MLB In Full Bloom - Giancarlo Stanton Belts Two Homers - 8/12/2014

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Giancarlo Stanton hit a pair of home runs and also displayed his defensive skills in the field Monday night to lead the Marlins to a 6-5 win against the visiting Cardinals. It's Stanton's fourth multi-homer game of the season and the 13th of his career, making him the franchise leader in that category, surpassing Hanley Ramirez. The Miami slugger also made a sensational catch in the fifth inning that earned him a standing ovation from the fans. Stanton launched a 470-foot home run in the third inning, which was his second home run of the night. Stanton is up to 31 for the season, tying him with Jose Abreu and Nelson Cruz for the major league lead. It seems like he's pretty much wrapped up the NL home run title, as long as he stays healthy. Anthony Rizzo is six back at 25 and no one else has more than 22 home runs.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

  • Chris Davis went 2-for-3 with a two-run homer after replacing Manny Machado at third base Monday against the Yankees. It was Davis's fourth appearance at third base this year, and he'll likely be seeing more action there with Machado set to miss some time. The multi-hit game was his first since July 19, though he did manage to hit three homers last week.
  • Manny Machado (knee) has been diagnosed with a right knee sprain. The diagnosis doesn't necessarily mean a lot right now, as he will undergo further testing today, which will include an MRI. It's possible something worse will be found after Machado injured his knee when it buckled on him during a swing Monday. The Orioles and Machado's fantasy owners will be crossing their fingers in hopes of getting good news.
  • Felix Hernandez was brilliant as he pitched seven strong innings Monday night. He allowed one run on three hits and no walks with eight strikeouts against the Blue Jays for his 13th victory of the season. Hernandez ran his record streak to 16 consecutive starts of seven innings pitched and two runs or less. His only mistake was a solo homer given up to Jose Bautista, which was just his seventh homer allowed this season. He'll face the Tigers this weekend.
  • Andrew McCutchen (rib) was placed on the 15-day disabled list by the Pirates on Monday. This move is retroactive to August 4, with a fracture of his 11th left rib. It appears that McCutchen is making excellent progress, but he's apparently not close to game action. The good news is that he has already missed a week, so he'll be eligible to return next week if everything goes well. The Pirates and fantasy owners will have to keep their fingers crossed.
  • Justin Verlander (shoulder) is scheduled to undergo an MRI on his sore shoulder today. Verlander, who lasted just one inning in his start Monday against the Pirates, was pulled after allowing five earned runs and throwing just 40 total pitches. This is the first injury-related MRI he'll undergo in his career. The heavy innings totals over the years may finally be starting to take their toll on the right-hander. The Tigers will announce the results sometime today.
  • Josh Willingham was traded from the Twins to the Kansas City Royals on Monday afternoon in exchange for RHP Jason Adam. Willingham figures to share designated hitter duties with Raul Ibanez while Billy Butler plays first base with Eric Hosmer (hand) out. He'll give the Royals some extra pop down the stretch.
  • The Kansas City Royals beat the Oakland Athletics 3-2 on Monday night to win their 8th straight game and for the first time in more than a decade, the Royals are in first place in mid-August. The Royals trailed the Tigers by eight games on July 21st, but their 16th win in 19 games wiped away the deficit and gave them the lead at the latest point in a season since 2003.