Elias Says: July 29, 2017

Altuve and Reddick lead Astros to a win

Jose Altuve rapped out three more hits in the Astros’ win over the Tigers, giving him 43 hits over his last 18 games. The only other players in modern major league history with 43 or more hits over an 18-game span within one season were Ty Cobb, George Sisler, Jack Tobin, Heinie Manush and Ichiro Suzuki. Of those five players, three are in the Hall of Fame (Jack Tobin is the odd man out) and one will be when he becomes eligible.

Josh Reddick’s three-run home run in the eighth inning turned a 5-3 deficit into a 6-5 lead for the Astros in their win on Friday night. It was only the second time in his career that Reddick hit a go-ahead home run in the eighth inning or later. His other one was for the A’s against the Astros on July 22, 2013.

A gem for Tanaka

Masahiro Tanaka struck out 14 batters, allowed only two hits and did not walk anyone in his gem against the Rays on Friday night. Tanaka is the first pitcher this season to have a game in which he struck out at least 14 batters while allowing two or fewer hits plus walks. Tanaka is the first pitcher in Yankees history to have a game like that.

Gardner, Judge and Frazier homer

Brett Gardner, one night after hitting a walkoff home run, led off the Yankees first inning with a home run. Gardner became the third player in Yankees history to hit a home run leading off the game the game after hitting a walkoff homer. Hall of Famer Joe Gordon did it in 1940 and Roberto Kelly also turned the trick in 1990.

Gardner’s outfield mates, Aaron Judge and Clint Frazier also homered in the game. It was the second time this season that the three starting outfielders for the Yankees all homered in the same game. Gardner, Judge and Aaron Hicks did it on May 2. This is the first time since 2000 that the Yankees had their three starting outfielders all homer in the same game twice in a season. In 2000, it was Paul O’Neill, Bernie Williams and David Justice in one game and then O’Neill, Williams and Ryan Thompson in the other.

Judge’s home run came off Rays rookie Austin Pruitt. It was Judge’s eighth home run of the season off a rookie pitcher, one shy of Justin Smoak, the major league leader in that category. Mike Moustakas has also hit eight homers off rookie pitchers this season.

Productive 100 games for Ramirez

Jose Ramirez rapped out four hits, including a home run, and drove in three runs in the Indians’ win over the White Sox. Ramirez has 124 hits, 18 home runs and 55 RBIs in 100 games this season. The last Indians player with that many hits, home runs and RBIs in his first 100 games of a season was Juan Gonzalez in 2001 (131 hits, 28 HR, 101 RBI).

Dodgers’ big lead dampens rivalry game

The Giants and Dodgers opened a three-game series in Los Angeles on Friday night. The first-place Dodgers were 31½ games ahead of the last-place Giants when the game began. Only once in the last 80 years had the Dodgers and Giants played a game against each other with that large a gap in the standings between the two teams. The Dodgers had a 32-game lead on the Giants when they met each other on September 29, 1985.

Two-homer game for Seager

Corey Seager hit two home runs in the Dodgers’ win over the Giants. It was the sixth multiple homer game over the last two seasons for Seager, all as a shortstop. That’s more multi-HR games as shortstop than any other player over that span. The last player to have six multiple home run games as a shortstop over a two-season span was Hanley Ramirez from 2007 to 2008.

Bridwell is 5-1

Parker Bridwell improved to 5-1 and lowered his ERA to 3.04 in eight starts this season (he had one relief appearance). Bridwell is the fifth rookie in Angels history to win five of his first eight starts of a season joining Bo Belinsky in 1962 (6-1 in first eight starts), Marcelino Lopez in 1965 (5-3), Jered Weaver in 2006 (7-0) and Andrew Heaney in 2015 (5-1).

Moose is on the loose

Mike Moustakas’s three-run homer, his 30th homer of the season, was the big blow in the Royals’ win over the Red Sox. Moustakas reached 30 home runs in the Royals’ 101st game of the season, the fastest for any player in team history. The previous fastest was 117 team games to 30 home runs by Gary Gaetti in 1995.

Three-hit game for Realmuto

J.T. Realmuto had three hits including a go-ahead home run in the Marlins’ win over the Reds. It was the tenth three-hit game as a catcher this season for Realmuto, the most in the major leagues.

Tillman roughed up again

The Rangers lit up Chris Tillman for eight runs in 4⅓ innings on Friday night in their 8-2 win. Tillman is 0-6 with an 8.30 ERA over his last 13 starts. Tillman’s 13 straight starts without a win is the second longest such streak in the major leagues this season. Jerad Eickhoff went 14 consecutive starts without a win earlier this season. The last Orioles pitcher to go 13 straight starts within one season without a win was Brian Matusz in 2010 (13 in a row).

Suter has been super

Brewers rookie Brent Suter threw seven shutout innings in their big win over the Cubs. Suter, who improved to 2-1 with a 2.40 ERA this season, has allowed two or fewer runs in each of his last five starts, the longest such streak for any rookie pitcher this season.

The last Brewers rookie to have five consecutive starts like that was Tyler Thornburg in 2013.

Gyorko supplies the offense

Jedd Gyorko had three hits and drove in the only run in the Cardinals’ 1-0 win over the Diamondbacks. Gyorko is the seventh player in Cardinals history to record three hits and an RBI in a 1-0 victory. The other Redbirds to do it since 1920, the first year RBIs became an official statistic, were Milt Stock (1921), Curt Flood (1968), Bernard Gilkey (1993), Scott Rolen (2004), Carlos Beltran (2012) and Matt Holliday (2014).

Welcome home Conforto

The Mets’ leadoff batter, Michael Conforto, hit two homers against the Mariners in Seattle on Friday night. It was the fourth time this season that Conforto had a multi-homer game from the leadoff spot in the batting order, a single season record for the Mets. Two Mets players had three multi-homer games from the leadoff spot in one season: Tommie Agee did it twice (1969 and 1970) and Curtis Granderson (2015).