Chipper Jones is arguably having the best year as a hitter. Yes, I know Chase Utley is lighting it up in Philly, but there's more to a hitter then just home runs.
Ladies and gents, this year Chipper is doing it all. He is leading the league in average with a stifling .418. To go along with that average he has 14 home runs and 39 RBI.
Also he hit his 400th career home run last night against the Marlins and becomes the third switch hitter to hit over 400 home runs in his career—joining Mickey Mantle and Eddie Murray.
I would like to take notice to that as that is a remarkable accomplishment, so congratulations Chipper Jones.
The last person to hit over .400 in the regular season was Ted Williams in 1941. That is a long time ago.
Why is it to rare? I think I know the answer.
To perform at such a top level for a long period of time requires great durability, stamina, and focus. Chipper isn't getting any younger, but how is he still able to hit over .400?
When Chipper needs a break and a day off he is simply telling Bobby Cox. Bobby Cox is one of the best managers baseball has ever seen, and he is going to listen to his players.
Chipper knows his body better then anyone else does, and he's simply listening to it.
This is not why he is hitting over .400 though or every player would be just taking days off. He is swinging the bat extremely well and is a confident hitter. Technique over power will win any day.
Chipper's swing is as smooth as it can get. He was always a solid hitter, but he is bringing his game to another level.
It could be luck or it could not be luck—we are just going to have to wait and find out.
Will Chipper keep up this amazing batting average?
He batted .417 the first month of the season and .422 in May. This month he is starting off the best he has all season with a monthly average of .471.
I'm an Atlanta Braves fan and would love to see Chipper hit over .400 for the whole year. In reality, it's not going to happen. His age will catch up with him in the end, but I guarantee he will still have a solid year.
Prediction: .356 average, 31 home runs, 112 RBI