Let’s begin with the apparent assertion: Aaron Decide has a really, excellent probability of cracking 60 residence runs this yr. At this level, I’d say that it’s fairly doubtless that he’s going to finish with a house run depend someplace within the mid-to-low-60s. That’s a fully unimaginable achievement in its personal proper that must be celebrated, but it surely gained’t be the brand new single-season residence run report. You may see another writers or followers declare that if Decide finishes in that lofty territory of 60-or-more homers that it could be the “actual” report.
Whereas it could be good to reside in an alternate actuality the place lies are true if we imagine them, we don’t reside in that world. That is precise actuality and on this specific universe, Barry Bonds is the single-season residence run report holder after he hit 73 dingers in 2001. That’s the official report and the one one that might’ve been held accountable about it if steroid utilization was truly thought-about to be a significant drawback again throughout that period is presently within the Baseball Corridor of Fame, if you wish to complain to somebody about it.
The purpose of bringing that up isn’t to denigrate something that Aaron Decide is doing. If something, I actually hope that followers are appreciating what we’re seeing from Decide this season since he’s been utterly astonishing on the plate. In fact from a counting stats perspective, the very fact it’s completely possible for Decide to complete the season above 60 homers is wonderful by itself. If (or maybe, when) Decide eclipses the 60-homer mark, he can have entered the rarefied air that solely Babe Ruth and Roger Maris have dared to succeed in whereas sporting the Yankee pinstripes. You already know you’re having an unimaginable season when these two names are being referenced frequently, and that’s what’s been taking place with regards to Decide right here in 2022.
Certainly one of my favourite superior statistics is wRC+ and that’s primarily as a result of it’s very straightforward to know. In case your wRC+ is an honest quantity above 100, you’re doing fairly good. If it’s beneath 100, you’re not having a fantastic yr in any respect. If it’s floating at or round 100, you’re league common. It additionally adjusts for each park elements and league elements as nicely, so it’s a very good catch-all stat for offensive manufacturing. I’m saying all of that to say that Aaron Decide’s wRC+ is presently at a whopping 203.
If that sounds ridiculous, that’s as a result of it’s — Within the lengthy, winding historical past of Main League Baseball, there have solely been 33 situations of a participant ending the season with a wRC+ of 200 or above. Solely 5 of these seasons have come because the flip of the century — 4 of which have been delivered by Barry Bonds when he was taking part in a totally totally different sport of baseball from 2001 by way of 2004 and the final time it occurred was when Juan Soto completed the 60-game 2020 season with a wRC+ of 202.
Merely put, Aaron Decide is having one of the best offensive full season since Barry Bonds retired. Typing out that sentence was mind-blowing by itself and it must be mind-blowing everytime you watch this man on the plate this season. Whereas trying on the stats are one factor, the opposite story is seeing Decide in motion and in addition seeing how opposing groups are approaching him at this level.
In one other Bonds-like comparability, some groups have merely determined that they’re not going to let Decide beat them. Whereas this was once a silly technique through the early phases of the season, it’s beginning to make sense ever since New York’s lineup as a complete began slowing down within the second half of the season. Groups can now afford to both pitch round or just wave Decide onto first base as a substitute of taking an opportunity towards him.
Consequently, Aaron Decide has been compelled to take his possibilities which are coming fewer and farther in between from one another. Don’t fear although, that also hasn’t stopped him from mashing bombs at an especially excessive price.
If this was a standard season and a standard period of baseball, there’d be no query as to who can be the American League MVP this season. Nevertheless, we gained’t be in a standard period anytime quickly due to the mere presence of baseball’s unicorn in Anaheim. Shohei Ohtani has been having a implausible season in his personal proper as he’s continued to be a harmful hitter on the plate whereas stepping his sport up on the mound. This screenshot from ESPN actually says all of it about simply how worthwhile Ohtani has been to the Angels this season:
Shohei Ohtani is doing issues that haven’t been completed since Babe Ruth was doing them over a century in the past. You already know who else is doing issues that Babe Ruth was doing over a century in the past? Aaron Decide. If Decide was to maintain up the tempo that he’s presently on, then he would have a season that you would genuinely examine to any of Babe Ruth’s prime seasons. The MVP dialog must be very intense and there doesn’t appear to be a incorrect reply right here. With that being mentioned, a probably traditionally important season from Decide shouldn’t be penalized by a uniquely wonderful Ohtani having a positive season for his requirements. Ohtani is more likely to have one other season like this whereas Decide might very nicely be reaching the zenith of his baseball energy right here in 2022.
There are many questions going ahead and all of them are full of intrigue. Will Aaron Decide hit over 60 homers this season? Will Decide have the primary 200 wRC+ full season since Barry Bonds did it? Will it nonetheless in some way be not adequate for the MVP award? Will Decide even nonetheless be a member of the New York Yankees by this time subsequent yr? The longer term holds these solutions and it’s going to be extraordinarily enjoyable to determine it out going ahead. Aaron Decide is within the midst of a particular season and it’s far more enjoyable to reside within the current and admire what he’s received occurring proper now.