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Baseball Daily Dose

Vogelbach Stuns Cardinals With Ultimate Slam

by David Shovein
Updated On: September 6, 2021, 10:14 am ET

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Daniel Vogelbach lived out every kid’s dream on Sunday afternoon against the Cardinals. He was called upon to pinch hit in the ninth inning with the bases loaded and his team trailing by three runs. 

He made good on that magical situation, crushing a 1-0 offering from Cardinals closer Alex Reyes for a 397-foot walk-off grand slam -- delivering their division rival with an absolutely soul-crushing defeat.

It was just the 28th ultimate grand slam in major league history -- where a player hits a walk-off grand slam with his team trailing by three runs in their final at-bat. He’s the first player in Brewers franchise history to accomplish the feat and the first in franchise history to hit a pinch-hit walk-off grand slam. He’s the first MLB player to hit an ultimate slam since David Bote did so for the Cub against the Nationals in August of 2018.

It was the eighth home run of the season for the hulking first baseman who is now hitting .220/.324/.401 with 20 RBI in 71 games.

The victory puts the Brewers a season-high 30 games over the .500 mark and lowers their magic number to clinch the National League Central Division to 14.

While Vogelbach’s blast was the only ultimate slam of the day, it wasn’t the only grand slam around Major League Baseball. In fact, there were six in total -- tied for the second most in any single day in big league history.

Three of those came in one game -- the Cubs against the Pirates -- and all three of them were go-ahead blasts, making it the first time in MLB history that three go-ahead grand slams were hit in the same ballgame. Matt Duffy, Bryan Reynolds and Frank Schwindel were responsible for those four-baggers.

Gary Sanchez and Kevin Pillar also crushed grand slams on what was a wild day around Major League Baseball.

Starting Pitchers with an EDGE

Robbie Ray - 6 2/3 IP, 0 ER, 1 H, 3 BB, 10 K, 27% CSW, 19 swinging strikes 

It feels like every week I’m hurling accolades in Ray’s direction, but it’s impossible to say that he hasn’t been deserving. He threw another absolute gem on Sunday afternoon, allowing just one hit over 6 2/3 scoreless innings in a victory over the Athletics while piling up 10 strikeouts. His resume for the American League Cy Young Award is starting to look pretty impressive, as he’s now 11-5 with a 2.60 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and a 212/41 K/BB ratio over 166 innings. He and Yankees ace Gerrit Cole look to be the front-runners for the hardware at the moment.

Brady Singer - 7 IP, 0 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 6 K, 29% CSW, 13 swinging strikes 

Even in what has been a mostly disappointing season for the 25-year-old right-hander, Brady Singer goes out every once in a while and shows the promise that made him the 18th overall selection from the 2018 draft. Singer dominated a powerful White Sox lineup in this one, allowing just four hits over seven scoreless innings. He now sports a 4.58 ERA and 1.53 WHIP over 116 innings on the season. He could be an interesting mixed league option over the final four weeks of the season and definitely someone to keep an eye on heading into 2022 drafts.

Charlie Morton - 7 IP, 2 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 4 K, 31% CSW, 14 swinging strikes 

The 37-year-old hurler did a tremendous job silencing the Rockies offense at Coors Field on Sunday afternoon, allowing just two runs on two hits over seven strong innings. For his efforts, he earned his 13th victory of the season. He now boasts a 3.47 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and 185/51 K/BB ratio over 158 innings through 28 starts on the season.

Hitters with an EDGE

Frank Schwindel - 3-for-4, HR (11), 4 RBI, 2 R, BB

If you haven’t already done so by now, it’s time to start taking Frank Schwindel seriously. All he has done for the past month is hit for the Cubs and he has really ratcheted his power game up a notch this week with homers in three straight games and in six of his last seven. Oh, and did I mention this one happened to be a go-ahead grand slam in the seventh inning? On the season, he’s now slashing a spectacular .320/.366/.624 with 11 homers and 32 RBI and is leading many fantasy managers to league titles despite being rostered in just 51 percent of all Yahoo leagues.

Gary Sanchez - 2-for-4, 2 HR (20), 6 RBI, 2 R

Sanchez had a monster day out of the ninth spot in the Yankees lineup in Sunday’s loss to the Orioles, blasting a second inning grand slam off of Keegan Akin and a two-run shot in the sixth off of Marcos Diplan. He’s still hitting just .216/.319/.448 on the season, but that has come with 20 long balls and 49 RBI.

Javier Baez - 4-for-4, HR (27), 2 RBI, 3 R, SB (14)

Baez delivered a combo meal in what turned out to be a lopsided victory over the Nationals on Sunday afternoon, and he chipped in three additional singles as well. With the four-hit attack, the polarizing shortstop is now hitting .252/.298/.491 with 27 long balls, 75 RBI and 14 swipes in what has been a terrific all-around season offensively.

Bryan Reynolds - 4-for-5, HR (22), 4 RBI, 3 R, SB (5)

Reynolds also had himself a combo meal in a losing effort against the Cubs on Sunday afternoon. He clobbered a grand slam off of Zach Davies in the third inning to briefly put the Pirates out in front 5-2. He also collected his 30th double of the season and singled twice, raising his season slash to an impressive .301/.384/.518 to go along with 22 long balls and 81 RBI.

EDGE Priority Pickup

Jonathan Villar, 2B/3B/SS, New York Mets -- Available in 52% of Yahoo fantasy leagues.

Many thought that the return of Javier Baez and Francisco Lindor from the injured list was going to push Villar out of an everyday job with the Mets. Think again. His sizzling bat has seen him steal the starting third base job away from J.D. Davis and it has even earned him a spot atop the Mets lineup in recent days. Over his last 13 games he’s hitting .440 (22-for-50) with three homers, seven RBI and a stolen base -- and that doesn’t include his home run in the resumption of a suspended game against the Marlins. He has three positions of eligibility and could wind up being a difference maker down the stretch.

Closing Time

Tyler Wells vs. Yankees - 1 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, 0 BB, 0 K (1st save)

Just when you think that maybe, perhaps the Orioles are going to have someone handle the bulk of the save chances in their bullpen, manager Brandon Hyde goes in a different direction. After Cole Sulser closed out the Yankees on Saturday, he turned to Tyler Wells to get the final three outs in a one-run game on Sunday afternoon. Wells obliged, needing just 12 pitches (10 strikes) to set down the side in order. He now carries a 3.35 ERA and 0.84 WHIP over 51 innings in his rookie campaign. This continues to be a difficult spot to speculate for very few save chances, making it not worth the aggravation in most mixed leagues.

Alex Reyes vs. Brewers - 0 IP, 1 ER, 1 H, 0 BB, 0 K (5th blown save)

While all of the damage done in the ninth inning on Sunday wasn’t on his watch, Reyes was the one who actually gave up the lead, coming on to serve up a walk-off grand slam to Daniel Vogelbach. Fortunately for fantasy managers, Giovanny Gallegos -- who had been the most likely candidate to usurp the closer’s role -- is the one who loaded the bases in the first place and was charged with four runs in his one-plus innings of work. Reyes still gets the job done more often than not and carries a 3.00 ERA and 1.37 WHIP to go along with 29 saves in 34 tries on the season.

Rowan Wick vs. Pirates - 2 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, 2 BB, 2 K (3rd save)

If there were any lingering questions over who the Cubs closer was, Rowan Wick put those to rest over the weekend. He closed out the first game of the series to earn his second save of the season then came on and got the final six outs on Sunday to put an exclamation mark on the Cubs comeback victory. The Cubs aren’t likely to win many games over the final four weeks of the regular season, but expect to see Wick in the ninth inning in the games in which they do have a lead to protect.

Monday’s Matchup of the Day

Brandon Woodruff (MLW) vs. Zack Wheeler (PHI)

There are 12 MLB games on tap for Monday’s Labor Day Holiday -- including nine afternoon contests -- but one of those games stands out among the rest.

In Milwaukee, a pair of candidates for the National League Cy Young Award will do battle as Brandon Woodruff takes on Zack Wheeler.

Woodruff enters with a tremendous 2.35 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and 185/40 K/BB ratio across 157 1/3 innings on the season. He has faced the Phillies just once this season -- back on May 6 in Philadelphia -- where he struck out 11 over 6 2/3 innings of one-run baseball in a tough-luck loss.

On the other side, Zack Wheeler has put up some pretty impressive numbers as well this season, registering a 3.01 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 208/40 K/BB ratio across 182 2/3 innings. He has stumbled as of late though, with a 4.59 ERA over 68 2/3 innings since July 7. He has allowed four runs or more in seven of his last 10 starts -- including each of his last four. Like his competitor, he has taken on the Brewers just one time this season -- back on that fateful day on May 6. In that one, Wheeler hurled a complete game shutout, striking out eight in one of the finest starts of his career.

 

American League Quick Hits: Starling Marte (head) returned to the Athletics lineup on Sunday. … Nick Pivetta was scratched from his scheduled start on Sunday and placed on the COVID-19 IL. … Julio Teheran (shoulder) has been shut down for the remainder of the season. … The Yankees placed Jonathan Loaisiga on the 10-day IL with a right rotator cuff injury. … Tanner Roark elected free agency. … Angels outfielder Justin Upton was placed on the 10-day IL with a right lumbar strain. … The Astros purchased the contract of Marwin Gonzalez from Triple-A Sugar Land. … Ramon Urias was pulled from Sunday’s game due to soreness in his right leg. He’s considered day-to-day. … Semien clubbed his 25th home run as the Blue Jays routed the Athletics. … Wander Franco extended his on-base streak to 35 games in a losing effort to the Twins. … Nick Gordon went 3-for-5 with two RBI and a stolen base as the Twins completed their sweep of the Rays. … Salvador Perez crushed his 41st home run of the season as the Royals defeated the White Sox. … J.D. Martinez slugged his 25th home run in a losing effort against the Indians. … Franmil Reyes went 4-for-4 with a homer and three RBI as the Indians beat the Red Sox. … Adalberto Mondesi swiped a pair of bases in a victory over the White Sox. … Cedric Mullins launched his 25th home run of the season as the Orioles beat the Yankees. … Janson Junk allowed five runs (one earned) on six hits over 3 2/3 innings in a losing effort against the Rangers in his big league debut. … DJ Peters went 4-for-5 and socked a pair of dingers to lead the Rangers to victory in that one. … Jo Adell went 3-for-3 with two home runs in a loss to the Rangers. … Kyle Seager delivered a go-ahead two-run double as the Mariners scored seven times in the 11th inning to beat the Diamondbacks.

National League Quick Hits: Brewers shortstop Willy Adames was placed on the 10-day injured list with a left quadriceps injury. No timetable has been given for his potential return. … Keibert Ruiz sat out Sunday’s game against the Mets due to a sore knee. He’s considered day-to-day. … Gerardo Parra landed on the injured list with right knee inflammation. … Ke’Bryan Hayes (hand) returned to the Pirates lineup on Sunday after missing five games. … JT Brubaker was placed on the injured list with right shoulder inflammation. … The Braves signed Maikel Franco to a minor league deal. … Danny Duffy (forearm) threw a successful bullpen session on Sunday. … Clayton Kershaw (forearm) is scheduled to throw three innings in a minor league rehab start with Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday. ... A.J. Pollock landed on the injured list with a right hamstring strain and could miss the remainder of the regular season. … Miguel Rojas was pulled from Sunday’s game due to left trapezius soreness. …  Luis Castillo fanned seven while allowing just one unearned run over six innings in a loss to the Tigers. … Bryce Harper crushed his 27th home run as the Phillies topped the Marlins… Adam Duvall blasted his 30th home run of the season in a victory over the Rockies. … Tyler O’Neill went 3-for-4 with a homer and two RBI as the Cardinals fell to the Brewers. … Jake Cronenworth slugged a walk-off homer to beat the Astros on Sunday. … Walker Buehler was crushed for six runs on seven hits over three innings in a loss to the Giants. … Brandon Belt clobbered his 21st home run as the Giants triumphed over the Dodgers.