User 'kamea' now 14 picks away from $5.6 million grand prize
By Zachary Finkelstein
Another day of Beat the Streak action saw current leader "kamea" get two steps closer to surpassing one of baseball's most hallowed marks: Joe DiMaggio's MLB-record 56-game hitting streak.
The BTS user extended his or her streak, which began back on April 7, to 43 straight successful picks by selecting Yankees second baseman Starlin Castro and Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts on Tuesday. Castro went 1-for-4 with a double against the Reds, while Bogaerts was 2-for-5 with a triple and a two-bagger at Minnesota.
The rules of MLB.com's flagship fantasy game are simple, even if the challenge is not: Correctly pick a batter or two each day to tally a hit in a game. Then do it again and again, and don't stop until 57 straight successful selections are made. To do so would be to "top" Joe D.'s storied hitting streak from 1941. The prize for prevailing is a cool $5.6 million.
"Kamea" has relied heavily on the BTS "Double Down" feature, which allows Streakers to select two players on the same day. If both batters record at least one hit -- as Castro and Bogaerts did Tuesday night -- the Streaker's run advances by two games. But if either player goes hitless, the streak drops back to zero.
What do we know about Mr. or Ms. "kamea?" Well, unfortunately, not much. But rest assured, the sleuths at MLB.com are actively seeking more information. The great BTS community is clamoring for info on our mysterious star, and understandably so.
So, what can we say about "kamea?" For starters: his or her picks have hit a robust .366 (64-for-175) during the streak. By comparison, Joltin' Joe batted .408 (91-for-223) during his historic 56-game streak into immortality during the summer of 1941.
As for popular picks, "kamea" hasn't shown a particular affinity for one team or player. The user has most frequently called on Bogaerts, Francisco Lindor and Freddie Freeman, doing so successfully four times with each. He or she has also successfully used Mike Trout, Bryce Harper and Lorenzo Cain three times each.
The talented "kamea" has also benefited from a few fortunate hops. On April 10 and April 20, for instance, he or she picked players (first Zack Cozart and then Daniel Murphy) who did not play. Sometimes, it's better to be lucky than good.
But make no mistake: "kamea" knows what he or she is doing. What we're witnessing is more skill than luck. And now, he or she is reaching up and climbing higher, just six shrewd picks away from the all-time BTS high of 49, first set by Mike Karatzia in 2007 and matched last summer by Terry Sims.
Even if "kamea" happens to fall short of the grand prize, he or she has put themselves in prime position to claim the $10,000 consolation prize given to the player with the highest streak should no one break DiMaggio's mark. Additionally the BTS game makers hand out millions of other prizes for streaks as small as five.
Looking ahead, "kamea" will continue to tantalize all, climbing closer to the contest's seven-figure windfall. What will the end result be? Nobody knows. But we'll surely be watching and rootin' along.
Zachary Finkelstein is an editor for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.