Giancarlo Stanton hit his 50th homer of the season on Sunday, and it was a big one. Not only was it No. 50 and happened to put the Marlins ahead while they're still fighting for a wild card spot, but it also tied the record for the most homers in August (18), and has Stanton just two from tying the record for homers in any month, one held by Sammy Sosa.
And that's fitting, too, as Stanton is now on pace for 63 homers in 2017, and if he gets to at least 60, he'll be the first player to get to that threshold since 2001, when Sammy Sosa hit 64 and Barry Bonds set a new record with 73.
There have been just eight 60-homer seasons in MLB history, and just five players have managed the feat. Mark McGwire managed it twice (70 in 1998 and 65 in 1999) while Sammy Sosa (66 in 1998, 63 in 1999, and 64 in 2001) managed it three times. Even Bonds only did it the one time, though, the 333 intentional walks — and 834 regular walks — accumulated after 2001 had a lot to do with Bonds never even making it to 50 homers again, never mind 60.
Even if Stanton doesn't get to 60, 50 is more rare than you might think. There have only been 44 seasons with at least 50 homers, and Stanton is just the 28th player to reach that mark. With five weeks to go in the 2017 season, however, and Stanton's 50th homer his 24th in his last 41 games, it feels like 60 is within reach even if Stanton slows down a bit. We'll see, though: Even Barry Bonds' record-setting season saw him post a month with just six homers, so we should save the celebrations for when Stanton actually does get to 60.
- The Phillies recorded a triple play in the fifth inning of Sunday's game against the Cubs, but they also had a pointless pick-off attempt in the same frame for a runner who wasn't even taking a lead.
- The Brewers beat the Dodgers in back-to-back games, ending Los Angeles' streak of winning series, one they've mantained since early June. The W also put the Brewers just two games back of the Cubs in the NL Central.
- Japan defeated Texas 12-2 to win the 2017 Little League World Series. That's the fourth title in six years for Japan.
- The Astros are in limbo thanks to Hurricane Harvey, but it's expected they'll officially announce their plans for the where and when of playing games on Monday.
- A Brewers' minor leaguer was hit in the chest by a pitch and suffered a "cardiac event." He's in critical, but stable, condition.
- The Yankees face an eventual infield dilemma.
- Hanley Ramirez has played a significant role in recent offensive struggles in Boston.
- Billy Beane said out loud what we already all knew: The Josh Donaldson trade was questionable.
- The Rockies are doing well, but Carlos Gonzalez is not. It's been a strange (likely) last season in town for the longtime Colorado outfielder.
- The Royals were defeated 20-0 by the Indians this weekend, with Cleveland shutting out KC three games in a row.