Fielder (2007, 2008 and 2009) and Braun, who did it twice (2008 and 2009; 2011 and 2012).
Braun and Fielder are tied for the most 30-100 seasons with the club; each had four in a Brewers uniform. Burnitz and Thomas each had three 30-100 seasons in Milwaukee, while Cooper, Ben Oglivie and Richie Sexson are the only other Brewers to have multiple 30-100 seasons with the Brew Crew, each with two.
Alex Rodriguez leads the majors with the most 30-100 seasons with 14. He is followed by Jimmie Foxx, Albert Pujols, Manny Ramirez and babe Ruth, each who had 12 such seasons.
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