Cubs' Jose Quintana tops players for Sunday, Sept. 24; Scherzer, Kershaw fail in chances to take Box-Toppers points lead

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Cubs pitcher Jose Quintana is Sunday’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 Sept. 24:  


Player Pos Team BTP
1 Sale, Chris 2806 pi sp bos al 25.1
2 Scherzer, Max 2588 pi sp dc nl 25.0
3 Kershaw, Clayton 2494 pi sp lad nl 23.1
4 Kluber, Corey 3200 pi sp cle al 22.0
5 Strasburg, Stephen 2736 pi sp dc nl 20.8
6 Greinke, Zack 1871 pi sp ari nl 20.1
7 Severino, Luis 3567 pi sp nyy al 20.1
8 Carrasco, Carlos 2885 pi sp cle al 19.8
9 Santana, Ervin 2005 pi sp min al 16.1
10 Ray, Robbie 3502 pi sp ari nl 16.0
What are those numbers after players' names?

Also, Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer and Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw both had the chance to take the lead in Box-Toppers season player rankings in their starts Sunday—but neither did. Scherzer moved closer to leader Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale, earning Player of the Game honors and Kershaw earned the win in his start, but did not earn Player of the Game honors.

Player of the Day—Quintana pitched a complete-game, three-hit shutout, striking out 10 and walking one, in the 5-0 win over the Brewers.

Quintana earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day, giving him 15.0 for the season. He ranks 15th among all players and ninth among National League pitchers.

American League Player of the Day—Athletics pitcher Jharel Cotton pitched five scoreless innings, striking out six and allowing one hit and one walk, in the 8-1 win over the Rangers.

National League Batter of the Day—Yasmani Grandal of the Dodgers homered and went 1-for-1, driving in three runs, in the 3-1 win over the Giants.

American League Batter of the Day—Joe Mauer of the Twins went 2-for-5, scoring twice and driving in two runs, in the 10-4 win over the Tigers.

Best seasons

Here are all players who have earned 25 or more Box-Toppers points in a single season since 1995, ranked by their single-season Box-Toppers point total. When Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer reached 25.0 points Sunday, it marked the 25th time a player reached 25 points in a season. Scherzer's 25.0 points for 2017 now ranks 25th-best for a single season.  

Player Team Pos Year BTP
1 Randy Johnson Dbacks pi sp 2000 33.7
1 Randy Johnson Dbacks pi sp 2002 33.7
3 Pedro Martinez Red Sox pi sp 2000 33.5
4 Randy Johnson Dbacks pi sp 1999 31.5
4 Clayton Kershaw Dodgers pi sp 2014 31.5
6 Pedro Martinez Red Sox pi sp 1999 31.4
7 Randy Johnson Dbacks pi sp 2001 29.4
8 Jake Arrieta Cubs pi sp 2015 29.1
9 Pedro Martinez Red Sox pi sp 2002 28.8
10 Curt Schilling Dbacks pi sp 2002 28.4
11 Roger Clemens Blue Jays pi sp 1997 27.4
12 Johan Santana Twins pi sp 2004 26.8
13 Pedro Martinez Expos pi sp 1997 26.7
13 CC Sabathia Indians/Brewers pi sp 2008 26.7
15 Randy Johnson Mariners/Astros pi sp 1998 26.4
16 John Smoltz Braves pi sp 1996 26.1
16 Clayton Kershaw Dodgers pi sp 2011 26.1
18 Roger Clemens Blue Jays pi sp 1998 25.8
18 Corey Kluber Indians pi sp 2014 25.8
20 Johan Santana Twins pi sp 2006 25.7
20 Clayton Kershaw Dodgers pi sp 2015 25.7
20 Max Scherzer Nationals pi sp 2016 25.7
23 Cliff Lee Phillies pi sp 2011 25.4
24 * Chris Sale Red Sox pi sp 2017 25.1
25 * Max Scherzer Nationals pi sp 2017 25.0
* Current season

Box-Toppers points lead—Two pitchers—Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer and Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw—had the chance to retake the Box-Toppers season player rankings lead Sunday, but neither did.

Scherzer came close, earning 1.0 Box-Toppers point Sunday as Player of the Game in the 3-2 win over the Mets. He needed to earn at least NL Player of the Day honors (worth 1.7 points) to pass Sale. And his Box-Toppers game score Sunday of +10.0 normally would have been good enough to do that. But Player of the Day and fellow NL player, Cubs pitcher Jose Quintana, beat Scherzer out with a Box-Toppers game score of +15.0.

Kershaw, on the other hand, did not earn Player of the Game honors in his start, despite earning the win and having a Box-Toppers game score of +4.0.

So Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale still leads with 25.1 Box-Toppers points. Scherzer’s added point gives him 25.0 points, moving him within 0.1 point of Sale with one week—and perhaps one start—remaining in the season. Kershaw, earning no points, remains in third place with 23.1 points.

Scherzer (6IP 3H R BB 10K W in the 3-2 win over the Mets) earns 1.0 Box-Toppers point, giving him 25.0 for the season. It is the 25th time in Box-Toppers tracking history (begun in 1995) that a player has reached 25.0 Box-Toppers points in a season; Scherzer’s 25.0 points ranks 25th-best since 1995. It is the second time Scherzer has earned 25.0 or more in a season—he had 25.7 to lead all players in 2016.

Scherzer also has 156.7 career Box-Toppers points, ranking 16th among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. He trails 15th-ranked player Tim Hudson (157.0).

Kershaw (8IP 8H R 0BB 6K W in the 3-1 win over the Giants) did not earn Player of the Game honors Sunday. He had a Box-Toppers game score of +4.0, same as teammate Yasmani Grandal (HR 1-1 R 3BI). But Grandal earned Player of the Game honors because in cases of game score ties, batters have the edge.

Rankings—Indians pitcher Corey Kluber maintains his fourth-place spot in Box-Toppers season player rankings after earning Player of the Game honors Sunday.

Kluber (7IP 6H 2R 0ER 2BB 10K W in the 4-2 win over the Mariners) earns 1.0 Box-Toppers point, giving him 22.0 for the season. He ranks second among AL pitchers, behind Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale (25.1).

Debut—Angels pitcher Keynan Middleton made his Box-Toppers debut Sunday, earning his first career Player of the Game honor.

Middleton (1IP 0H 0R 0BB 2K W in the 7-5 win over the Astros) made his Major League debut May 5 and was playing in his 62nd career game. He is the 3,918th player to debut in Box-Toppers since record keeping began in 1995.

Scoring—Quintana earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day and Cotton earns 1.7 points for being AL Player of the Day. Grandal and Mauer each earn 1.5 points for being their league’s Batter of the Day. All of Sunday’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.

Box-Toppers strives for accuracy. See a mistake in a post? A wrong name, wrong team, grammar error, spelling goof, etc.? Thanks for pointing it out! Contact Box-Toppers here. Let's fix it and make it right.

Top player from each game

Listed from highest to lowest Box-Toppers game score 

9/24 Score Game Player of the Game AB R H BI IP H R ER BB K
MLB 15.0 CHC 5, MIL 0 Jose Quintana W (7-3) - - - - 9.0 3 0 0 1 10
10.0 WSH 3, NYM 2 Max Scherzer W (16-6) - - - - 6.0 3 1 1 1 10
AL 9.0 OAK 8, TEX 1 Jharel Cotton W (9-10) - - - - 5.0 1 0 0 1 6
7.0 CLE 4, SEA 2 Corey Kluber W (18-4) - - - - 7.0 6 2 0 2 10
5.0 CHW 8, KC 1 Lucas Giolito W (3-3) - - - - 7.0 5 1 1 0 5
BAT 4.0 LAD 3, SF 1 Yasmani Grandal C 1 1 1 3 - - - - - -
4.0 PHI 2, ATL 0 Nick Pivetta W (7-10) - - - - 6.0 5 0 0 1 4
4.0 PIT 4, STL 1 Jameson Taillon W (8-7) - - - - 5.0 4 1 1 1 6
4.0 `BAL 9, TB 4 Darren O'Day - - - - 2.0 0 0 0 0 2
3.0 COL 8, SD 4 Pat Valaika PH-3B 2 1 2 2 - - - - - -
3.0 ARI 3, MIA 2 Fernando Rodney W (5-4) - - - - 1.0 0 0 0 0 2
3.0 LAA 7, HOU 5 Keynan Middleton W (6-1) - - - - 1.0 0 0 0 0 2
3.0 `BOS 5, CIN 4 Addison Reed H (11) - - - - 1.0 0 0 0 0 2
BAT 1.0 MIN 10, DET 4 Joe Mauer DH 5 2 2 2 - - - - - -
1.0 TOR 9, NYY 5 Russell Martin C 4 0 2 3 - - - - - -
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 25.0 50.7 128.9 156.7 -0.7
Kluber, Corey 3200 pi sp cle al 22.0 43.2 87.4 87.4 0.8
Quintana, Jose 3040 pi sp chi nl 15.0 25.4 50.2 50.2 4.6
Taillon, Jameson 3658 pi sp pit nl 8.0 13.0 13.0 13.0 3.0
Rodney, Fernando 1803 pi cp ari nl 7.0 12.0 30.0 42.0 2.0
Pivetta, Nick 3825 pi sp phi nl 7.0 7.0 7.0 7.0 7.0
Mauer, Joe 1869 1b min al 6.5 8.0 29.5 77.1 5.0
Cotton, Jharel 3733 pi sp oak al 5.7 7.7 7.7 7.7 3.7
Valaika, Patrick 3793 ss 3b 2b ph col nl 5.2 5.2 5.2 5.2 5.2
Giolito, Lucas 3900 pi sp chi al 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0
Martin, Russell 2202 ca tor al 2.0 12.5 27.0 55.0 -8.5
Reed, Addison 3023 pi cp mr bos al 2.0 4.0 13.0 13.0 0.0
Grandal, Yasmani 3058 ca lad nl 1.5 8.7 18.7 18.7 -5.7
O’Day, Darren 2577 pi cp bal al 1.0 4.0 13.7 14.7 -2.0
Middleton, Kenyan 3918 pi mr ana al 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0
What are those numbers after players' names?