MLB Weekly Notebook: Feeling the NFL Draft -- Baseball/Football Ties
From Major League Baseball
All Stats Going into Thursday
DECISION FOR THE DIAMOND
With the NFL Draft beginning tonight, here is an annual look at some notable players throughout Major League Baseball who have passed on pursuing football careers as well as NFL stars who chose the gridiron over the diamond.
Current/Recent MLB players:
• San Francisco Giants right-hander Jeff Samardzija was a wide receiver at the University of Notre Dame, catching a total of 24 passes in his first two seasons before emerging as a star in his junior season in 2005. He finished the year with 77 catches and single-season records in both receiving yards (1,215) and touchdown receptions (15) with numerous All-America selections. After a senior season in 2006 with 12 touchdowns, Jeff finished as the school’s all-time leader in reception yards with 2,593 and was one of three finalists for the Fred Biletnikoff Award for the nation’s top wide receiver.
• New York Yankees outfielder Giancarlo Stanton was a three-sport star (baseball, football and basketball) at Notre Dame High School in southern California. He accepted a scholarship to play baseball for USC before being selected 79th overall by the Marlins in the 2007 MLB Draft. Stanton also received offers from USC, UCLA and UNLV to play football.
• Kansas City Royals outfielder Billy Hamilton was an all-state athlete in baseball, football and basketball at Taylorsville High School in Mississippi. He was a top wide receiver prospect, but turned down a football scholarship from Mississippi State University and was drafted by the Reds in the second round of the 2009 MLB Draft.
• Arizona Diamondbacks reliever Archie Bradley, who was the seventh overall selection in the 2011 Draft, passed on the opportunity to play quarterback at the University of Oklahoma.
• New York Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia, a six-time All-Star and 2007 AL Cy Young Award winner, signed a letter of intent to play as a tight end at the University of Hawaii, but he signed with Cleveland after being a first round pick in 1998.
• Free Agent designated hitter Matt Holliday signed a letter of intent to play quarterback at Oklahoma State University after earning All-American honors in his senior season at Stillwater High School, but decided to sign with the Colorado Rockies after they drafted him in 1998.
• Minor Leaguer Bubba Starling, the fifth overall selection of the 2011 Draft by the Kansas City Royals, chose to sign with the Royals rather than play quarterback at the University of Nebraska.
• Casey Kelly, who is currently pitching in the KBO League and was a centerpiece of the deal that sent Adrián González to the Boston Red Sox prior to the 2011 season, was a standout quarterback in high school in Sarasota, Florida. He was headed to the University of Tennessee before being selected by the Sox as the 30th pick in the first round of the 2008 MLB Draft.
• New York Mets Minor League outfielder Tim Tebow was a Heisman Trophy winner (2007) at the University of Florida. Tebow quarterbacked the Gators to two National Championships (2006, 2008) and was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the first round (#25 overall). He signed a Minor League contract with the Mets on September 8, 2016.
Former/Retired MLB players:
• Hall of Famer Mickey Mantle was a three-sport athlete at Commerce High School in Oklahoma, playing baseball, basketball and football. He received a football scholarship from the University of Oklahoma.
• Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew was an All-American quarterback at Payette High School in Idaho, earning 12 varsity letters. He was offered a football scholarship from the University of Oregon.
• Hall of Famer Frank Thomas played football as a freshman tight end for Auburn, catching three passes for 45 yards, but he then focused only on baseball for the rest of his college career.
• Hall of Famer Jim Rice was a three-sport athlete at T.L. Hannah High School, playing baseball, basketball and football. Rice was an all-state kick returner, defensive back and wide receiver, leading to football scholarships from Clemson, North Carolina and the University of Nebraska.
• Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg was a three-sport star at North Central High School in Spokane, Washington and was named to Parade Magazine’s High School All-America team. He originally signed a letter of intent with Washington State University, but opted not to attend after the Philadelphia Phillies drafted him in the 20th round of the 1978 MLB Draft.
• Hall of Famer Reggie Jackson was a star athlete at Cheltenham High School in Pennsylvania, excelling in baseball, football, basketball and track and field. Jackson accepted a football sholarship from Arizona State University, while receiving additional offers from Alabama, Georgia and Oklahoma. Following one season on the football team, Jackson decided to switch to baseball full-time during his sophomore season when he would become a First Team All-American. Mr. October was the second overall pick by the Kansas City Athletics in the 1966 MLB Draft.
• Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson was a four-sport star at John Muir High School in Pasadena, California, playing baseball, football, basketball and track and field. After thriving in each sports at Pasadena Junior College, Jackie enrolled at UCLA, where he became the school’s first athlete to letter in four varsity sports. In 1941, Robinson pursued a career with the Los Angeles Bulldogs of the Pacific Coast Football League. Following his military career, Robinson ultimately accepted a contract from the Kansas City Monarchs in the Negro Leagues and would thus begin his historical professional baseball career.
• Hall of Famer Dave Winfield was drafted by four teams in three different sports following his college career. The San Diego Padres selected him fourth overall in the 1973 Draft, four years after the Baltimore Orioles selected him out of high school in the 40th round. Despite not playing football in college, Winfield was chosen by the Minnesota Vikings in the 17th round of the 1973 NFL Draft. Winfield was also selected in the 1973 NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks.
• Bo Jackson, a Heisman Trophy winner, played four seasons in the NFL with the Oakland Raiders from 1987-1990, and played eight years in the majors from 1986-1994. Bo was named Comeback Player of the Year in 1993, after he had missed the 1992 season due to hip replacement surgery which would force him to retire during the 1994 season. Jackson was the first athlete to be named an All-Star in two major sports. He was selected on three occasions in the MLB Draft -- first out of high school by the New York Yankees in the second round in 1982; then by the Los Angeles Angels in the 20th round in 1985; and finally in the fourth round in 1986 by the Kansas City Royals. Jackson was the first overall selection of the 1986 NFL Draft by the Tampa Bay Bucs, but refused to sign with the team, and was again selected in 1987 in the seventh round by the Los Angeles Raiders.
• Like Jackson, Deion Sanders had success in both Major League Baseball and in the NFL. “Prime Time” played nine seasons in the Majors, leading the league in triples in 1992 and hitting .533 in the 1992 World Series. Deion recorded 53 career interceptions in 13 NFL seasons and was selected to the Pro Bowl eight times. Sanders was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons with the fifth overall selection in the 1989 NFL Draft, and selected by the New York Yankees in the 30th round of the 1988 Amateur Draft. He is the only athlete to play in a World Series and a Super Bowl.
• Former MLB outfielder Brian Jordan was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals 30th overall in the 1988 Amateur Draft. While in the Minor Leagues, Jordan was a safety for the Atlanta Falcons from 1989-1991 before turning his attention to baseball full-time.
• Retired backstop Joe Mauer, a six-time All-Star and the 2009 American League Most Valuable Player, was Gatorade’s National Player of the Year as a quarterback at Cretin-Derham Hall High School and signed a letter of intent to play at Florida State.
• Retired slugger Adam Dunn, who signed with the Reds after being drafted in the second round in 1998, accepted a scholarship to play football at the University of Texas, but after the school’s spring football game in 1999, he decided to play baseball full-time. A high school quarterback, Dunn resisted a position change after being informed he would not be the Longhorns’ starting quarterback in the upcoming season.
• Former Rockies first baseman Todd Helton was the signal-caller for the University of Tennessee. Slated to be the Vols’ backup quarterback in 1994, Helton took over for the injured Jerry Colquitt in the season opener at UCLA and started the next three games. Helton suffered a sprained Medial Collateral Ligament in the first half of Tennessee’s September 24th game at Mississippi State, and a freshman named Peyton Manning took over from then on.
• Former Major League outfielder and manager Kirk Gibson was a wide receiver at Michigan State University, where he was named to the 1978 College Football All-America Team. He was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the seventh round of the 1979 NFL Draft.
• Former outfielder Seth Smith was a quarterback in college, serving as the backup at Mississippi for three seasons behind Eli Manning.
• Retired outfielder Jeff Francoeur led Parkview (GA) High School to two state championships in both baseball and football and was slated to play both at Clemson University, whose baseball team also had received commitments from D-backs right-hander Zack Greinke and former Major League outfielder Jeremy Hermida. All three were first round choices, however, and each signed to play professional baseball.
• Retired outfielder Carl Crawford was recruited by Nebraska as an option quarterback, but the Houston native signed with the Devil Rays out of Jefferson Davis High School as a second round pick in 1999.
• Former All-Star outfielder Darin Erstad played baseball and football at the University of Nebraska and was the punter on the Cornhuskers’ 1994 national championship team.
• Former All-Star outfielder Grady Sizemore was recruited to play both baseball and football, as a quarterback, at the University of Washington. At Everett’s Cascade High School, Sizemore set school records with 3,081 rushing yards and 16 career interceptions. He also was recruited by Arizona State, Cal, Clemson and Washington State. Sizemore signed with the Montreal Expos after being selected 75th overall in the third round of the 2000 MLB Draft.
• Former Major League outfielder Trot Nixon signed a letter of intent to play quarterback at North Carolina State, but he signed with Boston after being the seventh overall pick in the 1993 Draft.
• Former Major League outfielder Elijah Dukes was offered a scholarship to play linebacker at North Carolina State.
• Former Major League infielder Josh Fields, who played in 100 games for the Chicago White Sox in 2007, earned three letters as quarterback of Oklahoma State’s football team where he holds the school record for most career touchdown passes with 55. Fields tied a Big 12 record (since broken) with seven touchdown passes in a 52-6 win at SMU on September 20, 2003, and set a Cotton Bowl record with 307 passing yards vs. Mississippi on January 2, 2004. The following June, Josh was selected as the 18th pick overall by the White Sox.
• Former Major League infielder/outfielder and MLB Network analyst Mark DeRosa played baseball and football at the University of Pennsylvania where he was the Quakers starting quarterback from 1993-1995. Mark was selected in the seventh round of the 1996 MLB Draft by the Atlanta Braves.
• Former Major League outfielder Gabe Gross played baseball and football at Auburn. After starting six games at quarterback as a freshman in 1998, he began to concentrate on baseball in his sophomore year. Gross was Toronto’s first round pick in 2001.
• Former Major League outfielder Nick Stavinoha played football and baseball at Jersey Village (TX) High School where he helped lead his baseball team to three district championships and the football team to two district titles before attending the University of Houston for football. Nick, who appeared in 79 games for the Cardinals in 2010, later switched to San Jacinto College as he began his switch to baseball.
• Former Major League outfielder Joe Borchard played baseball and football at Stanford. He was considered the leading candidate to start at quarterback for the Cardinals in 2000, but he signed with the White Sox after being their first round pick (12th overall) that June.
• Former Minor League outfielder Donavan Tate, the son of former NFL running back Lars Tate, was San Diego’s third overall selection out of Cartersville High School in Georgia in 2009. Tate was an all-state selection as quarterback at Cartersville and had committed to play both baseball and football at the University of North Carolina prior to being drafted.
• Former Minor Leaguer Brandon Jacobs, who is currently playing independently in the Frontier League, was selected by the Boston Red Sox in the 10th round of the 2009 Draft. Jacobs had committed to play football at Auburn University prior to the draft following a senior season in which he rushed for over 1,500 yards with 19 touchdowns and was named to the Georgia 5A All-State team.
• Former Minor Leaguer Chad Jones was a third round selection out of LSU by the New York Giants in the 2010 NFL Draft. Jones was originally drafted out of high school in the 13th round of the 2007 MLB Draft by the Houston Astros. He was again drafted in 2010 by the Milwaukee Brewers in the 50th round, and taken a third time in the ninth round of the 2013 Draft by the Reds.
Current/Recent NFL players:
• Kyler Murray, an anticipated first round selection in tonight’s Day 1 coverage, was selected as an outfielder by the Oakland A’s with the ninth overall selection in the 2018 MLB Draft. Murray is slated to become the first person ever to be selected in the first round of both the NFL and MLB Draft. Led by the 2018 Heisman Trophy winner, the Oklahoma Sooners won the Big 12 Championship and were selected to the College Football Playoff, competing in the 2018 Orange Bowl.
• Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, the 10th overall selection in the 2017 NFL Draft, was selected by the Detroit Tigers in the 37th round of the 2014 MLB Draft out of high school. Mahomes is the son of former big league pitcher Pat Mahomes, and earned the NFL’s 2018 MVP Award.
• New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady played football, baseball and basketball at Junipero Serra High School in California. He was drafted as a catcher by the Montreal Expos in the 18th round of the 1995 Draft following his high school career. Brady did not sign and went on to play football at the University of Michigan before turning pro and leading the Patriots to six Super Bowl wins.
• Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the fourth round of the 2010 Draft, was the starting quarterback at North Carolina State and he led the Seahawks to a Super Bowl win in his second season after the team drafted him 75th overall in the 2012 NFL Draft. The New York Yankees, who currently have the baseball rights to Wilson after acquiring him via trade this past offseason, had Wilson participate in 2018 Spring Training games.
• New York Giants wide receiver Golden Tate was a 42nd round selection of the Arizona Diamondbacks out of high school in 2007 and a 50th round selection of the San Francisco Giants out of Notre Dame in 2010 after he was a second round choice of the Seattle Seahawks in the 2010 NFL Draft.
• Free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 43rd round of the 2009 Draft.
• Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston, who led his Florida State team to a national champi- onship in 2013, was a two-sport star for the Seminoles. Winston made 24 relief appearances on the mound in 2014 for the Seminoles, going 1-0 with a 1.08 ERA and 31 strikeouts in 33.1 innings pitched while holding opposing hitters to a .154 batting average. In addition, he recorded a team-high seven saves, which was tied for eighth-most in the conference.
• Free agent quarterback Johnny Manziel was drafted by the San Diego Padres in the 28th round of the 2014 Draft.
• Free agent quarterback Brandon Weeden was drafted by the New York Yankees in the second round of the 2002 Draft. He played parts of five Minor League seasons for the Yankees, Dodgers and Royals.
Former/Retired NFL players:
• Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 1979 Amateur Draft, but did not sign with the club. He was again selected in the 1981 Amateur Draft by the New York Yankees. Elway signed with the club and played right field for the Oneonta Yankees in 1982. He hit .318 in 42 games before giving up baseball for professional football. He was selected number one overall in the 1983 NFL Draft by the Baltimore Colts before being traded to the Denver Broncos. Elway played 16 seasons as the quarterback of the Broncos and led the team to Super Bowl titles in 1998 and 1999. John was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004.
• Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 1979 Amateur Draft, but decided to play college football instead. Marino would go on to become one of the greatest NFL quarterbacks of all time.
• Hall of Fame running back Jim Thorpe played for four Major League teams from 1913-19, but ultimately embarked on an eight-year football career that began in 1920. Thorpe was First Team All-Pro in 1923 and was named to the NFL 1920’s All-Decade Team. Considered one of the greatest athletes in American history, Thorpe also won two gold medals at the 1912 Summer Olympics in Stockholm.
• Former NFL quarterback Daunte Culpepper was drafted as an outfielder out of high school by the New York Yankees in the 26th round of the 1995 Draft, but did not sign. Culpepper would go on to play quarterback at the University of Central Florida where he set more than 30 school quarterback records. Daunte was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings with the 11th overall selection in the 1999 NFL Draft.
• Former NFL quarterback Matt Moore was drafted by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the 22nd round in the 2004 Draft.
• Former NFL quarterback Michael Vick was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 30th round of the 2000 Draft.
• Former NFL wide receiver Eric Decker was selected in the 2008 MLB Draft in the 39th round by the Milwaukee Brewers, and again in 2009 in the 27th round by the Minnesota Twins.
• Former NFL wide receiver Hines Ward was a high school outfielder taken in the 73rd round of the 1994 MLB Draft. The 2006 Super Bowl MVP did not sign and went on to become a star football player at the University of Georgia.
• Former Tennessee Titans quarterback Jake Locker, who was also a 10th round selection by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 2009, had his rights signed by the Angels while he returned to the University of Washington for his junior season. Locker was selected eighth overall by Tennessee in the 2010 NFL Draft.
• Heisman Trophy winner Ricky Williams was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the eighth round of the 1995 MLB Draft. Williams spent four years in professional baseball, never moving up beyond Single-A, before turning his attention to professional football.
• Peyton and Eli’s father Archie Manning, a former NFL quarterback, was taken in the third round of the 1971 Amateur Draft by the Chicago White Sox, but did not sign. He was also selected in the 1971 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints with the second overall selection. Archie played 13 NFL seasons and was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1978 and 1979.
• Former NFL running back Cedric Benson was also a high school outfielder taken in the 12th round of the 2001 MLB Draft. He played in nine games for the Gulf Coast Dodgers before going on to star at the University of Texas at Austin, where he received the Doak Walker Award as the nation’s top running back in 2004. Boston Red Sox outfielder Darnell McDonald was recruited by the University of Texas to play baseball and football but chose to play professional baseball leading to the school’s recruitment of Benson.
• Former NFL wide receiver Antwaan Randle El was selected by the Chicago Cubs in the 14th round of the 1997 Draft.
• Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Doug Johnson was a second round draft pick in 1996 for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, playing as an infielder in their Minor League system in 1996 and 1997 before suffering a rotator cuff injury and leaving to concentrate on football full-time.
• Former NFL quarterback Drew Henson was selected in the sixth round of the 2003 NFL Draft by the Houston Texans. Henson played in nine games over two seasons from 2004-05 with the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions. Prior to his NFL stint, he was also selected by the New York Yankees in the third round of the 1998 MLB Draft with the 97th overall selection. Henson played in over 500 Minor League games over six seasons and appeared in eight Major League games with the Yankees between 2002-03, collecting one hit in nine at-bats.
• Former NFL quarterback Chad Hutchinson signed with the Dallas Cowboys as an undrafted free agent in 2002. Hutchinson played in the NFL for three seasons between the Cowboys (2002-03) and Chicago Bears (2004). The St. Louis Cardinals selected him in the second round (48th overall) of the 1998 MLB Draft, and he spent four seasons in the their minor league system.
• Former NFL quarterback Kerry Collins was drafted three times by MLB clubs. The Detroit Tigers drafted him out of high school in the 26th round of the 1990 MLB Draft, but Collins decided to attend Penn State University. The Tigers drafted him again in the 60th round of the 1991 MLB Draft, and he was selected in the 48th round of the 1994 MLB Draft by the Toronto Blue Jays, but did not sign in either instance. Collins was ultimately drafted in the first round of the 1995 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers, would make two Pro Bowl Teams (1996, 2008) and play for 17 seasons.
• Former first baseman Chris Weinke played six seasons (1991-96) in the Toronto Blue Jays Minor League system after being selected by the Jays in the second round of the 1990 MLB Draft. After the 1996 season, Weinke accepted a football scholarship at Florida State University, winning the Heisman Trophy in 2000. He was drafted by the Carolina Panthers in the fourth round of the 2001 NFL Draft.
• Former NFL quarterback Steve McNair was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 35th round of the 1991 MLB Draft. A three-sport athlete at Mount Olive High School in Mississippi, McNair did not sign with the Mariners, but opted to attend Alcorn State University. He was drafted by the Houston Oilers with the third overall pick in the 1995 NFL Draft and would go on to win the 2003 MVP Award.
• Former NFL running back D.J. Dozier was originally drafted out of high school by the Detroit Tigers in the 18th round of the 1983 Amateur Draft. He opted to go to Penn State and play football where he scored the game-winning touchdown of Penn State’s 1987 Fiesta Bowl victory over Miami. D.J. was drafted 14th overall by the Minnesota Vikings in the 1987 NFL Draft and finished his football career in 1992 with the Detroit Lions. In 1990, the New York Mets signed him as an amateur free agent. He spent 1990 and 1991 in the Minors, and was called up to the Major Leagues in 1992 where he would play in 25 games.
• Former Miami Dolphins quarterback Pat White helped lead his high school team to two state championships as a pitcher and outfielder before attending the University of West Virginia for football. White was drafted by Major League organizations on four different occasions, but never did sign. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim drafted him in the fourth round of the 2004 MLB Draft, and again in the 27th round in 2007. The Cincinnati Reds selected Pat in the 49th round in 2008 and the New York Yankees picked him in the 48th round in 2009. White signed a Minor League deal with the Kansas City Royals in September 2010 after being released by the Dolphins, and has since retired from the diamond.
• Former head football coach Urban Meyer, who won two BCS Championships at the University of Florida (2006 and 2008) and one at Ohio State University (2014), was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 13th round of the 1982 MLB Draft. He went on to play two seasons as a shortstop in the Braves organization.
• Oakland Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio was a 22nd round selection of the Toronto Blue Jays in the 1981 MLB Draft out of Hayward High School in California.
Mr. 3000 In Waiting
CC Sabathia struck out three batters in five innings of his Wendesday start for the Yankees. that gives him 2,997 strikeouts for his career, three why of becoming the 17th pitcher in MLB history to reach 3,000.
With 247 career wins, the left-hander is also on pace to become the 14th pitcher in MLB history to amass at least 250 victories and 3,000 strikeouts in his career. The table below details each pitcher’s historic career, sorted by strikeouts.
LINE DRIVES (Compiled from Club Game Notes)
FLAIR FOR THE DRAMATIC: David Bote of the Chicago Cubs recorded his fourth career walk-off RBI on Sunday in just his 46th home game with a plate appearance since making his Major League debut last season. The only current Cub with more walk-off RBI is Anthony Rizzo (7). Bote is a career .370 (10-for-27) hitter with three homers and 11 RBI in 30 plate appearances in the ninth inning-or-later.
MR. 1,000: All-Star third baseman Nolan Arenado of the Colorado Rockies recorded his 1,000th career hit on Monday night with his go-ahead solo home run in the seventh inning. He became the ninth player to record 1,000 hits with the Rockies and at age-28, he became the youngest player to reach the milestone with the franchise. Arenado is just the second player to hit a home run for his 1,000th hit in a Rockies uniform (Carlos González) and the second Rockies player to hit a home run for his 1,000th career hit (Ty Wigginton).
PITCHERS CAN HIT TOO: New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler had a strong game on Tuesday night, throwing seven scoreless innings with 11 strikeouts during the Mets 9-0 victory over the Phillies. In addition, Wheeler hit his first career Major League home run, becoming the third Mets pitcher (Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom) to hit a home run this season. The Mets are the first National League team since at least 1908 to have home runs from three different pitchers in the team’s first 25 games.
THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT TEXAS: Oakland Athletics outfielder Stephen Piscotty went 2-for-4 on Wednesday night against the Texas Rangers. Piscotty extended his franchise-record hitting streak against the Rangers/Senators to 17 games, hitting 29-for-66 (.439) in the process. The previous franchise record was 15 games, established by Geronimo Berroa (May 7, 1995 - July 12, 1996).
KING FELIX: Starting pitcher Félix Hernández of the Seattle Mariners has compiled a 2.78 ERA in 74 career starts in the month of March/April. Among all active pitchers, his 2.78 ERA is the second lowest career ERA for the month of March/April, trailing only Johnny Cueto (2.76).
STAY THIRSTY, MY FRIENDS: The Tampa Bay Rays have played 477 games since their last complete game, pitched by Matt Andriese on May 14, 2016 against Oakland. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the streak is just three games shy of tying the Miami Marlins (June 4, 2014–June 2, 2017) for the longest drought in Major League history.
H’EATON’ UP: Adam Eaton of the Washington Nationals extended his hitting streak to 10 games on Wednesday night. Over those ten games, Eaton is batting .386 (17-for-44) with two doubles, one triple, a home run, two RBI, three walks, two stolen bases and ten runs scored. Overall, he’s reached base safely in 20- of-22 games this season.
ROSIES ARE RED HOT: After going hitless in the first three games of the season, Eddie Rosario of the Minnesota Twins is hitting .312 (24-for-77) with ten home runs in his last 19 games. He became the first Twins player to log ten home runs before May 1st, and the fastest player (21 games) in franchise history (since 1961) to reach ten home runs. The previous record was established by Hall of Famer Kirby Puckett (23 games) during the 1986 season.
ROC, JOC: Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson celebrated his 27th birthday on Sunday with four hits and two home runs. Pederson became just the third player in Major League history with four hits and two home runs on his birthday, joining Hall of Famer Joe Morgan (September 19, 1983) and Kirk Gibson (May 28, 1995). Overall, he is tied for third in the Majors with 10 home runs, and all 10 of his round-trippers have come against right-handed pitchers, tied with Christian Yelich for the Major League-lead.
THE ANDY MAN CAN: Brian Anderson of the Miami Marlins hit a double in the first inning on Saturday. The hit was his 200th Major League hit in 201 career games. Per the Elias Sports Bureau, he became the 10th-fastest player in Club history to tally 200 hits. Edgar Renteria holds the franchise record, recording 200 hits through his first 169 games.
PRESSLY’S TEAR: Ryan Pressly of the Houston Astros has not allowed a run in his last 30 games (27.2 innings), the longest scoreless appearance streak in Club history. The longest streak by an Astros reliever is 28.1 innings, set by Doug Jones from 1994-1995, while the overall Club record is 32.1 innings, set by Roy Oswalt in 2008.
THE HOME RUN A KEY COMPONENT: All three of the Kansas City Royals’ runs on Tuesday night came via the home run, with Alex Gordon, Jorge Soler and Hunter Dozier combining for all of the scoring. It was the fourth time that the Royals have clubbed three home runs in a game this year, and the third time doing so in a nine-inning game. The Royals have hit 33 home runs through their first 25 games. Last year, the Club didn’t hit its 33rd home run until the 38th game in on May 11th.
ELITE COMPANY: On Saturday night, Albert Pujols of the Los Angeles Angels hit an RBI double in the fourth inning. Per the Elias Sports Bureau, the RBI double gave Pujols his 1,993rd career RBI, passing Hall of Famer Babe Ruth (1,992) for fifth-most in MLB history. With one more RBI, he’ll match Hall of Famer Lou Gehrig (1,994) for fourth in Baseball history.
HOMER’S ODYSSEY: In Saturday’s doubleheader, the Baltimore Orioles and Minnesota Twins combined to hit 17 home runs in the two games. The Orioles hit six home runs during the two contests, while the Twins hit 11. The 17 combined home runs were the most combined home runs in a doubleheader in Major League history, breaking the previous record (15) held by the Milwaukee Braves and Chicago Cubs on May 30, 1956. The Braves combined to hit nine home runs, while the Cubs hit six in the two games at Wrigley Field.
ABREU AT 150: Chicago White Sox first baseman José Abreu hit his 150th home run on Monday night in his 763rd career game. Abreu became the third-fastest player in White Sox history to reach that milestone, trailing only Jermaine Dye (627) and Hall of Famer Frank Thomas (672). Abreu’s 150 homers rank tenth in franchise history, and the slugger is within reach of Carlos Lee (152) and Bill Melton (154).
PITCHING PROWESS: Cleveland Indians pitchers recorded 222 strikeouts through the first 22 games of the season, the most strikeouts through 22 games in franchise history. 2019 surpassed the previous record of 218 set in 2017. The starting pitching staff has recorded 155 strikeouts in 125.2 innings, the most strikeouts by a starting staff in baseball, ahead of the Washington Nationals (152) and Houston Astros (146).
MAGIC 8-BALL: Philadelphia Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco has six home runs and 18 RBI when batting eighth in the batting order. Franco is nearly halfway to the single-season franchise record (since at least 1914) of 13 home runs when batting eighth, accomplished by Spud Davis (1930) and Andy Seminick (1948).
SWEEPS SEASON: The Detroit Tigers swept a doubleheader from the Red Sox on Tuesday, winning the first game, 7-4, and the night game, 4-2. It marked the first time Detroit has swept the Red Sox in a doubleheader at Fenway Park since August 20, 1965. It was also the Tigers’ first doubleheader sweep since September 22, 2016 against the Minnesota Twin