This is relevant to my interests. It’s from Sam Page at Sports Illustrated’s Extra Mustard and, well, I’ll let him say what it’s all about:
I’ve ported the superpowers of 100 of the biggest names in comic books into the hyper-specific sub-ratings of baseball simulator Out of the Park Baseball, simulated a 162 game season, and examined the sabermetric output … I tried to ask, with each player, “what would really happen if he or she tried to play baseball?” So, for instance, the Flash has great pitch recognition because he can slow down time. But so too do the telepaths, who can anticipate the future pitch, the Kryptotians, who can perceive life at a molecular level, and Cyclops, with his mutated spatial awareness. The Flash family (all four of them) are top base-stealers, but so are the teleporters on the X-Men.
What follows is way more thinking about the intersection of superheroes and baseball than I’ve ever encountered. And while this may gag those of you with a low tolerance for geekdom of both the sabermetric and comic book variety, it is definitely worth your time if you can handle such things.
Plus, there are universal truths imparted: such as Aquaman sucking.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: