Posts Tagged ‘Jose Altuve’

The Fun of Altuve-Rose Has Begun

August 13, 2016
2036: Twenty years from now, he may be remembered as "The Little Big Man That Altuvenated Minute Made Park"!

2036: Twenty years from now, he may be remembered as “The Little Big Man That Altuvenated Minute Maid Park”!


The Fun of Altuve-Rose Has Begun

Through Saturday’s August 13, 2016 that just finished in Toronto with a 4-2 Astros loss, Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros now has 997 hits in the first 784 games of his MLB regular season career. Altuve is now playing in the sixth season of his 2011-2016 big league span of early service.

All-Time Hits leader Pete Rose, who finished his 24-season (1963-1986) active MLB playing season with a record total of 4,256 hits, earlier recorded the first 1,000 of his career safeties in Game 831 of his MLB career. It happened on June 26, 1968 with a single against the New York Mets at Crosley Field in Cincinnati. Hardly coincidental in the matter of this close accomplishment comparison of Rose to the incredible newbie great-to-be that Jose Altuve is becoming a terrific Astros fan fun track. Pete also reached the four-digit career hits benchmark level in the sixth season of his MLB experience.

Player Age Hits Game
Pete.Rose 27 1,000 831
Jose.Altuve 26    997 784

Wow! The way Altuve is now hitting in 2016, he may well reach 1,000 hits tomorrow – in the Sunday rubber game against Toronto. After all, Altuve needs only three more hits to reach 1,000, and that’s almost chump change the way this guy hits.

However it happens doesn’t matter. It’s coming. And coming soon. What matters now is that the “fun clock” is up and running full blast on Altuve versus Rose.

Rose was age 27 in the 1968 season in which he reached 1.000 total hits. Altuve, God Willing, will be 26 when he reaches the 1.000 hit level any day now in August of 2016. And, as we said, maybe that day is as soon as tomorrow.

We Astros fans are blessed to be witnesses to the blossoming of the real Babe Ruth of our franchise. With no disrespect intended for the wonderful career accomplishments of Craig Biggio, Jeff Bagwell, Jimmy Wynn, Larry Dierker, Nolan Ryan, Jose Cruz, or Lance Berkman, Houston’s “Little Big Man” is rapidly playing up to a level that leads only one place, if it is sustained over time – and that’s the no-brainer wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.

Who knows? Our smiling little finger-biting Venezuelan may someday be remembered in celebration and song in these parts as …. “The Little Big Man That Atluvenated Minute Maid Park!”

Let’s just hope we can afford to keep him here in Houston also as the greatest career Astro of all time!


Bill McCurdy

Publisher, Editor, Writer

The Pecan Park Eagle

Houston, Texas

Altuve Deserves Start at 2nd for NL

June 18, 2012

Jose Altuve is also a pretty nifty little fielder too.

In a truly fair and balanced world, Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros would be the runaway choice to start at second base for the National League in the 2012 All Star Game. The game’s smallest player at 5’5″ just happens to carry the biggest offensive production among all second basemen in the NL, forged big by his .317 batting average through games of June 17th.

Altuve is the only NL second baseman with any substantial playing time hitting over .300 this year – and his nearest competitor, Brandon Phillips of the Cincinnati Reds, is twenty point back of Altuve with a BA of .287. If I’m not mistaken, Altuve also leads all second basemen with the most multiple hit games – and he also ranks high among RBI leaders at his position.

He’s also an adroit fielder who positions well and handles the tough plays with all the moxie of a seasoned veteran.

Unfortunately, the only thing that could keep Jose Altuve from starting, the fan vote, most certainly will. I’ve been against the fan vote from the start for all the obvious reasons. Fans pick players on the basis of name recognition, partisanship, and popularity. It also caters to fans of the large market teams. How could we play an All Star Game without a boatload of Yankees? Obviously that will not be a problem. The Yankees have  some great players, but they also have more fans – and more votes. If MLB and the networks think that fan voting makes for better TV viewing numbers, and they obviously do, then we are likely to keep seeing the same soup warmed over every year until either the end of time, or the death of the All Star Game, whichever comes first.

As a kid, I liked it much better when the players and managers voted for the All Star teams of each league and were simply barred from voting for anyone from their own teams. If you wanted to see Hank Aaron in left, Willie Mays in center, and Roberto Clemente in right for the NL, the player vote was the best way to get there – as long as these players were having years that affirmed they deserved it. The players were told to only pay attention to what players were doing during the current year – and not to vote on the basis of past season greatness. Players may not have followed this advice perfectly, but it seemed to me they were much closer to the truth each year than the fans ever are.

Unless he gets hurt, Jose Altuve will make the NL All Star team as the representative of the Houston Astros. It’s just too bad he can’t go there too as the starting second baseman. – Nobody else in the NL has done it better in 2012.

Altuve Joins Inside-The-Park HR Club

August 21, 2011

Jose Altuve, shown above in his recent home debut for the Houston Astros in a game against the Reds, has now joined the MLB Inside-The-Park HR Club in a game against the Giants.

We’ve got a little more road to cover before we anoint the career of 21-year old rookie second baseman Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros, but in the meanwhile,  the kid certainly isn’t doing much to discourage the early adulation. He went 3 for 5 in Saturday’s game at Minute Maid Park against the defending World Champion San Francisco Giants, raising his batting average  to .327 in 110 official times at bat during this late portion of the 2011 season.

Yesterday ALtuve also collected his first big league home run too, but it wasn’t just any old homer. It was inside-the-park job that caromed off the far left center field wall and got lost from the tracking vision of Giants center fielder long enough for Jose to burn a base running path all the way home for his first big league round-tripper, The kid has speed, moxie, and a high native baseball IQ. Nothing was going to stop him once he caught a glimpse of the fielder searching for the ball as he rounded second base. Not Third Base Coach Dave Clark, Not common sense. Not caution. Not the thought that starting any game with a man of third was a pretty good way to go. Nothing got in the way of Altuve’s literal most true enactment of a hell-bound-for-leather home run trip around the bases on the wings of opportunity. And he made it. With no play on him at the plate from a late and more than errant return throw of the ball to the infield.

In the early dead ball days of baseball, when many parks were canyons of space covered by shallow-playing outfielders, the balls that did skip through the defenses on a good roll were always a danger of becoming inside the park homers. The triple count, of course, was also quite high. The number of players who hit two inside-the-parkers in the early part of the 20th century is also quite high.

Ty Cobb led the American League with 9 home runs in the 1909 season and everyone of them was an inside-the-park job. That total by Cobb also represents the most inside-the-park home runs by an American Leaguer in any single season. That all of them for Cobb in 1909 were inside-the-park jobs speaks volumes for the normalcy of such a play back in the day. Tyrus was banging inside-the-prkers at a 100% rate in 1909.

Sam Crawford led the National League in 1901 with 16 home runs, and with 12 of these being inside-the-park acts and the NL record for same in a single season, giving old Sam a 66.7% sub-total of inside-the-park-home-runs to grand total homers for that one season.

Ty Cobb (1905-1928) hit 46 career inside-the-park homers to lead the American League for all time. His 46 sub-total from his 117 grand total career homers gave him a 39.3% average of insiders to total HR strokes.

Tommy Leach (1898-1915) hit 48 of his 63 career total homers as inside-the-parkers to become the National League’s all time leader. His figures represent that 76.2% of his shots never left the ballpark.

Jesse Burkett (1890-1905) is the major league leader in career inside-the-park homers. His career totals for each league place him back of Cobb and Leach respectively, but his grand total of 55 inside-the-parkers among 75 total homers still leads all MLB challengers. Burkett’s inside-to-total HR percentage is 73.3% – also the high stat among the three leaders portrayed here.

Isn’t baseball wonderful? Every time a kid like Jose Altuve does something like start a game off with an inside-the-park home run, it triggers the minds of many back to the days of old, when such a play was not quite the oddity it’s become in the early 21st century.

Keep it up, Jose Altuve! – We Astros fans need all the stoking of hope coals that players like you can give us by your the embers of this mostly forgettable 2011 season.