MLB News & Moments You Should Know – Sept 21

Aaron Judge is good at baseball, folks.

Stay updated on everything baseball with our morning MLB News & Moments articles. We’ve got you covered to keep you in the know.

 

Today’s Headlines

 

Tap Tap Tap…Case Ended (Until Tonight)

I’m not sure if you’ve all heard about this Aaron Judge guy, but I think he’s pretty good at this whole baseball thing. It’s been…a strange year for the Yankees overall but every time Judge steps up to the plate it’s appointment viewing for every baseball fan, and he did not disappoint last night:

Or if you’d prefer some on-the-ground reporting from your intrepid author:

It was Judge’s only hit in a 1-4 night, but it’s his 60th on the season (if you haven’t heard, that ties Babe Ruth for the Yankees and AL record books), he’s 20 home runs in front of second-place on the HR list (Kyle Schwarber) and 23 in front of second in the AL (Yordan Alvarez.) That’s a Ruthian lead in the category to go with the milestone number.

In a fun extra bit of history, it turns out that Wil Crowe’s great-great-uncle is Red Ruffing, who has a plaque in monument park and was a teammate of Babe Ruth (Roger Maris’ family is also in attendance at all of these games) which is the type of wonderful and weird throughline that only baseball seems to provide.

Judge’s rather quiet night combined with an 0-5 night for Luis Arraez and 0-2 night for Xander Bogaerts means that not only is Judge likely going to set a new AL home run record this week, but he’s currently in the lead for the AL Triple Crown:

A truly incredible and historic season for the man with a casual 10.5 fWAR and 9.7 bWAR, although number 60 was somehow only the second-most exciting home run of the ninth inning last night. Judge pulled the Yankees within three of the Pirates and had to be forced into a curtain call since the Yankees were still in line to lose, but Wil Crowe loaded the bases with no outs for Giancarlo Stanton, and then…

Stanton has been mired in a truly awful slump since returning from the IL with an Achilles issue, so hopefully this marks the beginning of one of his hilarious hot streaks that we all know he’s capable of. Also hopefully my voice comes back soon. For now, enjoy The Dingerminute.

 

Hit ‘Em Up

Home runs weren’t the only record chase going on last night, although the one that got set is a bit more ignominious:

One would have to assume there wasn’t as much cheering for Nick Lodolo’s errant pitch that got a piece of Kiké Hernández in Cincinnati, but one must observe the milestones, yeah? Lodolo’s spent some time on the IL this year but flashed some real plus stuff from the left side, although he’s already in some rarified Reds air when it comes to hit batters:

I doubt (well, kind of hope) he takes the top spot on this list, but #2 does seem doable, if infamy’s your thing.

 

Not Quite A Clinch…

…but it’s a start for Cleveland’s postseason aspirations:

The Guardians are now five games up on the White Sox, who are also 5.5 games back for a Wild Card spot. The AL Central is still up in the air by the numbers, but right now it’s Cleveland’s to lose, which is certainly not how most saw it playing out in the spring (although our own Justin Dunbar noted their organization glow-up last month.) And it seems like the team’s Social Media crew were feeling it, with one of the more weirdly wonderful tweets I’ve seen:

Goblins would have been a rad name for an MLB team to take, just saying.

 

Best Moments From Yesterday

 

It Takes Two

I don’t know a ton of Baltimore fans, but the ones I do know are wildly excited about how the 2022 team has ended up doing. They’re not in last in the AL East! They’re over .500! They’re technically capable of grabbing a postseason spot!

But also they’ve called up two of the game’s top prospects this year in Adley Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson, who teamed up for a little Vaudeville performance down the third base line last night:

Gunnar’s only been in the bigs for 19 games, and while Julio Rodríguez may have the inside track on AL ROY right now in the public consciousness, Adley’s having quite the debut season, putting up 4.5 fWAR so far (only 0.4 behind Julio!) The future is certainly looking bright down in Camden Yards.

 

Numbers Game

Speaking of the AL East and playoff hunts, Toronto is only 5.5 games back of the Yankees, and currently hold a 2.5 game lead for the first Wild Card slot. And they played a wild one last night, beating the Phillies 18-11, which would be a “football score” if it weren’t for the fact that the Jays simply scored more than nearly half of the NFL:

From here on out, NFL final scores will be referred to as “Blue Jays Scores.” I don’t make the rules.

 

Injuries

 

 

Articles You Should Read

 

Summer Of George – Sam Lutz, Pitcher List

In The Background Of History: What it’s like for MLB pitchers to give up a 3,000th hit – Dan Hayes, The Athletic (sub req’d)

 

Fantasy Baseball Coverage

 

Starting Pitcher Roundup

Hitter Performances

Reliever Ranks (Closers) (Holds)

Starting Pitcher Streamers

 

Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Asher Dratel

Asher hails from Brooklyn, wears a 2008 Joba Chamberlain jersey to every Yankees game he attends, and pronounces BABIP funny. Appreciator of Beefy Lad dingers and beers.

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