Don't touch that dial: Stanton must-see TV
MLB homer leader hits 10th in last 14 games, drives in all four Marlins runs
MIAMI -- Miss a Giancarlo Stanton at-bat and you risk missing something extraordinary. The Marlins' slugger struck yet again on Saturday, launching a two-run home run while adding a two-run double in a 4-1 win over the Rockies.
With 23 home runs and 59 RBIs, Stanton paces the Majors in both categories, and he is also challenging some team preseason expectations.
"I don't think he can do much more [to surprise us]," Miami closer A.J. Ramos said. "It's a pleasure to watch. This is one of the few guys you stop and watch when he comes up to bat. I had to go to the restroom, and I was going to go in, but I was like, 'No, he's coming up to bat.'"
Stanton is on one of his show-stopping streaks. He's hit 10 homers in his last 14 games, making every at-bat must-see entertainment.
"Pick the ones you're going to miss, I guess," Stanton said.
The 23 homers are a personal high for Stanton prior to the All-Star break. He blasted 22 before the break last year, when he finished with an NL-leading 37.
The 59 RBIs are approaching the 63 he had in 2014 before the break.
Mike Lowell holds the franchise record for home runs (28) and RBIs (76) before the All-Star break. Lowell accomplished both in 2003. Gary Sheffield is next in first-half home runs with 26 in 1996. Stanton is tied for third along with Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla, who each had 23 homers in 2008.
"I'm finally feeling comfortable," Stanton said. "Not being tense up there. I'm being relaxed."
In the first inning, Stanton delivered a two-run double off the wall in left-center off David Hale.
"I was just trying to get him in from third and get the ball in the air," Stanton said. "I didn't think the ball was necessarily a home run."
The shot, tracked by Statcast™, landed a projected 397 feet away.
The home run came off Hale in the sixth inning, on a changeup that remained fair just down the left-field line. Stanton used some body language on the drive, which was tracked to have landed a projected 393 feet by Statcast™.
"I bent it over a little bit," Stanton quipped about his body language. "It needed to fall the other way."
The four RBIs gave the Marlins plenty to smile about in the dugout.
"Our chemistry is very special in here, regardless," Stanton said. "You can't always, when you're not playing well, be showing that. That's kind of the normal feel of how we are in here, taking it out there."