BALTIMORE (AP) — Baltimore first baseman Chris Davis is nearing a record streak for futility.
Davis was 0 for 4 with two strikeouts in Sunday’s 15-3 loss to the New York Yankees. He is 0 for 23 with 13 strikeouts this season and is hitless in 44 at-bats since a second-inning double off James Shields of the Chicago White Sox last Sept. 14.
Davis two shy of the record for consecutive hitless at-bats by a position player, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Eugenio Velez went hitless in his final 46 at-bats of the 2011 season, one more than the previous mark shared by Pittsburgh’s Bill Bergen (1909), Dave Campbell of San Diego and St. Louis (1973) and Milwaukee’s Craig Counsell (earlier in 2011).
Orioles manager Brandon Hyde has tried to stay positive with Davis, who has two RBIs, on a bases-loaded walk and a forceout. Most of the Orioles lineup struggled Sunday against Yankees left-hander Domingo German, who gave up two runs, two hits and two walks over six-plus innings.
“I haven’t talked to him about it since, but he’s facing a tough lefty there,” Hyde said. “I hope that he feels like he’s making progress. He took a couple decent passes on those fly balls. Just didn’t happen.”
Davis is in the fourth season of a $161 million, seven-year contract.
He hit .168 last year, the worst batting average in major league history for a qualified player, with 16 home runs, 49 RBIs and a .539 OPS.
Davis has been booed after strikeouts at Camden Yards.
“I understand the frustration,” Davis said after Thursday’s home opener. “Nobody’s more frustrated than I am, especially a day like today, the kind of game that we were having. It was a frustrating day for me personally and the team collectively. But you’ve got to move on.”