Something has happened in Major League Baseball that has not been properly addressed. An athletic feat that even a non-baseball fan must acknowledge.An athletic feat that has not been accomplished in professional baseball in over 45 years.An athletic feat that baseball greats Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa or even Barry Bonds could not accomplish. Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers has won the Triple Crown in the American League.
For you non-baseball heads out there, a Triple Crown is when a player leads their respective conference in batting average, home runs and runs batted in. Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski of the Boston Red Sox was the previous member of the prestigious club that only holds 14 members. Other notable Triple Crown winners include Hall of Famers Ty Cobb, Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Rogers Hornsby and Lou Gehrig. Now, the last Triple Crown Winner was in 1967 with Carl Yastrzemski.
When Yastrzemski won the Triple Crown there were eight teams in each division, approximately 450 players in the Major League. Currently there are thirty teams, with fifteen in each division. Not taking away from the pitching greats of the past, but the pitching in the current MLB is a little more advanced then back in the day. Now here is where the problem exists with the whole situation. The media has not taken any notice to how big of an accomplishment that Cabrera has amassed.
No ESPN “Sunday Conversations” with Cabrera or “All-Access” sessions are to be seen at all. Maybe it is the fact that Cabrera is a quiet natured guy who has been rumored to be reluctant to the attention and the limelight that winning the Triple Crown is suppose to bring. It could be the fact that Cabrera is Venezuelan and cannot speak English that well. Regardless what the issue is, Cabrera’s accomplishment has been overshadowed in the headlines of the sports media.
The NFL replacement referees, the start of season in the NBA and NCAA college basketball, the New York Jets quarterback battle between Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez and the struggles of Alex Rodriguez in the playoffs have all received more frontpage coverage than Cabrera. Maybe we can gather something from Cabrera and his passive attitude towards the situation.
Could you imagine the sports media explosion if LeBron James led the Eastern Conference in points per game, rebounds and assists? What if Peyton Manning led the American Football Conference in passing yards, passing touchdowns and quarterback rating? The idea of sports today is so individualized, and it is evident by how our sports media portrays sports every day. LeBron James, Tim Tebow and Peyton Manning are talked about everyday for no reason. Maybe we should all take something from how Cabrera handles his elite accomplishment.
When asked for a quote after Cabrera won the Triple Crown Cabrera said that, “I’m just trying to play my best and have fun.” Everyone should take note to the Cabrera led Detroit Tigers who have swept the Yankees to advance to the World Series.
Maybe it will take an incredible season of winning a World Series along with leading the American League in batting average, home runs and runs batted in to finally give this man his due.