Miguel Cabrera is one of the most talented hitters to ever step on the diamond. Last season, he completed one of only 17 Triple Crowns in Major League Baseball history by hitting .330 with 44 home runs and 139 RBI. He is obviously now a member of a pretty elite fraternity.
However, given the pace that he is off to in 2013, it is not too hard to believe that he might become a member of a more exclusive club. He is in a position to win his second Triple Crown, and he would join only Hall of Famers Rogers Hornsby and Ted Williams as the only men to complete this accomplishment.
Right now, 52 games of the season are in the books, and here is how Cabrera stands in each of the big three categories. Keep in mind that he only needs to lead the American League in each of these categories in order to win the title.
In terms of batting average, he is currently sitting in first place with a .368 batting average. Chris Davis of the Baltimore Orioles is his nearest competition with a .356 average, but I would like to point out that Davis is notorious for his high strikeout totals and consequently low average. Over his career, he only has a .268 average which is definitely solid, and I do not mean to diminish that, but the odds of him keeping up with Cabrera are very slim. The next closest competitor is also from the Baltimore Orioles. Manny Machado is having a great rookie season, and he is hitting .336. However, with an over 30 point difference in average, Cabrera seems like a very safe bet for this statistical category.
It is not surprising that the home run category is competitive. Right now, Cabrera is sitting in second with 15 bombs. Not surprisingly, Chris Davis is also the top of this category with 19 home runs. Last season, he did hit 33 home runs, so there is no doubt that he has power, and perhaps he has taken that production to another level. I believe that this will be the toughest category for Cabrera to recapture.
Finally, he has a very familiar competitor in the race to dominate RBI. Cabrera is on top with 59 RBI, but Davis is right behind him with 50 of his own. Both of them are sitting in the middle of lineups that produce a lot of runs as well, so it is highly unlikely that either one slows down substantially. Cabrera has a slightly better track record than Davis, so while this race is far from over, I would have to assume that he has a little bit of an advantage.
Right now, if Miguel Cabrera is going to land his second Triple Crown, he needs to overcome the power hitting first baseman of the Baltimore Orioles Chris Davis. History would obviously lean in favor of Cabrera, but Davis has shown so much improvement this season that it is hard for me to write him off as a hitter who is simply going to cool off.
With this serious competition, Cabrera needs to stay hot. I think it is possible, but there is a lot of baseball left to play.