Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts hit for the cycle on Thursday night against the Blue Jays. It’s the 320th cycle in baseball history. Betts is the first member of the Red Sox to hit for the cycle since Brock Holt on June 16, 2015 against the Braves.
Betts singled to lead off the game, tripled in the second inning, and doubled in the fourth. He wouldn’t complete the cycle until the ninth inning, however, when he belted a solo homer off of Ken Giles. Despite Betts’ effort, the Red Sox lost 8-5 to the Blue Jays.
Betts, 25, is in the midst of an MVP-caliber season. After Thursday’s action, he’s hitting .347/.434/.668 with 27 home runs, 59 RBI, and 95 runs scored, and 22 stolen bases in 440 plate appearances. Betts’ Red Sox also own the best record in baseball at 81-35.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.