#HIGHFIVE | Top 5 MLBbros (Week 6)

#HIGHFIVE | Top 5 MLBbros (Week 6)

If the season was only seven weeks long, Aaron Judge would be the American League’s Most Valuable Player.  He rolled the dice and if things continue to go his way, he will be baseball’s highest-paid player by season’s end.

  For the second time this season, he takes the top spot on our #HighFive List.

  1. Aaron Judge

Aaron Judge has his Yankees off to their best start since 1998 when they went on to win 114 games and swept the San Diego Padres in the World Series.  

Judge, whose 14 home runs lead the Majors, takes the top spot on our #HighFive list once again and deservedly so.  He is leading baseball’s best team in average, on-base percentage, runs, hits and OPS while only trailing fellow MLBbro and #HighFive member Giancarlo Stanton for the team lead in RBI.

“It’s fun with this team,” Judge told reporters after his 4-for-5 with two home run performance on Tuesday.  “We want to play two games a night if we could.”

That was Judge’s third career four-hit game. He now has his average sitting at .306 with 30 runs batted in and an OPS of 1.049 to go along with those 14 homers.

 

 

His Yankees will welcome Tim Anderson and the White Sox into the Bronx for a three-game series this weekend.

2. Hunter Greene

I have seen plenty of heartbreaking moments in baseball over my twenty plus years on Earth, but there are not many I can think of other than the look on Greene’s face after his team allowed no hits and still found a way to take the loss Sunday against Pittsburgh.

No pitcher in the Majors has thrown more pitches in a game than Greene’s 118 on Sunday. If it had not been for a few untimely walks, he may have had a chance to throw a few more.

He struck out a career-high nine batters in the game, but also gave up a career-high five free passes to Pirate hitters, including two in the 8th that led to him being taken out just five outs away from history.

 

Changing The Culture | The Broken Red Machine Wastes Hunter Greene’s Electric No-Hit Stuff

 

“It would have been great to have a different result,” said Greene in this postgame interview.  “But it is what it is.  This is my team, ride or die with them.”

The Reds are in rebuild mode this season, but one positive I can take away from Greene’s outing was the fact that manager David Bell actually gave him a chance to build strength and confidence for starts farther down the line in his career. Typically, we see young pitchers held back and catered too when they first enter the league, but Greene was ramping up for the day he officially becomes an ace.

On the season, Greene now has a 1-6 record with 44 strikeouts and a 6.21 ERA. His next start will be Saturday in Toronto where he will take on the Blue Jays.

3. Giancarlo Stanton

No visiting player had hit a home run over the new left-field wall in Baltimore’s Camden Yards. That was until Stanton stepped into the box and launched one in the 4th inning of Thursday’s game.

People have been waiting for Stanton to fall off from his hot streak that began last season and has carried into 2022.

He, along with Judge, are Major League Baseball’s current leaders in average exit velocity and both are in the top 6 when it comes to hard-hit percentage.

 

 

A little over a week ago, Stanton had a stretch where he homered five times in five games.  Through his last seven games, Stanton is 12-for-26 with a .462 (emphasis on the .462!) batting average with 13 RBI, a 1.000 slugging percentage, four home runs, a .548 on base percentage all while drawing five walks in the process.

4. Michael Brantley

Michael Brantley has set the tone for the Astros’ lineup during their current hot streak as he leads the team in batting average and on base percentage this season.

Brantley is batting .321 over his last seven games with five RBI, a .504 on base percentage and one home run, which came during Houston’s Monday night massacre of the Boston Red Sox.

His three-run home run was one of five dingers the Astros hit in an inning, making them just the eighth team in Major League history to accomplish the feat.

 

Michael Brantley “The Professional” Leads Astros Bat Attack Back To Top Of AL West

 

This weekend, Brantley’s Astros return to H-Town for the Silver Boot Series against Marcus Semien and the Texas Rangers.  If all goes according to the plan, the lefty will matchup against Taylor Hearn Sunday afternoon.

5. Jazz Chislohm Jr.

 

Euro-stepper Jazz Chisholm Jr. is doing everything humanly possible to be the face that represents the Marlins franchise.  

Swag, charisma, skill – the “Bahamian Blur” has brought it all to Loan Depot Park, and now he is putting up the numbers at the plate to make his case.

Chisholm currently leads the team in batting average, home runs, RBI, runs scored, hits, triples, stolen bases, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and on base plus slugging percentage.

 

 

Those are “main event” type numbers that we rarely see a player put up for his team, but we have known since last season Chislohm is different. If he stays on this wave, he has a chance at taking the crown for best second baseman in baseball.

Over his last seven games, Chisholm is batting .286 with two home runs and four RBI. This weekend, he’ll have a chance to take on the reigning World Series champion Atlanta Braves.

#HIGH FIVE | Top MLBbro Players (Week 4)

#HIGH FIVE | Top MLBbro Players (Week 4)

Aaron Judge is continuing his case to be the highest paid player in baseball when this off-season comes around.

He told the media he wouldn’t talk about his contract once the season started but his early season MVP campaign is speaking volumes. He takes the top spot in Week 4 of our #HighFive list after hitting five home runs and carrying the Yankees to an 11-game winning streak.

 

1. Aaron Judge

Funny how the Yankees went on the longest winning streak in the Majors this season after a two-home run game from Aaron Judge a few weeks ago ignited the team.  Since then, Judge, who entered Thursday tied for first in MLB with two other players (nine home runs), has been one of the best players in baseball.

 

 

He was named Rob Parker’s Homeboi Highlight this week after homering in four out of five games and posting a batting average over .400.

In all, Judge has hits in 12 out of his last 14 games and has his Yankees sitting with the best record in the American League East and tied for the best record in the Majors with their crosstown rivals, the Mets.

Judge and the Yankees had their winning streak snapped Wednesday after the home plate umpire decided to call a few strikes that were near his ankles, but despite that Judge has driven in 13 runs, scoring seven, had a .867 slugging percentage with a .333 batting average over his last seven games.

2. J.P. Crawford

J.P. Crawford joined Aaron Judge as the only two MLBbros named to Major League Baseball’s April Team of the Month. He hit .360 with nine RBI and three home runs that were followed by some top-notch bat flips.

 


Crawford currently leads the American League with a .452 on-base percentage and ranks in the top five for both Wins Above Replacement and OPS.

Crawford had his 11-game hitting streak snapped a few days ago, but immediately began a new one the following day going 2-for-4 and scoring a run, in a game that Dusty Baker clinched his 2,000th win as a manager.

Over his last seven games, Crawford is batting .400 with a .600 slugging percentage and five runs scored.  He’s on pace to have a 30-homer season and potentially a Silver Slugger award in his trophy case next to his Gold Glove.

3. Mookie Betts


Like our own Dante Miles said, it was only a matter of time before Betts got out of his early season slump. He’s given Dodger fans a glimpse of what MVP Mookie brings to the table.

He has collected nine hits in his last seven games including two home runs. One come last night against their rival Giants that had one of their fans nearly in tears after he caught it.

Entering Thursday, Betts was tied for the Major League lead with 23 runs scored this season which is a good sign knowing he has yet to reach his full form in the batters box. He is batting .346 with a .577 slugging percentage and three RBI over his last seven games.

 

4. Josiah Gray

 

Josiah Gray went into the Bay and tore it up during his start last Sunday against the San Francisco Giants. Gray bounced back after taking his second loss of the season. He tied a career high with 10 strikeouts in a big way, firing six scoreless innings of one hit baseball.

Gray did not give up a hit through the first 4.2 innings. He was able to keep the Giants off the board despite giving up a season-high four walks. He only struck out three batters, but one came on a nasty slider with the bases loaded to kill what could have been a major rally.

 


Gray earned three wins for the Nationals as he continues to earn his stripes this season.

On the season, Gray has a 3-2 record with 31 strikeouts and a 3.12 ERA.  His next start will be Saturday night under the bright lights of Los Angeles against the Angels.

5. Giancarlo Stanton

Last week he became the seventh-fastest player ever to reach 350 home runs with a first inning bomb against Baltimore.  

Along with making history at the plate, Giancarlo Stanton began the week showing he is no liability in the outfield by making one of the most impressive catches we have seen this season.

 


Monday came around and Stanton made one of the best catches we have seen this entire season when he robbed Blue Jays third baseman Matt Chapman with a leaping catch at the wall.

Stanton once again leads the league in average exit velocity at 97.4 MPH and has the highest max exit velocity recorded when he hit a 119.8 MPH liner earlier this season has been just as important as Aaron Judge to the Yankees lineup during their most recent hot streak.

Over his last seven games Stanton is batting .321 with two home runs, four RBI and an on-base percentage over .400.

#HIGHFIVE | Top MLBbros (Week 3)

#HIGHFIVE | Top MLBbros (Week 3)

Byron Buxton came back to the Twins lineup and continued his case of being the best player in the Majors and earning the top spot in Week 3 of our #High/Five Top Black and brown players of the week. 

  1. Byron Buxton

When Byron Buxton’s name has been in the Twins lineup in the last two years, no player in baseball has played better and this week was a cinematic display of what he brings to the table.

Buxton was named Rob Parker’s Homeboi Highlights feature after the hitting display he put on against his AL Central rival White Sox last weekend.

After going 4-for-4 with a home run, double, two RBI, and scoring three runs in Saturday’s game, his Sunday encore was one for the ages.

After striking out in his first three at-bats, he rose to the occasion yet again with two crunch-time home runs. 

His first was a two-run home run in the 7th inning that tied the game at three. Then in the bottom of the 10th inning with runners on second and third White Sox manager Tony La Russa disrespected Buxton. La Russa decided to pitch to him with a base open. The plate appearance ended with a 469ft three run walk-off home run, tracked as the longest in the Statcast era (since 2015).

That’s just one of many impressive numbers Buxton has put on his resume over the last few seasons.  Entering Thursday, the Twins are 125-73 when he plays and his Wins Above Replacement rating is higher than Mike Trout, Fernando Tatis Jr. and Juan Soto during that time.

Buxton has a long way to go, but early on, he’s on pace to become the ninth player in Major League history with a WAR above 10 for a season.

2. J.P. Crawford

 

Seattle’s newest captain has shown this season he can apply pressure with the bat the same way he does with his Gold Glove on defense.

Entering Thursday, Crawford found himself in fifth place in the Majors for On Base Percentage and ninth in OPS.  His power numbers look like they will be up as well judging by his three no-doubter home runs in the last seven games – not to mention the impressive bat flips.

 

On the season, Crawford is batting .333 with those three home runs, nine RBI and nine runs scored.

3. Jazz Chisholm Jr.

This week we were taught a very valuable lesson, do not rush the “Bahamian Blur.”

The umpire during last Thursday’s game against the St. Louis Cardinals was the culprit, but Yadi Molina and the baseball players were the only victims from the crime scene.

Chisholm tried to gather himself after an 0-2 pitch in the bottom of the seventh inning.  The umpire hurried him into the box. After a bit of back-and-forth between the two he settled in the box and smashed a home run deep to right field.

Live At The Ball Park | Exclusive Interview With Miami Marlins “Bahamian Blur” Jazz Chisolm

That was one of two homers Chisholm Jr. hit last week. The other came on the first pitch of Saturday’s contest against the divisional rivals Braves.

Entering Thursday, Chisholm’s 1.029 OPS is the ninth highest in the Majors.  His average sits at .308 with 15 RBI and four home runs.

4. Aaron Judge

Aaron Judge is playing for a bag this season.  Not just any bag, he wants to be paid as the top player in baseball. He finally got on the home run board this week. 

Judge kicked off his 30th birthday weekend with two home runs against the Cleveland Guardians Friday night.  He then made one of the biggest plays of the season when he stood up to Yankee Stadium Bleacher Creatures in right field who were throwing stuff at a Guardians outfielder after the Yankees walk-off win.

During his last seven games last year’s American League Silver Slugger has a .360 batting average with three home runs, five RBI, three walks and .429 On Base Percentage.

5. Josiah Gray

Coming into Thursday, Gray ranks seventh in strikeouts among all pitchers. 

He tied a career high with 10 strikeouts in his start Wednesday against the Bahamian Blurs’ Marlins.

Chisholm applied pressure to Gray with a lead off bunt single in his start this week against the Miami Marlins. Gray settled down, striking out the next two batters, throwing 23 of his first 27 pitches for strikes and allowing no runs through the first two innings.

For the first time this year a team hit Gray around a little.  He finished allowing seven hits in 5.2 innings while giving up four runs and three walks.

His next start will be Sunday in the Bay against the San Francisco Giants.

#HIGHFIVE | Top 5 MLBros (Weeks 1-2)

#HIGHFIVE | Top 5 MLBros (Weeks 1-2)

Washington D.C.’s next ace Josiah Gray takes the No. 1 spot on our first #High/Five list of the season.

  1. Josiah Gray

Josiah Gray is going to be the nation’s capitals next ace and he wants that crown sooner rather than later.

After starting off 2022 showing why he was rated as a top prospect for the Dodgers last year, he leads the wave on this years first #High/Five list.

The Nationals traded away Max Scherzer and Trea Turner, two pillars of their franchise, for Gray and another prospect at last season’s trade deadline.  They believe the deal will be worth it in the future.

Josiah Gray Is Stepping Up As Young Ace Of Washington Nationals Staff

In his last 10.1 innings he has allowed just one run and struck out 13 hitters.  Gray also gave up only four hits and won both starts.

He’ll look to continue his winning ways Sunday against the San Francisco Giants.

  1. Hunter Greene

Hunter Greene is already a superstar. He’s one player that needs to be on the mound in this year’s All-Star Game, in his hometown of Los Angeles, to show the world.

Greene had one of what will be many MLB moments in just his second career start, on the Dodger Stadium mound last Saturday night.

He broke the Major League record for most pitches thrown over 100 MPH in a game (39), finishing the game throwing 5.1 innings, striking out six, and only allowing two runs against one of the baseball’s best lineups.

 

Hunter Greene’s Second MLB Start Was Record Breaking For The Golden Arm MLBbro | Sets New Record With 39 Pitches of 100+MPH

 

Greene began his career facing two tough opponents. He got the win in his debut versus the World Champion Braves striking out seven in five innings and only giving up three runs.

The No.2 overall pick in the 2017 Draft will have another tough test this Friday as he takes the mound against the St. Louis Cardinals.

  1. Josh Bell

Josh Bell has been one of the best hitters on the planet and continues to shine during his time in D.C. He’s already earned the honor of being named in Rob Parker’s Homeboi Highlights.

Going into Thursday, Bell ranks 13th in the Majors in batting average and has collected a hit in every game he has played in every game this season except two. He has five multi-hit performances already.

Josh Bell Is Ringing Heads In D.C.

 

Bell has an OPS of .977, a .354 batting average, drawn eight walks, hit two home runs and drove in 11 RBI this season.

  1. Jazz Chisholm Jr.

Jazz Chisholm has everything needed to be the face of the franchise for the Miami Marlins.  His on and off-field swag, confidence, and skills put him in the conversation to be one of the best second baseman in the Majors.

Known to us as the “Bahamian Blur”, Chisholm Jr. is the eighth Bahamian-born player to play in the Majors.  The ninth, Lucius Fox, made his debut for the Nationals a few weeks ago.

Bring Out The Trumpets |It’s Time For Jazz Chisholm AKA “Bahamian Blur” To Take Over As Franchise Player Of The Miami Marlins? 

 

Chisholm Jr. leads the Marlins in OPS, slugging percentage, RBI, home runs and slugging percentage.  Even more impressive – he has done so after missing some games due to injury.

Chisholm’s batting average stands at .296 this season with an OPS of 1.085 and two home runs.

  1. Ke’Bryan Hayes

Before the season began, the Pittsburgh Pirates made it clear they wanted Ke’Bryan Hayes to be a part of their future success by signing him to an eight-year/$70 million deal, making him the highest paid player in their franchise’s history. Over the first few weeks of the season he’s made good on their decision.

Hayes has batted either first or third for a Pirates team that has turned some heads early this season. He has a .326 batting average with two steals and has continually flashed his leather, showing his potential to become one of the best defensive players at his position in the league this season.

 

#HIGHFIVE + 5 More | Top 10 Black & Brown MLB Players For 2021

#HIGHFIVE + 5 More | Top 10 Black & Brown MLB Players For 2021

The 2021 season saw some MLBbros become parts of baseball history. From breaking single-season home run records the most home runs at a position to being a franchise’s first 30/30 club member and even the first walk-off in the Great state of Iowa, this was one to remember.

        Here are our Top 10 MLBbros of 2021.

1. Marcus Semien

No second baseman in the history of Major League Baseball has hit more home runs in a season than Marcus Semien has for the 2021 Blue Jays, and with just a few games left, has a chance to pile on a few more.

Semien bet on himself this season and it has paid off big time. He signed a one-year deal with the Blue Jays in the off-season and even made the switch from shortstop to prove his versatility.

Semien’s 44 home runs have him fourth in the race for the Home Run crown, while some of his other numbers absolutely crushed other Major League second baseman.

He is slashing .267/.338/.881 with 101 RBI and 39 doubles and also has the highest Wins Above Replacement rating in the Majors at 7.2.

Semien was exactly what they needed in the city of Toronto to get over the hump and become true contenders.

He’ll get the chance to test the free agent waters and says he wants to be considered a short stop while doing so.  I don’t think we can rule out the possibility he continues to play second base, but he should get the chance to be paid top dollar regardless of which side of the diamond he is on.

2. Cedric Mullins

Cedric Mullins may have had the greatest season in Baltimore Orioles franchise history, and the numbers do not lie.

Mullins became the fourth active player to join the illustrious 30 home run and 30 stolen base club. No other Oriole has ever done that.

The 5’8 175 center fielder has the eighth highest batting average in the Majors, the fourth most doubles and is ranked seventh in OPS among outfielders.

Mullins’ 2021 All-Star selection shocked many people, but throughout this entire season he proved his name belongs amongst baseball’s elite players.

Even though Baltimore baseball is going through tough times, they have a diamond in the rough batting leadoff and playing center field for years to come.


3. Aaron Judge

Aaron Judge has had his best season since he won the 2017 Rookie of the Year award. The Empire State has been on his back this entire season, and Judge has continued to step up and answer the bell each time in pressure situations.

From his late home run in the Field of Dreams Game to his go-ahead double against the rival Red Sox this past weekend on Sunday Night Baseball, Judge showed this year he is one of the most clutch players the game has to offer.

We told you back in April his health was key to a Yankees playoff berth.

He’s given us more than a few missles and treasured moments.

Judge leads the Yankees in almost every offensive category this season: games played, hits, doubles, home runs, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, OPS or WAR.

He now has 38 home runs, 96 RBI and an OPS of .916 this season.

4. Tim Anderson

Tim Anderson has become one of the faces of baseball over the last few seasons and continues to make his case for best shortstop in the game every time he steps on the field.

TA7 is one of the most feared leadoff hitters in all of baseball. He has the ability to make it 1-0 before most fans can make it to their seats from the concession stands.

Anderson sits slightly out of the Top 10 for average in the Majors at .301.  He also adds 17 home runs, 18 steals, 59 RBI and 92 runs scored to his season totals.

5. Giancarlo Stanton

Giancarlo Stanton has been the Robin to Aaron Judge’s Batman this year, especially during the second half of the season when the Yankees made their run to get themselves back into contention.

Stanton has the second highest exit velocity average on batted balls this year at 95.3, just slightly behind Judge who is at 95.9.  He also has 35 home runs, 96 RBI and an .881 OPS.

Stanton etched his name in the history books of one of baseball’s best rivalries, the Yankees and Red Sox.  In their final time in Boston this season Stanton became one of four Yankees to have three home runs and 10 RBI in any 3-game span vs the Red Sox.

6. Marcus Stroman

Marcus Stroman sat out the entire 2020 season, and for him to return in 2021 and lead the Majors in starts, he deserves some respect on his name.

Stroman finished with a career high 33 starts and posted the second lowest ERA of his career.

Despite having the “best pitcher” in baseball (Jacob deGrom) the and a 2021 All-Star in their rotation (Taijuan Walker) Stroman was the most consistent Mets pitcher throughout the season.

He’ll have the chance to test the market as a free agent and will have multiple suitors as he may be the most marquee name behind Max Scherzer.

7. Mookie Betts

Despite fighting through multiple injuries and maybe a little 2020 World Series hangover, Mookie Betts had a fine 2021, even if some of his numbers are a peg lower than what we’ve become accustomed too.

Betts was named an All-Star this season and currently has 22 home runs, 56 RBI, 89 runs scored and a .371 on base percentage. His OPS is quickly approaching .900 as well.

He’s been a swiss army knife for the Dodgers, moving around in the lineup as well as playing second base for a few games and turning out a few web gems.The formed MVP will surely save his biggest moments for the playoffs.

8. J.P. Crawford

J.P. Crawford put himself in rare company last season when he became one of the few recent black Gold Glove winning infielders and it looks like he’ll repeat again this season.

He leads the Majors in putouts and assists and seems to give the west coast jaw dropping highlights every single night.

JP Crawford Is On His Way To A Second Gold Glove & Possibly His First Taste Of MLB Playoff Life

At the plate Crawford made some improvements from last season. His average against left handed pitchers increased from .242 to .276. Crawford ranks 14th in the league in total hits and leads all Major League shortstops with 37 doubles.

On the year he is slashing .273/.336/.715 with 52 RBI and nine home runs.

9. Michael Brantley

If Michael Brantley could have avoided the injury bug this season, he would have had a legit chance at the 2021 batting championship.

He started the season off hot, earning his fifth career All-Star appearance as he led the Majors in batting average for most of the first half of the season.

He’s only appeared in 118 out of 159 games this season and has 29 doubles, a .311 average and a .798 OPS. Another great season for “The Professional.”

10. Triston McKenzie

Triston McKenzie had to learn on the fly this season, and grew up in front of our eyes with some dominant starts, particularly on August 15th when he pitched eight innings out one hit baseball and a career high 11 strikeouts.

At one point of the season McKenzie put together seven consecutive quality starts from August 5th to September 14th.

McKenzie is also going to lead the team in strikeouts, becoming one of the youngest to do so in franchise history just behind C.C. Sabathia who did it at age 21.

Honorable Mentions:

Josh Bell– Despite the struggles of his Nationals, Bell had himself a great year.  He is at 27 home runs, 88 RBI and a .814 OPS.

Jazz Chisholm Jr.– Injuries at the beginning of the season stopped Jazz from being a 2021 All-Star, but we still got the chance to see him Euro step across the plate 17 times.

He has an outside chance at winning the National League’s Rookie of the Year award, but the only  Bahamian born player currently in the Majors has already impressed folks around the league

LaMonte Wade Jr.– Wade Jr. is the epitome of what the San Francisco Giants have been able to do this season.  He continually stepped up especially in late game situations earning himself the nickname “Late Night Lamonte”

Jack Flaherty – Jack Flaherty was on his way to becoming a black ace and winning 20 games before an injury stalled his season for a few months.

The Cardinals seemed to come back alive when he returned as they rattled off 17 consecutive wins at one point.  It seems Flaherty might come out of the bullpen for St. Louis during their playoff run if they can get past the wild card games.

It’s been a great season and we’ve brought you the best of the Black and Brown players in MLB. We’ll be back next season with our #HIGHFIVE lists.

See you in March !