Josh Hamilton’s home run drought is finally over. And yes, I write that with tongue firmly planted in cheek.
After Aaron mentioned this morning that Hamilton hadn’t homered in nearly two weeks, the Rangers’ slugger went deep in the bottom of the second inning tonight against the Blue Jays. His solo shot off right-hander Carlos Villanueva landed in the second deck in right field.
It was Hamilton’s first home run since May 12, spanning 11 games and 47 plate appearances. Even with the two-week gap between round-trippers, Hamilton still leads the majors by a wide margin with 19 home runs. After hitting another home run tonight, Adam Dunn currently ranks second in the majors with 15.
Mariners starter Félix Hernández pitched well enough for a win on Wednesday afternoon, but Padres starter Chris Paddack was just a little bit better. Hernández allowed one run on three hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in the Mariners’ 1-0 loss. Paddack tossed seven scoreless innings on one hit and one walk with nine strikeouts.
With eight strikeouts on the day, Hernández passed Don Drysdale to move into 36th place on Major League Baseball’s all-time strikeouts leaderboard at 2,488. Max Scherzer currently sits in 35th place at 2,493. Christy Mathewson is Hernández’s next target at 2,507.
On the season, Hernández is now 1-2 with a 3.91 ERA and a 21/3 K/BB ratio across 25 1/3 innings. The 33-year-old had a rough 2017 and ’18, but the first-place Mariners are hoping he has something left in the tank. Hernández is earning $27 million this season and can become a free agent after the season.