Pelicans infielder Chesny Young had no idea at the time that he had broken the Carolina League record for consecutive games on base.
It’s a good thing his family was on top of it.
Young set the record of 38 consecutive games reaching base during a 4-0 win over the Salem Red Sox on July 19 and the streak ballooned to 44 games until it was snapped when he failed to reach base Sunday, going 0-for-4 in a 3-1 win over the Carolina Mudcats.
“I didn’t even know about it until I broke it; my family texted me after the game,” said Young, who also had a career-high 14-game hit streak snapped Sunday. “After I broke it, though, I think the last two games it came down to the last at-bat. I got one hit in one game and didn’t get the hit in the second game. So that was the only time I ever thought about it.”
The Carolina League began tracking on-base streaks at the start of the 2009 season and Young broke the 37-game record set by Carlos Sanchez while with the Winston-Salem Dash in 2012. The minor league record for a batter reaching safely in consecutive games was set by South Bend (Ind.) Silver Hawks shortstop Andrew Velazquez in 2014 with 74 games, which was just 10 games shy of the major league record of 84 set by Hall of Famer and Boston Red Sox legend Ted Williams in 1949.
Young put together 18 multi-hit games during the streak, including a three-hit game and five-hit game. Young also entered Tuesday owning a Carolina League-best .340 batting average and is on pace to break the Pelicans’ franchise record for batting average during a single season, which is held by Marcus Giles with a .325 average during the 1999 season.
Young said it was just a product of hard work.
“I didn’t really look at it as a streak. I was just doing my own thing, working hard and taking advantage of opportunities,” he said. “But with the streak, the whole thing is consistency. So I’ve been just trying to be consistent with my work ethic pretty much.”
Pelicans manager Mark Johnson has noticed how much Young’s approach and work ethic helps his game – not only during the streak, but every day.
“His approach doesn’t change; he’s consistent,” Johnson said. “Not only consistent with his approach but his pregame routines and everything he does is consistent and that’s the name of the game. He’s a poster child for consistency.”
Young also played a big part in the Pelicans clinching a playoff spot with a first-half Carolina League Southern Division title. He wants to help the team down the stretch, unless he gets a call to Double-A Tennessee first.
“It’s getting late in the season so it’s definitely a grind on the body,” Young said. “I’m just trying to get good rest, keep up the good work and help the team win.”