You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news. In honor of the women’s (Sunday) and men’s (Monday) NCAA basketball championship games, as well as Major League Baseball’s opening day — and not at all because regular author Walt Hickey asked sportswriter Neil Paine to fill in for him — today’s edition is a special sports SigDig.
14 home runs
The number of dingers hit by San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner since the start of the 2014 season, including the two he belted on opening day Sunday. Not only is that far more than any other pitcher, but on a per-at-bat basis, Bumgarner has homered more frequently than all but 16 position players over the same span. Put him in the Derby! [Baseball-Reference.com]
Game-leading scoring total for South Carolina’s A’ja Wilson in the NCAA women’s championship Sunday night. As the Gamecocks were closing out their 67-55 victory over Mississippi State, Wilson carried the team on her shoulders with 7 points, 3 rebounds and 2 blocks in the fourth quarter. Afterwards, she was named the Final Four’s Most Outstanding Player. [NCAA]
Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook has recorded 40 triple-doubles during the 2016-17 NBA season, his most recent being a 40-point, 13-rebound and 10-assist performance against the Charlotte Hornets Sunday. Westbrook is now just one triple-double shy of tying Oscar Robertson’s all-time single-season record of 41; he also needs to record just 29 assists and 11 rebounds over the Thunder’s remaining six games to guarantee he’ll join Robertson as the only players to average a triple-double for an entire season. [CBS Sports]
Gonzaga’s odds of beating North Carolina in the NCAA men’s basketball championship Monday night, according to the FiveThirtyEight model. The Bulldogs are making their first-ever title-game appearance, while UNC is on appearance No. 11 (including a buzzer-beating loss just last year). But the stats give a clear edge to the Zags, who — according to the ratings of numbers whiz Ken Pomeroy — play the toughest defense in the country. [FiveThirtyEight]
That’s the number of consecutive victories the Connecticut Huskies had reeled off going into the NCAA women’s tournament semifinal Friday night. But all great streaks have to end sometime, and UConn’s was snapped when Mississippi State’s Morgan William sank a game-winning jumper at the horn to seal the upset. Despite the loss, though, we should all take a moment or two to appreciate what Connecticut accomplished: From what we can tell, 111 straight victories is the longest winning streak a true team sport ever produced in college history. [FiveThirtyEight]
If you see a significant digit in the wild, send it to @WaltHickey.
CORRECTION (April 3, 11:39 a.m.): An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified the team against which Russell Westbrook collected his 40th triple-double. It was the Charlotte Hornets, not the Utah Jazz.