Very few major league baseball players manage to win the triple crown – even fewer follow such a season with an even better one.
But that is exactly what Miguel Cabrera, of the Detroit Tigers, is well on his way to doing. Here is how this season is better.
Through August 19th, Cabrera’s batting average was .359 or 29 percentage points higher than the .330 average he led the American League with in 2012.
His slugging average of .689 leads major league baseball and is well above the .606 slugging average he achieved last year.
Cabrera’s RBI total of 139 last year was most impressive, when he averaged an RBI for every 4.475 official plate appearances (622 AB’s). But so far this year, he’s doing even better. His 120 RBI’s in only 444 official at-bats works out to an RBI for every 3.7 official plate appearance – a huge improvement that could account for more than 40 RBI’s in a normal season.
As for Cabrera’s home runs this season, he will probably top last year’s total of 44, but last year he averaged a home run every 14.135 plate appearances – this year he has 40 homers in only 444 plate appearances – a homer every 11.1 at-bats
In virtually every way one can view Cabrera’s last two seasons, his MVP season suffers in the comparison. – So why has Cabrera’s incredible current season remained largely beneath the “radar”?
A major reason is that he missed about two weeks of this season because of abdominal muscle trauma. Another reason is the incredible early season home run hitting heroics of Baltimore’s Chris Davis. – who had hit 37 home runs by the All Star break.
Trailing Davis by five homers with less than six weeks left in the regular season means Cabrera is a longshot to win this year’s American League home run crown – but this writer believes Cabrera would have been at least “even money” without that nagging abdominal injury.