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09/24/2004 Archived Entry: "MLB news: 40-40 update"

MLB news: Beltran update

By Michael Toeset

CARLOS BELTRAN on Thursday finally had a good game, going 3 for 3, his first multi-hit game since Sept. 9. Thatís right, Sept. 9. Has the 40-40 pressure gotten to him? It would certainly appear that way.
But thereís enough games left for Beltran to make the ultra-exclusive club, and on Thursday, he inched closer with two steals, giving him 39 for the year.
So with nine games left, Beltran finds himself with 38 homers and 39 steals. Heís capable of reaching the 40-40 club with one good game, so the odds are still greatly in his favor that heíll join Jose Canseco, Barry Bonds and Alex Rodriguez. (See below to see how their seasons compare using TTBA.)
Whatís even more sensational about Beltran is his uncanny ability to steal bases without getting caught. Now in his seventh season, Beltran is already the all-time steals-percentage leader, having stolen 189 bases and been caught only 23 times. How can a player possibly be that good? Not since Rickey Hendersonís heyday has there been a player youíd risk the game on by letting him try to swipe a base.
This season, Beltran has his 39 steals in 42 attempts, a sensational .929 success rate. By comparison, speedsters Carl Crawford and Juan Pierre sport .792 and .656 success rates, respectfully.
It would be a shame if Beltran didnít join the 40-40 club. But even if he doesnít do it this season, I believe he still is a great bet to be the first 50-50 player ever. He is only 27, after all.

TTBA comparison of 40-40 players Ė and Beltran:
Barry Bonds (1996): .308 avg, 42 hr, 40 sb, .729 TTBA
Carlos Beltran (2004): .267 avg, 38 hr, 39 sb, .655 TTBA
Jose Canseco (1988): .307 avg, 42 hr, 40 sb, .630 TTBA
Alex Rodriguez (1998): .310 avg, 42 hr, 46 sb, .615 TTBA

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