This is one of those deals where the headline sounds better than the actual story. It’s a true headline — Rockies catcher Tony Wolters really did knock the cover off a ball — but it’s not like he did it with a Hulk-like smash.
It happened in the bottom of the seventh inning of last night’s Padres-Rockies tilt. Wolters took a mighty (?) swing and . . . barely touched the ball, knocking it into the dirt for a swinging bunt. The bat hit the ball just right — or just wrong — and the ball hit the dirt just so that the seam ripped.
Wolters was safe at first but the only reason he made it was because the cover flapping off the ball caused it to fly like a knuckler on a bender. Watch:
This is not as uncommon of an occurrence as you might imagine. Jose Reyes did it last year. So did Wil Myers.
It’s almost as if something is going on with the baseballs which is making them less likely to stand up to the swing of a bat.
For the first time in a month and a half, Aaron Judge went an entire game without striking out, ending his record streak at 37 games. Judge had an RBI single and three walks in Tuesday night’s 13-4 victory over the Tigers.
Judge went 1-for-4 with a solo home run and zero strikeouts in a 9-4 loss to the Brewers on July 7. Between July 8 and August 20, Judge would strike out in all 37 games, breaking the record previously held by Adam Dunn, who struck out in the first 32 games of the 2012 season. If one counted streaks extending into multiple seasons, Dunn held the record at 36 games as he struck out in his final four games in 2011 as well.
After Tuesday’s performance, Judge is now hitting .284/.417/.594 with 37 home runs, 81 RBI, and 93 runs scored in 525 plate appearances on the season. He’s had a particularly rough second half, as he entered Tuesday with a .684 OPS since the All-Star break, a far cry from his 1.139 OPS before the break.
Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez was able to get a ground ball past Pirates first baseman Josh Bell for a double leading off the top of the sixth inning of Tuesday night’s game. He would come around to score later in the inning on a Corey Seager single, breaking a 1-1 tie.
The double gave Gonzalez 2,000 hits for his career. He is the 282nd player in baseball history and the 11th active player to reach 2,000 career hits. Gonzalez also has 300 home runs, making him one of 94 players with at least 300 dingers and 2,000 hits.
Gonzalez, who was recently activated from the disabled list, entered Tuesday’s action hitting .247/.295/.330 with one home run and 25 RBI in 201 plate appearances on the season.