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The baseball equivalent of a 52-point game

Milwaukee Bucks v Toronto Raptors
DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors shoots his 52nd point of the night, setting a Toronto Raptors record for most points in a game, late in the second half of an NBA game against the Milwaukee Bucks at Air Canada Centre on January 1, 2018 in Toronto, Canada. 
Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Last night, in the Toronto Raptors game against the Milwaukee Bucks, DeMar DeRozan scored 52 points — a Raptors’ franchise record, breaking the previous record of 51 points set by Terrence Ross and Vince Carter. DeRozan also had a game score of 44.1, setting a Raptors’ regular-season record.

DeRozan’s 52 points was the third best performance in the NBA this season, and just the fourth player to exceed 50 points in a game this season.

What’s the baseball equivalent of a 52-point game?

The most obvious candidate is a three or four home run game. A point, or home run, is a show of an individual’s sheer strength and offensive prowess, largely independent on the performance of teammates (albeit less so in basketball).

Still, only 18 players in the history of baseball have hit four home runs in a game. Scoring 52 points in a basketball game occurs at a more frequent rate — Wilt Chamberlain accomplished the feat 118 times in his NBA career. Hitting three home runs in a game is a less revered feat, with good reason. It occurs much more frequently than a four home run game, or even a 52-point game in basketball.

A less obvious candidate is a cycle. Although it doesn’t make total sense when considering the requirements for the accomplishment, the rarity matches up with that of a 52-point game.

In 2017, there were seven cycles. When considering that MLB teams play nearly double the amount of games played in a NBA season, the rate at which a cycle occurs in baseball is nearly equivalent to that of basketball.

In Blue Jays history, there’s only been two cycles, which roughly matches up to the three 50-point games in Raptors history.

Some other stuff:

  • Yesterday, Scott Mitchell of TSN outlined 18 predictions he had for the Blue Jays in 2018.
  • Jon Heyman again reiterated Josh Harrison of the Pittsburgh Pirates as a possible fit for the Blue Jays in an article a few days ago.

Follow Mark Colley on Twitter @MarkColley. Mark can be reached at