Craig Calcaterra

Blogger at NBC Sport.com's HardballTalk. Recovering litigator. Rake. Scoundrel. Notorious Man-About-Town.
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Mark Trumbo hits two more bombs, leads all of baseball with 26 homers

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Mark Trumbo was traded away from Seattle last December for basically nothing. He’s making them regret that this year.

Trumbo went 3-for-6 with a double, two solo home runs and three runs scored in yesterday’s win over the Dodgers. He’s now hitting .285/.334/.570 with a major league leading 26 homers and 64 runs driven in. That’s a 50-home run pace. Trumbo has hit 30+ homers twice, but that was three and four years ago. He hit 14 homers in 2014 and 22 last season.

Yesterday it was announced that Trumbo would take part in the Home Run Derby. It’s well-deserved. Not bad for a guy that only cost the Orioles Steve Clevenger.

 

Matt Carpenter to miss time with an oblique strain

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Cardinals second baseman Matt Carpenter checked his swing in the bottom of the third inning during yesterday’s game against the Pirates. He grimaced in pain and eventually walked off the field with a trainer. Cardinals manager Mike Matheny confirmed after the game that Carpenter suffered a right oblique strain.

Derrick Goold of the Post-Dispatch tweeted afterward that Matheny said there is “a high level of concern” about the injury and uncertainty over how much time Carpenter might miss. Many oblique strains lead to players missing a month or more.

Kolten Wong and Jedd Gyorko will cover while Carpenter is out, though his .298/.420/.568 batting line will be impossible to replace.

And That Happened: Wednesday’s scores and highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Red Sox 11, Rangers 6: I’m guessing it’s just subjective on my part, but I feel like the ugliest baseball of the year is played in the week before the All-Star break. The All-Stars have a lot of stuff on their mind and the non-All-Stars are practically tasting the margaritas they’ll have on their long weekend getaways with their sweeties. David Ortiz hit his 20th homer and drove in three. Bryce Brentz drove in three runs. Boston took two of three from Texas.

Tigers 12, Indians 2: So much for that losing streak to the Indians. This one went sideways for Cleveland in the five-run fifth, capped by Nick Castellanos‘ three-run jack. Michael Fulmer continued his nice campaign, winning his ninth game, after allowing one earned run over six innings.

Phillies 4, Braves 3: Atlanta took a 3-2 lead in the top of the eighth, courtesy of Adonis Garcia‘s second RBI double of the game. The Braves didn’t have much time to get cocky, though, because Freddy Galvis hit a two-run blast in the bottom half of the inning to put the Phillies ahead for good. It’s the sort of loss that, were the Braves worth a tinker’s damn, would kind of hurt. Now it’s just a new and interesting way to lose.

Twins 4, Athletics 0: Ervin Santana tossed a two-hit complete game shutout, needing exactly 100 pitches to do it. He struck out eight and didn’t walk a soul. If you’re into game scores, Santana’s 91 was the seventh highest of the year by any pitcher.

Mets 4, Marlins 2: Giancarlo Stanton homered twice for the second game in a row, but they were both solo shots and that’s all the Marlins would get. Jacob deGrom gave up zero runs on six hits to the non-Giancarlo portions of Miami’s lineup. Contrary to my post yesterday, Don Kelly was not the Hero of the Game. One wonders whether he was even the best option named Don that the Marlins could’ve theoretically played at first base yesterday.

Reds 5, Cubs 3: The Reds declared yesterday opposite day, as they decided to see what it was like to win a game when the other team’s bullpen couldn’t get the job done. Tucker Barnhart hit a go-ahead, three-run homer off Trevor Cahill as the Cubs dropped their sixth game of their last seven and fell below the Giants for the best record in baseball. Zack Cozart homered for the third straight game.

Orioles 6, Dodgers 4: A five hour 26 minute game that was largely sloppy, featured 36 strikeouts and 14 walks and which dumped over 30,000 people out onto the L.A. freeways during rush hour sounds like a lot of fun. Sad I couldn’t make that one. Jonathan Schoop doubled in two runs with two outs in the 14th inning to win it. Chase Utley had six hits in a losing cause.

Nationals 7, Brewers 4: The Nats leaped out to a 4-0 lead after two but Milwaukee came back and tied it in the top of the third. With the game reset, Washington scored a run in the bottom of the third and the rest of the day ended up being academic. A three-run homer from Bryce Harper and a two-run shot from Ryan Zimmermann bookended the festivities.

Blue Jays 4, Royals 2: Michael Saunders hit a solo shot and singled home the go-ahead run in the eighth. Russell Martin then doubled in Saunders for some insurance. The Jays sweep the Royals for their fifth straight win. They’re only 2.5 back of the Orioles. Things got sexy for Toronto in the second half last year. Are we seeing the beginnings of 2015 redux?

Angels 7, Rays 2: Mike Trout had the day off Tuesday and the Angels romped. He was back in the lineup yesterday — homered even — and the Angels romped. The AP gamer sets forth this factoid about Trout:

With his 100th hit, Trout became the first player to collect 100 hits and 15 home runs before the All-Star break four times before his age-25 season. Miguel Cabrera and Jimmy Foxx are the only other players to have accomplished the feat three times.

So I guess Trout is good. In some ways, though, I’m more impressed by his consistency. Here are his OPS+ numbers from each of his full seasons and for 2016: 168, 179, 168, 176, 172. He’s like a robot, stuck on the “Mickey Mantle” setting.

White Sox 5, Yankees 0: Miguel Gonzalez tossed seven shutout innings and the Sox won via a single, a couple of doubles and a fielder’s choice. The Sox take two of three from the Yankees and remain on a hot streak in which they’ve won 11 of 16. Weird season for Chicago.

Astros 9, Mariners 8: The Astros sweep the M’s. Carlos Gomez singled, doubled and tripled, driving in three. Luis Valbuena hit a tie-breaking two-run homer in the eighth. Remember how those two were being cast as the scapegoats for the Astros’ slow start a month or two ago? Baseball is like the weather everyplace besides, like, San Diego: wait a few minutes. It’ll change.

Pirates 7, Cardinals 5Jung Ho Kang hit a double that scored the tying and the go-ahead runs in the seventh. Jeff Locke was knocked out early but Pirates relievers combined for five scoreless innings as Pittsburgh won its third straight series from the Cards at Busch Stadium.

Padres 13, Diamondbacks 6Ryan Schimpf, who, um, of course I had heard of before because I’m totally a baseball expert, homered twice. Schimpf homered the night before too. Good old Schimpfy! He’s always doin’ stuff like that! He really makes me smile. [Craig frantically Googles “Ryan Schimpf”]

Giants 5, Rockies 1: Johnny Cueto allowed one run in a complete game to win his 13th of the year and to put the Giants on top of all of baseball with a record of 54-33. Nice pickup that Cueto was, eh?