One of baseball’s best redemption stories continued on Thursday afternoon, as A.J. Burnett threw 6 2/3 sharp innings to win his eighth straight start in a 5-4 victory over the Phillies. Burnett improved to 9-2 with the win and now has a 3.31 ERA over his first 13 starts this season. And, he’s just the third pitcher this year to go 5-0 in a month, joining Washington’s Gio Gonzalez and the Phillies’ Cole Hamels.
Some thought Burnett would be successful with a change of scenery, but very few saw this level of success coming for him. Burnett got off to a slow start after after suffering a fractured right orbital bone during spring training. Then he had that 12-run disaster against the Cardinals on May 2. If that one start was removed from his body of work, Burnett would have a 2.05 ERA in his other 12 starts. That’s pretty incredible considering how bad he was in the Bronx the last two years. Burnett will most likely not keep up this pace and his ERA will settle around 4.00, but he should remain a useful starter in all formats the rest of the way.
In other fantasy news….
- Andre Ethier (oblique) is currently considered day-to-day and will avoid the disabled list for now.
- Mike Trout had two hits, including his eighth home run of the season, Trout ran his hitting streak to a career-best 10 games, during which he’s hit .422 with 13 runs scored.
- Madison Bumgarner allowed just one hit in his first career shutout Thursday against the Reds. This was the fourth straight game that the Giants have shutout their opponent.
- Robinson Cano went 3-for-4 with a home run in the 5-4 win. He launched a two-run shot off in the sixth inning for his 18th long ball of the season.
- Miguel Cabrera finished 4-for-5 with a home run and two RBI during the Tigers’ 5-2 victory at Tampa Bay on Thursday night. Cabrera blasted his 16th homer of the season in the ninth inning and he continued his hot stretch in which he’s hit .342 over his past 46 games.
- Jose Altuve (hamstring) isn’t expected to return this weekend at the earliest. Let’s hope the few extra days off will help Altuve avoid the disabled list.
- Jose Bautista hit his 26th home run of the season in Thursday’s loss to the Angels. This homer was Bautista’s 14th of June.
- Trevor Bauer made his major league debut Thursday night against the Braves. He was a little shaky, allowing two runs over four innings with three strike outs, three walks, and he did hit a batter, but he kept them in the game.