Aaron Judge hit his 37th homer and Giancarlo Stanton hit a huge three-run homer (35th) giving him 96 RBI on the season to lead the Bronx Bombers to a 7-3 win over Toronto in the first game of a pivotal three-game series that could determine one of the AL Wild Card spots. The Yankees have won seven in a row and their magic number is down to three.
After betting on himself last off-season Marcus Semien turned out one of the greatest offensive seasons for a second baseman of all-time.
He is now tied for the record for most home runs in a year for the position and continues to make “Money Ball” and analytics look silly.
Baseball is in a Golden Age- There is talent everywhere you look, from two-way stars to Triple Crown hopefuls.
Some extraordinary accomplishments can be swept under the rug, but what Marcus Semien has done this year is going to be etched in history forever and it goes to show, always bet on yourself.
Most single-season HR by a 2B in @MLB HISTORY:
T1) Marcus Semien – 43 (2021) 🤯
T1) Davey Johnson – 43 (1973) pic.twitter.com/RKVEUs4ZXd
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) September 26, 2021
Record Breaking, Money Making Season
Saturday night Semien tied Davey Johnson’s record of 43 home runs in a season by a second baseman. The record has stood since 1973.
Semien spent the first eight seasons of his career at shortstop, but after the Oakland A’s decided not to offer him a deal to stay, he decided to show his versatility.
“When we go out there and do our thing and play our game, no matter what the circumstances are, I’ll take us over anybody,” said Semien.
The Jays are trailing New York and Boston for the final wild card spot with just six games left on their schedule — three head-to-head in “The Six” against the Yankees.
The addition of Marcus Semien to the Blue Jays lineup shifted them from a young team on the rise who may be a year or two away, to one of the best teams in the Majors.
Semien is leading all second baseman in home runs, slugging percentage and has played in the most games. He’s also second in doubles, RBI and second in runs scored.
Marcus is so charming lol 😍🤪 pic.twitter.com/B1MjP7qzAa
— Marcus Semien’s #1 Fan (@hiphilary) September 18, 2021
Semien told reporters over the weekend that he “Still sees himself as a shortstop” which puts his name on a wide list of elite players at the position looking to cash out this summer, none of which have put up better numbers than he has.
Marcus Semien, senhoras e senhores! pic.twitter.com/vRXYY2HS7X
— After Home Plate #ComeBackGuto💪🙏 (@AfterHomePlate) September 19, 2021
Before worrying about inking a new deal, Semiens soul focus this week will be getting the Jays in the playoffs and adding a few extra dollars by showing up big in October. Toronto meets Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton’s Yankees for a critical three-game set on Tuesday.
Blue Jays second baseman Marcus Semien hit his 40th homer last night in a 6-2 Toronto win, leaving him three shy of trying Davey Johnson’s season record of 43 homers by a second baseman.
Heading into Thursday night, the Toronto Blue Jays had won seven games in a row and 10 of their last 11, pulling within a game and a half of the New York Yankees for the second Wild Card berth in the American League.
The Jays have overcome injuries, playing home games in two different countries, and the toughest division in baseball to put themselves in the mix for the playoffs.
Offensively, the Jays have everything.
Vlad Guerrero Jr. is one of the frontrunners in the AL MVP race, Marcus Semien is chasing the single-season record for home runs by a second baseman, and when George Springer has been healthy, he’s been incredibly impactful.
Toronto leads the AL in home runs, slugging percentage and OPS, while ranking in the top five in batting average, on-base percentage, and RBI.
But, they should be seven games better based on their Pythagorean W-L record, which factors in runs scored and runs allowed.
While the Jays have very solid pitching numbers overall, they haven’t gotten great starting pitching. Robbie Ray has been their best, going 11-5 with a 2.60 ERA.
Just imagine where Toronto might be, had they held on to a pair of MLBbros who were just starting to come into their own.
Marcus Stroman and Tai Walker have been holding it down all season in Queens; keeping the New York Mets in contention for the National League East while staff ace Jacob deGrom has battled injuries all season long.
But from 2014-19, Marcus Stroman was a member of the Blue Jays, finishing in the top 10 in AL Cy Young voting in 2017 and making the All-Star team in 2019.
Walker joined Toronto’s staff during 2020’s shortened-season, going 2-1, with a 1.37 ERA in six starts.
Stroman was traded during his All-Star campaign and Walker wasn’t offered a contract last offseason.
The Stro Show could still be headlining in Toronto. Stroman’s 9-12 record hasn’t reflected just how good he’s been for the Mets.
New York has only provided him with an average of 3.78 runs when he takes the hill.
It’s lucky to be that high, considering the Mets have scored two runs or less in 15 of his 29 starts, including one or less 10 times.
Stroman has gotten a total of 14 runs from his offense in his 12 losses.
In contrast, the Blue Jays have scored two runs or less as a team only 20 times all season.
Stroman also still ranks in the top ten in ERA in the National League (2.93) and gives the Mets Gold Glove-caliber defense.
No doubt that he could have picked up a few more wins wearing his old powder blues.
Tai Walker made his first All-Star team this season, as he got off to a 7-3 start, but has struggled during the second half of the season. Walker hasn’t won a game since he beat the Yankees on July 3.
But run support has been an issue for him as well. In 13 of his 25 starts, the Mets have put of three or fewer runs. Just like with Stroman, more often than not, his teammates have given him below average support.
Both Stroman and Walker would likely have better numbers had Toronto held on to them. But they didn’t.
Maybe the Blue Jays have enough to keep pushing and make it back to the playoffs.
However, if they don’t, they can look about 500 miles to the southeast and find what they were missing.
Labor Day Weekend belonged to Marcus Semien as his four total homers now have him at 37 which is just shy of the record for most in a season by a second baseman in Major League history.
— MLBbro.com (@MLBbrodotcom) September 8, 2021
Marcus Semien was the starter for the American League All-Star team at second base earlier this summer, but this most recent stretch of play may be the best showing in what has been a career year.
Over his last seven games he’s slugging a sick 1.000 with 6 homers and 11 RBI.
Semien has not been stat padding with his numbers either: entering Tuesday, his Blue Jays had won eight of their last 10 games, which included a sweep of the Wild Card hopeful Oakland Athletics. Then they double flexed and grounded the surging Yankees on the back of Semien’s five RBI on Labor Day.
Marcus Semien is a winning baseball player. Great talent. Great teammate. pic.twitter.com/woHdtPmKxR
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) September 4, 2021
Friday night’s game against the Athletics was one of the wildest games played this season. The Jays trailed 8-2 before a six run eighth inning tied the game. The A’s would respond with two runs in the ninth, but then in the bottom half Semien called game by hitting a three-run home run to the second deck.
I feel when you play this game so hard you realize things about the baseball gods and you tend to believe. For Marcus to come up in that situation at that time in the game to do what he did is wild. I wanted to live in that moment for a bit. that’s all https://t.co/FSEatZcDzs
— Tony Kemp (@tonykemp) September 4, 2021
Fellow MLBbro and Oakland A Tony Kemp stayed on the field long after Semien’s walk-off heroics to watch his on field press conference. Then came Monday afternoon when the Blue Jays went into the Bronx and shut out the Yankees 8-0. Semien got the Day Party started with a solo homer.
What a year Semien is having. After the A’s treated him like damaged goods, he rebounds with one of the greatest statistical seasons by a second baseman in MLB history. How’s that for sticking it to your ex?
— MLBbro.com (@MLBbrodotcom) September 6, 2021
He decided then to end the game with an exclamation point. After walks loaded the bases Semien hit his first grand slam of the season.
Semien slam! pic.twitter.com/ym6PL4JDWx
— MLB (@MLB) September 6, 2021
Semien now has 38 home runs which is the most ever for an MLBbro second baseman and the 13th most in a season for any second baseman in Major League history. The record is 43 set by Davey Johnson in 1973.
Semien is evoking memories of the great Joe Morgan. He’s also having a career year on the defensive side of the ball. He made the switch this season from shortstop to second base for the first time in his nine year career and currently has his highest Defensive WAR at 1.6.
Semien now has a .270 average, 88 RBI, 14 steals and .875 slugging percentage and a Big Bag coming his way this off-season.