Justin Turner
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Dodgers set MLB home run record in five-game span

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While the Twins remain unchallenged at the top of the league’s home run leaderboards, they’re not the only team setting home run records these days. In an 8-3 win over the Braves on Friday, the Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, Justin Turner, and Will Smith combined for four homers, boosting the club to 22 bombs in their last five games — a new all-time MLB record in such a short stretch.

Cody Bellinger was the first to strike. In the second inning, he saw a 92.2-m.p.h. fastball from Atlanta righty Mike Soroka and dropped it over the wall in right field for a leadoff solo shot, his 41st of the season. It’s the fourth home run he’s managed in his last five games, keeping him atop the leaderboard with Mike Trout, who also happened to register his 41st of the year on Friday.

In the seventh, now down 3-2 to the Braves, the Dodgers tacked on another pair of homers to regain the lead. Max Muncy and Justin Turner went back-to-back against lefty reliever Sean Newcomb — Muncy with a three-run blast, Turner with a 415-foot solo homer — to give the team a cushy three-run advantage. Per MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick, it marked the 14th time the Dodgers have gone back-to-back this year: another franchise record.

One inning later, rookie slugger Will Smith followed the home run hit parade with his own, taking Jerry Blevins deep to left field for his 10th dinger of 2019. He’s the eighth Dodgers player to reach double-digit home runs so far this season, following still more impressive feats by Bellinger, Muncy, and Turner, as well as Joc Pederson, Kiké Hernández, Corey Seager, and Alex Verdugo.

Not only did the club set a new five-game home run record, but they also extended their streak to five straight games with four or more home runs. They’ll try for a sixth on Saturday, when they’re scheduled to take on Braves’ right-hander Mike Foltynewicz at 7:20 PM EDT.

Buster Posey has opted out of the season

Buster Posey has opted out
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Buster Posey has opted out of the 2020 MLB season. The San Francisco Giants have issued a statement saying that they “fully support Buster’s decision. Buster is an integral part of our team and will be sorely missed, but we look forward to having him back in 2021.”

Posey and his wife are adopting identical twin girls who were born prematurely and who are currently in the NICU and will be for some time. They are stable, but obviously theirs is not a situation that would be amenable to the demands of a baseball season as it’s currently structured.

Poset had missed all of the Giants’ workouts so far, Recently he said, “I think there’s still some reservation on my end as well. I think I want to see kind of how things progress here over the next couple of weeks. I think it would be a little bit maybe naive or silly not to gauge what’s going on around you, not only around you here but paying attention to what’s happening in the country and different parts of the country.” He said that he talked about playing with his wife quite a great deal but, really, this seems like a no-brainer decision on his part.

In opting out Posey is foregoing the 60-game proration of his $21.4 million salary. He is under contract for one more year at $21.4 million as well. The Giants can pick up his 2022 club option for $22 million or buy him out for $3 million.

A veteran of 11 seasons, Posey has earned about $124 million to date. Which seems to be the common denominator with players who have opted out thus far. With the exception of Joe Ross and Héctor Noesí, the players to have opted out thus far have earned well above $10 million during their careers. Players that aren’t considered “high risk” and elect not to play do not get paid and do not receive service time.