Ronald Acuna Jr. (OF - ATL) Acuna hit a monster blast in the Braves' 5-0 win over the Marlins Thursday. The 432 blast was his 21st on the season, as he continues to wow the baseball world. Overall, the 20 year old continues to do it all, with a line of .286/.355/.571, the 21 homers, 45 RBI, 55 runs and ten stolen bases. As impressive as his counting stats are, the rookie also boasts a wOBA of .391, and a wRC+ of 147. Both of which indicate he is already a major component of the Braves' offense, all before he can legally buy a beer. Scary huh?
Aaron Nola (SP - PHI) Nola was able to record his 15th win of 2018 as the Phillies bested the struggling Nationals 2-0. The Philly ace went eight innings, allowing zero runs on five hits while striking out nine and walking just one. The outing against fellow NL Cy Young candidate Max Scherzer lowered his season ERA to 2.13. It upped his K/BB ratio to an impressive 3.64, as he is averaging an even 9 K/9. Opposing teams are hitting .196 against him as he is asserting himself among the top pitchers in the National League at just age 25.
Max Scherzer (SP - WAS) The Nats ace was the hard luck loser against Aaron Nola in their 2-0 loss to the Phillies Thursday. Despite losing, it made 22 of 27 starts allowing two runs or fewer. 2018 has been another ace-level season for the 34-year-old, and he remains a favorite to add another Cy Young to his mantle. While he is pitching lights out, it will be tough to beat out Mets hurler Jacob deGrom for the award, which speaks to just how well deGrom is pitching. Scherzer remains one of the top arms to target heading into 2019 drafts.
Madison Bumgarner (SP - SF) Bumgarner got the W as the Giants topped the Mets and their ace Jacob deGrom 3-1 Thursday. MadBum put in eight innings of work, allowing one earned run on five hits while striking out eight and walking one. The outing put his ERA down to 2.88 for 2018, but FIP suggests he hasn't been as good as the ERA indicates since it sits at 3.83. It's been a solid season overall for Bumgarner, but the strikeouts are down a bit as he is sporting his lowest K/9 total since 2010 at 7.67. At the same time, his 3.57 BB/9 is the highest of his big-league career. It may just be a case of knocking some rust off after a major injury, but Thursday's start was an encouraging sign.
Odubel Herrera (OF - PHI) Herrera's two-run blast was all the Phillies needed in their 2-0 win over the Nationals Thursday. The homer was Herrera's 20th on the season. Overall, the 26-year-old is slashing .266/.319/.443 with 64 RBI, 55 runs and five steals. His 6.4% BB% is rather low, but his .302 BABIP, which is down from his .345 mark is holding down his slash line. His 104 wRC+ is not spectacular but remains a few notches above league average. He remains the starter in center but has conceded some at-bats to rookie Roman Quinn, who the Phillies want to get a look at. This is a situation to watch as the season draws to a close.
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