With anything like a normal 162 game season, quite a few team and career milestones will be reached this year. Let’s take a look.
Miguel Cabrera is on record stating 500 home runs and 3000 hits are personal goals this year. He needs 13 homers for 500 and 134 hits for 3000. If he hits .250 this year, then he needs to stay healthy enough to get 534 at bats for 3000–doable with good health. Also, if he scores just 3 runs, he will reach 1500 for his career. He also reaches 5000 total bases with just 58 more. 19 more doubles gets him to 600 for his career. The future Hall of Famer will have his name in the news quite a bit this year.
Will Albert Pujols keep his WAR total above 100? He’s at 100.7 right now. He has 3236 hits; with 84 more, he can move into the top ten all time, passing Paul Molitor at 3319. He’d also pass Napoleon Lajoie, Eddie Murray, Willie Mays, and Eddie Collins along the way. That’s no longer a given for him, in likely his last season, but not impossible. With 57 runs scored, he’d reach 1900. He has 5923 total bases, with 44 more he will pass Barry Bonds to #4 all time. 144 would move him past Willie Mays for #3 all time. 34 home runs to tie A-Rod’s 696 is probably too many. 114 RBI to reach Babe Ruth’s 2214 and #2 all time on that list isn’t realistic. Still, this is an inner circle Hall of Fame career that’s reaching its twilight.
Mike Trout moves into the top 40 all time in WAR if he achieves 5.2 (passing Pete Rose); with 5.4 he achieves 80 total WAR. He could retire today, and he’d be a first ballot Hall of Famer. Remember, he’s also only 28.
Joey Votto needs 92 hits for 2000 and 5 homers for 300.
Robinson Cano needs 29 doubles to reach 600. We should be talking about his HoF career arc, too, but his PED issues have put paid to that.
Andrew McCutcheon needs 26 runs scored to reach 1000 for his career.
Justin Verlander isn’t playing this year as he recovers from Tommy John surgery, but it’s with remembering he’s the active career leader with 226 wins and 3013 strikeouts.
John Lester needs 7 wins for 200 and 103 K’s for 2500.
Craig Kinbrel has 348 saves. With 20 more he would pass Jeff Reardon’s 367 to move into the top ten all time. Other leading active players in terms of total saves—Aroldis Chapman has 276, and Kenley Jansen has 312.
With 216 K’s Max Scherzer joins Verlander in the 3.000 K club. Zack Greinke has 2689; he will have to wait until next year. Pitchers within 200 of reaching 2000 include David Price (1981), Ervin Santana (1926), Gio Gonzalez (1860), Adam Wainwright (1830), Madison Bumgarner (1824), and Francisco Liriano (1815). They won’t all get to 2000.
Tony LaRussa at 2728 wins almost certainly gets the 46 needed to pass John McGraw for #2 all time. (#1 is of course Connie Mack at 3731.).
Dusty Baker with 13 wins will pass Bill McKechnie for #14 all time. Here are the managers with more who aren’t in the Hall of Fame: Gene Mauch and Bruce Bochy. Bochy will be inducted, probably the next time the Today’s Game committee meets. Baker can pass Mauch if he keeps managing after this year.
The Cardinals need 82 wins for 11K all time (the other teams in the 11K win club are the Giants, Dodgers, and Cubs). There is only one 11K loss team is the Phillies, and nobody will join them this year.
The Brewers need 87 wins to reach 4K (I think they have to wait until next year). The Twins only need 61 for 9K. The Rays of course haven’t existed long enough to reach those numbers but will reach 2K wins this year (38 away).
On the losing side of the ledger, with their 56th loss this year, the Red Sox will have accumulated 9K. The Rangers are 50 losses away from 5K.
8 thoughts on “Preview 2021: Milestones”
Looking forward to some fun watching Miggy bring it this year. Been a minute since we were celebrating milestones, but I think we’ll get to do some celebrating again this season. And we have some Midwest City at the helm. Back-to-back managers from Oklahoma. That’s a good omen. Bring it.
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You could win quite a few bar bets asking people to name the MLB team with the most all time wins. I bet 90% of people would pick the Yankees.
Indeed. The reason, of course, is that the NL has been around longer…and the Yankees were not a good team until some guy named Ruth came along.
Robinson Cano cannot reach any milestones this year. He is suspended for the entire year for PEDs.
You’re right. For some reason I thought he was just coming off suspension.
Since this is the 2nd time it just seems that way
One more such act of buffoonery by him, and I won’t have to worry about it.
Good piece. I especially like the wry way you pointed out the futility of Pujol’s chase of counting stats at the expense of his reputation.