Friday, October 9, 2009

Werth Streaks Ahead

Jayson Werth’s eighth-inning home run did more than just offer hope to the Phillies in Thursday’s 5-4 loss. It also extended his postseason hitting streak to 11, giving him the highest total among active major leaguers. He was tied with Scott Rolen, who has a 10-game streak.

Werth also moved closer to the Phillies’ postseason hitting streak record of 13, held by Greg Luzinski. The Bull got hits in his first 13 postseason games, from the 1976 NLCS against Cincinnati into the 1980 NLCS against Houston.

Luzinski hit .326 during his postseason streak, going 16-for-49 through Game 2 of the ’80 NLCS. Then, Luzinski went colder than Colorado in October.

In his next 10 postseason games, including three ’80 NLCS games, three ’80 World Series appearances, and four ’83 ALCS games with the Chicago White Sox, Luzinski had just four hits in 33 at-bats, for a .121 average.

Unlike Luzinski, Werth got off to a slow start as a hitter in the playoffs before catching fire. He hit .235 in his first six playoff games prior to the 2008 season, when he played in the 2004 NLDS as a Dodger, and then the 2007 NLDS with the Phillies.

However, Werth is hitting .348 (15-for-43) during his streak, which began in Game 2 of the 2008 NLCS against Los Angeles.

The major-league record for longest postseason hitting streak is 17, shared by three players: Manny Ramirez, Derek Jeter, and Hank Bauer.

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