Yankees' Masahiro Tanaka tops players for Friday, Sept. 29 with highest Box-Toppers game score of 2017

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Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka is Friday’s Box-Toppers Player of the Day, earning the highest Box-Toppers game score of the season.

Top 10 players

Here are the top 10 players in Box-Toppers points (BTP) for the 2017 season as of Sept. 29:  


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 Strasburg, Stephen 2736 pi sp dc nl 22.5
5 Kluber, Corey 3200 pi sp cle al 22.0
6 Carrasco, Carlos 2885 pi sp cle al 21.8
7 Severino, Luis 3567 pi sp nyy al 21.1
8 Greinke, Zack 1871 pi sp ari nl 20.1
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 Friday, Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg rises to fourth place in Box-Toppers season player rankings after earning National League Player of the Day honors.

Player of the Day—Tanaka struck out 15 over seven scoreless innings, allowing three hits and no walks in the 4-0 win over the Blue Jays.

Tanaka had a Box-Toppers game score Friday of +19.0, the highest earned by a Player of the Game in 2017, beating the +18.2 Box-Toppers game score earned Sept. 4 by Robbie Ray of the Diamondbacks. Marlins pitcher Edinson Volquez, who has the only no-hitter in 2017, earned a Box-Toppers game score of +17.0 in that game, June 3, the eighth-best game score of 2017. (See the chart below Highest Box-Toppers game scores of 2017.)

Tanaka earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day, giving him 11.4 for the season. He ranks 23rd among all players and eighth among American League pitchers. Tanaka is the 36th player this season to reach 10 or more Box-Toppers points. It is the third season he has reached 10 points. In 2014, he had 12.7 with the Yankees and in 2016, he had 14.1 with the Yankees, which ranked fifth among AL pitchers.

National League Player of the Day—Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg struck out eight over 7 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing two hits and two walks, in the 6-1 win over the Pirates.

Strasburg earns 1.7 Box-Toppers points for being NL Batter of the Day, giving him 22.5 for the season, rising from eighth to fourth place in season player rankings. He ranks third among NL pitchers, behind teammate Max Scherzer (25.0) and Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw (23.1).

Strasburg now has 105.4 career Box-Toppers points, rising to 66th place among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. With his points Friday, he passes three players on the “all-time” list—Jamie Moyer (104.0), Dodgers pitcher Scott Kazmir (105.1) and Astros pitcher Francisco Liriano (105.2). He trails 65th-ranked player Aramis Ramirez (105.8).

American League Batter of the Day—Brian Dozier of the Twins hit a three-run homer and doubled in the 6-3 win over the Tigers. Dozier went 2-for-3, scoring twice.

National League Batter of the Day—Ian Happ of the Cubs hit a three-run homer and went 2-for-4, scoring twice and driving in three runs, in the 5-4 win over the Reds.

Box-Toppers points lead—Max Scherzer and Clayton Kershaw have one final chance Saturday to take the Box-Toppers points lead and win 2017’s Box-Toppers Player of the Year honors.

Scherzer of the Nationals (25.0 Box-Toppers points, ranked second) starts Saturday against the Pirates and Kershaw of the Dodgers (23.1 Box-Toppers points, ranked third) starts Saturday against the Rockies. Both players trail current Box-Toppers points leader, Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale, who has 25.1 points for 2017.

For more details, see this post.

Box-Toppers team rankings—With two days left in the season, the race for top spot in Box-Toppers final team rankings is down to two teams, but the Cleveland Indians could wrap up the title with a win Saturday.

Here are the accumulated Box-Toppers point totals of the top three teams through Friday’s game:

  1. Indians 139.9
  2. Dodgers 136.4
  3. Nationals 135.3

The Indians won Friday, adding 1.0 Box-Toppers point and now lead the Dodgers by 3.5. If the Indians add one more Box-Toppers point Saturday or Sunday, they would have at least 140.9 points, putting the lead out of reach of the Dodgers, who could only earn 4.0 more points (earning Player of the Day honors, worth 2.0 points, both Saturday and Sunday), giving them 140.4.

Meanwhile, the Dodgers lost Friday, keeping their total steady. The Nationals won, with Strasburg earning NL Player of the Day worth 1.7 points and move within 1.1 point of the NL leading Dodgers.

Top 10 watch—Diamondbacks pitcher Zack Greinke (20.1 Box-Toppers points, ranked eighth) did not earn Player of the Game Friday in his team’s 2-1 loss against the Royals.

Greinke (4IP 6H 2R 2BB 4K L) had a Box-Toppers game score of -4.0. Player of the Game was Royals pitcher Ian Kennedy (5IP 4H R BB 7K W) with a Box-Toppers game score of +5.0.

Notable—Brewers pitcher Chase Anderson became the 37th player this season with 10 or more Box-Toppers points after earning Player of the Game honors Friday.

Anderson (7IP 3H R BB 5K W in the 5-3 win over the Cardinals) earns 1.0 Box-Toppers point, giving him 10.4 for the season. He ranks 33rd among all players and 15th among NL pitchers.

Debut—Jorge Alfaro of the Phillies made his Box-Toppers debut Friday with his first career Player of the Game honor.

Alfaro (HR 2B 2-3 R BI in the 6-2 win over the Mets) made his Major League debut Sept. 12, 2016, and was playing in his 34th career game. He is the 3,920th player to debut in Box-Toppers since record keeping began in 1995.

Scoring—Tanaka earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day and Strasburg earns 1.7 points for being NL Player of the Day. Dozier and Happ each earn 1.5 points for being their league’s Batter of the Day. All of Friday’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 

9/29 Score Game Player of the Game AB R H BI IP H R ER BB K
MLB 19.0 NYY 4, TOR 0 Masahiro Tanaka W (13-12) - - - - 7.0 3 0 0 0 15
NL 11.2 WSH 6, PIT 1 Stephen Strasburg W (15-4) - - - - 7.2 2 0 0 2 8
7.0 CLE 10, CHW 1 Trevor Bauer W (17-9) - - - - 6.0 4 1 1 0 7
6.0 MIL 5, STL 3 Chase Anderson W (12-4) - - - - 7.0 3 1 1 1 5
5.0 KC 2, ARI 1 Ian Kennedy W (5-13) - - - - 5.0 4 1 1 1 7
5.0 `TB 7, BAL 0 Jake Odorizzi - - - - 4.0 2 0 0 1 4
4.2 SF 8, SD 0 Chris Stratton W (4-4) - - - - 6.2 7 0 0 2 7
BAT 4.0 MIN 6, DET 3 Brian Dozier 2B 3 2 2 3 - - - - - -
4.0 COL 9, LAD 1 Chad Bettis W (2-4) - - - - 7.0 4 1 1 1 4
3.0 HOU 3, BOS 2 Alex Bregman 3B 4 1 3 3 - - - - - -
BAT 3.0 CHC 5, CIN 4 Ian Happ 3B-CF 4 2 2 3 - - - - - -
3.0 MIA 6, ATL 5 Marcell Ozuna CF-LF 3 1 2 3 - - - - - -
3.0 LAA 6, SEA 5 Mike Trout CF 3 2 2 2 - - - - - -
3.0 TEX 5, OAK 3 Shin-Soo Choo RF 2 2 1 2 - - - - - -
1.0 PHI 6, NYM 2 Jorge Alfaro C 3 1 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 +/-
Strasburg, Stephen 2736 pi sp dc nl 22.5 37.6 96.7 105.4 7.4
Tanaka, Masahiro 3305 pi sp nyy al 11.4 25.5 46.2 46.2 -2.7
Odorizzi, Jake 3291 pi sp tb al 11.1 17.5 37.2 37.2 4.7
Anderson, Chase 3328 pi sp mil nl 10.4 17.4 26.4 26.4 3.4
Bauer, Trevor 3065 pi sp cle al 9.7 21.1 39.2 39.2 -1.7
Ozuna, Marcell 3190 lf fla nl 9.2 14.2 27.7 27.7 4.2
Kennedy, Ian 2723 pi sp kc al 6.0 16.0 47.1 72.5 -4.0
Choo, Shin-Soo 2267 rf dh tex al 6 7 27 53.7 5
Dozier, Brian 3219 2b min al 5.5 7.5 19.2 19.2 3.5
Trout, Mike 2949 cf ana al 5.0 17.5 52.5 54.0 -7.5
Stratton, Chris 3883 pi sp sf nl 3.7 3.7 3.7 3.7 3.7
Bregman, Alex 3721 3b hou al 3.0 5.0 5.0 5.0 1.0
Happ, Ian 3798 cf lf 3b chi nl 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0
Bettis, Chad 3481 pi sp col nl 2.0 8.7 14.1 14.1 -4.7
Alfaro, Jorge 3920 ca phi nl 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0
What are those numbers after players' names?

Highest Box-Toppers game scores of 2017

Here are the 12 best single-game performances by a player in 2017 based on their Box-Toppers game score. Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka Friday had the best single-game performance of the season so far with his Box-Toppers game score of +19.0:  


Date Bonus Score Game Player IP H R ER BB K
1 9/29 MLB 19.0 NYY 4, TOR 0 Masahiro Tanaka W (13-12) 7.0 3 0 0 0 15
2 9/4 MLB 18.2 ARI 13, LAD 0 Robbie Ray (W, 12-5) 7.2 3 0 0 0 14
3 8/29 MLB 18.0 BAL 4, SEA 0 Dylan Bundy (W, 13-8) 9.0 1 0 0 2 12
4 7/28 MLB 18.0 NYY 6, TB 1 Masahiro Tanaka (W, 8-9) 8.0 2 1 1 0 14
5 8/8 MLB 18.0 BOS 2, TB 0 Chris Sale (W, 14-4) 8.0 2 0 0 1 13
6 5/27 MLB 18.0 WSH 3, SD 0 Stephen Strasburg (W,6-1) 7.0 3 0 0 1 15
7 6/19 MLB 17.0 CLE 12, BAL 0 Corey Kluber (W,6-2) 9.0 3 0 0 0 11
8 6/3 MLB 17.0 MIA 3, ARI 0 Edinson Volquez (W,2-7) 9.0 0 0 0 2 10
9 9/20 MLB 17.0 BOS 9, BAL 0 Chris Sale W (17-7) 8.0 4 0 0 0 13
10 4/20 MLB 16.0 `BOS 4, TOR 1 (F/10) Chris Sale 8.0 4 0 0 1 13
11 6/2 MLB 16.0 `LAD 2, MIL 1 (F/12) Clayton Kershaw 7.0 2 1 1 1 14
12 7/16 MLB 16.0 CHC 8, BAL 0 Jose Quintana, W (5-8) 7.0 3 0 0 0 12
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.