What a great week of baseball it has been. Yesterday, MLB had its first no hitter of the 2014 season in Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Josh Beckett and giving us a glimpse of game six of the 2003 World Series Josh Beckett. To top that, today is Memorial Day where all major league teams will have their inner San Diego Padres in them and all busts out cameo style jerseys in honoring all veterans and giving thanks to them for serving our country and protecting our freedom. So enjoy today with your family and friends and with that being said here are this week’s standout player of the week.
AL Standout – Nelson Cruz
Baltimore outfielder Nelson Cruz, like Melky Cabrera, Jhonny Peralta and Ryan Braun are all on the own path of earning forgiveness. Cruz has taken a big step with his play at the plate, not only this week but through the season as well. Like most of you I was deeply upset when guys like Cruz and Peralta got paid big money after they admitted they had cheated. This almost gave a lesson to younger players that it pays to cheat, but what you have to look at is we are not the general managers or owners who agreed to pay these players. All players should be judged for their play on the field and so far Nelson Cruz has backed that up.
Cruz has been dominant at the plate this week with a .455 batting average, .536 OBP, 1.136 SLG. He added four home runs and seven RBI. As we sit right now Cruz is leading the AL in home runs and RBI and he is this week’s American League standout player of the week.
NL Standout – Yasiel Puig
Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig has put together a nice week for a Dodgers team that once again has begun this season as under achievers. Saying that, there is hope because honestly one can argue that no one has been hotter than Puig in the last few weeks at the plate and it just goes to show that Puig can be one of the best in the game when he is hot. Like I stated earlier, yesterday Josh Beckett’s no hitter could be the start of a surge for the Dodgers who are currently third in the NL West and 5.5 games behind their rivals the San Francisco Giants. A good run starting now could make for quite an interesting September.
With that being said, Puig has put together quite a week of baseball with a .522 batting average, .607 OBP, .870 SLG and added one home run to three RBI.
Stepping up – Chris Davis
Baltimore first basemen Chris Davis had a breakout season last year that came as a surprise to almost the entire baseball world. I personally though it was a fluke, and his start to the season has pretty much backed that claim up.
However, this week has shown me and most of the baseball world that last season was no a fluke and that Davis is superstar in the making. Before last year, Chris Davis’ career high was 33 home runs and 85 RBI and his career line of .265/.332/.511 was a reason for calling last season a fluke, as he put up MVP-candidate numbers with a .286/.370/.634 while leading the majors with 53 home runs and 138 RBI.
This week shows that all superstars or superstars in the making have a bad stretch and baseball fans should hope this trend will continue and Davis can prove to the world that last year was not a fluke.
This week almost earned Chris Davis standout player of the week over his teammate Nelson Cruz, but he is this week’s surprise player for showing us fans that Chris Davis is real. Davis’ week was just as sickening as Nelson Cruz with a .455 batting average, .542 OBP, 1.158 SLG with 4 home runs and 10 RBI.
The week that Nelson Cruz has had at the plate will hopefully help baseball fans use the saying forgive but never forget. While we all deserve second chances in this world, one can argue cheating to get ahead is almost unforgivable and will take a hell of a lot to earn that trust back.
For baseball players to earn your trust back from those fans they really did hurt, all they really have to do is play good baseball and show that they can play at a high level without cheating. Nelson Cruz is well on his way to showing he still has power and can can play at a high level when he is clean.
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