By Scott Barancik, Editor

Here are your MLB highlights for the week of August 19-25, 2019:

Mazel tov

  • Alex Bregman’s 2-run HR on August 22 marked the 119th Jewish home run of 2019, surpassing the 118 hit in 2018.┬áLike the Majors as a whole, Jewish ballplayers are seeing a surge in HRs. Alex Bregman (32) and Kevin Pillar (19) have already set personal records, Joc Pederson (26) has matched his career high, and rookie Rowdy Tellez has added 15.

Stats to share

  • An adjustment Kevin Pillar made to his stance and swing in early June has “completely turned his season around,” according to Forbes. Before the change, Pillar was hitting .213 with a .344 slugging percentage. Since then, he’s hit .302 and slugged .549.
  • Ryan Braun has been on a tear since the All-Star Break. According to Fangraphs, his 1.031 OPS (on-base plus slugging) since the Break ranks #5 in the National League, and his batting average (.339) is tied for #6.

At the plate

  • LF Ryan Braun (Brewers) hit .385 (5-for-13) with a double.
  • 3B Alex Bregman (Astros) hit .318 (7-for-22) with 2 HRs, a double, a .400 OBP, and a 1.036 OPS (on-base plus slugging). Bregman also stretched his current on-base streak to 19 games, a period during which he has hit .389 with 5 HRS, 25 RBIs, 11 doubles, and a .476 OBP. Bregman currently ranks #2 in the A.L. in OPS (.973), #3 in on-base percentage (.408), #4 in slugging percentage (.565), #5 in home runs (32/tied), and #7 in RBIs (90).
  • CF Kevin Pillar (Giants) hit .235 (4-for-17) with 2 HRs — both of them game-tying — a double and 4 RBIs.

  • 1B Rowdy Tellez (Blue Jays) hit .154 (2-for-13) with a home run, double, 2 RBIs, and a .214 OBP, but his hitting was clutch. His 9th-inning home run on August 21 tied the game, and his 8th-inning double on August 24 put Toronto in the lead.

  • LF Joc Pederson (Dodgers) hit .083 (1-for-12) with a home run, 3 RBIs, and a .214 OBP.
  • 2B Ian Kinsler (Padres) remained on the injured list with a herniated cervical disk.

On the mound

  • Max Fried (Braves) was hit hard in a no-decision outing on August 24, yielding 5 earned runs on 7 hits and no walks over 5 innings while striking out 5.
  • Richard Bleier (Orioles) had his best outing out of the season on August 21, pitching 2 perfect innings of relief on just 27 pitches while striking out 3 to close out an 8-1 win.
  • Robert Stock (Padres), who has been on the injured list since early July, is on a rehab assignment with the El Paso Chihuahuas (AAA).

Staying close by

  • C Garrett Stubbs (Astros/AAA/Round Rock Express) hit .200 (4-for-20) with a double, 3 RBIs, 2 stolen bases, and a .273 OBP. In 53 minor-games behind the plate this season, Stubbs has thrown out 39% of attempted base-stealers (13-of-33).
  • C Ryan Lavarnway (Reds/AAA/Louisville Bats) hit .250 (3-for-12) with a home run, 2 RBIs, and a .308 OBP. In 40 minor-league games behind the plate this season, Lavarnway has tossed out 35% of attempted base-stealers (15-of-43).

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