Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Odúbel Herrera is one of the most talented players in Major League Baseball, yet he still manages to fly under the radar on a national scale. That might not be true for much longer, though, if he keeps producing like he has this season for Philadelphia.
The 26-year-old has taken his offensive game to another level, and his true breakout season has been cemented recently thanks to a pair of remarkable streaks he’s put together at the plate.
According to StatsBYSTATS on Twitter, the streaks don’t just highlight Herrera’s breakthrough to the next level. They actually put him in elite company, with a handful of baseball’s all-time greats.
Earlier this season, Herrera reached base in a career-best and MLB season high 45 consecutive games. That alone is notable, and certainly helped Philadelphia get off to a superb start in April and May.
Herrera’s streak tied Chuck Klein for the fourth-longest on-base streak in Phillies history. Mike Schmidt (56), Klein again (49), and Bobby Abreu (48) are the only Phillies to top it. Herrera’s was the longest on-base streak in the majors since Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman and then Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth had 46-game streaks in 2016. Barry Bonds holds the NL record of 57 games.
In Friday’s 12-2 victory against the Washington Nationals, Herrera smashed a two-run home run against Nationals starter Tanner Roark in the third inning. That extended his current streak to five straight games with a home run, and together those streaks elevated his performance this season to a level populated by the likes of Babe Ruth and Barry Bonds.
Odubel Herrera of the @Phillies has homered in 5 straight games.
Players with 40-game on-base streak and 5-game HR streak in same season in live-ball era:
Babe Ruth (1921)
Barry Bonds (2001 & 2003)
Jim Thome (2002)
Jim Edmonds (2004)
Odubel Herrera (2018)#BeBold
— Stats By STATS (@StatsBySTATS) June 23, 2018
Ruth and Jim Thome are both Hall of Famers. Bonds is the all-time home run king and would be a Hall of Famer if not for the PED stench that’s followed him long into retirement. Don’t sleep on Jim Edmonds either. He made his name as an eight-time Gold Glove outfielder, but also came up just seven homers short of 400 for his career. If only he could have played more than 140 games more than seven times during his 17-year career.
Of course, we’re not suggesting Herrera has or will achieve the same level of success as those players, but he’s deserving of more attention than he’s getting. He’s certainly an All-Star candidate this season.
Chance at history
If Herrera can keep the home run streak going Saturday, he’ll establish a Phillies team record. Right now, he’s one of six players in franchise history to homer in five straight games.
Herrera is the sixth Phillie to ever hit a HR in five straight. The others: Rhys Hoskins, Chase Utley, Bobby Abreu, Mike Schmidt and Dick Allen. https://t.co/070MVHXQCy
— Matt Gelb (@MattGelb) June 22, 2018
He’d also be on the doorstep of tying Bonds and Thome, who each reached seven straight games with a home run.
Ken Griffey Jr. (Mariners, 1993), Don Mattingly (Yankees, 1987) and Dale Long (Pirates, 1956) hold the MLB record of eight straight games with a home run.
Regardless of whether Herrera gets to those plateaus, he’s shown he can be a centerpiece in Philadelphia’s lineup.
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