Major League Baseball just announced that Rockies closer Greg Holland and Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas have been named 2017 Comeback Players of the Year. The Comeback Player of the Year Awards are presented annually to one player in each League who has “re-emerged on the field during the season.” They are voted on by MLB.com’s beat writers.
Holland missed the entire 2016 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery but came back with the Rockies to collect 41 saves and went 3-2 with a 3.61 ERA while striking out 70 batters and walking 26 over 57.1 innings pitched. He was an NL All-Star and a two-time reliever of the month this past season.
Moustakas, who was limited to 26 games in 2016 after tearing his ACL, came back to hit .272 with 38 home runs, 85 RBI and 75 runs scored over 148 games while posting a .521 slugging percentage.
Both Holland and Moustakas are free agents.
Reds right-hander Anthony DeSclafani put on a show during Saturday’s matinee against the Cubs. Up 2-1 in the third inning, the hurler hooked a Brian Duensing fastball over the left field fence for his first career home run — and first career grand slam:
Grand slams are impressive no matter the player or situation, but they’re made all the more special in rare circumstances like this one. Not only is DeSclafani the first pitcher to deliver a grand slam in 2018, but he’s the first Reds hurler to do so in nearly 60 years. Per MLB.com’s Brian Scott Rippee, right-hander Bob Purkey was the last to hit a slam for the Reds in 1959, when he took Cubs reliever John Buzhardt deep in the third inning of a 12-3 drubbing.
The 28-year-old righty had a decent outing on the mound as well, holding the Cubs to two runs, four walks, and three strikeouts over 6 1/3 innings before passing the ball to reliever Michael Lorenzen. Entering Saturday, he carried a 2-1 record in three games, with a 4.60 ERA, 2.3 BB/9 and 8.6 SO/9 across 15 2/3 innings — not too shabby for someone who hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016.
The Reds currently lead 8-2 in the bottom of the seventh.