When you spend an entire month doing nothing but smacking the cover off baseballs, the rest of the sport is going to take notice. When that month just so happens to coincide with your first month of big league baseball ever, well, now you’ve got one of the best storylines of the year.
That’s exactly what Cincinnati Reds RF Aristides Aquino just waded through in the month of August, setting both MLB and franchise records all over the place with a dinger barrage as impressive as I’ve ever witnessed. On Tuesday, he took home some silverware for his work, as he was not only named the National League’s Rookie of the Month, but also it’s Player of the Month.
Look at those stats. Look at them. Buy a telescope, stick its lens right up to your device’s screen, and sear them into your retinas. Then sit back and imagine what things might look like over the next 6 years if anything close to what Aquino has done in his short time in the bigs is 100%, undeniably real. Heck, he’s already continued to dinger and ribbie his butt off into the month of September, so...
On a slightly related note, Reds righty Sonny Gray did not take home the NL’s Pitcher of the Month prize, and while they don’t announce runners-up to those awards, I’d wager he certainly finished second to St. Louis starter Jack Flaherty (who admittedly had a completely brilliant month of August). That said, it’s worth a tip of the cap to Gray, who who fired 36.2 innings of 0.74 ERA ball in his 6 starts in August, in which the Reds went 5-1.
A great starting pitcher and an otherworldly hitter for a calendar month, yet the Reds went just 13-15 in that time. I suppose we can wrap this post by mentioning that the team’s bullpen posted a 5.36 ERA combined for the month of August, with a 1-6 record (if you’re into that sort of thing).