(Photo by Steve Paluch)
When Craig Counsell laced a single off of Enerio Del Rosario in the 46th at-bat since his last hit, people the world over raised their glasses in support and cities all across the world were planning massive blowouts in celebration. I guess we were a little premature because revised research reveals that Counsell did, in fact, tie Bill Bergen’s hitless record.
Joe Dittmar, who was the SABR researcher to discover Bergen’s 46 at-bat hitless streak, revised his research while Counsell was on the trail:
"It’s been more than 14 years since I did my original research on the Bergen hit-less streak, so I went back to my original files and photo copies of his day-by-day records. There was one date in particular, July 14, where the Bergen AB entry was fuzzy. Upon review it looked to be either a 2 or a 3. At the time of my original research I did not reference any play-by-play materials and interpreted that AB entry as 3. Now, upon closer scrutiny, and particularly with confirmation from the Retrosheet data, it’s pretty certain Bergen had 2 ABs on that date.
Dave Smith was gracious enough to recently provide me with all the PBP data that Retrosheet has available for the Bergen streak. Although there are some gaps in that data, it seems to confirm the DBD records, including Bergen's 2 ABs on July 14, not 3 as it first appeared to me.
Therefore, it now appears that Counsell tied the hit-less streak by a non-pitcher at 45 first set by Bill Bergen in 1909.”
Don’t worry, though, Craig Counsell is made of heartier stock than you and I, and in some way, he must understand that he has now achieved baseball immortality. It’s just a shame that this information came after the fact, once the media frenzy surrounding the Brewers had died down.