Thursday, June 14, 2007

Watson's hitting streak now tied for 13th longest in minor league history

Brandon Watson just keeps on rolling. The Dugout was impressed when Charleston's Mitch Hilligoss posted a 38 game hitting streak earlier this season. Watson has blown by that mark.

He already has three hits tonight in the Columbus Clippers' International League contest, pushing the streak to 40 games. And that’s at the Triple-A level. Not to take anything away from Hilligoss’ mark because 38 games is tough to do in beer-league softball, but Watson is doing this against staffs that contain former and soon-to-be big leaguers. In theory, those guys know how to pitch.

The streak is the longest in Columbus' history, and is now only two shy of the longest in International League history, Jack Lelivelt's 42-gamer for Rochester in 1912. Joe Wilhoit holds the all-time record, hitting in 69 consecutive games for Wichita in 1919.

Here are the Top 15 minor league hitting streaks of all time:

Games Name Year
69 Joe Wilhoit 1919
61 Joe DiMaggio 1933
55 Roman Mejias 1954
50 Otto Pahlman 1922
49 Jack Ness 1915
49 Harry Chozen 1945
46 Johnny Bates 1925
43 Eddie Marshall 1935
43 Orlando Moreno 1961
43 Howie Bedell 1947
42 Jack Lelivelt 1912
42 Herbert Chapman 1950
40 Brandon Watson 2007
40 Frosty Kennedy 1953
39 Brandon Watson 2007
38 Mitch Hilligoss 2007
38 Hubert Mason 1925
38 Paul Owens 1951

In case your wondering (and because The Dugout is currently waiting out a ninth inning Marlins/Indians rain delay at Dolphins Stadium), only six major leaguers have ever strung together hitting streaks of 40 games or more. We all know that Joe DiMaggio's 56-gamer is the longest in the show. Willie Keeler hit in 45 straight over two seasons (44 in a single year). Pete Rose tied Keeler's single season mark of 44 in 1978. Bill Dahlen hit in 42 straight for the Chicago Cubs in 1894, George Sisler hit safely in 41 consecutive games for St. Louis in 1922, and Ty Cobb reached the 40 plateau in 1911.

Put them all together and Watson's is the longest streak in nearly 30 years.

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