By JAKE SEINER
AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP) — Major league hitters have opened this 60-game sprint by stumbling out of the blocks. Coming off a condensed preseason camp for a season truncated by the coronavirus pandemic, hitters can’t seem to get in the swing of things. The league-wide batting average is .229, down from .252 last season — stunning, considering the National League has adopted the designated hitter for this season. The all-time low for batting average is .237, set in 1968, “the year of the pitcher.” Strikeouts are up for the 15th straight season, and the home run rate has dropped a year after extra-slick baseballs helped produce a record 6,776 big flies.
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