BOSTON -- Michael Young drew his 17th walk of the season on July 6 from Twins pitcher Francisco Liriano. One month later he is up to 18 walks.
That leaves him with a rate of one walk for every 24.89 plate appearances, the sixth highest in the American League. White Sox shortstop Alexi Ramirez has one walk for every 42.40 plate appearances. Last year, Young walked once every 14.66 plate appearances. In 2005, when he won the AL batting title, he walked once every 12.62 appearances.
"I would like for my walk totals to be higher and I expect they will be," Young said. "The biggest thing is to focus on the strike zone and make good contact, But it's something I pay attention to and I expect it will get better."
Young is still tough to strike out. He has one strikeout for every 9.33 plate appearances, which is the fourth best in the AL, but he also averages just 3.44 pitches per at-bat, the fourth lowest in the league.
"I don't think I'm chasing bad pitches," Young said. "One thing is I don't hit many foul balls. When I swing, I usually put it in play. You don't have to foul off a lot of pitches to have good at-bats. You just want to see as many pitches as possible to get a good pitch to hit."
The club record for highest rate of plate appearances per walk was set by Mickey Rivers in 1980. He had a walk once every 33.05 plate appearances. He also hit .333 that year. Young's current rate is the fifth highest in Rangers history.