I’ll give Humberto Quintero this much: his name is really satisfying. Just say it a few times, making sure to start it with a bit of an “um” sound instead of going hard on the H. Tell me that doesn’t make you feel good. Humberto Quintero. Really, it’s one of the best names to simply say this side of Inigo Montoya.
Dude can’t hit at all anymore, however, and now that the Royals have Salvador Perez back from knee surgery, Quintero’s .232/.257/.341 services are no longer required. He’s been designated for assignment. Bryan Pena will be Perez’s backup going forward, and he’s the better choice.
Don’t cry for Quintero, though. My guess is that he’ll latch on someplace because catchers who, rightly or wrongly, are given the “good receiver” tag and have a history of being just fine with being a backup always seem to.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: