Blue Jays fans have been complaining all week about management’s decision to not call up stud prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. for the remainder of the season. Vlady Jr. is regarded as the best prospect in baseball which was confirmed Friday by the 19-year-old being named 2018 Minor League Player of the Year by Baseball America earlier this week.
Personally, I think that’s been good news. Without Guerrero Jr. in the big leagues, another Blue Jays prospect has had the chance to shine during his call up. That man is Rowdy Tellez.
Based on his time with Toronto so far, people should start paying some attention to what this 23-year-old first baseman from Sacramento, California is doing.
He began his MLB career with three doubles in his first three plate appearances. In the process, he made a little bit of history.
Folks, we have @MLB HISTORY!
Rowdy is the FIRST player in the live-ball era to record extra-base hits in EACH of his first THREE plate appearances! pic.twitter.com/pETP4olJZo
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) September 7, 2018
Not too shabby.
After Thursday’s game against Cleveland he was 4-for-5 in the bigs. And yes, that fourth hit was also a double.
This wasn’t some one time thing, though. Tellez kept the good times rolling into Friday’s contest where he picked up two more doubles in his five times up, the second of which he ripped up the middle on the first pitch he saw.
I’m no math magician, but that’s six doubles in ten MLB plate appearances. That’s a doubles percentage of .600. Not a hitting percentage… A DOUBLES PERCENTAGE OF .600.
Nick Ashbourne, the MLB editor at Yahoo Canada Sports, puts his numbers into perspective.
Fun fact: Rowdy Tellez has 2 fewer doubles than Russell Martin this season
— Nick Ashbourne (@NickAshbourne) September 8, 2018
Russell Martin isn’t known for collecting doubles on a regular basis. Let’s face it, he’s no Rowdy Tellez. However, Martin has been up to the dish 352 times this season.
There’s no reason to believe that Mr. Tellez’s hot doubles streak will come to an end. Furthermore, I believe that the small sample size is irrelevant. The guy is clearly a MLB double factory. To call his play thus far an outlier would be a slap in the face to his achievements and talent. With that in mind, let’s explore some more of the numbers.
Toronto has 21 games remaining this season. We’ll be conservative and say that Tellez will have three at-bats in each of those games for a total of 63 more plate appearances this year. Since that .600 doubles percentage will certainly hold over that time (if not improve), that’s 38 more doubles this season for a total of 44.
Earl Webb currently holds the all-time record for doubles in one season. He had 67 with the Boston Red Sox in 1931.
If only Tellez had been called up a few weeks earlier. That record wouldn’t have stood a chance.
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