Reaching 100 walks in an MLB season should be something to admire: it’s harder than most people think.
Just three players have surpassed 100 walks in 2023, and there were two in 2022.
Then, you can imagine how difficult it is to take 120 walks in a year.
Well, San Diego Padres outfielder Juan Soto has taken 120 bases on balls in each of the last three seasons.
He is one of just six players in the history of the game to have that many straight seasons with as many walks or more.
“Only players to ever have 3 straight 120+ walk seasons: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Ted Williams, Eddie Yost, Barry Bonds, Juan Soto,” Codify Baseball tweeted.
Only players to ever have 3 straight 120+ walk seasons:
Juan Soto 🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/T9W0FZbJgv
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) September 24, 2023
Look at the names on that list: they are all amazing, and most of them are among the most potent and productive names in history.
To earn that many walks over a sustained period of time, it’s not enough to have a good eye at the plate.
If you are a disciplined hitter with little to no power, pitchers will eventually challenge you with more pitches in the zone.
They respect the hitters that earn that kind of respect, and Soto’s power and overall hitting ability are both elite on top of his historically great plate discipline.
This year, he has 127 walks, yes; but also 31 doubles and 33 home runs.
He has proven he can inflict a lot of damage on contact, and pitchers fear him as a result.
Soto has one last season of arbitration remaining in 2024: after that, he will sign one of the richest contracts in history when he hits free agency.NEXT: The Padres Are Suddenly Back In The Wild Card Race