Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Machado Shooting for 162 This Season

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Machado Shooting for 162 This Season

Article excerpt

Orioles third baseman Manny Machado knows he has a long way before he even thinks about catching Cal Ripken Jr.'s consecutive games played streak. But not only is Machado the only player in the majors to play in every game this season, he owned baseball's active consecutive games streak entering Friday.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Machado's 127 consecutive games played stands as the longest active streak. No other player in the major leagues other than Machado can play in all 162 games this season. That has been Machado's goal since spring training. Despite his place as one of the game's best young players, he has yet to play a full major league season after his past two years were cut short because of season-ending surgeries to each of his knees.

"I think one of my main goals going into this season was to try to play as many games as I possibly can," Machado said.

"Injuries always happen, that's a part of the game, but that's a great accomplishment that so far it's been going great. I've been playing every day. I've been healthy."

Entering Thursday, Los Angeles Angels outfielder Kole Calhoun (117 games) owned the second-longest active streak and Colorado Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon was third with 103 consecutive games played, according to Elias.

San Francisco Giants outfielder Hunter Pence's 383-game streak - formerly the longest active consecutive games streak - ended when he opened this season on the disabled list. Texas Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder has the longest recent consecutive games streak when he played in 547 consecutive games from 2010-14.

Machado said he learned quickly the importance of finding a way to play every day through the grind of a 162-game season. In 2013, the Orioles had four players - Adam Jones (160), Nick Markakis (160), Chris Davis (160) and J.J. Hardy (159) - who played at least 159 games. Machado would have been in that group as well. He played in all 156 games until suffering a left knee injury.

"I think it's made me mentally stronger, being able to go out there and perform every day," Machado said. …

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