Three Up, Three Down: Gurriel Grows Into Starring Role


Yulieski Gurriel, 1B, Astros

After an inauspicious start, Gurriel has developed into an impact contributor for the American League West champions. Gurriel, who signed a five-year, $47.5 million deal last summer, was hitting .260/.299/.393 on June 3. He’s been on a tear ever since, and now boasts a .295/.327/.481 slash line with a team-leading 39 doubles, 18 homers and 72 RBIs for the Astros.

Tim Anderson, SS, White Sox

Anderson cratered to a .232/.254/.347 slash line on Aug. 1. Since then, he’s been one of the game’s most dangerous hitters. Anderson has hit .318 with 13 doubles, eight home runs, 26 RBIs and an .867 OPS over his last 48 games. The upsurge has coincided with Anderson beginning counseling over the murder of his best friend back in May.

Kyle Hendricks, RHP, Cubs

The reigning National League ERA champ had a bit of a comedown this season, but has been pitching like it’s 2016 recently. Hendricks has a 2.40 ERA over his last 10 starts, second-best in the NL in that time. The hot stretch has lowered his season ERA to 3.14, his best mark this season.


German Marquez, RHP, Rockies

Marquez has had a strong rookie season, but is fading down the stretch at the worst possible time for the Rockies. With Colorado desperately trying to hang on to the NL’s second wild-card spot, Marquez has posted a 5.23 ERA in six starts over the past month. He’s gotten past the fifth inning only once in his last four starts.

Steven Souza, OF, Rays

Souza’s had his best year with a career-highs of 20 doubles, 30 home runs and an .803 OPS, but the final month has been a struggle. His .122 batting average is worst in the majors since Aug. 26, and his .460 OPS is fourth-lowest. He has just three extra-base hits in his 22 games in that time.

Josh Bell, 1B, Pirates

Bell’s rookie season has been up-and-down, and he’s finishing on a down note. The 25-year-old has hit .174 with a .527 OPS over the last month, including only two home runs.

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