Josh Hamilton got off to amazing home run pace, going deep 18 times in his first 31 games. However, since homering nine times in a six-game stretch from May 7 to May 12–including his four-homer game on May 8–he’s yet to leave the ballpark.
Hamilton is homerless since May 12, which is a span of 11 games and 46 plate appearances. Now, for most hitters going homerless for two weeks wouldn’t be the least bit noteworthy, but Hamilton simply showing that he’s human at the plate qualifies as pretty big news considering his ridiculous start.
During that 11-game homerless stretch he’s still hitting .308 with a .348 on-base percentage and three doubles, but Hamilton’s slugging percentage is just .385 and his OPS is .732.
And here’s the amazing part: He still leads the league in homers, RBIs, extra-base hits, slugging percentage, OPS, total bases, and Wins Above Replacement–many by wide margins–while also ranking second in batting average, on-base percentage, runs, hits, and times on base.
Blue Jays starter Matt Shoemaker has been diagnosed with a left knee sprain following his early departure from Saturday’s game. He’s scheduled to undergo an MRI on Sunday, after which the club will be able to determine the extent of his injury and draw up a more definite timeline for his return to the mound.
The right-hander held the A’s scoreless through three innings of three-hit, one-strikeout ball on Saturday. In the bottom of the third, with two outs and Matt Chapman on first, Shoemaker helped complete an inning-ending putout after Chapman tried to steal second. He tagged Chapman between first and second base, but appeared to twist his leg in the process and immediately started limping away.
Shoemaker was helped off the field after the play and was swiftly replaced by righty Sam Gaviglio in the bottom of the fourth. This is the first serious injury the 32-year-old has sustained since he underwent forearm surgery and missed nearly all of his 2018 campaign with the Angels. While he’s not expected to be sidelined for quite as long this time around, it’s still a concerning setback for the Blue Jays’ no. 2 starter, who currently boasts a sterling 1.57 ERA, 2.8 BB/9, and 7.5 SO/9 through his first 28 2/3 innings of 2019.
The Blue Jays will undoubtedly feel the lack of Shoemaker’s presence over the next few days, but they managed deliver a blowout win on Saturday even without his help. Behind six innings of one-run ball from Gaviglio and Elvis Luciano, the offense mustered up 10 runs — the most they’ve collected in a single game all season — and kept the A’s hardest hits at bay with impressive catches from Billy McKinney and Freddy Galvis.