Vladimir Guerrero Jr homered like his father 15 years ago as he won the MVP with the American League defeating the National League 5-2 in MLB's annual All-Star Game in Denver on Tuesday.

The American League extended their winning run to eight in a row, with Guerrero's home run marking the 200th in All-Star history.

Shohei Ohtani started on the mound for the American League All-Star team, sending down a shutout innings with no hits, tossing down the fastest pitch of the game at 100.2 mph.

Ohtani went 1-2-3, taking out Fernando Tatis, Max Muncy and Nolan Arenado.

The Japanese two-way star, who led off as the designater hitter, was zero-and-two at-bat but earned praise from American League manager Kevin Cash.

"We're all in awe of his ability to do that," Cash said about Ohtani's two-way game. "He came in hyped up on this stage.

"He gets warmed up to get take the at-bat, he was sitting in his chair to catch his breath.

"The way he's handled everything makes it more special, watching him interact with his teammates and handle the media, it's pretty remarkable."

Guerrero Jr's 468-feet home run meant the Guerreros joined the Bonds and Griffeys as father-sons who have homered in All-Star games.

The 22-year-old Toronto Blue Jays slugger went one-from-three, with two RBI along with his solo home run in the third inning and becomes the youngest MVP in history.

"It means the world to me," Guerrero Jr said. "I just want to say thank you to my dad. This is for you."

J.T. Realmuto got the National League on the board with a solo home run in the fifth inning, while Ohtani's Los Angeles Angels team-mate Jared Walsh made a crucial diving catch at left from a Kris Bryant fly ball to round out the win.

Toronto Blue Jays sensation Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani and Fernando Tatis Jr. of the San Diego Padres headline the starters for the 2021 MLB All-Star Game.

The starters for the upcoming All-Star Game, scheduled for July 13 at Coors Field – home of the Colorado Rockies, were revealed after two rounds of fan voting on Thursday.

Guerrero (aged 22 years and 119 days) will be the youngest Blue Jays player to start an All-Star Game, while he is also the youngest player to start at first base since George Scott in 1966.

Son of an MLB Hall of Famer, Guerrero is only second to Ohtani (28) for home runs this season with 26, while he leads the majors in RBI (66), on-base percentage (.442), OPS (1.117) and three-plus hit games (11 – level with Trea Turner).

Ohtani, 26, is set to become the first Japanese-born player to start an All-Star Game since Ichiro Suzuki in 2010.

The Angels' Ohtani has the most homers this season, while he owns a 3.60 ERA and 83 strikeouts across 60 innings on the mound.

As for Tatis, the 22-year-old shortstop will be the youngest player to start for the Padres in an All-Star Game.

Tatis entered Thursday's action leading MLB with an incredible .705 slugging percentage, while leading the National League (NL) in homers.

Elsewhere, Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers will become the first shortstop/third base combo in Boston Red Sox history to start the All-Star Game.

Atlanta Braves star Ronald Acuna Jr. will join Eddie Matthews as the player in franchise history to start multiple All-Star Games before turning 24, while Nick Castellanos and Jesse Winker will give the Cincinnati Reds multiple outfield starters for the first time since 1956.

 

All-Star Game starters:

American League

C: Salvador Perez (Kansas City Royals)
2B: Marcus Semien (Toronto Blue Jays)
3B: Rafael Devers (Boston Red Sox)
SS: Xander Bogaerts (Boston Red Sox)
OF: Mike Trout (Los Angeles Angels) 
OF: Aaron Judge (New York Yankees)
OF: Teoscar Hernandez (Toronto Blue Jays) 

National League

C: Buster Posey (San Francisco Giants)
1B: Freddie Freeman (Atlanta Braves)
2B: Adam Frazier (Pittsburgh Pirates)
3B: Nolan Arenado (St Louis Cardinals)
OF: Ronald Acuna Jr. (Atlanta Braves)
OF: Nick Castellanos (Cincinnati Reds)
OF: Jesse Winker (Cincinnati Reds)

Zach Davies, Ryan Tepera, Andrew Chafin and Craig Kimbrel combined for a no-hitter as the Chicago Cubs blanked World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-0.

The Cubs threw the seventh no-hitter of the 2021 season – tying a modern era record for most in a campaign – while making history of their own against the Dodgers on Thursday.

It was the Cubs' first combined no-hitter in franchise history after Kimbrel completed the job away to the Dodgers in Los Angeles.

Cubs starter Davies went six innings without allowing a hit, striking out four batters.

The Cubs also became the first team in MLB history to throw a no-hitter (solo or combined) against a franchise with three former MVP winners in the starting line-up – Mookie Betts, Cody Bellinger and Albert Pujols, according to Stats Perform.

 

Vladdy hits the front in homer race, Astros win again

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. reclaimed the lead for the most home runs this season after helping the Toronto Blue Jays crush the Baltimore Orioles 9-0. Guerrero homered for the 24th time in 2021 – a 438-foot moonshot guiding the Blue Jays to a fifth consecutive win after Lourdes Gurriel Jr's first career grand slam.

The Houston Astros extended their winning streak to 11 games after easing past the Detroit Tigers 12-3. During their winning streak, Houston have scored 93 runs and allowed just 24. According to Stats Perform, they are the first MLB team to score 90-plus runs while allowing less than 25 over an 11-game span since the Pirates in 1911.

Kyle Schwarber fuelled the Washington Nationals' 7-3 victory against the Miami Marlins. Schwarber homered twice for the Nationals. It is the fourth time in his last 11 games that Schwarber had at least two home runs and four RBI. According to Stats Perform, he is the first MLB player to achieve the feat four times in an 11-game span since RBI became an official stat in 1920.

 

Kremer crushed in Buffalo

Dean Kremer had a game to forget against the Blue Jays. The Orioles pitcher gave up six runs, two hits and a career-high five walks in the opening inning as Baltimore suffered their 20th straight road loss.

 

Rays in wild walk-off win

The Tampa Bay Rays reclaimed the lead in the American League (AL) East thanks to a dramatic finish in their 1-0 walk-off victory against the Boston Red Sox. With two outs in the ninth inning, the Rays prevailed after Manuel Margot scored from third base on a wild pitch by Red Sox closer Matt Barnes.

 

Thursday's results

New York Yankees 8-1 Kansas City Royals
Oakland Athletics 5-1 Texas Rangers
Toronto Blue Jays 9-0 Baltimore Orioles
Cincinnati Reds 5-3 Atlanta Braves
Tampa Bay Rays 1-0 Boston Red Sox
Houston Astros 12-3 Detroit Tigers
Washington Nationals 7-3 Miami Marlins
Cleveland Indians 4-1 Minnesota Twins
Pittsburgh Pirates 8-2 St Louis Cardinals
Chicago Cubs 4-0 Los Angeles Dodgers

 

Yankees at Red Sox

The blockbuster rivalry resumes as the New York Yankees (40-34) visit the Red Sox (44-31) for the series opener on Friday. Martin Perez starts for the Red Sox as the Yankees counter with Domingo German.

The Toronto Blue Jays produced an offensive avalanche as they humbled American League (AL) East rivals the Boston Red Sox 18-4.

Toronto lit up Boston with eight homers on 20 hits in Sunday's devastating MLB victory at Fenway Park.

Teoscar Hernandez hit a pair of three-run homers, while Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Cavan Biggio, Rowdy Tellez and Marcus Semien also went deep.

It was a devastating display as the Blue Jays pounded the Red Sox, who allowed the most home runs in their history on home soil.

Bichette became the third player in Blue Jays history with a four-hit, five-run game as Guerrero continued his stellar season – the Toronto star now leads in MLB in home runs, RBI, OBP, SLG, OPS and total bases.

 

Slam Diego!

The San Diego Padres defeated the New York Mets 7-3 thanks to Fernando Tatis Jr. Tatis hit a tie-breaking grand slam in the seventh inning to help snap a four-game skid. Padres team-mate Manny Machado followed with a home run.

Walker Buehler pitched six scoreless innings as World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Texas Rangers 5-3. Buehler allowed just five hits to remain unbeaten since 2019. The Dodgers ace has now recorded a loss in 22 consecutive starts, the second longest streak in franchise history – behind Kirby Higbe's 23 straight starts.

Craig Kimbrel closed out the Chicago Cubs' 2-0 win over the St Louis Cardinals. The Cubs completed a three-game sweep for their fifth consecutive victory to move level atop the National League (NL) Central. Kimbrel struck out three in the ninth inning. In each of his last seven appearances, he has posted a save without allowing a hit. According to Stats Perform, it is the third time in Kimbrel's career he has achieved the feat in seven-plus consecutive games. No other pitcher has had more than one such streak since saves became an official stat in 1969.

 

Yankees reeling after latest loss

The slumping New York Yankees were shut out 7-0 by the Philadelphia Phillies. The Yankees have now lost seven of nine games and 13 of 18.

 

Randy slam

Randy Arozarena hit his first career grand slam in the Tampa Bay Rays' 7-1 rout of the Baltimore Orioles. Arozarena homered in the seventh inning.

 

 

Sunday's results

Philadelphia Phillies 7-0 New York Yankees
Washington Nationals 5-0 San Francisco Giants
Atlanta Braves 6-4 Miami Marlins
Tampa Bay Rays 7-1 Baltimore Orioles
Chicago White Sox 4-1 Detroit Tigers
Cincinnati Reds 6-2 Colorado Rockies
San Diego Padres 7-3 New York Mets
Seattle Mariners 6-2 Cleveland Indians
Toronto Blue Jays 18-4 Boston Red Sox
Houston Astros 14-3 Minnesota Twins
Milwaukee Brewers 5-2 Pittsburgh Pirates
Oakland Athletics 6-3 Kansas City Royals
Los Angeles Angels 10-3 Arizona Diamondbacks
Los Angeles Dodgers 5-3 Texas Rangers
Chicago Cubs 2-0 St Louis Cardinals

 

Rays at White Sox

It will be a blockbuster showdown as the two best teams in the AL clash on Monday. AL East pacesetters the Rays (42-24), who own the best record in the American League, travel to Central leaders the White Sox (41-24). Tyler Glasnow takes to the mound for Tampa Bay, while the White Sox counter with Lance Lynn.

The Philadelphia Phillies keep finding ways to win, taking victory in their final at-bat for the third consecutive game with an 8-7 triumph over the New York Yankees.

It did not appear late heroics would be necessary in MLB on Saturday as the Phillies earned a commanding 7-2 lead against the visiting Yankees after five innings to back a solid start by Vince Velasquez.

But the Yankees scored a run in the sixth inning and another in the eighth before tying the game on DJ LeMahieu's three-run homer off Hector Neris in the ninth. 

After Archie Bradley held the Yankees scoreless in the 10th, Jean Segura hit a ground ball to third to score Ronald Torreyes from third base with the winning run as Gio Urshela's throw home was off the mark. 

It was the second successive walk-off hit for Segura after his two-run 10th-inning single beat rivals the Atlanta Braves on Thursday.

Philadelphia last had three consecutive walk-off wins from August 21-23 in 2013.

 

Rangers hammer Dodgers to snap skid

In one of the more unexpected results, the lowly Texas Rangers pounded the Los Angeles Dodgers 12-1, with the visitors limiting the World Series champions to six hits and beating up on Trevor Bauer and their bullpen. The victory snapped a 16-game road losing streak for the Rangers. 

Marcus Stroman and the New York Mets shut down the San Diego Padres' attack in a 4-1 win at Citi Field as Francisco Lindor and Jonathan Villar homered.

The Cincinnati Reds crushed the Colorado Rockies 10-3 to improve to 31-31 for the season after nine wins in their last 12 games. 

Brian Goodwin made a memorable first impression after driving in five runs in the Chicago White Sox's 15-2 rout of the Detroit Tigers. In his debut, Goodwin doubled in a run and hit a homer in his first two at-bats. In 357 games with the Washington Nationals, Kansas City Royals, Los Angeles Angels and Reds, he never had a five-plus RBI game. According to Stats Perform, the only other player with that many career games to have his first five-RBI game in his team debut was Todd Cruz in 1983.

 

White Sox crush Urena, Tigers

Tigers starter Jose Urena did not make it out of the second inning against the high-flying White Sox, allowing eight runs (seven earned) among the 15 batters he faced. The game got so bad the Tigers used catcher Jake Rogers and infielder Harold Castro to pitch the final two innings.

The Seattle Mariners took a 4-1 lead into the ninth inning against the Cleveland Indians, then saw the latter tie it up and eventually win it in the 10th on a throwing error by pitcher Paul Sewald. 

 

Vladdy, Blue Jays rough up Red Sox

The Toronto Blue Jays bashed five home runs, including the MLB-leading 20th of the season for Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and a career-long 468-foot shot for Bo Bichette, in a 7-2 rout of the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. 

 

Saturday's results

Chicago Cubs 7-2 St Louis Cardinals
Washington Nationals 2-0 San Francisco Giants
San Francisco Giants 2-1 Washington Nationals 
Philadelphia Phillies 8-7 New York Yankees
Toronto Blue Jays 7-2 Boston Red Sox
Cincinnati Reds 10-3 Colorado Rockies
Tampa Bay Rays 5-4 Baltimore Orioles
Miami Marlins 4-2 Atlanta Braves
Chicago White Sox 15-2 Detroit Tigers
New York Mets 4-1 San Diego Padres
Cleveland Indians 5-4 Seattle Mariners
Milwaukee Brewers 7-4 Pittsburgh Pirates
Minnesota Twins 5-2 Houston Astros
Los Angeles Angels 8-7 Arizona Diamondbacks
Oakland Athletics 11-2 Kansas City Royals
Texas Rangers 12-1 Los Angeles Dodgers

 

Padres at Mets

The Padres (37-29) will send Chris Paddack to the mound as they try to avoid being swept by the Mets (32-24) on Sunday.

Clayton Kershaw could not inspire the Los Angeles Dodgers to victory going down 6-4 to the freewheeling Atlanta Braves in MLB on Saturday.

Kershaw has an exceptional record against the Braves and, in the main, he continued that with nine strikeouts, giving up only eight hits, five earned, across his 95-pitch effort.

But the Braves have been free scoring this year and for the 33rd game this season they scored five or more runs, with Freddie Freeman and Ronald Acuna Jr touching down in a five-run third inning which flipped the game.

It was the first time since 2016 that Kershaw has given up a five-run inning.

Leading 5-4 in the seventh inning, Abraham Almonte hit a home run to give the Braves the lead they would not surrender.

 

Rays win again, Dalbec hits 453-footer

Manuel Margot is ominously beginning to find some form for the Tampa Bay Rays as they won 3-0 against the struggling Texas Rangers.

The Rays claimed their 18th win from their past 22 games, with Margot hitting his fifth home run of the season.

Bobby Dalbec smashed a 453-foot home run, the longest by a Boston Red Sox player at Yankees Stadium since records commenced as they won 7-3.

For the Yankees, Gleyber Torres continues to find his groove with a home run.

Jacob de Grom had 11 strikeouts across seven innings as the New York Mets silenced Fernando Tatis Jr and the San Diego Padres in a 4-0 victory.

Jose Peraza hit a solo home run, while Francisco Lindor regained some touch with a homer of his own.

Shohei Ohtani backed up his 10 strikeouts on Friday with a first-inning home run in the Los Angeles Angels' 12-5 triumph over the Seattle Mariners.

San Francisco Giants pitcher Kevin Gausman had 10 strikeouts as his side won 4-3 over the Chicago Cubs.

Gausman has had a sensational season for the Giants, coming in at 6-0 and with a 1.40 ERA, setting up the win across his seven pitching innings.

 

Fumbly Giants

The Giants got nervy in the ninth inning against the Cubs with some comical errors in the field, including two fumbles by Mauricio Dubon and a collision. At least they managed to hold on.

 

Number 18 for Guerrero

Vladimir Guerrero Jr moved clear at the top of the charts with a league-high 18th home run in the Toronto Blue Jays' 6-2 win over the Houston Astros. He also leads MLB in a range of statistics, including RBI, with 47.

 

Saturday's results

Detroit Tigers 4-3 Chicago White Sox
Cincinnati Reds 5-2 St Louis Cardinals
Toronto Blue Jays 6-2 Houston Astros
Philadelphia Phillies 5-2 Washington Nationals
Cleveland Indians 10-4 Baltimore Orioles
Tampa Bay Rays 3-0 Texas Rangers
Pittsburgh Pirates 8-7 Miami Marlins
Minnesota Twins 5-4 Kansas City Royals
Milwaukee Brewers 7-5 Arizona Diamondbacks
San Francisco Giants 4-3 Chicago Cubs
Boston Red Sox 7-3 New York Yankees
Atlanta Braves 6-4 Los Angeles Dodgers
Oakland Athletics 6-3 Colorado Rockies
Los Angeles Angels 12-5 Seattle Mariners
New York Mets 4-0 San Diego Padres

 

Mets at Padres

The New York Mets round out their road series against the San Diego Padres.

Clint Frazier had a dream game as the New York Yankees ended their four-game losing run and halted the Tampa Bay Rays' five-game winning streak with a 5-3 walk off victory on Tuesday.

Austin Meadows homered early for the Rays, while Miguel Andujar sent Tyler Glasnow into the bleachers at the bottom of the fourth inning to make it 3-3.

At 3-3, outfielder Frazier made his first major impact on the game with a sensational diving catch from Joey Wendle.

The game went to extras and in the 11th inning with two outs and a runner on third, Frazier hit a home run for his second career walk off.

 

Orioles end losing run, sluggers slug

The Baltimore Orioles ended their 14-game losing streak with a 7-4 triumph over the Minnesota Twins.

Center fielder Cedric Mullins pulled off a spectacular catch on the wall, before touching down on home base in the third inning from Trey Mancini's home run.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr and Ronald Acuna Jr remain top of the home run charts with both scoring homers on Tuesday.

Guerrero's Toronto Blue Jays swept aside the Miami Marlins 5-1, taking his season home run tally to 17.

Acuna's 17th home run came in a losing battle, with the Atlanta Braves going down 11-6 to the Washington Nationals who hauled pitcher Stephen Strasburg with a suspected shoulder injury after velocity issues.

Venezuela-born Acuna had four runs, three hits and two runs batted in across his four innings, but it was in vain.

 

Padres sweating on Tatis

The San Diego Padres were beaten 4-3 at the Chicago Cubs but to add injury to insult, the also lost Fernando Tatis Jr due to tightness around the mid-section after over-stretching in the field. Padres manager Jayce Tingler set the exit of Tatis, who has hit 16 home runs this season, was "precautionary".

 

Rendon flies for Angels

Anthony Rendon came up with the goods with three hits and 5 runs batted in as the Los Angeles Angels won 8-1 at the San Francisco Giants. With bases loaded, Rendon hit a home run at the top of the four inning to give the Angels an 8-0 lead they would never surrender.

 

Tuesday's results

Cleveland Indians 6-5 Chicago White Sox
New York Yankees 5-3 Tampa Bay Rays
Baltimore Orioles 7-4 Minnesota Twins
Toronto Blue Jays 5-1 Miami Marlins
Philadelphia Phillies 17-3 Cincinnati Reds 
Atlanta Braves 11-6 Washington Nationals
Detroit Tigers 10-7 Milwaukee Brewers
Chicago Cubs 4-3 San Diego Padres
Kansas City Royals 10-5 Pittsburgh Pirates
Houston Astros 5-1 Boston Red Sox
Colorado Rockies 3-2 Texas Rangers
Los Angeles Angels 8-1 San Francisco Giants 
Arizona Diamondbacks 6-5 New York Mets
Oakland Athletics 12-6 Seattle Mariners
St Louis Cardinals 3-2 Los Angeles Dodgers

 

Rays at Yankees

The Tampa Bay Rays (35-21) continue their series away to the New York Yankees (30-25) in their American League East match-up.

The Tampa Bay Rays' 11-game winning streak ended as they went down 2-1 to the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday in the MLB.

With veteran Rich Hill on the mound, the Rays were exceptional in the outfield in the early innings with Austin Meadows and Kevin Kiermaier pulling off spectacular catches from Andrew Benintendi.

Hill, at the cherry ripe age of 41, tossed down 13 strikeouts across seven innings for the Rays.

But the Royals got their go-ahead run in the sixth inning when Cam Gallagher touched down from Salvador Perez's hit.

Shohei Ohtani hit his 15th homerun of the season, a 117 mph rocket, as the Los Angeles Angels won 11-5 over the Texas Rangers, while the San Diego Padres made it 10 wins from their past 11 with a 7-1 victory at the Milwaukee Brewers.

 

Guerrero moves to 16, DeGrom returns

Vladimir Guerrero moved into the outright lead for most homeruns this season in the Toronto Blue Jays' 6-2 win over the New York Yankees.

Guerrero hit his 16th homer of the 2021 MLB season in the third inning, as Yankees pitcher Corey Kluber started for the first time since last week's no-hitter.

Kluber only sent down 58 pitches across three innings, allowing his first hit in 39 batters, before being hastily replaced by Michael King, with fears of a shoulder injury.

The result ended the Blue Jays' six-game losing streak too.

Jacob deGrom returned for his first game since April 28 with ride side tightness and pitched five innings with nine strikeouts as the New York Mets won 3-1 over the Colorado Rockies.

It was not a perfect return for deGrom, allowing only his third homerun of the season, when Ryan McMahon homered in the second inning. It was the first he has allowed in the strike zone too.

Right-hander Edwin Diaz stepped up to finish the job for the Mets with three strikeouts, sending down a 100 mph pitch on the corner to end the game.

Max Scherzer was on song for the Washington Nationals but it was not enough for victory as the Cincinnati Reds triumphed 2-1 with Kyle Farmer and Eugenio Suarez homeruns.

Scherzer pitched seven innings and had nine strikeouts, including eight out of the strike zone.

 

Jack's rough high school reunion

Harvard-Westlake pals Jack Flaherty and Lucas Giolito reunited in the Chicago White Sox's 8-3 win over the St Louis Cardinals. Flaherty had started with an 8-0 record in his first eight appearances for the Cardinals but that came to an end in a hard day, including a wild pitch to Yermin Mercedes which allowed Nick Madrigal to score. Jose Abreu also returned to form with a homer off Flaherty.

 

Greinke vs Kershaw in Houston

Star pitchers Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw faced off with the latter getting the upper hand as the Los Angeles Dodgers won 9-2 at the Houston Astros. Kershaw sent down 81 pitches with 57 strikes and six Ks. He only gave up one run and did not walk anybody.

 

Tuesday's results

Chicago Cubs 4-3 Pittsburgh Pirates
Philadelphia Phillies 2-0 Miami Marlins
Cincinnati Reds 2-1 Washington Nationals
Toronto Blue Jays 6-2 New York Yankees
Atlanta Braves 3-1 Boston Red Sox
Kansas City Royals 2-1 Tampa Bay Rays
New York Mets 3-1 Colorado Rockies
Cleveland Indians 4-1 Detroit Tigers
San Diego Padres 7-1 Milwaukee Brewers
Minnesota Twins 7-4 Baltimore Orioles
Chicago White Sox 8-3 St Louis Cardinals
Los Angeles Dodgers 9-2 Houston Astros  
Los Angeles Angels 11-5 Texas Rangers
San Francisco Giants 8-0 Arizona Diamondbacks
Seattle Mariners 4-3 Oakland Athletics

 

Padres at Brewers

Fernando Tatis Jr and the San Diego Padres  continue their enthralling series away to the Milwaukee Brewers.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is the real deal. The question is, can he match or even surpass the career of his Hall of Fame father?

Vladimir Guerrero is a name synonymous with baseball. Guerrero Sr. was voted one of the most feared hitters following a stellar career spanning 16 seasons that included an American League (AL) MVP, nine All-Star selections and eight Silver Slugger Awards.

Powerful just like his dad, Guerrero Jr. is now flying the family flag in living up to the hype, spearheading the Toronto Blue Jays' exciting young core in a bid to end their World Series drought, which dates back to 1993.

 

From prospect to star

Guerrero Jr.'s success is no surprise. He had long been on the radar when the Blue Jays signed the top international free agent in 2015. Before making his major league debut in 2019, he worked his way through the minor leagues – initially with the Rookie Advanced Bluefield Blue Jays before opening the 2017 season with the Class-A Lansing Lugnuts. He then joined the Advanced-A Dunedin Blue Jays later that year.

John Schneider – part of Toronto Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo's coaching staff – was manager of the Dunedin Blue Jays that year, a roster which also boasted Bo Bichette, Cavan Biggio, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Danny Jansen, as Guerrero Jr. had 56 hits, 31 runs, six homers, 31 RBI and a .333 batting average.

"Everyone sees the talent and the name obviously because of his dad and all that kind of stuff. But just how intelligent he is… and him as a team-mate and person," Schneider told Stats Perform News. "His team-mates love him. He loves coming to the yard and playing every day, having fun.

"It's been cool to watch him transform himself from a young kid with a ton of talent and having fun to a really established, difference-making major league hitter right now."

Guerrero Jr. – born in Montreal – has 35 hits, 24 runs, seven homers and 23 RBI with a .310 average this season, while boasting a .447 OBP, .549 SLG and .995 OPS – all career highs through 33 games in his third season in the majors. His 456-foot moon shot against the Kansas City Royals has put him in esteemed company in terms of distance this season, while his max 116.1 exit velocity is a number not many in the sport can even dream of matching.

A popular player in the team with an infectious smile, Guerrero Jr. also celebrated an accomplishment beyond even his famous Dominican father achieved – a three-plus homer and seven-plus RBI game last month against Max Scherzer's Washington Nationals as the 22-year-old became the youngest player in MLB history to achieve that feat.

The matchup against the Nationals also featured his third career grand slam. Aged 22 years and 24 days, Guerrero Jr. became the youngest player since Alex Rodriguez (20 years and 345 days in 1996) at the time of his third slam.

"People are drawn to him – players, staff. It's fun to be around him. He comes to the field with a smile every day and he comes every day having fun. It rubs off on guys. It's cool to have him go through the minor-league system with Bo, Cavan, Gurriel and those guys," Schneider said. "They know each other very well, they're comfortable with each other and it's something they've always done. It's easier for them to be themselves now and Charlie does a good job allowing everyone to do that. He has an infectious personality."

In his first 33 games of his third MLB season in 1998, Guerrero Sr. tallied more hits (39), fewer runs (19) and the same number of homers (seven), while he was inferior to his son when it comes to batting average (.307), OBP (.350) and SLG (.535).

"You forget how young he is because of how good he is," Schneider said. "He is always working on things whether it's offensively, defensively or game-planning wise. It's an adjustment period between the minor leagues and the big leagues.

"We've always kind of seen him as a hitter, being this talented and hitting the ball hard. But being able to watch him and look at advanced reports, have a much better plan going into every game has been a big difference. Watching him evolve at first base and third base for that matter has been great. You get the exceptional offense and forget that he is 22 years old and there is always going to be continued development throughout the course of his career."

 

Hard work pays off

During the coronavirus-shortened 2020 season, Guerrero Jr. finished with 58 hits, 34 runs and nine homers with a .262 batting average as the Blue Jays returned to the postseason for the first time since 2016. He had one hit as Toronto bowed out in the Wild Card Round at the hands of eventual World Series runners-up the Tampa Bay Rays.

Guerrero Jr. is now reaping the rewards after an intense offseason – shedding the pounds between the playoffs in October and Spring Training in February. He is gliding around the bases and making a mockery of major league pitching.

His walk percentage has rocketed from 8.2 in 2020 to 17.7 this season – a differential of plus 9.5, the largest increase in 2021, ahead of the Houston Astros' Yuli Gurriel (+7.7), Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Max Muncy (+7.5), Detroit Tigers outfielder Robbie Grossman (+7.5) and Nationals outfielder Victor Robles (+6.7).

In terms of OPS, his increase from .791 in 2020 to .995 (+.205) is the fifth-largest this season, behind only the Boston Red Sox's J.D. Martinez (+.396), Gurriel of the Astros (+.301), Chicago Cubs star Javier Baez (+.208) and Los Angeles Angels superstar Mike Trout (+.208).

Guerrero Jr. has also reached base on 63 occasions through Toronto's first 33 games of the 2021 season. That number ranks eighth all time in franchise history – Jose Bautista (70 in 2014) is first.

"Throughout the course of his career, in the minors, he was always finding himself in good counts," Schneider said of Guerrero Jr's patience at the plate this year. "Part of it was people were very careful with him and I think it's a little bit different in the minors command wise. Now, the biggest thing is that he's doing the same thing – you look up and it's 1-0, 2-0, 2-1 and he is laying off of borderline pitches where I think in his first two years he was putting in play.

"He is laying off those pitches knowing he can put them in play but maybe can't do damage with them. He has the very rare ability to be looking for a heater and get the hanging breaking ball and hit it out. He has better command of his strike zone with the combination of understanding how a pitcher is going to attack him."

Guerrero Jr. is fast becoming one of the elite first basemen in MLB. He is also forming a formidable partnership with team-mate and shortstop Bichette in the field.

In 2021, Guerrero Jr. and Bichette rank eighth for most direct assist-putout combinations by duos with 58 – Texas Rangers pair Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Nate Low (86) top the list, which only counts direct throws from one player to the other.

Guerrero Jr. is also fifth for the most total fielding chances in the majors without committing an error (228) this year.

"He has worked tirelessly with Luis Rivera our infield coach at first base but he always been a very, very good athlete," added Schneider. "Getting himself into really good physical condition has really helped him on both sides of the ball. Last year was kind of a crash-course at first base in a shortened season with a long lay-off due to COVID but he has taken it head-on and learnt new things.

"Just little things like when to get a ball to his right and when to go to the bag. It's just coming at you in a different angle than what he was used to last year. He's been doing a ton of reps and has always had the physical ability."

With 216 career games to his name, Guerrero Jr.'s stat line reads – 219 hits, 110 runs, 31 homers, 125 RBI, a .274 batting average, .353 OBP, .457 SLG and .810 OPS. It is not far off his father at the same stage of his career – 258 hits, 129 runs, 39 homers, 125 RBI, .317 average, .361 OBP, .541 SLG and .903 OPS.

Guerrero Jr.'s numbers also stuck up well against some Hall of Fame first basemen, including Orlando Cepeda, Tony Perez, Eddie Murray, Jeff Bagwell and Jim Thome.

Cepeda: 279 hits, 136 runs, 40 homers, 153 RBI, .319 batting average, .350 OBP, .538 SLG and .888 OPS
Perez: 144 hits, 66 runs, 16 homers, 88 RBI, .254 batting average, .303 OBP, .412 SLG and .715 OPS
Murray: 232 hits, 108 runs, 36 homers, 119 RBI, .280 batting average, .332 OBP, .463 SLG and .795 OPS
Bagwell: 216 hits, 110 runs, 23 homers, 120 RBI, .277 batting average, .372 OBP, .426 SLG and .798 OPS
Thome: 180 hits, 104 runs, 30 homers, 98 RBI, .256 batting average, .346 OBP, .449 SLG and .794 OPS

In the grand scheme of things, Vladdy's career is still in its infancy and he has barely scratched the surface of his potential, but he is on track to follow in his dad's footsteps, and then some.

Toronto Blue Jays sensation Vladimir Guerrero Jr. made MLB history in Tuesday's 9-5 win over the Washington Nationals.

Guerrero became the youngest player in major league history with three-plus homers and seven-plus RBI in a game as he fuelled the Blue Jays past the Nationals.

The 22-year-old star – son of Hall of Famer Vladimir Guerrero Sr. – carried the Blue Jays, a monster third-inning grand slam off three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer wiping out a 3-0 deficit.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. made it 7-3 with a solo homer in the fifth inning before adding a two-run home run in the seventh to complete the first three-homer game of his exciting career – not even a feat his father achieved.

Guerrero took his tally to seven home runs for the season as the Blue Jays won the series opener in Dunedin.

Trea Turner homered twice for the Nationals – his seventh multi-homer game and second this season – but it was not enough on the road.

 

Kluber ends wait

Corey Kluber claimed his first win since April 2019, while star sluggers Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton homered to lead the New York Yankees to a 5-1 rout of the Baltimore Orioles.

For the first time since 2018, Carlos Martinez had a win as a starter – the St Louis Cardinals topping the Philadelphia Phillies 5-2. Martinez allowed two runs – one earned – in just over seven innings, having gone 0-9 in his last 12 starts.

The Cleveland Indians beat the Minnesota Twins 7-5 behind Franmil Reyes, who homered twice – including a 452-foot shot.

 

Scherzer struggles, Dodgers downed again

It was a forgettable outing for Washington ace Scherzer, who allowed seven runs – five earned – and eight hits over five innings. He also joined Ivan Nova as the only pitchers to have allowed a home run to both Guerrero Jr. and his iconic father.

After a 13-2 start to the season, the Los Angeles Dodgers have dropped seven of nine games following a 6-5 loss to the Cincinnati Reds. The World Series champions are now in the midst of a three-game losing streak as they look to avoid a series sweep to the Reds.

 

Acuna bomb!

Atlanta Braves star Ronald Acuna Jr. clubbed another moon shot, this time his fifth-inning home run travelled a projected 481 feet. The Braves shut out the Chicago Cubs 5-0.

 

 

Tuesday's results

Cleveland Indians 7-4 Minnesota Twins
Pittsburgh Pirates 2-1 Kansas City Royals
New York Yankees 5-1 Baltimore Orioles
Toronto Blue Jays 9-5 Washington Nationals
Boston Red Sox 2-1 New York Mets
Tampa Bay Rays 4-3 Oakland Athletics
Atlanta Braves 5-0 Chicago Cubs
Milwaukee Brewers 5-4 Miami Marlins
Texas Rangers 6-1 Los Angeles Angels
Detroit Tigers 5-2 Chicago White Sox
Houston Astros 2-0 Seattle Mariners
Arizona Diamondbacks 5-1 San Diego Padres
Colorado Rockies 7-5 San Francisco Giants
Cincinnati Reds 6-5 Los Angeles Dodgers
St Louis Cardinals 5-2 Philadelphia Phillies

 

Red Sox at Mets

Mets (9-9) ace Jacob deGrom takes to the mound against the Red Sox (15-9) on Wednesday amid Hall of Fame comparisons following his red-hot form. The Red Sox counter with Nick Pivetta at Citi Field midweek.

Toronto Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr. could not hide his joy after making history in MLB with his three home runs against the Washington Nationals on Tuesday.

Guerrero became the youngest player in MLB history with three-plus homers and seven-plus RBI in a game as he fuelled Toronto's 9-5 victory over the Nationals.

The son of an MLB Hall of Famer, Guerrero carried the Blue Jays, a monster third-inning grand slam off three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer wiping out a 3-0 deficit.

Guerrero made it 7-3 with a solo homer in the fifth inning before adding a two-run home run in the seventh to complete the first three-homer came of his exciting career – not even a feat father Vladimir Guerrero Sr. achieved.

Former Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Sr. – a nine-time All-Star, eight-time Silver Slugger and 2004 American League (AL) MVP who also homered off Scherzer in his career – tweeted post-game: "What a night for my boy. All the hard work is paying off".

Speaking to the media through a translator afterwards, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. told reporters: "Definitely my career game, no doubt. It's the first time I hit three homers, which makes it very special."

"All of this feels great. I'm feeling very blessed right now," the 22-year-old continued. "Hitting two home runs against a legend like that, it's unbelievable what I'm feeling right now.

"It's all in my preparation, all in the work that I'm putting in before the games, and I thank God that it's paying off."

Toronto's Guerrero has seven home runs through 22 games played this season, with a .693 slugging percentage.

Guerrero added: "It feels great, but all of the trust I get from my team and my team-mates, all of the work that I put in with my coaches before the game and all of the preparation, that's what it's all about."

"We talked to him last year at the end of the year," Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said. "His goal was to get in better shape and to do better. He did.

"He deserves all the credit in the world for what he's doing right now, because he had an outstanding offseason and he's ready to play. He's doing what we thought he was going to do."

Guerrero's dominant display also earned praise from the opposition, with Washington's Josh Bell saying: "I feel like all of his at-bats tonight were really, really incredible -- really special.

"We saw [New York Mets ace Jacob] deGrom work last week, and that was something else. And we saw it here again. Just a franchise superstar at work. It’s fun to watch."

The Boston Red Sox lost for the first time since the opening series of the season as the Minnesota Twins snapped a five-game losing streak of their own Thursday. 

German-born outfielder Max Kepler's bloop single in the ninth inning brought home Luis Arraez to end Boston's remarkable run of nine consecutive victories with a 4-3 Minnesota triumph.

On a day when every player in MLB wore number 42 to honour Jackie Robinson's barrier-breaking debut for the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, a sea of 42 jerseys gathered in celebration at Target Field.  

It was a gutsy display from the Twins, who built a 3-0 lead to back Michael Pineda's seven scoreless innings but watched the red-hot Red Sox score three in the eighth inning to equalise. 

Arraez sparked the winning rally in the final inning, though, allowing the Twins to relax a bit after a rough stretch.

"It's impossible to go out and play baseball and not feel it when it's going really well or when it's not going really well," said Twins manager Rocco Baldelli. "It's really how you harness that and control it at times and sometimes how you just let it go."

 

Braves stage rally of their own

The Atlanta Braves followed the same blueprint as the Twins, stopping a four-game skid of their own after blowing a lead and then rallying to win in their final at-bat. 

Atlanta avoided a four-game sweep by the Miami Marlins with a 7-6 victory capped by Dansby Swanson's game-ending single in the ninth. 

It was a fitting finish for a contest packed with momentum swings, as Miami went out to a 3-0 lead before the Braves jumped ahead 5-3 on home runs by Ronald Acuna Jr. and Pablo Sandoval. 

The Marlins scored three of their own to surge back in front before five of the six Braves to bat in the ninth reached base, ending in the win.

 

Corbin has no answers for Diamondbacks

Washington Nationals starter Patrick Corbin got bombed in an 11-6 loss to Arizona, surrendering 10 Diamondbacks runs (nine earned) on six hits and four walks in just two innings. Corbin watched the second and third batters of the game, Carson Kelly and Eduardo Escobar, hit solo homers, then gave up a grand slam to Andrew Young in the second inning. He departed the game against his former club with an unsightly 21.32 ERA.

 

Mercedes' monster moon shot

Toronto Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr. muscled up on a hanging slider from Royals pitcher Kyle Zimmer for a 456-foot blast, the longest home run of his career, in the seventh inning of a 7-5 loss to Kansas City. 

 

Thursday's results
Atlanta Braves 7-6 Miami Marlins
San Diego Padres 8-3 Pittsburgh Pirates
Seattle Mariners 4-2 Baltimore Orioles
Seattle Mariners 2-1 Baltimore Orioles
Minnesota Twins 4-3 Boston Red Sox
Cleveland Indians 4-2 Chicago White Sox
Arizona Diamondbacks 11-6 Washington Nationals
Texas Rangers 6-4 Tampa Bay Rays
Kansas City Royals 7-5 Toronto Blue Jays
Oakland Athletics 8-4 Detroit Tigers
Los Angeles Dodgers 7-5 Colorado Rockies
Philadelphia Phillies-New York Mets (postponed)

 

Dodgers at Padres

The match-up of division rivals will feature the first MLB start for pitcher Ryan Weathers of the Padres (9-5) as he takes on Walker Buehler and the Dodgers (11-2).

Toronto Blue Jays recruit George Springer is excited about the team's young core, describing them as "beyond impressive" after making his Spring Training debut.

Springer, who joined the Blue Jays on a six-year, $150million contract via free agency – the largest deal in franchise history, debuted in Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.

A three-time All-Star and two-time Silver Slugger, Springer managed his first Spring Training hit against the Phillies.

The arrival of MLB World Series champion Springer from the Houston Astros caused a splash, his wealth of postseason experience complimenting a young group of stars in Toronto – Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio.

In Toronto, Bichette is the first shortstop in MLB history to have a .300-plus batting average and a .500-plus slugging percentage in each of his first two seasons (minimum 125 plate appearances in both seasons), per Stats Perform.

Blue Jays team-mate Biggio became the first player in league history to have at least 20 home runs, 20 stolen bases and 100 walks through his first 159 career games (that is how many games he has played so far).

As for Guerrero, he is the only MLB player currently 21 or younger who has at least 100 career RBIs.

Based on age at the time of games, the Blue Jays had the most hits (234), runs (148), home runs (38), RBIs (137), XBH (93) and BB (103) in 2020.

"A lot of people will say that they're young, but I think they're advanced for their age," Springer said post-game.

"I was having a conversation and you just kind of realise the talent it takes to play at this level at age 21, 22.

"It's beyond impressive to be in the big leagues that young and to do the things all these guys can do."

Springer impressed on his Spring Training bow for the Blue Jays, who will open their 2021 MLB season against American League (AL) East rivals the New York Yankees on April 1.

Batting leadoff at TD Ballpark on Tuesday, 2017 World Series MVP Springer hit a single as a designated hitter.

"I generally just see the ball and hit the ball," Springer said. "As Spring Training goes along, you're not facing a new guy every inning, you're starting to face the same guy over and over again.

"Sequences are starting to change, the game plans are starting to change, so as the spring progresses, it becomes more of a season-like feel."

Springer leads MLB with 136 home runs from the lead-off spot since 2015. The Blue Jays as a team have 129 homers from the lead-off spot over that time, per Stats Perform.

He has 39 lead-off home runs in his career – fourth most all-time behind Rickey Henderson (73), Ian Kinsler (48) and Brady Anderson (44).

Springer has recorded seven career World Series home runs – most from the lead-off spot all-time – and he is 19-for-56 (.339) in the World Series in his career. No other current Blue Jays player has a World Series hit in their career.

The 31-year-old's 174 home runs since debuting in MLB via Houston are third most by an Astro in a player's first seven career seasons, behind only Jeff Bagwell (187) and Lance Berkman (180).

Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo added: "I like when he leads off like we did today. I like that. But we'll see."

George Springer believes the Toronto Blue Jays are "built to win for a long time" after arriving from the Houston Astros in a blockbuster move in free agency.

The Blue Jays lured MLB World Series champion and MVP Springer to Toronto on a six-year, $150million contract – the largest deal in franchise history.

Toronto, who returned to the playoffs last season for the first time since 2016 before being swept by eventual World Series participants the Tampa Bay Rays in the Wild Card Round, had made Springer their number one target and landed one of the most coveted free agents this offseason.

Springer brings a wealth of postseason experience to an exciting young core of Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio in Toronto, where the Blue Jays also boast number one right-handed pitching prospect Nate Pearson.

And Springer is excited, telling reporters on Wednesday: "I think they're right there. When you play against this team like I have, you could see the talent, could see the potential in their line-up, in their staff, in their arms.

"I think this team is built to win, and I think they're going to be built to win for a long time."

Springer leads MLB with 136 home runs from the lead-off spot since 2015. The Blue Jays as a team have 129 homers from the lead-off spot over that time, per Stats Perform.

A two-time Silver Slugger, Springer has 39 lead-off home runs in his career – fourth most all-time behind Rickey Henderson (73), Ian Kinsler (48) and Brady Anderson (44).

Springer has recorded seven career World Series home runs – most from the lead-off spot all-time – and he is 19-for-56 (.339) in the World Series in his career. No other current Blue Jays player has a World Series hit in their career.

The three-time All-Star's 174 home runs since debuting in MLB via Houston are third most by an Astro in a player's first seven career seasons, behind only Jeff Bagwell (187) and Lance Berkman (180).

In Toronto, Bichette is the first shortstop in MLB history to have a .300-plus batting average and a .500-plus slugging percentage in each of his first two seasons (minimum 125 plate appearances in both seasons).

Blue Jays team-mate Biggio became the first player in league history to have at least 20 home runs, 20 stolen bases and 100 walks through his first 159 career games (that is how many games he has played so far).

As for Guerrero, he is the only MLB player currently 21 or younger who has at least 100 career RBIs.

Based on age at the time of games, the Blue Jays had the most hits (234), runs (148), home runs (38), RBIs (137), XBH (93) and BB (103) in 2020.

"This line-up reminds me a lot of them [the Astros]," 31-year-old outfielder Springer said midweek. 

"It is a young line-up but it's a very talented, advanced younger line-up. From everything I've seen, they're very, very ambitious. They want to win, they work hard. That's awesome to see."

Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins, who is eyeing the franchise's first World Series title since 1993, added: "What he's done, his athleticism, his character, his resilience and his perseverance.

"He will overcome challenges and we believe that he's going to be a very, very good player, not just for the beginning of his contract but for the duration."

George Springer is reportedly packing his bags and heading to the Rogers Centre.

Widespread reports claim the Toronto Blue Jays have agreed to a six-year, $150million contract with star free agent and MLB World Series champion Springer – the largest deal in franchise history, eclipsing Vernon Wells' $126m extension in 2006.

The emerging Blue Jays, who returned to the playoffs last season for the first time since 2016, had been looking to make a splash in free agency after recruiting ace Ryu Hyun-jin ahead of the 2020 campaign.

Toronto appear to have landed their number one target and one of the most coveted free agents this offseason, despite interest in the likes of Francisco Lindor and DJ LeMahieu, as they challenge the likes of the New York Yankees, Tampa Bay Rays and Chicago White Sox in the American League.

Springer – a World Series winner and MVP with the Houston Astros – brings a wealth of postseason experience to an exciting young core of Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio in Toronto, where the Blue Jays also boast number one right-handed pitching prospect Nate Pearson.

Teoscar Hernandez also had a breakout season for the Blue Jays, resulting in his first Silver Slugger Award.

But what does Springer's arrival mean for the Blue Jays in their pursuit of a first World Series crown since 1993? We take a look using Stats Perform data.

Experience and lead-off ability

Springer led the Astros to ultimate glory in 2017.

The 31-year-old outfielder tallied a team-high 14 homers, 37 runs, 50 hits and 32 RBIs with a .265 average in 189 at-bats as the Astros reached the AL Championship Series (ALCS) last season.

Springer leads MLB with 136 home runs from the lead-off spot since 2015. The Blue Jays as a team have 129 homers from the lead-off spot over that time.

A two-time Silver Slugger, Springer has 39 lead-off home runs in his career – fourth most all-time behind Rickey Henderson (73), Ian Kinsler (48) and Brady Anderson (44).

Springer has recorded seven career World Series home runs – most from the lead-off spot all-time – and he is 19-for-56 (.339) in the World Series in his career. No other current Blue Jays player has a World Series hit in their career.

The three-time All-Star's 174 home runs since debuting in MLB via Houston are third most by an Astro in a player's first seven career seasons, behind only Jeff Bagwell (187) and Lance Berkman (180).

In 15 career games at the Blue Jays' Rogers Centre, Springer has slashed .358/.453/.604 with seven extra-base hits and 10 RBIs.

Springer to compliment Toronto's young star power

It has been a long time since Jose Bautista's memorable bat flip and back-to-back trips to the ALCS in 2015 and 2016.

But Guerrero, Gurriel, Bichette and Biggio have given Blue Jays fans a lot to be excited about.

The big-hitting quartet took the MLB by storm during last season's coronavirus-shortened campaign, lighting up the league and helping Toronto to a 32-28 record before losing to eventual World Series participants the Rays in the AL Wild Card Round.

Bichette is the first shortstop in MLB history to have a .300-plus batting average and a .500-plus slugging percentage in each of his first two seasons (minimum 125 plate appearances in both seasons).

Blue Jays team-mate Biggio became the first player in league history to have at least 20 home runs, 20 stolen bases and 100 walks through his first 159 career games (that is how many games he has played so far).

As for Guerrero, he is the only MLB player currently 21 or younger who has at least 100 career RBIs.

Of players aged 25 or younger, the Blue Jays topped a number of categories last season.

Based on age at the time of games, the Blue Jays had the most hits (234), runs (148), home runs (38), RBIs (137), XBH (93) and BB (103) in 2020.

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