Mike Tauchman, OF (NYY)
Tauchman is the new Gio Urshela (although Gio Urshela is still really good), a New York Yankee that no one saw lifting the team to the top of the American League. No Miguel Andujar? No problem. We have Gio. No Giancarlo Stanton? No problem. In steps Tauchman. He tallied his second straight multi-hit performance, reaching base three times, adding his 43rd and 44th RBIs while Urshela put up two hits and Mike Ford was 3 for 4 with a home run. These are your New York Yankees. Tauchman has an 80% contact rate, .256 ISO and five stolen bases. This team is ridiculous.
Renato Nunez, DH (BAL)
Like everybody expected, Renato Nunez is on his way to a 30-homer season. The 25 year old hit his 28th of the year, creating a strong probability that Nunez exceeds his professional high of 33 homers, set mostly in AAA in 2017. He also walked twice on Wednesday, which is something that has dissipated in recent weeks. Despite the power surge however, his OPS is still below .800 because his batting average is so low. But his batting average is so low in part because his BABIP is so low. But his BABIP is so low in part because his flyball rate is so high. It's all to say that Nunez has very real power, but right now that only makes him a league-average player (103 wRC+). He has room to grow (his flyball rate hasn't been this high since playing in Single-A in 2014), but the flaws are evident.
Brian Goodwin, OF (LAA)
The Angels love to move Brian Goodwin all over the lineup, but he is showing some steady production. On Wednesday he reached base three times in five plate appearances, including two doubles and an RBI in the Angels' 8-7 loss at Texas. After showcasing a wide range of skills as a rookie with Washington in 2017, Goodwin was shipped between four teams (two MLB, two MiLB) in 2018 and struggled in 180 big league plate appearances. He has spent all of 2019 in Anaheim and the stability seems to be paying off as Goodwin's ISO is up 60 points, line drive rate is up over four percent and his wOBA is up 37 points. The Angels have a lot of money tied up in their three starting outfielders (Trout, Upton, Calhoun) and Ohtani has the DH spot locked down, but Goodwin could find his way into more playing time as Upton and Calhoun struggle.
Tim Anderson, SS (CHW)
Batting second in the lineup for the ninth time in his last 11 games, Anderson picked up a pair of singles and scored his 58th run. Waiting for Anderson's numbers to drop back down to earth has become a tiresome process. Whereas hot streaks in previous years have tailed off, we're approaching late-August and Anderson is slashing .332/.354/.503. He simply won't take walks and he swings and misses a lot, but he is making solid contact (77%) and is boosted by a .391 BABIP, which will eventually regress, but his skillset does allow for an elevated BABIP. Anderson only has two home runs since returning from injury on July 30, but if he regains his power stroke he could post his second straight 20/20 season and possibly support it with a .300 batting average.
Lucas Giolito, SP (CHW)
Giolito was simply spectacular on Wednesday, tossing a 3-hit shutout with 12 strikeouts and zero walks. He joins Shane Bieber as the only pitchers in the majors with multiple complete game shutouts. After reaching double-digit strikeouts two times in his first 22 starts, Giolito now has 11 or more K's in each of his last three outings. He locked up one of the best offenses in the American League, inducing the Twins into 24 swings and misses. As Giolito has found more success, he is utilizing his strikeout material more and more. Wednesday was the latest and greatest chapter in the phenomenal rebound story for the young White Sox hurler.
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