We’ve had far fewer BSOHL reports this winter than ever before. Is it because, by now, everyone knows that it’s a cliche that we’ve been mocking for years and years? Or is it because those quotes usually come after interviews that take place after a guy looking to bounce back has signed a deal someplace and . . . no one is signing anyplace?
NO MAN CAN SAY!
But now that players are starting to trickle into spring training camps, expect some more of these bad boys. Like this one, from Alex Cora, speaking of lefty Eduardo Rodriguez:
Tip o’ the cap to Cora for being aware of the cliche yet offering it anyway. He’s not only a World Series-winning manager, he’s well aware that cliches begin with truth!
As for Rodriguez, he has been effective when healthy but dings and dents and stuff have kept him starting more than 24 games in the season. Last season was his best: he went 13-5 with a 3.82 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 146/45 in 129.2 innings.
Here’s hoping being in The Best Shape of His Life adds up to an even better year!
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.