Pittsburgh Pirates History: The Cycle

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

The cycle is a feat that, for being so odd, is so common, when compared to other feats. Last night John Jaso recorded the 312th cycle in Major League Baseball History. There have only been 295 no hitters and only 23 perfect games.

John Jaso hit for the cycle last night, which is rather surprising because he is extremely slow and does not have a lot of home run power. Combine Jaso’s lack of two big things one usually needs to hit for the cycle and combine it with a pitcher who had a 2.85 ERA entering the day, the likelihood that John Jaso would hit for the cycle, basically seemed impossible.

Jaso has really had atale of three seasons. In April and May he hit a remarkable .304/.369/.441. However, in June and July, he faltered and hit a horrendous .198/.291/.275. The good news about Jaso, who signed a two-year deal in December, has hit .304/.402/.557 in August and September. Jaso getting going could be key, as he looks to be the left-handed bat off the bench in 2017.

Pirates Cycles

Last night was the Pirates 23rd cycle in team history. The first cycle was from Fred Carroll on May 2, 1887. Before yesterday, the most recent was done by Daryle Ward on May 27, 2004 in a game against the St. Louis Cardinals.

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Jaso’s cycle was the first at home since 2000, when Jason Kendall did it on May 19, against the St. Louis Cardinals. Yesterdays cycle was only the eleventh cycle at home for the Pirates, and besides Jaso and Kendall’s, they all occurred before 1950. The twelve on the road were

more spread out, as six of them occurred before and in 1950 and six occurred after.

Four of the teams cycle’s, 17 percent, came against the St. Louis Cardinals. Those were by Ward (2004), Kendall (2000), Willie Stargell (1964), and Bill Salkeld (1945). Another five of them occurred against Cincinnati. The four that achieved them are Gary Redus (1989), Mike Easler (1980), Chief Wilson (1910), and Fred Clarke (1903 and 1901).

Fred Clarke is not the only Pirate to hit for the cycle twice. Former shortstop Arky Vaughan had two as well. His first came on June 24, 1933 against Brooklyn and he had another on July 19, 1939 against the New York Giants.

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The Pirates have a long history with the cycle. Jaso’s last night ties the club with the San Francisco Giants as the most in history with 23. The Boston Red Sox are third with 21, which is a safe lead for the Pirates over them. The Miami Marlins are the only current team not have hit for the cycle.

*Numbers from fangraphs and Pirates