8/21/2013 2:54 A.M. ET
Beat the Streak welcomes new Club 40 member
Longoria's single helps Oregon resident pull closer to $5.6 million grand prize
By Zachary Finkelstein / MLB.com
If you're pressed for time, it's fine to read only the below line.
Beat the Streak may be your best shot at millionaire status in the next month-plus.
If you don't want our money, simply click to the next page on MLB.com ...
You're still here, though. Thought so. Let's delve into this discussion then, shall we?
One doesn't have to travel to take home the BTS $5.6 million grand prize, the biggest of its kind in fantasy-sports history. Just own a computer or a smart phone and possess a bit of baseball acumen.
Pick a batter, any batter. If that batter tallies at least one hit in the contest for which he has been selected, a streak is born. Make 57 picks in a row -- one more than baseball's record 56-game hitting streak -- and you'll win a jackpot with more dough than the lifetime on-field earnings of Joltin' Joe DiMaggio. As you likely know, the Yankee Clipper collected hits in 56 straight games back in 1941.
Eight Streakers have flied out to the BTS warning track in 2013 after climbing at least 70 percent of the way to the apex of the contest's mountain. To do so means they've made 40 or more correct picks without a streak-ending 0-fer.
The newest -- and ninth -- member of BTS Club 40 is Clement Uduk, a 25-year-old from Portland, Ore.
A student advocate at a high school, Uduk is a bicoastal baseball fan who cheers for both the Baltimore Orioles and San Francisco Giants. But in picking against his East Coast club Tuesday night, Uduk made his 40th straight successful BTS selection behind the Rays' Evan Longoria.
The Tampa Bay star was a sound selection, for sure, evidenced by his .423 average since Aug. 14. Moreover, Longoria's single came off O's starter Miguel Gonzalez, who had allowed the third baseman to tally four hits in 11 lifetime at-bats (.364) entering play.
Even though Uduk chose Longoria to reach the 40-pick plateau, his remarkable run up the BTS ladder has come on the backs of arguably baseball's most potent bats: Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers and the Angels' Mike Trout.
"Aside from those two specifically, I've been sticking to players that are on hitting streaks or that have solid splits against the starter they are facing," Uduk said. "Additionally, I've been focusing on the top third of the lineup on teams that put up healthy at-bats and move the line along."
Now 70.1 percent of the way to all the fame and fortune, Uduk has begun to dream of a world with a lot more money.
"The prize would definitely be used toward paying off student loans. That'd be first and foremost in my eyes," Uduk said.
"After that, it's up in the air: investment, travel, philanthropic endeavors ... and fueling my hunger for golfing -- cannot forget about that at all."
Golf, like baseball, preaches patience and pushes prudence. A fan of both sports, Uduk has heeded this lesson when making BTS picks.
"Thanks to there not being a penalty for taking a day off, I have been utilizing that option [to not pick] even though it has led to me missing out on increasing the streak if Miggy cranks out a homer here or there," said Uduk, who recently went seven days between selections.
Some missed opportunities to accelerate his streak aside, Uduk has found a system that works. Whether his modus operandi ultimately wins out in the end, however, is something we'll learn in due time. His time.
If you want in on the fun, visit mlb.com/bts or download Beat the Streak, presented by Dunkin' Donuts, from the Apple app store or through Google Play. Participation is free.
Zachary Finkelstein is a fantasy editor for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.