clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Jose Altuve asks to play, wins American League batting title

The Astros didn't plan to play Altuve in the final game of the season, but he wanted to win the batting title the right way: by playing.

Jim McIsaac

Jose Altuve didn't want to win the American League batting title by default. Entering Sunday with a league-leading .340 average, Altuve's name did not appear in the Astros' lineup originally. He could have enjoyed the game from the bench, making it nearly impossible for Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez (.337 average entering Sunday) to catch him and keep the title in Detroit. Altuve had other thoughts.

So after a little persuading, Altuve got to start, and earned his title with a hit. A ground-rule double to center field in the third inning virtually wrapped it up, and Altuve went 2-for-4 before exiting the game, finishing his season with 225 hits, hitting .341.

Martinez went 0-for-3, finishing at .335.

Detroit had been the home to the batting title for three years, with Miguel Cabrera earning all three titles. Cabrera, who had offseason surgery to repair his core muscles, batted just .315 in 2014, giving him his lowest average since hitting .292 in 2008. Meanwhile Martinez has been Detroit's best batter all year. A hot September (.391) kept Martinez in the running, but it wasn't enough to catch Altuve in the end.