Did Rusty Staub Staying With the Mets Cost Him a Shot at 3,000 Hits?
Rusty Staub retired with 2,716 hits.
What if Rusty had signed with an AL team? Might he have found 300 more hits?
In 1980, Rusty had 102 hits in 340 at-bats—a nice even .300.
Coming back to the Mets in 1981 (strike year), he only played 70 games, notching 51 hits.
The year that catches my eye is 1983. Rusty was the Mets' pinch hitter: only 115 ABs in 104 games. What if Rusty had played in the AL that year as a DH? He hit .296 as a Met, so let's say he hits .296 for someone else and gets 300 ABs. That would create another 54 hits.
On to 1984. .264 but only 72-at bats. Should we give him 300 ABs again? There's another 60 hits for Rusty.
Now he'd be 41 years old with 2,830 hits.
3,000 probably wasn't meant to be for Rusty but it's fun to think about.
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