Double plays are an absolute killer. The Tigers have been in several close games this season and double plays have been a major culprit in some of those losses. Double plays are obviously a negative, but some things have to right to hit into in the first place.
The Tigers lead the American League in both batting average and on-base percentage. These are obvious positives. However, as any fan can tell you, the Tigers also hit into a lot of double plays. They have hit into 65 double plays this season, better than one per game.
The Tigers lineup, while featuring more speed than in years past, still sports plenty of slow-footed batters. Miguel Cabrera leads the club with 10 double plays. In limited plate appearances, James McCann has already hit into eight. The club has ten players that are on pace to hit into at least 10 twin killings this season. That's brutal.
Double plays happen for a few reasons:
- Players consistently on base
- Hitting the ball hard at someone
- Slow base runners
- Bad luck
Way back in 1990, the Boston Red Sox hit into 174 double plays, a major league record. At their current pace, the Tigers would hit into 170 double plays. In other words, the Tigers are currently keeping up with a historic pace of bad luck. The good news is that the 1990 Boston Red Sox won their division and played in the ALCS. If the Tigers continue to hit into these double plays, but win the division, no one will remember the bad luck.