Saturday, August 6, 2011

Dan Uggla and Hobe Ferris

Dan Uggla photo courtesy of Getty Images
Atlanta Braves second baseman Dan Uggla is doing everything he can to raise his batting average to a respectable level. The problem is that his batting average has been SO LOW for most of the year that even a current monster hitting streak hasn't made it look good. Uggla is currently on an impressive 26-game hitting streak and has raised his average 37 points since July 5, the day his streak began. He is now batting, get this, a "whopping" .215 on the year. Incredible, but true.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Uggla has the lowest batting average (by far) in modern baseball history (since 1900) after a player's 25th game of a hitting streak. The previous low was .265, set by Hobe Ferris of the St. Louis Browns in 1908. Uggla broke the record by an astonishing 50 points.

When looking at Uggla's numbers, I asked myself, why hasn't he raised his average much higher? After all, a 26-game hitting streak is pretty long and impressive. Well, as I looked further into it, of the 26 games, Uggla had only 1 hit in 19 of them. I guess when you're trying to raise your batting average up from .178, going (1 for 4) or (1 for 5) during most of your hitting streak isn't going to get your overall average to .300 any time soon.

At the pace he's going, Uggla may need to break Joe DiMaggio's unbreakable 56-game hitting streak if he wants to see his average anywhere near, let's say, .280-- and it's safe to say-- that's highly unlikely.

But at least Uggla was able to get Hobe Ferris (1874-1938) in the news again. I must admit, prior to reading about Uggla's record, I didn't even know 'ole Hobe existed.

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