Mike Schmidt’s Hall of Fame career didn’t get off to a good start. in fact in Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, James listed Mike Schmidt as having the worst rookie season of any player who’s in the Hall of Fame. The only thing Schmidt seemed to do well was strikeout. In only 367 at bats, Schmidt struck out 136 times and it would be the only season until 1988 where Schmidt had an OPS+ of less then 111.
On June 27, 1973, Mike Schmidt had his first two homerun game. He drove in five of the seven runs the Phillies scored in that game. On August 10, 1973, Mike Schmidt had his only three hit game of the season and he also homered twice in that one. Generally though, Schmidt wasn’t driving in runs unless he hit homeruns. For most of the season he actually hovered right above the Mendoza line but after August 10, 1973, his batting average never got above .220. He went 0 for 25 in the final seven games of the season and that dropped him below the .200 mark at seasons’ end.
Of course this would be the end of the bad for Mike Schmidt. By 1974, he was already contending for the MVP and as Mike Schmidt went, the Phillies went and the team continually improved throughout the rest of the decade.
Here’s a look at Mike Schmidt’s numbers in 1973:
Stolen Bases 8
Caught Stealing 2
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