Giancarlo Stanton got off to an auspicious start to his Yankees career, smashing a pair of home runs in an Opening Day win over the Blue Jays. Since then, the slugger has struggled, culminating in a five-strikeout performance in Tuesday’s 11-4 win over the Rays.
Stanton and the Marlins’ Chad Wallach are the only players to strike out five times in a game so far this season. It happened five times last season with Brian Dozier, Javier Baez, Nelson Cruz, Matt Davidson, and Odubel Herrera. The last Yankee to strike out five times in a game was David Adams on September 29, 2013 against the Astros. Stanton had never accomplished the “feat” until Tuesday.
After Tuesday’s action, Stanton is batting .211/.348/.632 with the two home runs as well as four RBI and four runs scored in 23 trips to the plate.
The good news for the Yankees is that they didn’t need Stanton’s bat to hang up double digits on the Rays. Didi Gregorius hit a pair of three-run homers and added a two-run single in a four-hit, eight-RBI performance. The last Yankee to knock in eight runs in a game was Alex Rodriguez on April 26, 2005 against the Angels. He had three homers and 10 RBI that day. Five players in baseball had eight-RBI games last year: Andrew McCutchen, Chris Iannetta, Mookie Betts, Scooter Gennett (4 HR, 10 RBI), and Anthony Rendon (3 HR, 10 RBI).
Five years ago, Octavio Dotel retired following a 15-year career in which he pitched for a then-record 13 different teams. I’m not exactly sure what he’s been up to since then, but I know that today he got arrested, as did former Marlins, Twins and Mets second baseman Luis Castillo.
That’s the report from Héctor Gómez, and from the Dominican Today, each of whom report that the two ex-big leaguers were arrested today in connection with a longstanding money laundering and/or drug investigation focused on one César Peralta. also known as “César the Abuser.” So he sounds fun. Gómez characterizes it as a money laundering thing. Reporter Dionisio Soldevila characterizes it as “drug trafficking charges.” Such charges often go hand-in-hand, of course. I’m sure more details will be come out eventually. For now we have the report of their arrests. According to the Dominican Today, four cars belonging to Dotel were confiscated as well.
Dotel didn’t debut until he was 25, and for his first couple of years with the Mets and Astros he struggled to establish himself as a starter. He was switched full-time to the Houston bullpen at 27, however, and went on to make 724 relief appearances with a 3.32 ERA and a .207 opponents’ batting average while racking up 955 strikeouts in 760 innings. At the time of his retirement his career strikeout rate — 10.8 per nine innings — was the best in the history of baseball for right-handed pitchers with at least 900 innings, edging out Kerry Wood and Pedro Martinez.
Castillo also played 15 seasons, with a career line of .290/.368/.351. He was a three-time All Star and won three Gold Glove awards.