I’m sure Omar Vizquel fans will be angry about this comparison, but it’s not so much about him as it is me trying to point out the silliness behind acting as if “hits” are a good way to gauge someone’s overall ability as a hitter.
Anyway, yesterday Vizquel notched his 2,871st and 2,872nd career hits, meaning he’s just one hit shy of tying Babe Ruth on the all-time hit list with 2,873.
That’s a helluva accomplishment any way you look at it–particularly for a shortstop with a billion Gold Glove awards–but consider this: Ruth has 2,073 more total bases and 1,029 more times on base while making 2,664 fewer outs than Vizquel.
Not all hits are created equal, walks count for something too, and Babe Ruth was really friggin good.
Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres was born on December 13, 1996. That year, Bartolo Colon (who turns 45 years old on Thursday) was wrapping up a season he spent with Double-A Canton-Akron and Triple-A Buffalo. He would debut in the majors the following April.
In a clash of generations, the 21-year-old Torres and Colon squared off on Monday as the Yankees visited the Rangers. Torres won the battle twice, drilling a two-run home run off of Colon in the second inning and a solo shot off of Colon in the fourth. Colon wound up giving up six runs in total on eight hits (including four homers) and a walk with four strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings.
Here is video of the first homer Torres hit:
Torres is the second-youngest Yankee in club history with a multi-homer game. Mickey Mantle was 20 years and 296 days old when he went yard twice on August 11, 1952. Torres is 21 years, 159 days old. Joe DiMaggio was 21-212 when he hit two on June 24, 1936.
So much for respecting one’s elders. We’re currently seeing a youth movement in baseball. 19-year-old Juan Soto hit his first major league homer on Monday against the Padres. 20-year-olds Ronald Acuña and Mike Soroka debuted for the Braves earlier this year. Could 19-year-old Blue Jays prospect Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. join them soon?