Felix Millan has one of the most unbreakable records in New York Mets history. What he was able to do in his years with the team is more than double the second-plan man on the list, Doug Flynn.
Striking out used to be embarrassing for baseball players. Only the best sluggers could get away with it. Even they didn’t fan nearly as much as today’s batters. There are a couple of reasons for it beyond just the level of inhibition some people have. Pitchers throw harder and with bullpens getting used more creatively and wisely. Strikeouts are a common occurrence. This was rarely the case whenever Millan stepped up to the plate for the Mets.
Felix Millan set an unbreakable Mets record, striking out only once per every 29.1 at-bats
One strikeout per every 29.1 at-bats is significant. Millan would strike out only 92 total times in 2954 plate appearances as a member of the team. He’d also draw 161 total walks, putting him into that exclusive club of “I walked more than I struck out.”
It was an interesting turn in Millan’s career. During his early years with the Atlanta Braves, he was nearly even with 157 walks to 150 strikeouts. He’d improve those skills during his five seasons in New York, never striking out more than 28 times in a season!
Millan holds the career record for fewest strikeouts per at-bats as a member of the Mets. Second-place finisher, Flynn, did it at a rate of 13.5 per at-bat. Millan more than doubled this total in an impressive feat no one will ever come close to beating.
With the career total in the bag, Millan can also be crowned the single-season champion, too. He has the four best years in franchise history. In 1974, with 518 at-bats on his plate, Millan struck out only 14 times. This equals out to a rate of one strikeout per every 37 at-bats. Flynn (1981) and Lance Johnson (1996) are tied for fifth with a rate of a strikeout per every 17.1 at-bats.
The 1974 season wasn’t his only record-setting year either. With 24 sacrifice hits, he was able to set yet another franchise record. In 2009, Luis Castillo challenged with 19 of them. However, with the continued death of small ball, this is yet another one of those titles he’ll likely never lose.