More on Pete


No, this isn’t about the fake Pete Rose that’s running wild on Twitter. It’s about the real Pete Rose. You know, the Hit King.

This morning when I checked my email, I received another message from Chris Jaffe from The Hardball Times. Chris takes a look on a “day-versary” (as he puts it) on a historic feat in Rose’s career. It was 10,000 days ago that Rose collected his 4,000th hit. While Rose was not adorned in a Reds uniform when he accomplished this feat (still only the second player ever to do so), most people associate Rose with the Reds.

Jaffe makes an interesting analysis about Rose’s career and the numbers he accumulated.

"“If you know much about Pete Rose’s career, you’re probably aware that he was one of baseball’s great compilers. He became the all-time hit king because he’s also tops all-time in at bats, plate appearances, and games. He’s the quantity king. When he tallied his 4,000th hit, it came in his 3,259th game. In all baseball history, only two others ever played in that many games, Hank Aaron and Carl Yastrzemski. That’s one reason why Rose got 4,000 hits.He wasn’t just a quantity king, though. He also got his hits at a fearsome pace by any standards. He’s a fun game—take Rose’s hit pace at 4,000 games, cut it in half, and compare to what other players were doing at that time.”"

Soon after this excerpt, Jaffe provides us with exactly how great Rose performed throughout his MLB career.

It was with that I began to find out just a little more about Rose’s career numbers.

  • In only one month did Rose not have a .300 batting average. That was May (.283).
  • Rose was also pretty clutch. With RISP, Pete hit .311. With two outs and RISP, his average only dropped four points to .307.
  • Talk about consistency. Rose’s career average for day games was .302. For night game: .303.
  • Rose holds three of the top ten season marks for plate appearances: #3 – 770 (’74), #6 – 764 (’75), and #9 – 759 (’76)
  • Odd bit here. Rose’s 230 hits, a career high in 1973, is only the 36th most in a season. He shares that rank with Tommy Davis (’62), Stan Musial (’48), Joe Torre (’71), and Willie Wilson (’80).
  • Team in which Rose posted his highest batting average against was the Philadelphia Phillies (no wonder they wanted him) with a .329 clip. The lowest was the rival (then) Los Angeles Dodgers (.284).
  • And who did he collect his most hits against? The Atlanta Braves (468). Ironic that it was the Braves that ended his 44-game hitting streak.
  • Rose struck out once every 12.29 at-bats…but walked every 8.97 AB.

Yet, for all the impressive feats Rose accomplished, most outside of Cincinnati will remember him for that one thing. Yes, it was a big thing.

I prefer to remember Rose for what he brought to the baseball diamond (love of the game, hustle, always playing hard)…and these (along with other) mind-boggling numbers.