Saturday, July 9, 2011
Derek Jeter reached 3000 hits at age 37, which gives him the opportunity to keep racking up hits for a few years and get into the upper reaches of 3000 hit territory. He's the 28th player with 3000 hits, but there are only 8 with 3400 (Rose, Cobb, Aaron, Musial, Speaker, Anson, Wagner, Yaz). Even if he's done hitting .300 every year, he has a good shot at getting another 515 hits,w hich would make him 5th all time.
What other active players have a realistic chance at reaching 3000 hits in the next few years?
Active players with at least 2500 hits:
Ivan Rodriguez (2842)
Omar Vizquel (2831)
Alex Rodriguez (2762)
Johnny Damon (2662)
Chipper Jones (2562)
Vladimir Guerrero (2513)
Of these players, A-Rod is the only one that seems like a lock. I-Rod is close, but he's hitting .214 this year, has only 25 hits, is going to be 40 later this year and was just placed on the DL today. Vizquel is 44 and is not an everyday player anymore. It looks like the only way for him to get 3000 is to be play into his late 40's like Julio Franco or Jamie Moyer. He is hitting .269, so he can still hit, but it seems like a longshot.
Damon is an interesting case. He's only 37 (putting him ahead of Biggio's pace at a similar age, as he didn't reach 3000 until he was 41), and only needs 338 hits. He's hitting .279 this year and has only missed 6 games. If he has a strong finish in 2011 and has a typical Damon season next year (about 150 hits these days, he could be about 100 hits away by the beginning of 2013 (when he'll be 39). It's beginning to look very doable if he stays relatively healthy and doesn't have a huge fall off in production.
Chipper is going to be 40 before the beginning the beginning of next season and there were plenty of reports that he would retire last year. He's hasn't missed a lot of games this season, but he's only hitting .259 and doesn't seem like a good candidate to get another 438 hits.
Vlad is only 36 and has stayed productive, although he might never again hit .330 with nearly 40 home runs. If he just keeps cranking out hits at a decent pace, he could easily be withing shouting distance of 2900 by the beginning of 2014 (when he would be 39).
Posted by Brad Templeman at 6:37 PM