Melky Cabrera, Suspended Batting Champion?

Was perusing the stats in a state of shock earlier, trying to get a grip on how badly the loss of Cabrera's offense is going to sting, and happened to notice that through the last game he played Cabrera had 501 plate appearances so far this season. Assuming the Giants play the full 162-game schedule, a Giants hitter would need 502 PA to qualify for most rate-based crowns including the NL batting title. (3.1 PA per team game played is the criteria.)

In determining the batting champion, a player can win the crown even if he falls short of the requisite number of plate appearances, if he still has the better numbers after the shortfall of PA are added as at bats .

If the Giants end up playing a season of 161or fewer games due to a rain out that's not made up because it doesn't impact the playoffs (Labor Day weekend in Chicago, I'm looking at you!) then Cabrera's current line of 159 hits in 459 AB (501 total PA) and a batting average of .346 (.346405) is final.

If the Giants play the full 162 game schedule then a little recalculation is needed. Add 1 out (1 AB without a hit); 159/460 = .346 (0.345652) for the year.

If the Giants play a 163'rd game whether to break a tie at the end of the season or the one-game Wild Card (which should count towards regular season stats), or both (164 games), Melky's average would drop further to .343 or .341 for the year respectively.

Only one player, Pittsburgh's Andrew McCutchen, has a better batting average in the NL right now. He stands at .359 as of the start of play today, but hasn't hit well for average in August and September in the prior 3 years of his short career. His batting average has already dived in August as his BABIP has normalized.

Behind Cabrera are a few NL notables: Joey Votto, .342; then Buster Posey at .331 and Carlos Ruiz who while hitting a true .335 would drop behind Posey when make-up at bats are added to his non-qualifying total of plate appearances. Votto isn't likely to hit for high average on returning from injury, and the other two probably can't close the gap needing to hit well above .360 for the last 7 weeks of the campaign.

So we're looking at a very real possibility of another Giant grabbing individual single-season bling (*cough* 73 *cough*) while under a cloud of suspicion. We're at least going to have to endure the spectacle of seeing Cabrera's name on the NL leader boards right up until the last day of the season. This blows.

This FanPost is reader-generated, and it does not necessarily reflect the views of McCovey Chronicles. If the author uses filler to achieve the minimum word requirement, a moderator may edit the FanPost for his or her own amusement.

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