BTS leader at 45 games thanks to Altuve

BTS leader at 45 games thanks to Altuve

Beat the Streak is all about getting hits, and Houston's Jose Altuve has more of those this season than any Major Leaguer except Boston's Xander Bogaerts.

So it made sense for BTS active leader "Terry_Sims" to select Altuve for a second consecutive time on Tuesday. The decision paid off, although 63-year-old Terry Sims had to wait until the last minute.

Altuve was 0-for-3 against the Angels before picking up his 96th hit, an infield single, in the bottom of the ninth inning. That set up Carlos Correa's walk-off two-run single in a 3-2 Astros victory over the Angels and pushed Sims' streak to 45. He is now 12 successful picks away from passing Joe DiMaggio's record 56-game streak in 1941 and collecting the $5.6 million grand prize.

"I picked Altuve because I did not like any of the other matchups I looked at," Sims said in an email to MLB.com. "Quite a day for pitchers yesterday. Was down to the wire, watching the game on Gameday online. Altuve came through in the bottom of the ninth. Clutch, baby.

"[I'm] just trying to stick to my routine and hoping for the best, 45 in a row is hard to believe, I don't know how the other Streakers did it."

Sims needs two more to match Ken Gilman for the longest streak of the year, at 47.

"As far as being the leader, it really hasn't sunk in," Sims said. "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."

While Sims said this is the first time he has enjoyed a streak longer than 20 in four or five years of playing BTS, it's now easier than ever for players to chase down DiMaggio. For example, users have the option of employing the "Double Down" feature. Double Down allows fans to advance their streak by two games, but only if both of their picks get a hit. If one goes hitless, the streak ends.

Additionally, BTS research filters such as batting-order position, right- or left-handed pitchers and cold opposing pitchers are at fans' disposal to help make their decisions. They can also take as many days off between selections if they don't find ideal matchups -- just as long as they exceed 56 by season's end.

Should Sims string together 57 consecutive correct picks, he would be the first player to claim the grand prize since BTS launched more than 15 years ago. While nobody got that far in 2015, a $10,000 consolation prize was awarded, along with 2 million other prizes for streaks as small as five games.

It would be especially fitting if Sims or another BTS user could break the drought this year. After all, it's the 75th anniversary of DiMaggio's remarkable streak, which is being commemorated with daily recaps on MLB.com and @TheStreak.

Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.