Unfortunately I tuned into the Yankees game late yesterday. Fortunately I turned on the television just in time to see Melky rip a ball over Jermaine Dye's head and then just continue to run and run and run. As he rounded second I started to yell at the television, only to find out seconds later that Melky needed that triple to complete the cycle. The envelope was pushed, but deservedly so. Melky became just the 15th player in Yankees history to hit for the cycle and the first player during the Derek Jeter era. All of this of course on the anniversary of the death of one of the most beloved Yankees, Thurman Munson. Congratulations Melky.
21 replies on “Try-Cycle”
Melky is really one of the most enigmatic players on the yankees in my memory. He gets red hot for periods of time and delivers huge hits with lots of drama. Then all of a sudden, he cant hit a lick for like a month straight. Hard to say if its a concentration thing or just how his skill set plays out but it is nice to watch his play when the getting is good.
It’s difficult to remember that Melky is only 24, 2 years younger than Cano, a year younger than his contemporaries Ellsbury and Gardner, not even close to his prime. Young players struggle with consistency. Melky has had periods of red-hot baseball, but unfortunately has had longer periods of suck. I don’t know who said it, but you don’t normally find players who hold their own at the major league level at such a young age, and don’t progress their career. Melky could simply be progressing his still very young career.
It’s all because I sponsored his BR page. I feel like a Proud Papa!
The Yankees rushed him. Now he’s catching up. He’s a great CF, but I’d worry if he ends the year so well they think they don’t need a corner bat with Damon and Matsui gone.
I mean, they could always re-sign Jerry Hairston…
That was awesome…I’d never watched a cycle live. Jerry might be my new favorite player! Great bench pickup! I just wish he could pitch…
If there’s anything to worry about from Melky’s year it’s the jump of +.200 OPS against LHP from his career norms. Against RHP, he at +.050 OPS. Has he learned to hit southpaws or it small sample noise?
I always get beat up for poo-pooing the cycle, but it really is a feat that’s more lauded for its rarity than anything else. I hate the hype attached to the cycle because a cycle game at the plate can be virtually meaningless.
Other circumstanes must be in play for it to be meaningful. A player can hit for the cycle and account for exactly one run on the scoreboard. (Hypothetically, you hit a two-out, bases-empty single, double and triple and get stranded, and a two-out bases-empty home run.)
That wasn’t the case yesterday, however, as Cabrera accounted for 7 of the Yankees’ 8 runs, scoring three and driving in 4.
And that, really, was a MUCH bigger deal than hitting for the cycle.
AND, it was on the same scale, gamewise at least, as Big Vic going 5-for-6 with four RBIs.
I wouldn’t say that Melky is a great CF, but he has become a solid one – bordering on good. Yes he is very streaky a t the dish though*. But he is also a couple years away from his prime. I don’t know how much ceiling he really has, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him post a year or two of All Star caliber seasons between know and his age 30 campaign.
*side note – extreme streakiness is my biggest concern w/r/t the Yankee offense this year. We have a bunch of guys who are having good offensive years on balance, but are also prone to extended stretches where they look utterly, urtterly feeble – Swisher, Melky, Cano, Damon. All you can do is hope they they are hot at the right times.
Sorry IBM but while I get your point, this thread really has nothing to do with Victor Martinez.
Yes hitting for the cycle may not mean much more than a player getting (at least) 4 hits in a game and (at least) one RBI. You’re right about that for sure. It is nevertheless a notable achievement because it also demonstrates that – for one day at least – a player had both speed and power. There are other notable achievements that are so simply because of their rarity which don’t necessarily bring with them even a single RBI and don’t necessarily point to such versatility in a player (a guy going 5-for-6 or Carl Crawford stealing a record-tying 6 bases in one game against Boston for instance).
There is also the simple symbolism and story-book quality of it happening for this particular player in this particular year. He has played very well this year despite (or because of) having lost his job in Spring Training. He has NOT had wild swings in his offensive production this year as he has had in the past, he has hit a slew of game-winning hits, his defense has been very good, and he has generally reacted to losing his job in a way that has all the guys in the clubhouse pulling for him enthusiastically as was clear from the reaction to the cycle yesterday.
Lots of players had multi-hit games yesterday and I’d be willing to bet that someone will go 5-for-6 again before someone hits for the cycle (though there have been a hell of a lot of cycles this year). But apart from all that, Melky flashed both some speed and a power-bat yesterday (as well as making arguably the defensive play of the day) all of which is adding to a story-line that this kid has been weaving since Opening Day – which is that he continues to improve and will produce whenever he can get a shot at playing for a team that used to feature him as their starting CF’er and may again one day.
“…the most enigmatic players on the yankees in my memory”
This would make a great list – especially if enigmatic means more than just inconsistent. Being completely unable to explain – or even conjecture a guess – as to what is going on in a particular player’s head or to predict his behavior seems a good way to translate “enigmatic”. El Dugue vaults to mind for me. Of course, if we are going MLB-wide, I’m not sure anyone could rival Manny on this score (though on predictability, you can pretty much predict what he will do at the plate – and nothing else).
At a party in college once I had a beer, then I went to another party and had two, and at the next couple of parties I had three and then four beers. Nobody gave a shit.
More seriously, something as random (and not that meaningful, other than to his team on that given day) as the cycle is why I love baseball. The game rewards chance (and in this case, some obvious skills) with headlines. I like the game far more for notes on the wire like Melky hitting for the cycle than for all the other stuff we’ve been subject to these last several years.
More random accomplishments of dubious significance, please!!
“Sorry IBM but while I get your point, this thread really has nothing to do with Victor Martinez.”
Come on, Horse. It was a throwaway line.
Sorry IBM. Just trying to enjoy an admittedly minorish accomplishment by a Yankee without having to bring an RS accomplishment into it. I get your point.
How is something that is only slightly less rare than a no-hitter “minorish”??? Seems pretty impressive to me…
“… it also demonstrates that – for one day at least – a player had both speed and power.”
That means that one day each season, David Ortiz has a chance to hit for the cycle. And because he’s already logged his triple for the 2009 season, we’re put it on the list of things to look for next season.
Although a cyclical day at the plate is more rare than a no-hitter, I’d rather see a guy on my team get a no-hitter. And that’s mostly because I know my team will win the game. A cycle doesn’t mean you’re gonna win. It just means you’re not gonna get shut out.
More than anything, hitting for the cycle involves luck. (But I’m the first one to say, “I’d rather be lucky than good.”)
Last point: I’m not poo-pooing this because the cyclist was a Yankee. My reaction would be the same had it been Drew or Ellsbury, or, frankly, even Ortiz. If I miss a game and my son tells me that Josh Reddick hit for the cycle, my response would be, “That’s great. Did the Sox win?”
It’s a statistical anomaly.
Congrats to Melky for being the offensive force behind the Yankees’ pummeling of Mark Buehrle et al.
krueg, a cycle is a pretty minor, if rare, accomplishment. Is this a controversial statement? It’s an accomplishment of skill and also luck (which a no-hitter is as well, obviously), but of a very different magnitude. It might or might not impact the game, and it’s a series of individual moments that taken as a collective may have some, but possibly no, impact on a game’s result.
I’d say hitting for the cycle falls pretty far down on the list of notable individual accomplishments. It’s notable, without a doubt, but not very notable in the long run. Did you remember Tony Fernandez’ cycle?
Not trying to start anything here SF, relax…I just think something as rare as hitting for the cycle must mean it’s difficult to do and in no way a minor accomplishment. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion…
Totally relaxed, krueg, just offering my take on the cycle. As I said above, I love baseball for these oddities, the cycle is, to me a lucky oddity (but not without skill involved!).
You have to be lucky to be good…right?
We all are aware that no-hitters take luck as well, right?
We are well aware of the comments above, right? ;-)
It’s an accomplishment of skill and also luck (which a no-hitter is as well, obviously)