now, some may argue this shouldn't technically be considered a new career record because Michael only played in 137 total games. that's less than most players who play a full season play. but despite missing more games than usual due to several injuries he battled this year, Michael is still a qualifying player and therefore i am calling this an official career low. congratulations!
Michael's last strikeout of the season came in the game versus the Minnesota Twins on September 28. the Indians were down, 3-1, in the bottom of the 1st inning when Michael came to the plate with 1 out to face left-hander Tommy Milone. after a 1-2 count, Michael swung and missed to give him his 51st strikeout.
|screenshots cropped from a video on indians.com|
breaking down his Ks, Michael had 37 swinging strikeouts and only 14 looking. however, as i've documented in previous monthly blogs, several of those called strike 3s were bad calls by home plate umpires. don't get me started lol also, among all the regular players on the Indians, Michael's 51 Ks are the least.
Michael's K rate for his 2015 season is 8.6% (51 K/596 PA). at the time of this blog post, that formally makes him the toughest hitter in the American League to strike out. Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros is currently behind him at 9.9%. in the major leagues, Michael is the 4th toughest to strike out. it is possible that these rankings could change as the final 5 games are played throughout the league, and i will have the updated ranks in my upcoming Final #s blog. regardless, that is a very low strikeout rate and definitely something for Michael to hang his hat on.
not only that, but Michael's 2015 BB/K ratio is 1.18, thanks also in part to the career high 60 walks he drew this season. that's presently the best in the American League AND in the majors. again, his rank could potentially change as everyone else wraps up their seasons, and so again, i will include the final ranks in my Brantley's Final #s blog once 2015 has officially come to a close.
no matter what the end ranks are, Michael did a phenomenal job. i am so proud that he continues to be a high contact hitter and one of the hardest players in the league to strike out! =D