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Encarnacion overcomes slow start with record surge to 20 homers
From Elias: Edwin Encarnacion hit his 20th home run of the season in the Blue Jays' 5-4 win over the Twins. Now if by some chance you stepped away from baseball for the past six weeks, you might be wondering, "Wait, what? Not Encarnacion," who hit only two homers in the month of April.
In fact, no other player in major-league history who hit fewer than three home runs during April reached the 20-homer mark as soon as Encarnacion. By hitting his 20th homer on June 9, he beat the previous "record" by two days and that mark was a part of baseball history. Roger Maris hit only one home run in April 1961, but he hit his 20th on June 11 en route to a record-breaking total of 61 for the season.
Chisenhall makes history
From Elias: Lonnie Chisenhall had a game to remember, going 5-for-5 with three home runs and nine RBIs in the Indians' 17-7 win over the Rangers. Chisenhall was the first player since 1920, when the majors started compiling RBIs, to bat 1.000 in a game with as many as three homers and nine RBIs.
Would it surprise you, as it did us, to learn that four other Indians players had five hits, including three homers, in one game: Bobby Avila (1951), Joe Carter (1986), Ellis Burks (2001), and Victor Martinez (2004)? That's more than any other team in MLB history.
Chisenhall has driven in 22 runs in his last 10 games. Over the last 60 years, only one other Indians player had 22 or more RBIs over a 10-game span: Juan Gonzalez in 2001 (22 RBIs).
Cano learns to hit with bases juiced
From Elias: Robinson Cano drove in two runs with a bases-loaded double in the Mariners' 3-0 victory over the Rays. Cano's .315 career batting average with the bags full is virtually identical to his overall mark (.310), but that doesn't tell the story. Early in his career, Cano was futile batting with the bases loaded, producing only four hits in his first 33 at-bats (.121). But over the last five seasons, Cano has 30 bases-loaded hits, eight more than his nearest rival (Ian Desmond), batting .405 with the bags full.
2 Van Slykes hit 2 HRs 2 times each
From Elias: Scott Van Slyke hit a pair of home runs in the Dodgers' 6-2 win at Cincinnati. It was the second multiple-homer game of Van Slyke's major-league career; his father, Andy, had twice that many. Only two other active players and their dads had two or more multi-homer games each: Prince and Cecil Fielder and the John Mayberrys, Jr. and Sr.
Belisario records another sloppy save
From Elias: Ronald Belisario allowed doubles to the first two batters he faced in the ninth inning before locking down the White Sox' 6-5 win over the Tigers. It was the third of Belisario's six saves this season in which he allowed a run.
Morton is in control
From Elias: Charlie Morton struck out seven batters without issuing a walk over seven innings, earning the victory in the Pirates' 6-2 win over the Cubs. It was the 14th of Morton's 121 career starts in which he didn't walk a batter, but seven strikeouts was his career high in a game without a walk.
Strasburg continues great control
From Elias: Stephen Strasburg earned the win for the Nationals tonight at San Francisco, allowing one run in six innings. Strasburg struck out seven and allowed no walks, continuing a recent trend. Strasburg has now struck out 27 batters in his last three starts, while walking only one. This marks only the second time in franchise history that a pitcher recorded at least 27 strike outs and no more than one walk in a three-game span. Bob Sebra struck out 30 and walked only one in a three-start stretch spanning June and July of 1987 for the Expos. (Sebra won only two of his three starts - losing a 1-0 game in the middle start, in which he pitched a complete game.)
Altuve with another three-hit game
From Elias: Jose Altuve collected three hits for the Astros in their win over the Diamondbacks. It marked the tenth game this season of at least three hits for Altuve, and it came in Houston's 65th game of the season. In the past 15 seasons, the only other player to post at least ten three-hit games for the Astros in the first 65 games of the season was Miguel Tejada, who had an even dozen games of at least three hits for the Astros through the team's first 65 games in the 2009 season.
Richards back-to-back heavenly starts
From Elias: Garrett Richards allowed only four hits and walked no one in seven innings today, earning a win over the A's. Richards pitched eight shutout innings in his prior start, allowing four hits and walking no one. Richards is only the second pitcher in franchise history with back-to-back starts of at least seven innings, with no walks and no more than four hits in each. Bill Singer turned the trick in 1973, pitching back to back complete games, winning one on June 27, and losing the other on July 1.
Kings spread the scoring around
From Elias: The Kings have outscored the Rangers, 11-6, while winning the first three games of this year's Stanley Cup Final and each of L.A.'s goals was scored by a different player: Kyle Clifford, Drew Doughty, and Justin Williams in Game 1; Jarret Stoll, Willie Mitchell, Dwight King, Marian Gaborik, and Dustin Brown in Game 2; Jeff Carter, Jake Muzzin, and Mike Richards in Game 3.
No other team in NHL history had its first 10 goals in a Stanley Cup Final scored by 10 different players. Two teams previously had nine players who scored their first nine goals: the 1994 Canucks (also against the Rangers) - Bret Hedican, Martin Gelinas, Greg Adams, Sergio Momesso, Pavel Bure, Trevor Linden, Cliff Ronning, Jeff Brown, and Geoff Courtnall; and the 2013 Blackhawks - Brandon Saad, Dave Bolland, Johnny Oduya, Andrew Shaw, Patrick Sharp, Michal Handzus, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, and Marcus Kruger.
Quick shuts out the Rangers
From Elias: Jonathan Quick posted the second shutout in a Stanley Cup Final game of his NHL career with a 3-0 win over the Rangers on Monday night that gave the Kings a commanding three-games-to-none lead in this year's Final series. Quick's first shutout in a Cup Final was a 4-0 victory against the Devils in 2012, and that win also gave Los Angeles a three-nothing lead in the series.
Quick is one of five active NHL goaltenders with more than one shutout in Stanley Cup Finals games; the others are Martin Brodeur (3), Jean-Sebastien Giguere (2), Roberto Luongo (2) and Tim Thomas (2).
Quick's clean sheet against the Rangers means that there has been at least one shutout in every Stanley Cup Final since 1999 with the exception of the 2010 series, when the Blackhawks beat the Flyers in six games.