Thursday, August 13th, 2009

Baseball 101: Hitting for the Cycle

On Monday, August 10, Troy Tulowitzki hit for the cycle against the slumping Chicago Cubs. This was the fifth time in Colorado Rockies history that a player hit for the cycle. It was also the first time that a Rockies player achieved the feat in their home park, Coors Field.

So what does it mean to hit for the cycle?

Simply put, it's when a baseball player hits a single, double, triple and home run during the same game. During a normal game, the average starting player can come to bat anywhere from three to six times a game. Sometimes less, sometimes more. It all depends on the amount of scoring generated that day. That means the hitter managed to reach base safely at least four times without been walked, reaching on an error, reaching on a fielder's choice, or being hit by a pitch.

Does the hitter only get credit for a cycle if it's done in that order?

No. As long as the hitter manages to get a single, double, triple and home run, it doesn't matter what order it happens. If does happen in that order, it's called a "natural cycle."

Is this a common feat?

Yes and no. During the history of Major League Baseball, players have only hit for the cycle 287 times. Saying that, during the 2009 season, it's happened six times. No member of the Chicago Cubs have hit for the cycle since Mark Grace did on May 9, 1993.

Just another look at the game of baseball.

Here's another topic that was previously discussed: games back in the standings.

OK, so here is a question. It sounds pretty prestigious to "hit for the cycle" so here is a hypothetical situation. Assume it is a close game: A player has hit a home run, got a triple, a double and then hits a nice shot into the outfield so that he could easily score a triple or double. Does he stop at first to complete the cycle or does he take the extra bases and loose out on the cycle?
OR does it still count as a cycle?
Also, does he win anything a nice bicycle for example?
LimeyGeorge   Friday, August 14, 2009
I think any player would skip the cycle and take the extra bases. If he claims the extra base, it doesn't count as a cycle.

You just made me think of a great promotion. What if Huffy or any other bike company sponsored a "Hit for the Cycle" promotion. If a player on any given team does that, the company could donate bikes to the player's favorite charity.
Bill Pearch   Friday, August 14, 2009
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