Box-Toppers’ top single game performances by batters for 2017

Here are the top performances by a batter in single game for 2017 as measured by Box-Toppers’ game score. Anthony Rendon of the Nationals had the highest Box-Toppers game score for a batter in 2017 of 15.0 on April 30. While it was the highest score for a batter, it was the 16th-highest score for all players in 2017—pitchers had the 15 highest game scores. Batters are ranked by their Box-Toppers game scores (Score) and the ranks shown are their overall rank among the 2,430 games played in 2017. The Box-Toppers points (BTP) they earned for their single-game performances are also listed—2.0 for Player of the Day, 1.7 for league Player of the Day, 1.5 for league Batter of the Day and 1.0 for Player of the Game. For details of their performance, click the date link for that day’s Box-Toppers report.  
 
Rank Date BTP Score Team BATTERS AB R H BI HR 3B 2B
16 4/30 2.0 15.0 WSH 23, NYM 5 Anthony Rendon, 3B 6 5 6 10 3 0 1
31 6/6 1.5 14.0 CIN 13, STL 1 Scooter Gennett, LF 5 4 5 10 4 0 0
78 9/26 2.0 12.0 PIT 10, BAL 1 Andrew McCutchen CF 4 4 4 8 2 0 1
151 7/19 1.7 10.0 COL 18, SD 4 Nolan Arenado (3B) 6 4 5 7 3 0 0
152 7/26 1.5 10.0 KC 16, DET 2 Eric Hosmer (1B) 6 5 5 6 1 0 0
153 7/4 1.7 10.0 BOS 11, TEX 4 Andrew Benintendi (LF) 5 4 5 6 2 0 1
154 8/31 2.0 10.0 TOR 11, BAL 8 Kendrys Morales DH 5 4 4 7 3 0 0
210 7/2 1.5 9.0 BOS 15, TOR 1 Mookie Betts (RF) 6 3 4 8 2 0 0
211 4/25 1.7 9.0 WSH 15, COL 12 Trea Turner, SS 6 4 4 7 1 1 1
212 9/14 1.7 9.0 CHW 17, DET 7 Avisail Garcia RF 5 2 5 7 1 0 0
213 4/15 1.5 9.0 CLE 13, DET 6 Jose Ramirez, 2B 4 3 4 6 2 0 0
214 7/7 1.5 9.0 HOU 12, TOR 2 George Springer (CF) 4 4 4 5 2 0 1
215 8/9 1.7 9.0 WSH 10, MIA 1 Ryan Zimmerman 1B 4 4 4 5 2 0 1
216 9/22 1.7 9.0 ARI 13, MIA 11 Chris Iannetta C 4 2 3 8 2 0 0
217 8/3 1.7 9.0 ARI 10, CHC 8 Paul Goldschmidt (1B) 4 4 3 6 3 0 0

Nationals’ Anthony Rendon had highest Box-Toppers game score for batters in 2017

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Anthony Rendon of the Nationals had the best single-game performance by a batter in the 2017 season as measured by Box-Toppers game score.

On April 30, Rendon hit three homers and doubled, going 6-for-6, scoring five times and driving in 10 runs, in the 23-5 win over the Mets.

Rendon had a Box-Toppers game score of +15.0, which appears to be the highest game score for a batter in Box-Toppers’ 23 seasons of record keeping.

In fact, there were two single-game performances in 2017 that appear to be the two highest Box-Toppers game scores earned by batters since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. Plus, there were three top performances by batters that ranked among the top 100 single-game performances for all players in 2017. By contrast, in the past two seasons, there were no batters among the top 100 single-game performances for the season—all top 100 performances were by pitchers.

The other top three single-game performances by a batter in 2017:

  • On June 6, Scooter Gennett of the Reds had a Box-Toppers game score of +14.0, second-best for a batter earning Box-Toppers Player of the Game honors in 2017. (It also appears to be the second-best score for a batter in Box-Toppers’ 23 seasons, just behind the +15.0 score earned by Rendon a little over a month previously.) Gennett hit four homers and went 5-for-5, scoring four times and driving in 10 runs, in the 13-1 win over the Cardinals. Gennett’s +14.0 game score ranked 31st among top single-game performances by all players in 2017.
  • On Sept. 26, Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates had a Box-Toppers game score of +12.0, third-best for a batter earning Box-Toppers Player of the Game honors in 2017. McCutchen homered twice, doubled and went 4-for-4, scoring four times and driving in eight runs in the 10-1 win over the Orioles. McCutchen’s +12.0 game score ranked 78th among top single-game performances by all players in 2017.

There were 15 batters earning Box-Toppers Player of the Game honors who had a Box-Toppers game score of +9.0 or more during the season shown in the chart above. Batters are shown in the chart with their overall rank among the 2,430 games played in 2017. 

An overwhelming majority of the highest game scores belong to pitchers:

  • There are 15 pitchers earning Player of the Game honors who had higher game scores than top batter Rendon’s +15.0. (See Box-Toppers top 10 single-game performances here.)
  • Of the top 100 highest game scores, only three were achieved by batters—the other 97 were by pitchers.
  • Of the top 200 highest game scores, only seven were achieved by batters—the other 193 were by pitchers.

Before Rendon’s +15.0 Box-Toppers game score, the highest Box-Toppers game score for a batter earning Player of the Game honors in Box-Toppers tracking history (since 1995) appears to be +13.0, achieved by Shawn Green of the Dodgers on May 23, 2002 (4HR 2B 6-6 6R 7BI in the 16-3 win over the Brewers).

We say “appears” because while Box-Toppers has records for Player of the Game since the start of 1995, the data from actual game scores derived from box scores only goes back to the start of 2011. From 2011 through 2016, the highest Box-Toppers game score for a batter was +12.0. But examining games from 1995 to 2010 that were most likely to produce high Box-Toppers game scores (games in which batters had six hits, hit four home runs or drove in 10 runs), none had a game score higher than Green’s +13.0 in 2002. (See this post for more details on those games.)

J.D. Martinez earns no Box-Toppers points in his four home-run game performance

While hitting four home runs in a game is likely to give a batter a high Box-Toppers game score and likely to earn that batter Box-Toppers Player of the Game honors, it is not guaranteed.

For example, in 2017, J.D. Martinez of the Diamondbacks hit four home runs in a game on Sept. 4 but did not earn Player of the Game in the 13-0 win over the Dodgers. That honor went to Diamondbacks pitcher Robbie Ray, who struck out 14 over 7 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing three hits and no walks. 

Ray had a Box-Toppers game score of +18.2, second-highest in all games in 2017. Martinez, meanwhile, had a Box-Toppers game score of +9.0 (4HR 4-5 4R 6BI), not high enough to beat Ray for Player of the Game. 

As a consequence, Martinez earned no Box-Toppers points, even though his game score (based on tiebreakers) would have ranked 11th-best for a batter in 2017.

Three home-run games earning Player of the Game honors

The 15 batters earning Player of the Game honors who had the season’s highest Box-Toppers game scores all hit at least one home run in their game. As mentioned previously, Gennett hit four on June 6. There were four players on this list who hit three home runs:

  • Rendon in his top single-game performance for a batter in 2017 on April 30.
  • Nolan Arenado of the Rockies, who had a Box-Toppers game score of +10.0 on July 19, fourth-highest for a batter in 2017 (5-6 4R 7BI 3HR in the 18-4 win over the Padres).
  • Kendrys Morales of the Blue Jays, who had a Box-Toppers game score of +10.0 on Aug. 31, seventh-highest for a batter in 2017 (4-5 4R 7BI 3HR in the 11-8 win over the Orioles).
  • Paul Goldschmidt of the Diamondbacks, who had a Box-Toppers game score of +9.0 on Aug. 3, 15th-highest for a batter in 2017 (3-4 4R 6BI 3HR in the 10-8 win over the Cubs).

Breaking Box-Toppers game score ties

There are four batters on the list who all had Box-Toppers game scores of +10.0 and eight who all had Box-Toppers game scores of +9.0. Here’s how those ties were broken.

  • Fourth-ranked Arenado (+10.0 on July 19) ranked ahead of fifth-ranked Eric Hosmer of the Royals (+10.0 on July 26) because while both had the same number of at bats and hits, Arenado had more runs batted in (seven vs. six).
  • Fifth-ranked Hosmer ranked ahead of sixth-ranked Andrew Benintendi of the Red Sox (+10.0 on July 4) because he had more at bats (six vs. five).
  • Sixth-ranked Benintendi ranked ahead of seventh-ranked Morales (+10.0 on Aug. 31) because while both had the same number of at bats, Benintendi had more hits (five vs. four).
  • Eighth-ranked Mookie Betts of the Red Sox (+9.0 on July 2) ranked ahead of ninth-ranked Trea Turner of the Nationals (+9.0 on April 25) because while both had the same number of at bats and hits, Betts had more runs batted in (eight vs. seven).
  • Ninth-ranked Turner ranked ahead of 10th-ranked Avisail Garcia of the White Sox (+9.0 on Sept. 14) because he had more at bats (six vs. five).
  • Tenth-ranked Garcia ranked ahead of 11th-ranked Jose Ramirez of the Indians (+9.0 on April 15) because he had more at bats (five vs. four).
  • Eleventh-ranked Ramirez ranks ahead of 12th-ranked George Springer of the Astros (+9.0 on July 7) because while both had the same number of at bats and hits, Ramirez had more runs batted in (six vs. five).
  • Twelfth-ranked Springer ranks ahead of 13th-ranked Ryan Zimmerman of the Nationals (+9.0 on Aug. 9) because while both had the same number of at bats, hits, RBIs, runs, home runs, triples and doubles, Springer hit a sacrifice fly in his game (a lower-level tiebreaker not shown on the chart above) while Zimmerman did not.
  • Thirteenth-ranked Zimmerman ranks ahead of 14th-ranked Chris Iannetta of the Diamondbacks (+9.0 on Sept. 22) because while both had the same number of at bats, Zimmerman had more hits (four vs. three).
  • Fourteenth-ranked Iannetta ranks ahead of 15th-ranked Goldschmidt (+9.0 on Aug. 3) because while both had the same number of at bats and hits, Iannetta had more runs batted in (eight vs. six).

Box-Toppers bonus points

Only three of 15 batters listed in the chart had the highest overall Box-Toppers game score of the day, earning Box-Toppers Player of the Day honors. All three earned 2.0 Box-Toppers points (BTP in the chart above) for their performance. They are:

  • Top-ranked Rendon (+15.0 on April 30).
  • Third-ranked McCutchen (+12.0 on Sept. 26).
  • Seventh-ranked Morales (+10.0 on Aug. 31).

Seven of the 15 batters earned Box-Toppers league Player of the Day honors (worth 1.7 Box-Toppers points) because while they did not have top overall Box-Toppers game score for the day, they had the highest score for any player in their league for the day:

  • Fourth-ranked Arenado (+10.0 on July 19) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an NL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Angels pitcher Alex Meyer (+12.0 Box-Toppers game score).
  • Sixth-ranked Benintendi (+10.0 on July 4) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an AL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw (+14.0).
  • Ninth-ranked Turner (+9.0 on April 25) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an NL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Angels pitcher JC Ramirez (+10.0).
  • Tenth-ranked Garcia (+9.0 on Sept. 14) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an AL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Diamondbacks pitcher Zack Godley (+10.0).
  • Thirteenth-ranked Zimmerman (+9.0 on Aug. 9) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an NL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander (+10.0).
  • Fourteenth-ranked Iannetta (+9.0 on Sept. 22) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an NL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Mariners pitcher Erasmo Ramirez (+13.0).
  • Fifteenth-ranked Goldschmidt (+9.0 on Aug. 3) had the day’s highest Box-Toppers game score for an NL player, but was beaten out as overall Player of the Game by Indians pitcher Corey Kluber (+14.0).

The remaining five players on the list earned Box-Toppers league Batter of the Day honors worth (1.5 Box-Toppers points) because a pitcher had the highest Box-Toppers game score in their league for the day. 

For example, Gennett, who ranks second among batters in 2017 with a game score of +14.0 (which also, as previously mentioned, appears to be the second-best game score for a batter in the past 23 years) had the second-best game score of the day on June 6. Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer had a Box-Toppers game score of +15.0 (7IP 3H R 0ER 2BB 14K W in the 2-1 win over the Dodgers) to earn Box-Toppers Player of the Day honors, worth 2.0 Box-Toppers points. 

And so, even though Gennett’s game score ranks second among batters in 2017 (and over the past 23 years), it ranked second on June 6 and second among NL players. But it did rank first among NL batters that day, earning Gennett NL Batter of the Day honors worth 1.5 Box-Toppers points.

Top 15 batter performances help create double-digit runs

In all 15 games in which a batter earning Box-Toppers Player of the Game honors had a Box-Toppers game score of +9.0 or more, their team scored at least 10 runs. 

The most lopsided win was by Rendon’s Nationals on April 30, in the top-ranked game, beating the Mets, 23-5. 

The closest game was the 14th-ranked game by Iannetta’s Diamondbacks on Sept. 22 over the Marlins, 13-11.

Putting Rendon’s performance in context

Rendon had the top Box-Toppers game score by a batter earning Box-Toppers Player of the Game honors in 2017. But he had the 16th-best game score among the 2,430 games played. For context, here are the game scores that rank just above and below him:

  • Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco had the 15th-highest Box-Toppers game score for a Player of the Game in 2017. On Sept. 28, Carrasco had a game score of +15.1 (8.1IP 6H 0R BB 14K W in the 5-2 win over the Twins).
  • Cardinals pitcher Carlos Martinez had the 17th-highest Box-Toppers game score for a Player of the Game in 2017. On June 10, Martinez had a game score of +15.0 (CG 4H 0R BB 11K W in the 7-0 win over the Phillies). While Rendon and Martinez both had game scores of +15.0, Rendon ranks ahead of him because in cases of game score ties, batters rank ahead of pitchers.

How batters with top performances fared in Box-Toppers points

Of the 15 batters with the top single-game performances in 2017, Scooter Gennett of the Reds had the most Box-Toppers points during the season (10.7, which was third among NL batters and 34th among all players) while Trea Turner of the Nationals had the fewest (1.7, which was 132nd among NL batters and 513th among all players). In fact, the only Box-Toppers points Turner earned during the season came the only time he earned Player of the Game honors (and NL Player of the Day honors) in the April 25 performance listed as one of the top 15 for a batter in 2017.

Here’s how the other 13 batters listed above fared in Box-Toppers points in 2017, listed from most to fewest Box-Toppers points and their rank among their league’s batters:

  • Ramirez, 10.0, fifth among AL batters.
  • Hosmer, 9.5, seventh among AL batters.
  • Arenado, 9.2, fifth among NL batters.
  • McCutchen, 9.0, seventh among NL batters.
  • Rendon, 8.0, 12th among NL batters.
  • Goldschmidt, 7.4, 16th among NL batters.
  • Zimmerman, 7.2, 17th among NL batters.
  • Benintendi, 7.2, 17th among AL batters.
  • Garcia, 6.7, 21st among AL batters.
  • Morales, 6.5, 24th among AL batters.
  • Betts 6.0, 29th among AL batters.
  • Springer, 5.0, 48th among AL batters.
  • Iannetta, 3.2, 77th among NL batters.

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.

Related: 

Top 100 players in Box-Toppers points for 2017

Box-Toppers top single game performances for 2017

Box-Toppers top single game performances by batters for 2016