Jacoby Ellsbury breaks obscure record held by Pete Rose

Big League Stew
<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/mlb/players/7912/" data-ylk="slk:Jacoby Ellsbury">Jacoby Ellsbury</a> has entered the MLB record books. (Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)
Jacoby Ellsbury has entered the MLB record books. (Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)

New York Yankees outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury has broken a record held by Cincinnati Reds legend Pete Rose. No, not that one. Though it would be just as surprising to us if Ellsbury was anywhere near the all-time hit record.

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The 34-year-old outfielder broke one of Rose’s most obscure records during Monday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays. In the top of the fourth inning, Ellsbury reached base after catcher’s interference by Wilson Ramos.

It was the 30th time Ellsbury has reached on catcher’s interference. That set a new Major League Baseball record. Seriously, that’s the record Ellsbury set.

Exciting? Not especially. Prestigious? Not really. An MLB record? Most definitely.

Ellsbury managed the feat on his birthday, too. Not a bad way to kick off 34. He’ll have extra reason to eat some cake later.

We don’t expect you to immediately send congratulatory tweets to Ellsbury on the accomplishment, but it is a record that brings up some interesting questions. How does one rack up so many catcher’s interferences? Is Ellsbury using a larger bat than normal? Is there something about his swing that helps him? Does he intentionally try to reach base this way?

Honestly, we would be interested to know if there’s any strategy involved. Catcher’s interference isn’t something that happens often, so for one player to rack up 30 of them is just really odd.

Oh, and as for the all-time hit record, we don’t see Ellsbury passing Rose any time soon. With 1,359 career hits, he remains 2,897 off Rose’s record. Since you’re all curious, Rose had 2,547 hits through his age-34 season. Someone may topple Rose eventually, but it won’t be Ellsbury.

Still, he’ll probably settle for this accomplishment now. Ellsbury may not hold a popular record, but he’ll get his name in the record books. That’s more than a lot of players can say at any point during their careers.

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Chris Cwik is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at christophercwik@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Chris_Cwik

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