Red Sox’ Sale tops players for Thursday, July 18; Nationals’ Strasburg rises to 7th in player rankings

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Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale is Thursday’s Box-Toppers Player of the Day.

Top 10 players

Here are the top 10 players in Box-Toppers points (BTP) for the 2019 season through the games of July 18.
 
Player Pos Team BTP
1 Verlander, Justin 2112 pi sp hou al 14.8
2 Morton, Charlie 2503 pi sp tb al 14.8
3 Hader, Josh 3881 pi cp mil nl 14.7
4 Scherzer, Max 2588 pi sp dc nl 14.4
5 Cole, Gerrit 3232 pi sp hou al 14.1
6 Greinke, Zack 1871 pi sp ari nl 13.2
7 Strasburg, Stephen 2736 pi sp dc nl 12.7
8 Paddack, Chris 4093 sp pi sd nl 12.4
9 Bieber, Shane 4005 pi sp cle al 12.1
10 Ryu, Hyun-Jin 3139 pi sp lad nl 11.7
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Also Thursday, Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg rises to seventh place in Box-Toppers season player rankings after becoming the sixth pitcher this season to earn Player of the Game honors for batting. Strasburg is Thursday’s National League Player of the Day.

Plus, Alex Bregman of the Astros rises to lead American League batters in 2019 Box-Toppers points after earning AL Batter of the Day honors Thursday.

Player of the Day—Sale struck out 12 over six scoreless innings, allowing two hits and two walks, in the 5-0 win over the Blue Jays.

Sale earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day, giving him 8.0 for the season, rising to 25th among all players and 14th among AL pitchers.

Sale also now has 139.6 career Box-Toppers points, rising to 30th place among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. With his points Thursday, he passes Andy Pettitte (138.5) on the “all-time” list and now trails 29th-ranked Jake Peavy (141.8). Sale ranks 11th among active players in career points.

National League Player of the Day—Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg hit a three-run homer and went 3-for-3, scoring twice and driving in five runs, in the 13-4 win over the Braves.

Strasburg earns 1.7 Box-Toppers points for being NL Player of the Day, giving him 12.7 for the season, rising to seventh place in season player rankings, fourth among NL pitchers.

Strasburg now has 124.8 career Box-Toppers points, rising to 41st place among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. With his points Thursday, he passes Gary Sheffield (124.1) on the “all-time” list. (It should be noted Sheffield would have an estimated 155 career points if his entire career from 1988 were tracked.) Strasburg now trails 40th-ranked player Mariano Rivera (126.4). Strasburg ranks 13th among active players in career points.

Strasburg is the sixth pitcher this season to earn Player of the Game honors for batting. Others who have done it are:

Strasburg is the only of the six to earn NL Player of the Day. It is the first time in his career Strasburg has earned Player of the Game honors for batting. Strasburg had a Box-Toppers game score of +7.0 for batting Thursday and -3.9 for pitching (5.1IP 8H 3R 2BB 7K W).

American League Batter of the Day—Alex Bregman homered and went 2-for-2, scoring three times and driving in one run, in the 6-2 win over the Angels.

Bregman earns 1.5 Box-Toppers points for being AL Batter of the Day, giving him 7.0 for the season, rising to first place among AL batters. While his 7.0 Box-Toppers points is tied with three other AL batters—Brett Gardner of the Yankees, Albert Pujols of the Angels and Rafael Devers of the Red Sox—Bregman holds the tiebreaking advantage because he has the most 2018 Box-Toppers points, 6.2. (Gardner has the second-most with 5.5.) Bregman ranks 34th among all players.

National League Batter of the Day—There is no NL Batter of the Day for Thursday because the overall NL Player of the Day is pitcher Stephen Strasburg, who earned Player of the Game honors for batting.

Streak—Ryan Braun of the Brewers has now earned Box-Toppers points in 13 straight seasons after earning his first Player of the Game honor of 2019 Thursday.

Braun (HR 1-3 R 2BI in the 5-1 win over the Diamondbacks) earned his first points in 2007 with the Brewers and has 97.7 career points, 86th among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. He ranks 31st among all batters since 1995 and first among active NL batters.

Braun’s best season was 2010 with the Brewers when he had 15.0 Box-Toppers points, second among NL batters. Braun led NL batters in 2012 with 12.5 points. In 2018, he had 5.0 points, 13th among NL outfielders.

Braun was suspended for 65 games in 2013 under baseball’s performance enhancing drug policy and admitted to violations to the policy in the 2011 season.

Notable—Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner now has 119.4 career Box-Toppers points after earning Player of the Game honors Thursday.

Bumgarner (9IP 5H R BB 6K ND in the 3-2, 16-inning win over the Mets) rises to 44th place among all players in career points since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. He passes two players on the “all-time” list—Carlos Delgado (118.7) and Cliff Lee (119.1). Bumgarner now trails 43rd-ranked player, Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright (122.9). Bumgarner ranks 15th among active players in career points.

Bumgarner now has 5.0 Box-Toppers points for the season, 34th among NL pitchers.

Debut—Bubba Starling of the Royals made his Box-Toppers debut Thursday with his first career Player of the Game honor.

Starling (2B 2-3 2R 0BI in the 6-5 win over the White Sox) made his Major League debut July 12 and was playing in his sixth career game.

Scoring—Sale 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. Bregman earns 1.5 points for being AL Batter of the Day. All of Thursday’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 (BTG)

7/18 BTG Game Player AB R H BI IP H R ER BB K
MLB +14.0 BOS 5, TOR 0 Chris Sale (W, 4‑9) 6.0 2 0 0 2 12
NL +7.0 WSH 13, ATL 4 Stephen Strasburg P 3 2 3 5
+7.0 `SF 3, NYM 2 (F/16) Madison Bumgarner 9.0 5 1 1 1 6
+6.0 `MIA 4, SD 3 Nick Anderson 2.0 1 0 0 0 5
+4.1 CLE 6, DET 3 Brad Hand (S, 26) 1.1 1 0 0 0 4
BAT +4.0 HOU 6, LAA 2 Alex Bregman SS 2 3 2 1
+4.0 MIN 6, OAK 3 Eddie Rosario PH‑LF 1 1 1 3
+3.1 NYY 5, TB 1 Luis Cessa (W, 1‑1) 3.1 2 0 0 1 3
+3.0 NYY 6, TB 2 Gio Urshela 3B 4 1 3 3
+3.0 STL 7, CIN 4 Paul DeJong SS 4 2 2 3
+3.0 PHI 7, LAD 6 Bryce Harper RF 3 2 2 2
+1.0 KC 6, CHW 5 Bubba Starling RF 3 2 2 0
+1.0 MIL 5, ARI 1 Ryan Braun LF 3 1 1 2
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 Player of the Game winners. Players are ranked by their Box-Toppers point total for the current season (’19). Also shown are each players’ Box-Toppers point total for this season and last (’18-19), the period 2014-2019 (’14-19) and each players’ career point total. Also shown is how their 2019 Box-Toppers point total compares with their 2018 total (+/-).

Player of the Game Pos Team ’19 ’18‑19 ’14‑19 Career +/‑
Strasburg, Stephen 2736 pi sp dc nl 12.7 19.4 87.7 124.8 +6.0
Sale, Chris 2806 pi sp bos al 8.0 28.1 102.8 139.6 -12.1
Hand, Brad 2907 pi cp cle al 8.0 15.0 28.7 29.7 +1.0
Bregman, Alex 3721 3b hou al 7.0 13.2 18.2 18.2 +0.8
Bumgarner, Madison 2753 pi sp sf nl 5.0 11.7 66.3 119.4 -1.7
Harper, Bryce 3011 rf phi nl 4.5 12.0 31.0 46.4 -3.0
Urshela, Gio 4135 3b nyy al 4.0 4.0 4.0 4.0 +4.0
Rosario, Eddie 3542 lf ph min al 3.0 10.5 21.2 21.2 -4.5
DeJong, Paul 3827 ss stl nl 2.0 8.0 12.5 12.5 -4.0
Anderson, Nick 4145 pi cp mr fla nl 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 +2.0
Braun, Ryan J. 2300 lf mil nl 1.0 6.0 29.5 97.7 -4.0
Cessa, Luis 3703 pi mr nyy al 1.0 1.0 3.0 3.0 +1.0
Starling, Bubba 4192 rf kc al 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 +1.0
What are those numbers after players' names?
About Box-Toppers’ team abbreviations