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This Beat the Streak player is closing in on $5.6M

MLB.com @mattkellyMLB

Eclipsing the mythical 56-game streak has proven about as difficult for Beat the Streak players over the game's first 18 seasons as it has been for Major Leaguers since Joe DiMaggio set the Major League mark in 1941. But one BTS player is inching closer and closer to the magic number -- and it's time he got his moment in the sun.

University student Harsh Mehta of Toronto has successfully picked 43 consecutive players who have recorded hits to get himself within striking distance of the BTS grand prize. If Mehta continues his roll, his life could be momentously changed.

Eclipsing the mythical 56-game streak has proven about as difficult for Beat the Streak players over the game's first 18 seasons as it has been for Major Leaguers since Joe DiMaggio set the Major League mark in 1941. But one BTS player is inching closer and closer to the magic number -- and it's time he got his moment in the sun.

University student Harsh Mehta of Toronto has successfully picked 43 consecutive players who have recorded hits to get himself within striking distance of the BTS grand prize. If Mehta continues his roll, his life could be momentously changed.

Though MLB.com's flagship fantasy contest is formidable, the rules of the challenge are straightforward. Each user must correctly choose a batter or two each day to record a base hit in a game. The user has to repeat the process 57 straight times to surpass DiMaggio's legendary 1941 hitting streak. The first user to reach that total takes home $5.6 million, but there are other ways to earn prizes, as well.

Should Mehta fall short of the grand prize, he has a chance to claim the $10,000 consolation prize given to the player with the longest streak. That is, of course, contingent on nobody breaking DiMaggio's mark. Additionally, the BTS game makers hand out millions of other prizes for streaks as small as five.

Mehta, who goes by the tag Mehtush, is even closer to the current BTS record of 51 consecutive games set last summer by player Robert Mosley. And get this: Mehta is a rookie, at least in BTS terms.

"This is my first season playing Beat the Streak," Mehta told MLB.com. "I heard about it watching a Blue Jays game. I haven't really had any notable streaks in the past before other than a couple of A's in school."

Mehta, a Blue Jays fan who cited rising slugger Teoscar Hernandez as his favorite player, has used more than beginner's luck to get himself more than three-quarters of the way to Joltin' Joe's mark.

"I like to make my picks based on the pitchers that [the hitters] are facing," said Mehta, "and I also prefer to take players based on what ballparks they're playing in and where they bat in the order. Other than that, it's mostly just gut feeling."

Not letting superstition get in the way, Mehta says he has already thought about what he would do should his streak get to the coveted 57 games and ensure him the $5.6 million payday.

"I would probably buy a home for my mom, since it's one of her dreams to have our own home," he said. "And I would love to call my grandparents from India over to Toronto to spend some quality family time with them."

Follow along with Mehta's quest for 57 here.

Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB.