BTS leader chooses Altuve, reaches 44 games

BTS leader chooses Altuve, reaches 44 games

After Mike Trout kept his run alive Sunday afternoon, Beat the Streak leader "Terry_Sims" leaned on another productive American League bat to push his streak another game closer to the grand prize.

Terry Sims, 63, selected Jose Altuve for Monday's games and was rewarded as the former AL batting champion went deep for a solo homer and chipped in a single for good measure as the Astros beat the Angels, 10-7. Altuve's performance extended Sims' streak to 44 games, more than 75 percent of the way to the $5.6 million grand prize. Altuve has traditionally hit well vs. Los Angeles, batting .351 (85-for-242) in 22 career games against the club entering Monday's contest.

"As far as being the leader, it really hasn't sunk in," Sims said in an email to MLB.com. "At this point, reasoning and logic are out the window.

"I'm like the proverbial duck, pretty calm on the surface but paddling [hard] under the water, just trying to keep the streak alive."

Sims now needs just 13 more successful picks to pass Joe DiMaggio's record 56-game streak from 1941. In an email to MLB.com, the BTS leader said that in four or five years of playing Beat the Streak, this is his first time getting further than 20 games.

In 2016, it's easier than ever for BTS players to reach DiMaggio's legendary mark. Players can get a leg up with the "Double Down" feature, for example, which allows them the ability to increase their streak by two games in one day by picking a second player they feel will get a hit. If either one of the player's picks go hitless, however, the player's streak ends and returns to zero.

Additionally, BTS players have a wealth of research filters at their disposal, including batting-order position and cold opposing pitchers. Best of all, they can take days off between selections if they don't find ideal matchups -- just as long as they exceed 56 games by season's end.

Sims is attempting to become the first player in the 15-year history of Beat the Streak to win the grand prize. If no one claims the grand prize this season, the player with the longest streak gets a $10,000 consolation prize. Additionally, two million other prizes were awarded for streaks as small as five games last year.

Should Sims become the first player to pass DiMaggio, he said he has "no plans" for the money, other than leaving his job at a golf course and taking his wife and friends on a trip to play golf around the world.

"My friends are all watching who my picks are," Sims said.

If Sims or someone else finally collects the grand prize this year, it would be particularly fitting. After all, it's the 75-year anniversary of DiMaggio's remarkable streak, which is being commemorated with daily recaps on MLB.com and @TheStreak on Twitter.

Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.