Big League Stew

Derek Jeter has a chance of breaking Paul Molitor’s record for hits by a player 38 or older

Kevin Kaduk
Big League Stew

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The New York Yankees' race for a playoff spot might also feature Derek Jeter's chase for an impressive age-related record.

Not that it matters much to the team-first captain, but the 38-year-old Jeter currently stands 34 hits away from the 225 that 39-year-old Paul Molitor posted for the Minnesota Twins in 1996. As Replacement Level Yankees Weblog notes, that's the highest total ever posted by a hitter who was 38 years or older.

If Jeter is to pass Molitor's mark, he'll need a strong streak to end the season. He currently stands at 191 hits through 138 games and he's on pace to collect approximately 221 hits, leaving him just short. He's almost certain, though, to pass the 208 hits that Pete Rose totaled as a 38-year-old in 1979 and the trio of seasons that Washington great Sam Rice posted from 38-40. Cincinnati's Jake Daubert is also on the list with 205 in 1922.

Whatever happens, it's been a great bounce-back season for Jeter and it's one that will spur plenty of talk whether or not he can make a much more publicized run at Rose's all-time hits record of 4,256. If Jeter hits Molitor's total of 225 this year, he'll enter his age 39 season with 3,313 career hits, 943 away from Chuck Hustle's record. For comparison's sake, Rose had 3,372 hits through his age 38 season, so it's clearly not a long shot if Jeter remains healthy and productive.

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