For unknown reasons, 30 games seems to be the cutoff when people start to get really excited about a hitting streak. And after going last year without one of those oh-so-fun 30 gamers, Ryan Zimmerman singled in the first inning last night to reach said mystery magical number. I don't know about you, but I'm pumped.
Reuters has done us all a favor by asking a statistician how great of a chance Zimmerman has to match or beat Joe Dimaggio's 56-game hitting streak. The answer: Not much.
San Diego State University professor and statistician Jim Lackritz estimated Zimmerman's chances from this point of tying the Yankee Clipper at 1 in 414, or .0024 for you math geeks. To break DiMaggio's record, the odds are 1 in 517, or .0019. [...] Zimmerman has already improved his chances vastly as the odds before this streak began stood at 1 in almost 10 million, Lackritz said. "Basically, this is the toughest record in sports to break," the professor said.
Wow, so Juan Pierre must have like a 1 in 10 billion chance of starting a 56-game hitting streak every game.
If he can get a hit today (join Walkoff Walk for your official liveblog of Ryan Zimmerman's possible 31st consecutive game with a hit) against the Giants, Zimmerman is virtually a lock to get to number 35, as the Nats play the Phillies for 4 over the weekend. With the way Phillies pitching has been giving up taters this year, he might be a lock for the all-time homer mark, too.
Incidentally, the Nationals have scored 22 runs in their last three games. They've lost all three.