By Bill Arnold and Rick Wacha
CENTURY IN STEREO
Rafael Devers of the Boston Red Sox became the 20th batter – since the expansion era began in 1961 – to score 100 runs and drive-in 100 runs in 123 or fewer player games in a season. And, on Tuesday night, Cody Bellinger of the Los Angeles Dodgers became the 21st batter. The two stars are the 15th and 16th players to have accomplished the feat at least once. Three batters have performed the trick twice, while one pulled it off three times. Devers reached the dual century marks when he drove in four runs against the visiting Baltimore Orioles on August 18. Bellinger hit the triple-digit marks when he scored twice against the visiting Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday giving him 100 runs and 100 RBIs. The Dodger outfielder even one-upped Devers by reaching the marks in 122 games, which was one fewer than Devers. Through Thursday’s games, the Sox third baseman had 103 runs scored and 102 RBIs while the Dodger right fielder had 101 runs scored and 100 RBIs. Mickey Mantle holds the expansion era record for needing the fewest player games to reach 100/100 when he required just 108 contests in 1961. Alex Rodriguez accomplished the trick three times (2000-01 and 2007) while Hank Aaron (1961-62), Jeff Bagwell (1999-2000) and Todd Helton (2000-2001) turned it twice.
Below are the 21 batters who needed 123 or fewer player games to reach dual 100 marks since 1961:
|Carlos Delgado||Blue Jays||2000||123||100||112|
|Rafael Devers||Red Sox||2019||123||103||101|
A GOOD METROPOLITAN
Al Jackson, the mainstay of the expansion 1962 New York Mets, passed away on Monday at the age of 83 in Port St. Lucie, Fla. The left-hander was one of manager Casey Stengel‘s favorites on the team that went 40-120 in their premiere season. Jackson threw the team’s first four shutouts. The breaking-ball pitcher became a mainstay for the team during their first four seasons, compiling a 40-73 mark, which included two 20-loss seasons. Jackson earned the team’s first win at their new ballpark, Shea Stadium, on April 19, 1964, when he tossed a 6-0 shutout against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Born in Waco, Texas on December 26, 1935. Jackson was signed by the Pirates out of Wiley College in Marshall, Texas in 1955. He pitched briefly in the majors for the Bucs before the Mets selected him in the expansion draft on October 10, 1961. Jackson was traded by the Mets to St. Louis Cardinals after the 1965 season and after two years pitching for the Cardinals was traded back to the Mets after 1967 season. He finished his career with the Cincinnati after the Reds purchased his contract from Mets in June of 1969.
AROUND THE HORN
… Wednesday saw the end of a 37-day, consecutive-game streak where at least one player had a multi-homer game; the streak which began on July 13 saw 118 players hit at least two homers in a game and shattered the old record of 31 consecutive days set in May and June.
… August 18 marked the 58th anniversary of the shooting of the final climatic 15 minutes of the Blake Edwards‘ film “Experiment in Terror,” at Candlestick Park during a Dodger-Giant game in 1961 (which the Giants won 2-1 in 10 innings); the bank heist and extortion film was released in 1962 and starred Glenn Ford, Lee Remick, and Ross Martin.
… Albert Pujols joined Frank Robinson and Barry Bonds as the only players to hit at least 15 home runs and steal at least one base in each of their first 19 seasons in the bigs; the Angel swiped second base against the host Rangers in the 11th inning on Monday.
… Elvis Andrus of the Rangers leads the majors in steals of home with three.
… Last week (August 12-18) saw the most home runs ever hit during a calendar week in major league history when 313 taters left the park.
… Through Thursday the Tigers are a woeful 5-24 against A.L. West teams this season; the team hasn’t posted a winning record against the West since 2014.
… The Astros’ Aaron Sanchez‘s curveball spin has been clocked at 2,844 RPMs, which is the fifth-highest among starters in the majors; the only starters with higher revolutions per minute are the Reds’ Sonny Gray (2,902), the Astros’ Gerrit Cole (2,902), the Dodgers’ Walker Buehler (2,894), the Rays’ Charlie Morton (2,881) and the Braves’ Max Fried (2,846), who is the only southpaw of the group.
… The Diamondbacks’ Eduardo Escobar became the first N.L. switch-hitter to record 100 RBIs in a season when he drove in two against the visiting Rockies on Tuesday night with his career-best 10th triple of the season.
… Ranger youngsters Kolby Allard (22 years old), Brock Burke (23) and Joe Palumbo (24) started three consecutive games on the mound against the visiting Angels on Monday and doubleheader on Tuesday; it marked the first time the Rangers started three pitchers younger than 25 in three straight games since 2008 when Luis Mendoza (24), Matt Harrison (22) and Warner Madrigal (24) toed the rubber on July 7-9, 2008, also versus the visiting Angels.
… On Tuesday night Bo Bichette of the Blue Jays joined Jay Bruce, Adam Dunn, Carlos Gonzalez, Jose Reyes, and Jayson Werth as the only batters to have a multi-homer game against Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw; both home runs were solo shots in the 16-3 rout by the host Dodgers.
… The Cubs won a three-game series – two games to one – against the host Pirates this past weekend, which marked the first road series win by the Cubbies against the N.L. Central divisional opponent this season; the third game was played in Williamsport, Pa., as this season’s “MLB Little League Classic.”
… On Tuesday Luis Robert, who’s risen through three levels in White Sox’ farm system this year, is the first Sox minor leaguer to record a .300 batting average with 30 doubles, 10 triples, 29 home runs while scoring 102 runs, driving in 86 and stealing 36 bases in a season since Mike Cameron batted .300 with 34 doubles, 12 triples, 28 homers, scoring 120 runs and driving in 77 in for the Birmingham Barons of the Double-A Southern League in 1996.
… The Elias Sports Bureau reports that on Monday night Yadier Molina recorded his 149th career catching shutout when the host Cardinals blanked the Brewers 3-0; the only catchers with more career shutouts since 1900 are Yogi Berra (184), Gary Carter (168) and Carlton Fisk (157).
… James McCann joined Sherm Lollar (1958) and Ed Herrmann (1970) as the only White Sox catchers to hit two grand slams in a season; McCann clouted his second of the season on August 16 to help beat the host Angels, 7-2.
… The A’s Marcus Semien has played in all but 18 innings in his 209 consecutive-game streak that began on June 28, 2018.
… Tony Wolters became the last qualifying catcher to record an error when he made a terrible throw trying to catch the Diamondbacks’ Jarrod Dyson stealing second in the eighth inning on Monday night in Phoenix; the errant throw allowed Dyson to reach third base.
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