Chris Davis tore through the first couple of weeks of the season before slowing down a bit, but he’s terrorizing pitchers once again. Davis went 3-for-5 with his major-league leading 16th homer last night as the Orioles defeated the Blue Jays 10-6 in Toronto.
Davis’ solo shot in the third inning was one of four home runs on the night for Baltimore, as J.J. Hardy, Adam Jones, and Danny Valencia also went deep. The Orioles have hit at least four three homers in each of the past four games. It’s no surprise that they rank first in the majors in home runs and second in runs scored.
Davis has homered in three straight games and five out of his last seven. After enjoying a nice little breakout last season, the 27-year-old has taken things to a new level this year. He’s batting .337/.426/.723 with a 1.149 OPS through 47 games. Only Miguel Cabrera (1.154) has a higher OPS this season.
Your Friday box scores:
Phillies 2, Nationals 5
Cubs 4, Reds 7
Twins 0, Tigers 6
Indians 1, Red Sox 8
Pirates 1, Brewers 2
Yankees 9, Rays 4
Padres 2, Diamondbacks 5
Athletics 6, Astros 5
Marlins 3, White Sox 4 (11 innings)
Cardinals 7, Dodgers 0
Angels 5, Royals 2
Rockies 5, Giants 0
Rangers 9, Mariners 5
Braves 5, Mets 5 (suspended after eight innings due to rain, will resume Saturday at 6:10 p.m. ET)
Brewers closer Corey Knebel set a modern major league record for relievers to start a season, as Thursday’s appearance marked his 38th consecutive appearance with a strikeout. He set down the side in order in the ninth inning, striking Josh Bell out to start the frame.
Aroldis Chapman held the record previously, recording a strikeout in his first 37 appearances of the season in 2014 with the Reds.
Knebel, 25, has flown under the radar despite having an incredibly good season. He moved into the closer’s role in mid-May when Neftali Feliz, now a free agent, struggled. After Thursday’s appearance, Knebel is 12-for-15 in save chances with a 0.96 ERA and a 65/17 K/BB ratio in 37 2/3 innings.
Despite having hit at least 20 home runs in eight of his 11 seasons in the majors, Reds first baseman Joey Votto has never participated in a Home Run Derby. Currently, he’s tied for the National League lead in home runs with 20, and he hasn’t been invited to this year’s festivities at Marlins Park.
In the event he is invited, Votto said he thinks he can win it, C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Votto likened himself to Ichiro Suzuki, a player known more for his contact abilities and mastery of the strike zone than power. “Just think of me as the Canadian Ichiro — Japan has theirs and Canada has theirs,” Votto said. “I could pull homers into the seats at will.”
Along with the 20 homers, Votto is currently hitting .306/.419/.601 with 53 RBI, and 52 runs scored in 313 plate appearances.
Teammate Scott Schebler also has 20 home runs at the moment and Adam Duvall, who made it to the semifinals of the Derby last year, has 16. Neither of them have been approached about participating in the Derby, either. Per Rosecrans, in the event each was invited, Duvall said he would consider participating if he wasn’t an All-Star and Schebler would participate regardless. Votto said he would only participate if he made the All-Star team.