Stay updated on everything baseball with our morning MLB News & Moments articles. We’ve got you covered to keep you in the know.
Ronald Acuña Jr. is Back
After tearing his ACL and requiring surgery that kept him out for the second half of the 2022 season, Ronald Acuña Jr. is back.
— MLB (@MLB) April 28, 2022
The 24-year-old superstar is one of the most dynamic players in today’s game. Before going down last season, he was slashing .283/.394/.596 with 24 HR, 52 RBI, 72 R, and 17 SB in 82 games. He was en route to a meteoric season, and his return should have all Braves fans feeling plenty of joy this morning. Returning from surgery is always difficult, so we can’t be sure that Acuña Jr. will repeat this kind of performance right away. But for an 8-11 Braves team that sits at fourth in the NL East, Acuña Jr.’s return may be the sparkplug they need to defend their World Series title.
Tensions Explode During Cardinals vs Mets
The Mets have gotten off to a strong 14-6 start in the 2022 season with one strange caveat – they keep getting hit by pitches. The club currently leads MLB with 19 HBP in 20 games. And although this issue has followed the Mets throughout the season, tensions began to rise in their three-game series against the Cardinals this week.
On Tuesday night, Pete Alonso was hit in the helmet. In the top of the 8th inning on Wednesday afternoon, J.D. Davis was hit in the ankle with a ball and had to exit the game. When the bottom of the 8th rolled around and Nolan Arenado came up to bat, the following happened:
The benches have cleared after Yoan López threw up and in at Nolan Arenado. pic.twitter.com/VieEPQSKuu
— SNY (@SNYtv) April 27, 2022
Nolan Arenado was ejected from the game after the incident, which wouldn’t have a great impact as the Cardinals went on to win 10-5. However, the incident opens up a larger discussion on the etiquette surrounding HBP situations and retaliation, as well as the baseballs that MLB has provided teams this year. The Cardinals will travel to New York to play the Mets from May 16 – 19, and all eyes will be on that series to see if tensions remain.
Giancarlo Stanton Hits #350
Death, taxes, and Giancarlo Stanton hitting home runs. The 32-year-old slugger has been known for his immense power since his 2010 debut with the Marlins, and the reputation continues to precede him. Last night, he added a milestone to his dynamic career by hitting career home run #350 against the Orioles and helping lead the Yankees to a 5-2 victory. This one is not a cheap porch shot.
No one man should have all that power.
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) April 27, 2022
Though a few years removed from his 59 home run MVP season in 2017, Stanton remains a threat at the plate. He has hit 35 or more home runs in his last two full seasons and looks to be an integral part of the Yankees’ offense and their postseason hopes. Though he may have gotten to a quieter start with a .222 average and 2 home runs, be on the lookout for when Stanton goes on one of his torrid streaks of boppers.
Taylor Ward Stays Grand
You may have seen the name Taylor Ward in highlights over the last few weeks. The 28-year-old first-round pick from 2015 seemed like he would be a dependable bench bat in an Angels team that flaunted an outfield of Mike Trout, Brandon Marsh, and Jo Adell. And yet, so far, Ward is making his case to earn playing time over any outfielder not named Trout.
Ward is slashing .353/.500/.647 through 10 games this season. He has 3 home runs, 9 runs scored, and 5 RBI batting leadoff for the Angels. On Wednesday night, he made quite the statement with this grand slam against Zach Plesac to bust the game wide open.
— Los Angeles Angels (@Angels) April 28, 2022
This is absolutely a small sample size, but Ward is quickly becoming an early breakout pick for the season and could serve as a lethal leadoff bat for an Angels team with an already strong offense. Bill Shaikin reported that this is the first grand slam from an Angels leadoff batter since David Eckstein in 2002. Does anyone else remember what happened with the Angels in 2002?
Best Moments From Yesterday
The Toronto Flow Gods
Team promotions are always a fun addition to the season, and they’re even better when the whole team is a part of the joke. On April 29, the Toronto Blue Jays will host the Houston Astros on “Bo Flow” night, giving away a bobblehead of star shortstop Bo Bichette. To promote the event, the Blue Jays roster did their best Bichette impression. Alejandro Kirk is a natural.
With great flow comes great responsiBOlity 😂
Get your Bo Flow Bobblehead April 29!
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) April 27, 2022
Luis González…With Style!
Luis González is a 26-year-old right fielder who was drafted in the third round by the White Sox in 2017. Since being called up on April 22, González has smacked a homer, collected 5 RBI, and batted .316. Last night, he also showed his flair for the dramatic with this graceful catch to retire Christian Betancourt.
luis gonzález actually meant to catch this ball from his knees. don’t be bamboozled. pic.twitter.com/KvoFVearkh
— Cut4 (@Cut4) April 28, 2022
Childhood Friends Reunite and Represent
On Wednesday night, the Miami Marlins traveled to D.C. to play the Washington Nationals. Wednesday night also marked only the second time in MLB history that two Bahaman players competed against each other. The first instance occurred in 1961. Marlins’ 2B Jazz Chisholm Jr. and Nationals’ Lucius Fox helped make history. And what makes this moment even better? They were childhood best friends.
For the second time in Major League Baseball history two Bahamian players will compete against each other on the same field.
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) April 27, 2022
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Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)