The. Wait. Is. Over. The crack of the bat is back. The beautiful sunny days where fans pile in to watch their teams are back. Baseball is back, and one week in, there are already a number of storylines that have blossomed in the first week of the season.
Off to the Races
A few teams have opened up the season surprisingly well. The Diamondbacks have the privilege to say they are the best in baseball right now at 6-1, and Twins currently have the best record in the American League, with a 5-1 start to their season. The Orioles started 4-0 before falling to the Yankees on Sunday.
NL Early Frontrunner
The Diamondbacks have rattled off five wins in a row, after starting the season 1-1. The start is the best for Arizona since 2000. The team has seen impressive play from Jake Lamb, A.J. Pollack, Chris Owings and Paul Goldschmidt, all of which have over five RBI already this season. Their offense has been otherworldly, amassing 45 runs in the first seven games. They also won several games in comeback fashion.
AL Early Frontrunner
The Twins can thank a few members of their talented ball club for their success, but Miguel Sano is clearly a huge standout. The 23-year-old is hitting .350 with two homeruns and eight RBI on the season. Jorge Polanco and Jason Castro have also hit well too, but the Twins most impressive aspect so far may be their bullpen. Minnesota’s pen has allowed only four total runs in six games. The starters are stepping up as well, so the Twins have seen total domination for pitchers throughout their games so far. With the exception of the 6-2 loss to the White Sox, the Twins have held their opponents to one run in four games, and to three runs in the other. It’s pretty tough to beat a team doing that.
Standout Starts to the Season
Several players have had a great first week. Nomar Mazara, also known as “The Big Chill,” was one of the best in opening week, batting .417 with two homers and an MLB-leading nine RBI. As mentioned earlier, Sano has been great. Matching Sano with eight RBI is Yangervis Solarte from the Padres, who has also hit .370 thus far.
Milestone Met, More to Come this Season
Matt Holliday became the seventh active player to join the 2,000 hit club. He joins Ichiro Suzuki, Adrian Beltre, Albert Pujols, Carlos Beltran, Miguel Cabrera and Robinson Cano. Beltre himself is on the hunt for a milestone, as he is 58 away from the 3,000 hit club (Pujols may do it this year too, he is 175 base hits away). But Pujols has a different milestone on the radar; he is only nine long balls away from 600 lifetime homeruns. Only eight players in the history of baseball have achieved this feat.
On the mound, Bartolo Colon won’t go away, and he is being rewarded for his longevity. Colon is 135 strikeouts away from becoming the 33rd ever pitcher to strikeout 2,500 in a career.
Grab Some Pine
A few significant players have already been placed on the Disabled List. Tiger’s outfielder J.D. Martinez endured a foot injury and will be out until April 30th. Gary Sanchez of the Yankees was placed on the 10-day DL for a bicep injury. Ian Desmond of the Colorado Rockies underwent a hand injury and will be out until late April. White Sox pitcher Carlos Rodon suffered a bicep injury and will be out until May 15th.