Welcome back to another edition of Nate’s Weekly Biggest Moments and Performances in the MLB! It was indeed a great week in MLB again, with some huge performances by rookies and by some established dominators. Thanks for joining me for another glorious seven days of baseball—let’s get to it.
Vladimir Guerrero, Hr: Vlad Jr. finally hit home run numero uno on Tuesday. He must have enjoyed doing so, because he hit a 451-foot bomb later in the game, and number three later in the week. After all the hype, it’s good to see him start ripping the cover off the ball a little bit. Being a 20-year-old burdened with the expectations from his minor league performance and the precedent set by Sr. can’t be easy. Good for him. Hopefully, these are the first of many home runs to come.
The Three Debuteers: In other rookie news, three other big names made their major league debuts this week: two-way player Jared Walsh of the Angels, Austin Riley of the Braves, and Brendan Rodgers of the Rockies. Probably the most productive of the newbies so far is Reilly, who’s slashing .533/.533/1.000 with one home run in 12 plate appearances. Adding these guys to the ranks of young stars like Acuna and Soto certainly makes the future of the league seem bright.
MVP Repeat?: Christian Yelich continues to absolutely demolish the baseball, hitting another two homers this week. He’s now up to 18 longballs, 40 RBIs, and a 1.1969 OPS on the year. This guy is just incredible and looks to be well on his way to winning another MVP. A possible roadblock? Some dude named Cody Bellinger, who is hitting .409 and has 16 home runs. If things continue the way they are, we are in for a fun MVP race between two lefty powerhouses.
Blowouts: I don’t know if anybody else noticed, but there were some seriously lopsided scores this week. On Thursday alone, Rangers 16, Royals 1. Athletics 17, Tigers 3. Indians 14, Orioles 7. Friday, Cubs 14, Nationals 6. Saturday, the Twins beat the Mariners 18-4. These games are always fun to see—unless you’re on the wrong end of it, of course. My favorite part of blowouts is seeing position players get sent out to the mound to strike guys out with 70 mph fastballs. Like position players pitching, too? Check out @Cut4 on Twitter for some high-quality content on that front.
Troutstanding: Mike Trout hit his 250th career home run, a 473-foot missile to left-center. You simply cannot say enough about this guy’s numbers and accomplishments, but what I like most about Trout is how he treats the fans. In Baltimore last year, he brought a young fan out onto the field just to spend some time with him. Late last week, he told that same fan that he would hit a home run for him. Lo and behold, Trout hit a bomb. Have to respect the guy’s game, but I respect the guy even more.
The Riser: The Houston Astros have apparently been on a mission to destroy everybody in sight recently, winning 10 games in a row and pulling to an 8.5 game lead in their division. Think they’re ready to get back to the playoffs and avenge last year’s NLCS loss to the champs? With a league-leading team BA and a fourth-best ERA, you can bet they’ll be back.
The Faller: The Mariners have finally fallen into last place in the AL West after being the hottest team to start the year (13-2). It was fun while it lasted, but the dinger wave in Seattle had to end sometime. Frankly, I thought the M’s might actually be able to put together a little bit of a sustained run after their start, but I stand entirely corrected. For Seattle’s sake, let’s hope their new rebuild strategy of ripping apart last year’s legit contender doesn’t haunt them for too long.
Thanks for sticking with me through another recap. See you next week!