Friday, December 2 2022

By Ben Verlander
FOX Sports MLB Analyst

Mike Trout has been the best player in baseball for the better part of the past decade. He has missed his fair share of time the past few seasons, but he is back on the field now and proving that he might still be the best player in baseball.

On Saturday, Trout hit a home run that put him in the record books. It was his sixth homer in as many games, setting a franchise record for consecutive games with a home run. Entering this week, Trout is two games from tying the consecutive-home-run record held by Ken Griffey Jr., Don Mattingly and Dale Long.

Welcome to my Team of the Week, headlined this week by none other than Mike Trout. Trout was one of only two players with 30 or more total bases this week, and he trailed only Bo Bichette in OPS.

Mike Trout, Freddie Freeman, Aaron Judge headline Team of the Week

Ben Verlander gives us his latest Team of the Week, led by the Dodgers’ Freddie Freeman, Angels’ Mike Trout, Yankees’ Aaron Judge and Blue Jays’ Bo Bichette.

Watch “Flippin’ Bats with Ben Verlander” on YouTube, or subscribe on podcast platforms, including Apple Podcasts.

Now let’s check out the rest of this week’s team.

C: Yadier Molina, St. Louis Cardinals

Molina has joined Albert Pujols in his time machine, as the two are now producing like they haven’t for years. Molina tallied two home runs this week to pair with a .429 average. He was one of only two catchers with multiple homers and an average of .400 or better.

1B: Freddie Freeman, Los Angeles Dodgers

Only one first baseman had 20 total bases this week, and only one had an average north of .400 while hitting multiple home runs. That person was Freeman, who tallied 21 bases and three home runs while batting .417 this week.

2B: Vaughn Grissom, Atlanta Braves

Grissom is yet another rookie who has stepped up for the Braves this season, and this week was no different for the young second baseman. He hit .421, highest among second basemen with at least 10 at-bats, and his eight hits tied for the most among second basemen.  

MLB Power Rankings: Astros and Dodgers are still the teams to beat

Ben Verlander gives us his latest MLB Power Rankings, led yet again by the Dodgers and Astros.

3B: Eduardo Escobar, New York Mets

This week, Escobar was one of three players in MLB with a batting average of .500 or better and 25 or more at-bats (Aaron Judge and Bichette).

SS: Bo Bichette, Toronto Blue Jays

It was an exceptional week for Bichette, who led all players in runs (11), hits (16), extra-base hits (10) and RBIs (13). He hit .500 on the week, with five home runs, and slugged his way to an astounding 1.156 SLG%.

OF: Daulton Varsho, Arizona Diamondbacks

Varsho was one of just two outfielders with five or more home runs last week, and more than half of his hits were home runs. Varsho deserves a ton of credit this season for his ability to be a catcher and also a good center fielder. Get you a guy who can do both!

Albert Pujols and Aaron Judge continue home run chase

Ben Verlander dives into the exciting home run race for Albert Pujols, who hit his 697th career HR on Sunday, and Aaron Judge, who continues to chase history!

OF: Aaron Judge, New York Yankees

Judge continued his march toward history this week by adding two more home runs, taking his total to 55. Judge is six away from tying Roger Maris’ American League record. He was one of just two outfielders to have 25-plus total bases and score more than five runs last week, joining Trout. He also hit .500 with an OPS of 1.543.

OF: Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels

DH: Max Muncy, Los Angeles Dodgers

Muncy hit .539 on the week with three home runs and an OPS of 1.846. He was on fire at the plate and is showing signs of heating up at the right time for the Dodgers. Even in a tough season, Munch showed this week the ability we have come to expect from him over the past couple of years. He was the only Dodger on the week with an OPS over 1.400.

Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout rewrite Angels history together

Ben Verlander talks about Angels superstars Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani as they continue to amaze the baseball world — Trout with his home runs and Ohtani with his new sinker.

SP: Lance Lynn, Chicago White Sox

Lynn went 2-0 on the mound last week while not giving up a run and allowing only five hits in 13 innings pitched. He also struck out 16 batters. Lynn was the only pitcher this week to throw 10-plus innings without allowing an earned run.

CP: Jordan Romano, Toronto Blue Jays

Romano’s three saves are tied for the most in the majors over the past week. He didn’t allow a run in that time and struck out seven batters in the process. It was a dominant week for the dominant closer, who has been getting more save opportunities with the Blue Jays heating up.

Ben Verlander is an MLB analyst for FOX Sports and the host of the “Flippin’ Bats” podcast. Verlander was an All-American at Old Dominion University before he joined his brother, Justin, in Detroit as a 14th-round pick of the Tigers in 2013. He spent five years in the Tigers organization. Follow him on Twitter @BenVerlander.


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Source: FOX Sports

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