Jockbeat: Who’s the Real ‘Mr. October’?


There’s a perception that Alex Rodriguez has finally “turned around” his postseason hitting with three good games. But he’s still not in the same league as Reggie Jackson as a postseason hitter, the radio call-in shows keep reminding us.

If that’s your perception, then look at the following comparison:

Player A: 42 games, 151 at-bats, 40 hits, 7 homers, 19 rbi, .265 batting
Player B: 42 games, 158 at-bats, 46 hits, 9 homers, 25 rbi, .291 batting

I’ll give you a hint — Player A likes to collect antique automobiles, Player B is often seen with Kate Hudson. Shock and amaze your friends with those statistics: Player A is Reggie, Player B, A-Rod. Through their first 42 postseason games, A-Rod batted 26 points higher, had hit two more home runs and drove in six more runs than Reggie in his first 42 postseason games.

What changed everyone’s perception was Reggie’s 43rd postseason game, Game Six of the 1977 World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, when he hit three home runs. No one called him “Mr. October” before that game. Next time, think about this before you start to dump on any player for choking in the postseason. What a difference one game can make.