Well Donado

Breaking down the best hitting performances from yesterday’s games.

Martín Maldonado (HOU): 4-4, HR, 4 R, 4 RBI.

When the stars are aligned just right you can sometimes make out the type of line Martín Maldonado put up on Sunday. The four hit performance was his third such of his 11 year major league career (no, I’m not counting his three game cup of coffee in 2011 where he only recorded one plate appearance via a pinch hit opportunity), and his first since May 2015. On the pitching side, Nick Pollack may call this sort of performance a Birthday Party, but to give Maldonado credit for doing this sort of thing once a year may be a bit generous. Either way, he surely enjoyed his time in the spotlight, scoring four runs in one game for the first time in his career and knocking in four runs for just the seventh time. Despite the .184/.249/.345 slash on the season, Maldonado finds himself knocking on the door of his career highs in home runs and RBI on the season, currently sitting just one shy in each category. No one is jumping to the wire to add the Houston catcher after an impressive, yet improbable Sunday performance, as it’s one we may never see again – so just enjoy it.

Let’s see how the other hitters did Sunday

Aaron Judge (NYY): 4-5, 2B, 2 HR, 3 R, 4 RBI, BB.

Ok, we get it, Aaron Judge is good at hitting baseballs over fences, but if you haven’t noticed he’s now just .001 off from the AL batting title. Put that along side his generous lead in HR and RBI and you have a legitimate Triple Crown contender. And no, ERA is not a category in the Triple Crown.

Luis Rengifo (LAA): 2-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI.

How does anyone not yell out Luis Ren-gi-fo in the Rufio voice from Robin William’s Hook every, single, time? Rengifo hit a pair of homers on Sunday, the first time he’s done that in…oh…the past two games. That’s right, we were just talking about him after his pair of bombs hit on Friday as well. Rengifo has only had 25 starts all season when he did not collect a hit and now has 29 multi-hit games on the year. The newly minted leadoff hitter for the Angels is making the most of his full time utility role and has likely carved out a spot for himself heading into 2023.

Eloy Jiménez (CWS): 3-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, BB.

Since August 30th, Eloy Jiménez has slashed .348/.397/.710 with seven home runs, a sub 18% strikeout rate and a 208 wRC+ through 78 plate appearances. One has to wonder what other event around that time may have played a role in his recent success.

Oswaldo Cabrera (NYY): 3-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB.

Oswaldo Cabrera knocked out his second homer of his young career on Sunday and over the past 10 games he’s slashed .289/.372/.500 and has carved out every day playing time starting in right field for the Yankees. That may change with the impending addition of Harrison Bader this coming week, but the rookie may have done enough to keep the playing time coming through the end of the month.

Juan Soto (SD): 3-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB.

It may be a surprise, but Sunday marked Soto’s fourth home run in a Padres’ uniform. If this power outage to end the 2022 season drops Soto’s draft slot in 2023 drafts, I won’t be upset about it.

Tyrone Taylor (MIL): 3-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, RBI.

Sunday marked Tyrone Taylor’s second three-hit performance this month, while slashing .323/.371/.839. Unfortunately that only comes across 35 plate appearances as Taylor finds himself splitting centerfield duties with rookie Garrett Mitchell. It’s been a pretty even split with no platoon advantage being given to either side, so as nice as the production seems to be from Taylor he’s really difficult to manage in most, if not all, fantasy formats.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (TOR): 2-3, 2B, HR, R, RBI, 2 BB.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. extends his current hit streak to 12 straight and knocks out his 29th jack of the season. Despite any thoughts to the contrary, Vlad Jr has been one of the most consistent players all season, ranking fourth across baseball in total plate appearances and playing in 146 of the Blue Jays’ 147 games thus far. He still has an outside chance at a 100/30/100 season, which would surely help any fantasy roster in the final weeks of the season.

Adam Howe

Adam resides in Indianapolis after spending the better part of a decade in Oakland, CA and growing up in Massachusetts. He co-hosts the On The Wire podcast with Kevin Hasting, analyzing your weekly FAAB options before your bid deadlines every Sunday.

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