Last night both B.J. and Justin Upton homered in the Braves’ victory over the Astros. That was the fourth time they have done that as teammates and that ties a record.
The co-record holders: Jason and Jeremy Giambi and Vladimir and Wilton Guerrero. It’s a shame George Brett and his brother Ken didn’t share an NL team, as Ken Brett could hit. He had four in one season back in 1973. Oh well, I suppose the Royals are happy they didn’t share teams any more than they did. Why Ozzie and Jose Canseco never managed to do this is one of the great genetics questions of all time.
As for the Uptons: assuming B.J. doesn’t get himself DFA’d sometime soon — not the safest assumption I’d ever make but one that’s probably reasonable — they have a decent chance to claim the record for their own. And even if they don’t, I feel like they will eventually set the record for brothers striking out three times in a game together, if they don’t own it already.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.
McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).
McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.