If you are newly introduced to the sport, the term “cycle in baseball” may confuse you. You may wonder to yourself, is it something like a bicycle that only the Baseball players are allowed to ride. Hell no!! You cannot ride the Cycle in Baseball, but you undoubtedly can make it!! Still confused? Well, let us explain.
Cycle in Baseball, in the most straightforward possible language, can be explained as a situation when the hitter can hit all the “four types” of shots in the same game. The four mentioned shots are- singles, doubles, triples, and not forget the home run. If the player can execute all these in a single game, it is considered a cycle in Baseball.
The reason behind considering the Cycle in Baseball difficult
After reading through the definition, you might think, what is so challenging to execute a cycle in Baseball. But hey!! Had it been so easy, then a cycle in Baseball wouldn’t have been considered a historical event. A cycle in Baseball is one of the most challenging things to achieve in this sport. It is not just a swing that you may perfect by repeatedly practicing, ultimately mastering it. A cycle in Baseball requires immense skill and the perfect timing to execute it successfully.
When we say this, you will not believe that there is only 1% of the total baseball players who can pull off the Cycle in Baseball. Hitting four consecutive shots is problematic in itself. We hope now it is clear why hitting four different shots is even more difficult.
Being able to hit the Homerun after the Triple
Those who play Baseball know that hitting a single or a double is not very difficult. In recent times this has become even more achievable. What makes the Cycle in Baseball arduous is to hit the triples followed by the home run—according to some researchers, hitting home runs in a Major League baseball or as popularly known as the MLB, is comparatively more manageable when compared with hitting triples.
Even if we focus on the 2015 session, we see that the chances of scoring a triple compared to a home run are not more than a mere two percent. But things were different during the 30s. The chances of scoring a homerun used to be less when compared to triples which are quite the opposite of the present scenario.
There are obvious reasons for this shift. The field on which Baseball was played has changed in recent times. This has made it easier to score home runs but challenging to score the triples. But if one has to achieve the Cycle in Baseball, they have to score the triples. The outfielders can easily pick up the hits before the runner can make it to the home base from the first and hence the rarity.
Ways to achieve Cycle in Baseball
We said Cycle in Baseball is difficult but not impossible. You can still achieve it. Here are a few steps that you might follow to try and accomplish the Cycle.
A common myth says that speed is all you need to increase your batting average. But that is not true. Both power and speed have equal importance. When the players can generate more power by practicing repeatedly, they can also increase the batting average. This helps in hitting singles, doubles, and especially triples consecutively.
Having enough speed is one of the most critical aspects that baseball players should have, along with good power. Running through the bases is no easy task. That is the thing that helps you to score in Baseball. So one needs to be very fast to steal the bases. But is running with great speed enough?
No, it is not. One should know the correct way of running while maintaining the perfect speed. There may be many players with outstanding speed, but their lack of knowledge of utilizing it may hinder achieving the goal. The training for speed needs to start from a very young age. Since it is not just about running but also knowing the best strategy to utilize it effectively makes all the difference.
Perfecting the exit speed
Hitting the ball with immense power is not what will earn you a good batting average but also how you move your body after that. It is necessary to twist your body from the hip region after hitting the ball. The “extra” movement adds “extra” speed to the ball, making it fly off even further. The “swing speed” is entirely dependent on how one makes the ball fly.
The job isn’t done after making contact since you still need to swing the bat and push the ball fly. After making solid contact, you need to maximize your hip movement for that extra swing speed. While making contact with the barrel’s middle is good, swing speed is how you make the ball fly.
Getting ” extra ” base hits increases when the batter can hit off the ball with an excellent swing speed. Getting “extra” base hits increases. This helps accomplish the doubles and not just singles and not forget even the home runs.
The Bottom Line
Even if you can achieve all the points mentioned earlier, you may not be able to succeed in making a cycle in Baseball. The reason? If you are not disciplined enough. Discipline goes a long way, not just in sports but in every walk of life. A disciplined player may even achieve the impossible, while a skilled one may fail due to lack of discipline. Being a disciplined batter will help them read the pitcher’s eyes and decide the type of shots he wishes to play.
FAQs on Cycle in Baseball
How many Cycle in Baseball has been recorded over time?
As already mentioned, since this is a sporadic occurrence in the entire history of Baseball, the number of recorded cycles has been something around 330.
Who was the first player to hit the Cycle in Baseball?
The first-ever player to hit the Cycle was Charles Foley in 1882.
Who has the highest number of cycles in Baseball?
Adrian Beltre has hit the highest number of cycles. He is considered one of the greatest “third” basemen of all time.
What is a natural cycle in Baseball?
A natural cycle in Baseball is when the shots are in order of single, double, triple, and a home run.
Who has the fastest Cycle in Baseball?
Mike Lansing, the second baseman of the Colorado Rockies, holds the record for the fastest Cycle in Baseball.
Who has hit two cycles in one baseball game?
Multiple cycle hits have not occurred in MLB but occurred quite a few times in the minor ones. The first one occurred on September 17, 1920, hit by Bobby Veach and George Burns. And the second one happened on September 1, 2008, by Stephen Drew and Adrián Beltré.