It seems most folks are settled on New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge winning American League Rookie of the Year, but Andrew Benintendi isn’t done making his own case.
While Judge is batting just .185 in the second half, the Boston Red Sox left fielder has taken his game to another level as an instrumental part of the Red Sox’s offense, which has been stagnant at many points this season. That was apparent during Thursday’s 6-2 win over the Oakland Athletics, too.
The 23-year-old went 3-for-4 with two doubles, three RBIs and a run and leads the Red Sox with 15 three-hit games on the season. Benintendi also doubled twice for the second straight game, and his second two-bagger gave Boston the lead in the sixth inning for his 11th game-winning RBI, the most by a Red Sox rookie since Nomar Garciaparra in 1997. His 144 hits on the season also lead all major league rookies.
We could rattle off stats all day, but the point is that Benintendi deserves to be considered for the award, whether he wins it or not. There was a time in the season when fans and writers alike believed Judge would be the unanimous Rookie of the Year, but Benintendi is making sure that doesn’t happen.
Here are some more notes from Thursday’s win.
— It’s been a good season for Boston’s left-handed starters. Drew Pomeranz’s win Thursday gave him 16 on the season, tying him with Chris Sale to create Major League Baseball’s first lefty duo with at least 16 wins since Derek Holland and C.J. Wilson did it for the Texas Rangers in 2011.
Pomeranz’s and Sale’s 16 wins also are tied for the AL lead with Cleveland Indians starters Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer. Not bad company.
— Rafael Devers, who went 1-for-4 with a double, has been enjoying his time at Fenway so far this season. The third baseman has hit safely in 21 of his 26 career home games, batting .357 (35-for-98) with eight of his nine doubles.
— The Red Sox’s magic number to clinch the division is down to 14 after Thursday’s win. They have 16 games left.
— The Red Sox teamed up with the Minnesota Twins to donate to Hurricane Irma victims.
The two teams’ spring training facilities are just down the street from each other in Fort Myers, Fla.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images