With four games left to play for Richmond, Cody Cain has a good opportunity of registering his 500th regular-season strike-out in top-tier British baseball. It’s a milestone that will be accompanied by an asterisk, as 127 of the 489 nothced up to date were recorded in the renegade National League Baseball (UK) in Cain’s first two seasons in Britain, 1993 and 1994. Bitterness about the unsanctioned league reamins to this day, but few would dispute that the league was of a quality similar to or better than that of the official top flight. It is for this reason that I believe strongly that the 127 strike-outs should contribute to Cain’s total.
Aside from this approaching milestone, there are several other statistical things to keep an eye on in the closing weeks of the season, as several of the races for category leaders are yet to be decided. Some of the races are looked at below.
Current leader: .511 – Carl Randall (London)
Closest challenger: .456 – Ryan Bird (Richmond)
Current leader: 5 – Ryan Bird (Richmond)
Closest challengers: 3 – Cody Cain (Richmond), Grant Delzoppo (Richmond), Ryan Trask (Bracknell)
Current leader: 21 – Robbie Unsell (Richmond)
Closest challenger: 15 – Rob Anthony (London)
Current leader: 6 – Darrin Ward (Herts)
Closest challengers: 5 – Nick Goetz (Herts), Reid Wilson (London)
Current leader: 2.16 – Reid Wilson (London)
Closest challengers: 2.92 – Jason Roberts (and Cody Cain [2.05], who needs 5.2 more innings to become eligible)
Current leader: 53 – Michael Osborn (Richmond)
Closest challengers: 51 – Jose Sosa (Croydon), Matt Maitland (Bracknell)
To view full sortable statistics for the National Baseball League, follow the instructions here.
I’ll finish by noting some other approaching career milestones: Michael Osborn needs 6 more strike-outs for 250; Matt Maitland needs 15 more strike-outs for 200; and Ryan Trask (who has just had his 200th career top-tier hit) needs 4 home runs for 25.