And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

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Rockies 11, Giants 3: Carlos Gonzalez hit two homers for the second night in a row. This made me wonder about the longest streak of multi-homer games in baseball history. I found this answering the question — the answer was three, held by Gus Zernial of the A’s in 1951, Frank Thomas of the Mets in 1962, Lee May of the Reds in 1969, and Jeff DaVanon of the Angels in 2003 — but the data seems to have been collected a decade ago and I guess it could’ve happened again. I guess I need to re-up my expired Play Index subscription.

White Sox 6, Twins 4: J.B. Shuck hit a two-run, pinch-hit triple in the seventh inning to put the Sox ahead for good. The Twins are now one and a half games back of Texas for the second wild card and have a road trip ahead which takes them to Houston and Kansas City. So, yeah, if they’re gonna make the playoffs, they’re gonna have to earn it.

Nationals 15, Braves 1: Ryan Zimmerman was 3-for-3 with two doubles and four driven in and Jordan Zimmermann allowed one run over six innings. Each of which would’ve been plenty to beat the stanky-butt Braves, but because the Braves are the Braves and have clearly given up any pretense of being even remotely competitive this year the Nats scored 15 runs off of ’em.

Brewers 5, Pirates 3: That’s six straight wins by the Brewers over the Pirates. There’s going to be a lot of hand-wringing about how unfair it is that the Pirates, perhaps the second or third best team in all of baseball this year, are going to be stuck in a one-and-done wild card game. And I’ll agree that that stinks because one-and-dones are just not a fair test of a baseball team. But, at some point during that game, I’ll probably think “well, maybe if you didn’t roll the hell over for the Brewers this year — and the Reds for that matter, against whom the Pirates are 4-9 — you wouldn’t have been in this mess.”

Royals 15, Tigers 7: Lorenzo Cain hit a three-run homer, Paulo Orlando hit a two-run homer and Kendrys Morales drove in four. Fifteen runs on 20 hits in all for Kansas City who, I assume, can’t wait for October to get here.

Padres 10, Dodgers 7: The non-Greinke/Kershaw portion of the Dodgers’ pitching staff strikes again. Mat Latos allowed four runs in only four innings of work and the bullpen have up six more runs in the next five innings. L.A. held a 7-4 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth but couldn’t hold it. Jedd Gyorko hit a two-run homer and Yangervis Solarte had four hits. Crazy idea: Don Mattingly goes to a two-man rotation in the playoffs with whichever of Greinke or Kershaw isn’t pitching that day working from the pen. Sure, it may destroy both of their arms, but it’ll give him a 23-man offense. Could be cool?

Watch: Christian Yelich continues to make a case for NL MVP repeat

Christian Yelich
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Christian Yelich simply can’t be stopped. The Brewers outfielder (and defending NL MVP) entered Saturday’s game with a league-leading 11 home runs after swatting two against the Dodgers on Friday night, then clubbed another two homers in the first six innings of Saturday’s game.

The first came on a 2-1 pitch from the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu, who lobbed a changeup toward the bottom of the strike zone before it was lifted up and out to center field for a solo home run in the third inning.

While Chase Anderson and Alex Claudio held down the fort against the Dodgers’ lineup, Yelich prepared for his second blast in the sixth inning — this one a 421-foot double-decker on a first-pitch curveball from Ryu.

Yelich’s 13 home runs not only gave him a stronger grip on the league’s leaderboard, but helped him tie yet another franchise record, too. Per MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, he’s tied with Prince Fielder for the most home runs hit by a Brewers player in a single month, and sits just one home run shy of tying Álex Rodríguez’s 2007 record for most home runs hit within any club’s first 22 games of the season.

It may be far too early to predict which players will finish first in the MVP races this fall, but there’s no denying Yelich has already set himself apart from the competition. Through Saturday’s performance, he’s batting .361/.459/.880 with a 1.329 OPS and MLB-best 31 RBI across 98 PA so far.