Nationals' Max Scherzer passes Kershaw in 2017 Box-Toppers points; Giants' Samardzija tops players for Monday, Aug. 28

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Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija is Monday’s Box-Toppers Player of the Day.

Top 10 players

Here are the top 10 players in Box-Toppers points (BTP) for the 2017 season as of Aug. 28:  


Player Pos Team BTP
1 Scherzer, Max 2588 pi sp dc nl 23.0
2 Kershaw, Clayton 2494 pi sp lad nl 22.1
3 Sale, Chris 2806 pi sp bos al 21.1
4 Greinke, Zack 1871 pi sp ari nl 15.4
5 Carrasco, Carlos 2885 pi sp cle al 15.1
6 Severino, Luis 3567 pi sp nyy al 15.1
7 Kluber, Corey 3200 pi sp cle al 15.0
8 deGrom, Jacob 3343 pi sp nym nl 14.7
9 Strasburg, Stephen 2736 pi sp dc nl 14.4
10 Santana, Ervin 2005 pi sp min al 14.4
What are those numbers after players' names?

Also Monday, Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer (23.0 Box-Toppers points) rises to first place in season player rankings, passing previous leader, Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw, after earning Player of the Game honors. Kershaw (22.1 Box-Toppers points) had led since May 17, even though he had been on the disabled list since July 24.

Player of the Day—Samardzija pitched a complete-game, three-hit shutout, allowing no walks and striking out five, in the 3-0 win over the Padres.

American League Player of the Day—Rays pitcher Austin Pruitt pitched six scoreless innings, allowing one hit, one walk and striking out six, in the 12-0 win over the Royals.

American League Batter of the Day—Christian Vazquez of the Red Sox homered and went 4-for-4, driving in two runs, in the 6-5 win over the Blue Jays.

National League Batter of the Day—There is no separate NL Batter of the Day for Monday because no NL batter earned Player of the Game honors.

Scherzer—Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer ends Clayton Kershaw’s more than three-month stint atop Box-Toppers season player rankings after earning Player of the Game honors.

2017 lead changes

Here are the season’s lead changes among players in Box-Toppers points. Chart shows the date and the player’s Box-Toppers point (BTP) total when they took the lead.  

Date Player Team BTP
4/2 Carlos Martinez stl nl 2.0
4/3 Clayton Kershaw lad nl 2.0
4/9 Noah Syndergaard nym nl 3.0
4/14 Clayton Kershaw lad nl 4.0
4/15 Ervin Santana min al 4.7
4/19 Clayton Kershaw lad nl 5.0
5/2 Chris Sale bos al 6.7
5/6 Clayton Kershaw lad nl 7.0
5/12 Ervin Santana min al 7.7
5/13 Chris Sale bos al 8.4
5/17 Clayton Kershaw lad nl 8.7
8/28 Max Scherzer dc nl 23.0

Scherzer (7IP 5H R 2BB 10K W in the 11-2 win over the Marlins) earns 1.0 Box-Toppers point, giving him 23.0 for the season, passing Kershaw’s 22.1. 

Kershaw had led players since May 17 and kept the lead even though he’s been on the disabled list (back) since July 24. Kershaw is slated to return from the disabled list to start again Friday or Saturday.

Scherzer, too, was just returning from a shorter stint on the disabled list with a stiff neck. He last pitched Aug. 13.

The race for top spot in Box-Toppers player rankings looks much the same as 2016’s race. Last year, Kershaw ran out to a huge lead before going on the disabled list in late June. It took until Aug. 25 for Scherzer to pass the idle Kershaw. And in 2016, Kershaw did return from the disabled list, as he is expected to do this week, and contended for the Box-Toppers points lead, but Scherzer prevailed over Kershaw, 25.7-24.4 points.

Scherzer also now has 154.7 career Box-Toppers points, which ranks 17th among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. He trails 16th-ranked player Mike Mussina (155.6).

Rankings—Indians pitcher Corey Kluber rises to seventh place in Box-Toppers season player rankings after earning Player of the Game honors Monday.

Kluber (8IP 3H 2R BB 7K W in the 6-2 win over the Yankees) earns 1.0 Box-Toppers point, giving him 15.0 for the season, rising from 10th place in rankings. Kluber ranks fourth among AL pitchers.

Top 10 watch—Yankees pitcher Luis Severino (15.1 Box-Toppers points, ranked sixth) started Monday but did not earn Player of the Game honors in the 6-2 loss to the Indians.

Severino (6.2IP 4H 4R 3ER 3BB 9K L) had a Box-Toppers game score of +1.2. Player of the Game was Indians pitcher Corey Kluber with a Box-Toppers game score of +7.0. Kluber ranks seventh in Box-Toppers season player rankings.

Scoring—Samardzija earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day and Pruitt earns 1.7 points for being AL Player of the Day. Vazquez earns 1.5 points for being AL Batter of the Day. All of Monday’s other Players of the Game (listed in the chart below) earn 1.0 Box-Toppers point.

About Box-Toppers—Box-Toppers tracks who most helps their team win the most games. Using standard box score statistics, Box-Toppers uses a simple formula to determine a Player of the Game for each Major League Baseball game played. That player is the person who contributed most to his team’s win. In regular season games, players earn 1.0 Box-Toppers point for being named Player of the Game and can earn bonus points for being Player of the Day or top player or batter in their league for the day.

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Top player from each game

Listed from highest to lowest Box-Toppers game score 

8/28 Score Game Player of the Game AB R H BI IP H R ER BB K
MLB 11.0 SF 3, SD 0 Jeff Samardzija (W, 9-12) - - - - 9.0 3 0 0 0 5
AL 10.0 TB 12, KC 0 Austin Pruitt (W, 7-4) - - - - 6.0 1 0 0 1 6
9.0 LAA 3, OAK 1 Andrew Heaney (W, 1-0) - - - - 6.0 2 1 1 3 10
8.0 WSH 11, MIA 2 Max Scherzer (W, 13-5) - - - - 7.0 5 1 1 2 10
7.0 CLE 6, NYY 2 Corey Kluber (W, 13-4) - - - - 8.0 3 2 2 1 7
6.0 PHI 6, ATL 1 Aaron Nola (W, 10-9) - - - - 7.0 5 1 1 0 6
BAT 3.0 BOS 6, TOR 5 Christian Vázquez C 4 1 4 2 - - - - - -
3.0 CHC 6, PIT 1 Mike Montgomery (W, 5-6) - - - - 7.0 6 1 1 0 4
3.0 DET 4, COL 3 Shane Greene (S, 6) - - - - 1.0 0 0 0 0 2
2.0 BAL 7, SEA 6 Chris Davis 1B 3 2 2 1 - - - - - -
MLB—Overall Box-Toppers Player of the Day, worth 2.0 total Box-Toppers points.
AL—Overall American League Player of the Day, worth 1.7 total Box-Toppers points.
NL—Overall National League Player of the Day, worth 1.7 total Box-Toppers points.
BAT—Top AL or NL Batter of the Day, worth 1.5 total Box-Toppers points.
All other players listed here earn Player of the Game honors, worth 1.0 Box-Toppers point.
` Pitcher had a no-decision in the game and did not pick up a win or a save.

Box-Toppers point totals of the day’s top players

Here are Box-Toppers point totals of each of the Players of the Game. Players are ranked by their Box-Toppers point total for the current season (’17). Also shown are each players’ Box-Toppers point total for this season and last (’16-17), the period 2012-2017 (’12-17) and each players’ career point total. Also shown is how their 2017 Box-Toppers point total compares with their 2016 total (+/-).  

Player of the Game Pos Team ’17 ’16-17 ’12-17 Career +/-
Scherzer, Max 2588 pi sp dc nl 23.0 48.7 126.9 154.7 -2.7
Kluber, Corey 3200 pi sp cle al 15.0 36.2 80.4 80.4 -6.2
Nola, Aaron 3569 pi sp phi nl 12.8 19.5 21.5 21.5 6.1
Samardzija, Jeff 2495 pi sp sf nl 9.0 19.7 55.8 58.8 -1.7
Pruitt, Austin 3773 pi mr sp cp tb al 5.7 5.7 5.7 5.7 5.7
Montgomery, Mike 3513 pi sp chi nl 5.0 10.0 14.0 14.0 0.0
Vazquez, Christian 3380 ca bos al 5.0 6.0 9.0 9.0 4.0
Davis, Chris 2478 1b bal al 3.5 11.0 52.9 61.4 -4.0
Greene, Shane 3381 pi cp sp det al 2.0 5.0 15.0 15.0 -1.0
Heaney, Andrew 3515 pi sp ana al 1.0 1.0 5.0 5.0 1.0
What are those numbers after players' names?