Last week Anthony Rizzo, first baseman for the Chicago Cubs, hit leadoff for the first time in his seven year career. Before Rizzo’s first at bat, Cubs’ color man Jim Deshaies recalled:
Big Riz did it a couple of times in spring training, and on one occasion he went out there and ambushed the first pitch and hit a home run.
Two pitches into the regular season version of this experiment Rizzo hit a leadoff home run. The next evening Rizzo, still batting in the No.1 spot, made an impact one pitch sooner by hitting the first offering of the game over the outfield fence.
Houston had been the hottest team in baseball until cooling off a bit last week. The Astros still have a very comfortable lead in the AL West, so if the defending division champion Rangers are going to make a move on their cross-state rivals, now would be a good time to start. More after the jump.
After 5 straight games scoring at least 8 runs, the Yankees reached the 60 game mark scoring 353 runs and belting 102 home runs, the latter a new Yankee record, and the former the third highest Yankee total of the expansion era.
Leading the Pinstripers is phenom Aaron Judge, boasting leading marks in the AL triple crown categories, other AL firsts in WAR, walks, runs, total bases and runs created, and 2nd place in OBP, SLG, OPS, oWAR and right field TZR. More after the jump.
The Brewers have come back to the pack in the NL Central and everyone is in the race now. Especially these longtime rivals and pre-season favorites for contesting the division title. More after the jump.
Marlins’ right-hander Edinson Volquez shut down the Diamondbacks in this season’s first no-hit game, the first of Volquez’s career and sixth in the short history of the Marlins franchise. And the legendary career of Albert Pujols reached another major milestone with home run no. 600. More after the jump.
Hall of Famer Jim Bunning has died at the age of 85. Author of the first NL perfect game of the modern era, Bunning recorded over 3500 IP and 200 wins in a 17 year career, mostly for the Tigers and Phillies. While often overlooked among the pioneers of the modern, high strikeout pitcher, Bunning established standards for consistency and longevity that few pitchers since have been able to match.
More on Bunning after the jump.
The glamour matchup this Memorial Day weekend was the Dodgers and Cubs, but I’m going to look at a different series between two other teams vying for top spot in their divisions. Like last week’s matchup between the Twins and Rockies, these two clubs are enjoying success this season for the first time in several years, with both teams having last made the post-season in 2011. More after the jump.
The schedule passed the first quarter point last week. So, seems like an appropriate time to compare this season to last, both what’s changed and what’s stayed the same. More after the jump.
I know this inter-league series doesn’t seem like it belongs on a marquee. But, check out the standings – these two are leaders in their respective divisions. For both organizations and their fans, it’s a welcome change from the mediocrity that has been the norm for more than half a decade. More after the jump.
There are two players in this quiz with a lot of similarities in their careers. Your job is to figure out their identities based on these clues:
- We were both born in New York City.
- We both played over 200 games for teams in the same two cities.
- We both played over 200 games at each of the same two positions.
- We were both All-Stars playing a third position in a third city.
- We both have older brothers who played in the majors.
Congratulations to no statistician but and Voomo Zanzibar! They teamed up to make short work of this quiz, identifying the mystery players as Joe Torre and B.J. Surhoff. More after the jump.