Players of the Week: Tatis, Montas

First weekly honors for Padres, A's stars

August 11th, 2020

Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. and A’s right-hander Frankie Montas have been named the MLB Players of the Week presented by Chevrolet on Monday.

Tatis homered six times across the six games he played last week, including dingers in each of his past four contests, to give him eight round-trippers on the season -- tying him with Yankees slugger Aaron Judge for the MLB lead.

The Padres’ budding superstar went 10-for-23 (.435) on the week, with seven of those 10 hits going for extra bases to boost his season OPS to 1.226, tops among all qualified MLB hitters. Tatis also stole a base last week, giving him four swipes on the year to put him in a tie for second in the Majors, and he also ranks in the sport’s top five in RBIs (18), runs (15) and slugging (.810).

“Every time I get up there, I'm trying to do something special for those people that are watching, or even just for the game,” Tatis said.

The 21-year-old leads MLB in both FanGraphs’ and Baseball-Reference’s versions of WAR, helping San Diego get off to a 9-7 start to the 2020 campaign.

This is Tatis’ first career National League Player of the Week award, and he is the first Padre to claim the honor since Manuel Margot for the week of July 30, 2017. Tatis was the third-place finisher in NL Rookie of the Year voting in 2019.

“It's a great feeling,” Tatis said of Monday’s honor. “Especially after all that work we put in together in the last month, and here we are. I'm just happy, man.”

Past winners: AL | NL

Montas is carrying on the stellar form he showed in 2019 before his season was cut short by a suspension. Oakland’s right-hander won both of his starts last week against division rivals in the Mariners and Astros, allowing just one earned run on six hits across a combined 14 innings of work to lower his season ERA to 1.57.

“It means a lot,” Montas said. “After seeing the way I was working during the shutdown, to be able to have such an honor is huge for me. I’m really excited and happy about it.”

Montas has not allowed a home run through his first four outings (and a total of 91 batters faced) in 2020, and opposing hitters are slugging just .213 overall against the hard-throwing right-hander.

Montas heads an A’s pitching staff that entered Monday leading the Major Leagues in FanGraphs WAR (3.8), and Oakland has authored a nine-game winning streak to build an early five-game lead in the AL West.

This is also Montas’ first career AL Player of the Week award, and he is the first A’s player to take home the honor since Mark Canha for the week of Aug. 25, 2019.