Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/201...#ixzz1ZLGkQBM2Adam Dunn of the White Sox hit just .159, but didn't play Wednesday and finished with 496 plate appearances, six shy of qualifying. The post-1900 record low among qualifiers was set by Rob Deer at .179 in 1991.
Congratulations to the Big Donkey for having the lowest (post-1900) batting average in baseball history. I know the article stated he came up six PA shy of qualifying but I think they are wrong and here is why.
An official MLB rules states the following:
In other words, if a player lacks the required amount of PA then these are 'hypothetically' given to him as hitless. Right or wrong, agree or disagree those are the rules. If it works at the high end of the batting average spectrum why not the low end?From 1967 to the present, if the player with the highest average in a league fails to meet the minimum plate-appearance requirement, the remaining at-bats until qualification (e.g., 5 ABs, if the player finished the season with 497 plate appearances) are hypothetically considered hitless at-bats; if his recalculated batting average still tops the league, he is awarded the title. (This policy was invoked in 1981, securing Bill Madlock his third NL batting crown, and in 1996, when NL titlist Tony Gwynn finished the year with only 498 PAs.)
Extrapolating then, if we are determining the lowest batting average of all-time, we simply inverse that rule and assume the player would have gotten hits in each of the additional PAs needed to reach the qualifying standard.
Adam Dunn was six plate appearances shy. He is given a 'hypothetical' hit in each. He goes from 66 for 415, to 72 for 421. This calculates out to a .173 batting average. And, Bingo!, there you go. Move over, Rob Deer, there is a new sheriff in town. Congratulations are in order for Adam Dunn for having the lowest batting average in the history of baseball (post-1900).
Obviously this is written with tongue firmly in cheek. Just having a little fun is all. But I did run it by the Big Donkey himself and he seemed mighty pleased.