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Whit Merrifield has 28-game hitting streak

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It’s easy to lose track of hitting streaks that span from one season to the next, but a September-April streak counts in the record books the same way it would if it spanned from May to July. Whit Merrifield of the Kansas City Royals has one of the former variety: with his 3-for-4 day against the Tigers yesterday he has now hit safely in 28 straight games.

That streak began last September 10 when he followed an 0-for-4 day with a 1-for-4 day against the Chicago White Sox. He’ll attempt to keep it going at home against the Mariners this evening. Merrifield’s 28 games is only halfway to Joe DiMaggio and, of course, many a man has gotten that far only to fall short. Fifty-six is just a hard to fathom number for a hitting streak, especially in an age of low contact and high strikeout rates. Merrifield does stand a decent shot of setting a Royals record, however: he’s only two shy of tying and three shy of breaking George Brett’s record 30-game streak, which he set in 1980.

They Royals were bad last year but Merrifield was a bright spot, leading the league in hits. The Royals are bad this year — they just lost their fifth straight — but Merrifield’s streak is at least something fun for now.

 

 

Anthony Rendon explains why he didn’t go to the White House

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Today the Angels introduced their newest big star, Anthony Rendon, who just signed a seven-year, $245 million contract to play in Orange County.

And it is Orange County, not Los Angeles, Rendon stressed at the press conference. When asked about the Dodgers, who had also been reported to be courting him, Rendon said he preferred the Angels because, “the Hollywood lifestyle . . . didn’t seem like it would be a fit for us as a family.”

What “the Hollywood Lifestyle” means in that context could mean a lot of things I suppose. It could be about the greater media scrutiny Dodgers players are under compared to Angels players. It could mean that he’d simply prefer to live in Newport Beach than, I dunno, wherever Dodgers players live. Pasadena? Pasadena is more convenient to Dodger Stadium than the beach. Who knows. They never did let Yasiel Puig get that helicopter he wanted, so traffic could’ve been a consideration.

But maybe it’s a subtle allusion to political/cultural stuff. Orange County has trended to the left in some recent elections but it is, historically speaking, a conservative stronghold in Southern California. And, based on something else he said in his press conference, Rendon seems to be pretty conscious of geographical/political matters:

A shoutout to the notion of Texas being Trump country and an askance glance at “the Hollywood Lifestyle” of Los Angeles all in the same press conference. That’s a lot of culture war ground covered in one press conference. So much so that I can’t decide if I should warn Rendon that both Texas and Orange County are trending leftward or if I should tell him to stick to sports.