Nolan Arenado extends hitting streak to 27 games, tying a Rockies franchise record

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Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado smacked a first-inning double off Rangers right-hander Colby Lewis on Wednesday evening in Arlington, Texas, extending his hitting streak to 27 games and tying Michael Cuddyer for the longest hitting streak in the 21-year history of the Rockies franchise.

(Cuddyer set his 27-game mark in 2013).

Arenado, a budding star at age 23, is now batting .329 with an .894 OPS in 36 games this season while offering elite-level defense at third base. According to MLB.com’s Thomas Harding, the last time someone 23 or younger had a hitting streak this long was in 2003, when Albert Pujols hit in 30 straight games for the Cardinals. Here is Arenado’s record-tying double from Wednesday …

Joe DiMaggio has the longest hitting streak in major league history at 56 games. He set that in 1941.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.