Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Blake Snell went 5-0 on Friday, moving a half-game ahead of Texas slugger Joey Gallo for the best overall record in the MLB The Show Players League.
And Snell, tied with Gallo with 19 victories but sporting one fewer loss at 19-3, didn’t just win on Friday. He dominated his competition to the tune of a 35-3 aggregate score.
The 2018 American League Cy Young winner beat Seattle Mariners reliever Carl Edwards Jr. 3-0 and Oakland A’s pitcher Jesus Luzardo 3-1 in his most competitive games.
Snell topped Milwaukee Brewers closer Josh Hader 8-1 and Atlanta Braves right-hander Luke Jackson 10-0 before ending his night with his only non-pitcher opponent, Detroit Tigers utility man Niko Goodrum. The position may have been different, but the result wasn’t, as Snell won that one 11-1.
Both Gallo and Snell have magic numbers of two to clinch playoff berths.
The online tournament utilizing the “MLB The Show 20” game features one player from each of the 30 major league teams. The charity event is helping fill some time for players and fans with the baseball season shut down indefinitely due to the coronavirus pandemic.
All players will square off once in a 29-game round robin over three weeks. Each regular-season game lasts three innings, and there are extra innings when needed.
The eight-player postseason will culminate in a May 3 World Series. The playoffs will utilize a best-of-three format until the World Series, which will be best-of-five.
Sony Interactive Entertainment and Major League Baseball, in cooperation with the players association, will donate $5,000 on behalf of each player to a Boys and Girls Club in his community. A total of $175,000 will be donated, including the World Series prize of $25,000.
Young Toronto Blue Jays infielder Bo Bichette, the only other player in action Friday who entered the day in a playoff spot, went 2-1.
A little separation was made on the playoff bubble, as well. Pitchers Tommy Kahnle of the New York Yankees (2-0 on Friday) and Amir Garrett of the Cincinnati Reds (3-1) moved into a virtual tie for the final playoff spot at six games above .500, while Luzardo went 1-3 to drop off the bubble.
Other players with multiple wins Friday were Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Jon Duplantier (2-1), Hader (2-1), Edwards (2-1) and Jackson (2-2).
Goodrum was the day’s biggest loser at 0-5, while Colorado Rockies outfielder David Dahl went 0-4. Washington Nationals outfielder Juan Soto and Miami right-hander Ryne Stanek each went 1-2.
MLB The Show Players League standings, through Friday:
1. Tampa Bay Rays’ Blake Snell, 19-3
2. Texas Rangers’ Joey Gallo, 19-4
T3. Toronto Blue Jays’ Bo Bichette, 15-5
T3. Los Angeles Dodgers’ Gavin Lux, 16-6
5. New York Mets’ Jeff McNeil, 15-6
6. San Diego Padres’ Fernando Tatis Jr., 15-7
T7. New York Yankees’ Tommy Kahnle, 13-7
T7. Chicago White Sox’s Lucas Giolito, 14-8
T7. Baltimore Orioles’ Dwight Smith Jr., 15-9
T7. Cincinnati Reds’ Amir Garrett, 15-9
T11. Minnesota Twins’ Trevor May, 12-9
T11. Milwaukee Brewers’ Josh Hader, 13-10
T11. Arizona Diamondbacks’ Jon Duplantier, 13-10
14. Oakland Athletics’ Jesus Luzardo, 13-11
15. Washington Nationals’ Juan Soto, 10-9
T16. Atlanta Braves’ Luke Jackson, 12-12
T16. Chicago Cubs’ Ian Happ, 9-9
T18. Kansas City Royals’ Brett Phillips, 11-12
T18. St. Louis Cardinals’ Matt Carpenter, 9-10
T20. Philadelphia Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins, 10-13
T20. San Francisco Giants’ Hunter Pence, 8-11
22. Houston Astros’ Lance McCullers Jr., 9-13
23. Miami Marlins’ Ryne Stanek, 8-15
24. Seattle Mariners’ Carl Edwards Jr., 6-15
25. Los Angeles Angels’ Ty Buttrey, 4-14
T26. Detroit Tigers’ Niko Goodrum, 6-18
T26. Colorado Rockies’ David Dahl, 5-17
T26. Cleveland Indians’ Carlos Santana, 3-15
29. Pittsburgh Pirates’ Cole Tucker, 3-16
30. Boston Red Sox’s Eduardo Rodriguez, 2-19
–Field Level Media