The Milwaukee Brewers season is underway, and for many fans that means trying to keep track of every critical moment and stat you can think of. In terms of following a baseball club it can be a lot to juggle at once.
With that in mind, we decided to highlight some of the milestone statistics coming down the road this season for a handful of Milwaukee Brewers players.
Rickie has a pair of benchmark statistics coming up this season, though they may not be the easiest to come by if he can’t stay healthy.
Weeks is a scant 130 hits away from 1,000 – a good performance to start the year thus far (three hits in two games to begin the 2013 season) has netted him 870 hits on his career. Rickie also is 36 doubles way from having 200 two-baggers in his career. It would require a monster year from his bat to achieve it (his highest career double total so far is 32 in 2010), but when he can stay in the lineup for an entire season the number is easily reachable.
Aramis has a chance to set himself apart in terms of power numbers this year. (Benny Sieu-USA Today Sports)
When you play Major League Baseball at a high level for as long as Ramy has, you’re bound to start catching up on some pretty impressive numbers. This season Aramis Ramirez will more than likely hit four of them – and start building on them for a possible run at the Hall of Fame.
As of today, Ramirez sits with 1,962 hits and if he keeps up his hot start, he could collect the 38 hits necessary to reach 2,000 in a matter of a month or two. He also needs just 34 runs scored to collect run number 1,000. Not to mention passing some duly significant milestone numbers on doubles (he’s five away from 450) and home runs (342, only eight to go for 350) are easily in reach for Ramirez. Another good power year will make him one of the best all-around offensive players among active Major Leaguers and leave him poised to pass even bigger milestones in 2014.
But this year, Axford has a chance to eclipse a more important milestone for Milwaukee fans. John Axford is 28 saves away from 134 – which would be enough to pass up Dan Plesac as the most successful closer in Milwaukee Brewers history. Even though last year was underwhelming (though unlucky might be an equally powerful argument) he still managed to save 35 games. I’d say this title is all but locked up for the Ax Man in 2013.
With all the success of Yovani’s career and the amount of time he’s been on the hill for the Brewers, it’s easy to forget that he’s only 27 years old. In 2013, his success should continue, at least in the strikeout department. Yo is 61 strikeouts shy of the 1,000 mark, sitting at 939 for his career. It’s a long way to the top of the list, but if he can continue to put up 200 K seasons, he can be among the most prolific strikeout pitchers in the game in five years.
One more pitching milestone is on the horizon for Gallardo, though it is unreachable this season. Gallardo is sitting on 69 wins for his career – if he can hang in around 15 or 16 wins like he has the past few seasons, he should hit the century mark at the end of 2014.
I included Norichika Aoki on this list, and at first it might be a head scratcher. But, when
Aoki has had plenty to smile about in his career, and hopefully a whole lot more come with his time in Milwaukee (Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)
taking a Japanese player’s career numbers into account I believe that the time spent in the Professional Leagues across the Pacific ought to be included when considering their career as a whole. With that in mind, there are some pretty big moments on the horizon for the Brewers outfielder.
First off, a big number in the life of any contact hitter – home run number 100. We’ve seen Aoki’s power stroke a little bit – the bigger dimensions of MLB parks have limited his home run ability – but combining his numbers from the Tokyo Yakult Swallows, he is only 5 home runs away from his 100th professional dinger. But we all know we love Aoki for his contact and ability to get on base, and in just 63 hits – think around the All-Star break – Nori will have earned 1,500 professional hits between America and Japan. Though his numbers have swung greatly in terms of stolen bases during his time in Tokyo, Aoki finds himself only six swipes from a career number of 200 stolen bases.
It’s no wonder that he was a star in Japan – and though we will hardly hear mentions of these milestones as Aoki’s American numbers don’t have that kind of clout, I think he deserves a tip of the cap for a great career in baseball that he’s building on here in Milwaukee.
Ryan Braun has 203 home runs. This year, if his average number of homers through 162 games holds (37), or even regresses slightly, Braun will pass his former teammate Prince Fielder for the number two mark all-time among Brewers players. That would leave him well within striking distance to pass up Robin Yount‘s all-time best mark in Milwaukee of 251.
Essentially, this season, just look at all the top-ten Brewers offensive categories – and Watch Braun continue to creep up the list. Agreed?
Corey Hart is missing a big chunk of time due to injury. When he comes back, he will start chasing down history as a Brewer again. (Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports)
The injured right fielder turned first baseman may be missing a month (or more) of the regular season, but he still has plenty of time to catch up to some pretty nice career marks.
Hart currently has 950 hits on his career, just 50 away from number 1,000 and he can join his friends Rickie Weeks, Aramis Ramirez, Alex Gonzalez, and Ryan Braun as active Milwaukee Brewers over that illustrious mark. I think they’re getting matching jackets.
In a more unreachable goal – and one that probably tells us more about what could have been than anything else – Corey finds himself just 17 stolen bases away from career number 100. Age and injury have kept him from hitting double-digit steals for a few seasons, and it’s unlikely he’ll hit that number as a Milwaukee Brewer.
I know you’re expecting some jokes here – but trust me, I could not find a statistical output of the number of times a shortstop trips over his feet to field a grounder and as far as I can tell, Baseball-Reference has no leader board for active players with the most first-strike misses in the Major Leagues.
In all seriousness, though, Yuniesky Betancourt has been a productive member of lineups for a large portion of his career. So much so, in fact, that he finds himself only 26 hits from the 1,000 mark himself. He will need to capitalize on all of his chances in Milwaukee until the roster gets back to full strength to do it as a Brewer, but it’s certainly not out of the question.
Or maybe it is. It IS Yuni, after all.
So even if all the predictions end up true and we won’t be able to see the Milwaukee Brewers chase down another Division Title or a Wild Card berth, at least you will be able to see a team that is full of some really special talent.
By the way, I don’t mind telling you that The Brewer Nation is chronicling these – and plenty more – milestones for the 2013 season. Show him some love, that’s a ton of work.