With one game left in the 2006 season, he has one more chance to amass 80 RBI–more if he needs them to hold on to the team lead in RBI–and to finish the year at .270. Right now he has 79 RBI and is at .267.
And if he wants to do anything else good, like steal a base or make a circus catch in the outfield to rob the opposition of an XBH or a home run, we’re for that, too.
So basically, we’re looking for True Elation 24. If Eric follows through with the weird "one day good, one day bad" cycle he’s been one lately, he’s due for a good day tomorrow.
And all’s well that ends well.
Eric Byrnes has just hit his 26th homer! It happened in the third inning of tonight’s contest between the D’Backs and the Padres. It was a 2-out, 2-run blast to left off starter Clay Hensley. This gives him 270 total bases for the year, a new personal best. (His previous mark was 266 in 2004).
UPDATE: D’Backs win 3-1. Hernandez Valverde (S), and Byrnes’ homer was the difference-maker.
EB Line for the Night: 1-4 2RBI 1R. His other outs were to the outfield. So 0 K and 0 DP. His last 4 hits have been XBH. 3 HRs and 1 DB.
If the Dodgers beat the Giants tonight, the NL West will be tied.
Kéllia "Watching Byrnesie Homer is Definitely Better Than Going to the News Department BBQ" Ramares
This is the third time we try to post on the subject. The fact that a post gets destroyed when the remote server cannot put it up is frustrating.
Eric Byrnes achieved 25/25 today as he achieved 20/20 on Sept. 4th, by getting the homer and stolen base(s) he needed on the same day.
Byrnesie stole bases 24 and 25 in the 6th inning from Giants’ starter Jonathan Sanchez after reaching first on a fielder’s choice.
Congrats, Byrnesie. You have certainly proven that ’05 was an aberration.
Eric Byrnes has hit a 2-run homer in the first inning of the game vs. the Giants. That’s homer No. 25. Exactly what we were hoping for. (We certainly won’t object if he gets more). It’s also RBI 75 and 76. Byrnesie is in the running for the team lead in RBI. Jackson and Tracy have 77. The R was No. 80.
It’s also his second homer in 3 days. And he hit double No. 37 last night. Looks like he’s heating up in the last week of the season.
Byrnes needs 2 more stolen bases to be 25/25.
Eric Byrnes has hit his 24th homer, a solo shot off Giants’ ace Jason Schmidt in the 4th inning. It was his 63rd XBH of the year, a new personal best for aggregate XBH. It was also RBI No. 74, a new personal best for RBI in a season.
That’s more like it!
(D’Backs leading 4-1 as CoJack followed up in the same inning with a 3-run HR).
When MLB.TV has a commercial break, it sometimes displays a little dialogue from the computer that says "Know what my favorite play is? The two-out walk-off grand slam. I know it’s kind of obvious. But I’m not changing it. Keep watching, you might see one."
Well, those were watching that game–not me, I was at work–saw precisely that, from Nomar Garciaparra. To center, over the head of Eric Byrnes. That’s now Nomar’s second walk-off homer this week. (Who does he think he is? David Ortiz?)
This is now at least the third walk-off hit sent beyond Byrnes’ reach. I saw the Mets get two walk-off hits (not homers) at Shea. With a runner on third, the outfielders were playing shallow to try to make a play at the plate on a single. The Mets’ balls were hit near the warning track. This time, Garciaparra hit the ball to the fans.
Byrnes bageled again with one K. I swear it’s like he’s forgotten how to hit.
After singling in the first inning, Byrnes stole second. That’s stolen base No. 23. That gives him 23 homers and 23 stolen bases. This exceeds the output of the D’Backs only other 20/20 man, Devon White, who went 22/22 in 1998.
In the 9th inning, Byrnesie singled with the bases loaded, driving in two runs. That makes 73 on the year, which ties his 2004 total, so far his career best.
Miguel Batista won the game! That’s his 11th win. It’s nice to see him win because he gets stuck with so many no decisions. He gave up three runs in the first–what is it about the first inning that D’Backs pitchers give up runs like there is some sort of law that says they have to?–but then he settled down and pitched well. Jose Valverde closed it out.
Byrnesie is in singles mode. All four hits tonight were singles, as was the one hit he got last night. That’s good for the average, but not good for the slugging percentage, the XBH/H and the TBs. But what bothers us most about tonight is that he was not driven in any of the 4 times he was on base, even though the stolen base put him on 2nd, and in a subsequent inning he got as far as third.
Byrnes also struck out once today. He’s been striking out regularly and we would like to see him stop that before he ends the season with 90+. That would still be an improvement over 2004, but we remember that earlier this year, he went 58 PA’s without a K. It would be nice if he could close out the season with a long no-K streak.
And while we were elated to see him get some RBI’s with the bases loaded, greedy DTLFL is still waiting to see Eric Byrnes get something more than a single with the bags full.
The D’Backs got 17 hits tonight.
Trevor Hoffman of the San Diego Padres got save No. 478 tonight. That ties him with Lee Smith for the all-time number of saves.
Kéllia "Still waiting for XBH No. 63" Ramares
Going into tonight’s game Eric Byrnes had great numbers against Dodger starter Derek Lowe and Dodger closer Takashi Saito. Looking at him in tonight’s 2-0 loss, you would have thought he was seeing them for the very first time.
He took most of the pitches he saw from them tonight. When forced to protect the plate in his first time up, he GIDP. And only the highness of the chopper to third and his speed saved his second grounder from also being a double play; the Boys in Blue settled for a fielder’s choice that got the lead runner.
Eric singled his third time up but was thrown out stealing on a pitchout. He ran on the first pitch. This is now the 2nd time in the last three attempts that he has been thrown out and both times were on pitchouts. (He drew a lot of throws when he was on with the fielder’s choice). Opposition teams have recognized him as a base-stealing threat and have made the adjustment. He now has to make the counter-adjustment.
Byrnes was his usual hustling self in the outfield, but at the plate he seemed lethargic. He has days when he seems unsure of himself at the plate and he ends up checking his swing and looking at things he should swing at. This was one of those days; it ought not to have been, given his prior successes against the pitchers he faced tonight. But there he was against Saito in the 8th, two out with runners on 2nd and 3rd and he was caught looking at a fast ball.
So Byrnes tonight had a DP, an FC that was almost a DP, a CS, a K and he had 4 LOB, three in scoring position. He came up with the game on the line in the 8th and served as a negative reminder of why Albert Pujols and David Ortiz are so special.
To sum up the night: YUCK!
Kéllia "Still waiting for XBH No. 63" Ramares
The Eric Byrnes line for the night was 2-4 with 2 RBI (with 2 out), 2 R, 1 BB with No K’s, and 1 SB. His batting average is now .272. And he has 71 RBI.
In the one-sided slugfest that was tonight’s game–the D’Backs got 18 hits–Byrnesie was the difference-maker in terms of getting the win. Batting 4th against David Wells, he drew a walk, went to second on a Conor Jackson single, stole third and scored on Johnny Estrada’s ground out. That was the D’Backs’ first run.
Byrnesie batted in the next two runs with a two-out single that scored Hudson from second and Gonzo from first. So when the Padres entered the bottom of the ninth, the last thing I wanted was for the D’Backs’ bullpen to mess with Byrnesie’s status as the difference-maker. They managed not to do that, but it was a little scary at first. They let a run score in the 8th, and the 9th was not 1-2-3.
My one quibble was that Byrnes’ hits were both singles. He still needs an XBH of any kind to set a new personal best for aggregate XBHs in a season, and 4 more doubles to set a new personal best in that category. Still, I will call this a quibble and not a fly in the ointment. I am elated that he batted in two of the three two-out RISP he had.
Thanks to a reader from Arizona, I got one of those Byrnes Dirty-T-Shirts. It fits great and I wore it to work tonight. I will be appropriately superstitious and wear it again to work tomorrow, since Byrnesie had such a good time today. (One of the nice things about being a radio tech is no dress code).
Welcome back to the game to Ryan Klesko of the Padres, who had a serious shoulder injury. He entered as a pinch hitter and walked.
And good luck to Jason Isringhausen of the St. Louis Cardinals. The 34-year-old closer is undergoing hip surgery.
I don’t think so.
Today Byrnes is batting cleanup. Within the last week, he’s been leadoff, fifth, 2nd and cleanup. Byrnesie’s not going to complain; he just wants to play. But can this sort of shifting around really aid his quest for consistency?
I don’t think so.
Today’s D’Backs lineup v. the Rockies: Young, Callaspo (SS), Gonzalez, Byrnes, Jackson, Hudson, Snyder, Green, Batista.
BTW, Congrats to Byrnesie who finally got to 500 ABs last night. And Good Luck to Batista. Would that I had $100 for every No Decision he’s gotten this year.