Sad Departure: 2 key players depart Cleveland Guardians just now….


Sad Departure: 2 key players depart Cleveland Guardians just now….

Can Steven Kwan of the Cleveland Guardians, who is on the verge of hitting.400, reach 400?
Since Ted Williams hit.406 in 1941, there hasn’t been a.400 hitter in the major leagues or the American League.

Since Shoeless Joe Jackson hit.408 in 1911, the Cleveland Guardians have not had a hitter who is rated at least 400.

The top three hitters in the major leagues at the beginning of play on Monday were Luis Arraez (.326), Bobby Witt (.327), and Steven Kwan (.398).

That’s accurate. June is halfway over, and Cleveland’s Steven Kwan is leading the majors in hitting—by a whopping 71 points.

The bat-to-ball wizard for the Guardians is hitting.563 (18-for-32) in his last eight games, raising his season batting average to.398, which is 71 points higher than any hitter in either league and leading the American League.

Stephen Vogt, the manager of Cleveland, described him as “just a great hitter.” “He doesn’t chase; he knows the (strike) zone and stays inside himself. It’s difficult to remove him.

Ask the Toronto Blue Jays, please. Kwan hit.615 (8-for-13) during Cleveland’s three-game weekend series in Toronto. Kwan went.800 (4-for-5) in the Guardians’ 7-6 loss to the Blue Jays on Sunday.

You must be a huge star if, in the middle of June, you are only two runs shy of hitting.400.

Even though he is out-hitting his much-more-famous teammate Jose Ramirez by 129 points, Steven Kwan is still Steven Kwan. The difference between Ramirez, Cleveland’s No. 3 hitter, and Kwan, the team’s leadoff hitter, is that Ramirez leads the American League in RBI with 62 and is tied for fourth in home runs with 18.

Kwan appears to be on base all the time, which is why he has been on base for many of Ramirez’s home runs. He does not have enough plate appearances to qualify, despite having an on-base percentage of.456, which would rank third in the American League.

Kwan was a hitting machine before and after his hamstring strain, which kept him out of action for the majority of May. When he was added to the list of injured on

In the 11 games since his return from the injured list, Kwan is hitting .535 with a .600 on-base percentage, a .698 slugging percentage, and a 1.298 OPS. Those are cleanup hitter numbers being produced by the Guardians’ leadoff hitter.

“I try to hit the ball hard, do the same thing every day, and stick to a routine I trust,” said Kwan, simplistically.

Cleveland acquired the 26-year-old left fielder in the fifth round of the 2018 MLB draft, out of Oregon State University. Guardians officials knew they had something right away.

What stands out most is Kwan’s ability to put the bat on the ball. At the start of his rookie season in 2022, opposing pitchers threw 116 pitches before Kwan swung and missed one. In his first two seasons with Cleveland Kwan averaged just 67 strikeouts per season.

This year he is averaging 12.2 at bats per strikeout, which would lead the American League by a wide margin if he had enough at bats to qualify.

Kwan’s 168 hits in his rookie year were the most by a Cleveland rookie in 88 years, and he was the first Guardians rookie to have more walks than strikeouts since Kenny Lofton in 1992, and the first in the majors since 2007.

There was almost no transition at all in Kwan’s arrival in the major leagues. As a rookie in 2022, he won the left field job coming out of spring training, quickly ascended to the leadoff spot in the batting order, and has been there ever since. He also averaged 20 stolen bases in each of his first two major league seasons.

This year, Kwan leads the majors with 10 three-hit games. His seven three-hit games in Cleveland’s first 30 games are the most by a Cleveland hitter since 1937. Kwan’s 71-point lead in the American League batting race makes him a candidate to become the franchise’s first AL batting champion in 70 years (the last Cleveland player to do it: second baseman Bobby Avila, who hit .341 in 1954).

In addition to being the Guardians’ leadoff hitter, the 5-9, 170-pound Kwan also is a major frustration to opposing hitters. He was won a Gold Glove in each of his first two seasons, and it is not unusual to see him diving into the stands to catch a foul ball in left field, or racing into the left-center field gap to take away a hit from another hitter.

Indeed, Kwan is one of those rare players who hit the ground running – literally and figuratively – upon arriving in the big leagues, and he has gotten better in each succeeding season.

Good enough to hit .400 in a season? Good enough to win a batting title? Both are probably a long shot, but so far this season Kwan has been a big shot.

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