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The Monday Takeaway

The Cubs lost to the Pirates, but we’re not here to talk about that. Not exactly that, anyways. Part of that.

Chicago lost 5-1. Here’s the “1” part:

Look at that sweet, beautiful swing. That’s a power swing. That’s an uppercut geared for power. It’s like the healthy, functional version of Greg Bird that’s occasionally popped up.

It’s Cole freaking Hamels.

Hamels, who is a pitcher, hit the ball out to a deep part of Wrigley Field. That’s really damn hard to do, no matter how Friendly the Confines. Cole Hamels hit a beautiful dinger, and it was a sight to see. The Cubbies lost but let’s appreciate the fact that Hamels laid pipe and did it in glorious fashion. Let’s watch it again:


It was just the second homer of his career. It was awesome.

The DH should still be in both leagues, by the way.

Quick Hits from Monday

Goodness gracious, Corey Kluber is disgusting.


That’s 20 wins on the season for Kluber, by the way. Good luck figuring out the Cy Young race in the American League. There’s a few guys you can reasonably argue for, and Kluber is decidedly one of them.


Ho-hum, the Red Sox won again.


Oh, it’s a franchise-record 106th win. Yawn. They’re an unstoppable juggernaut. Who gives a rip? They’ve got two MVP candidates. I’m dying over here.

Wake me up. Snoring.

They’ve got the top seed for the American League playoffs. What else is new? Cole Hamels hit a homer!



And here is your regular dose of Shohei Ohtani—who is good. That’s 21 bombs for Ohtani. Sho-time Madness.

Defensive Play of the Day


Brett Gardner did not start this game. He came in when Aaron Hicks tweaked his hamstring. He hasn’t been playing much center field these days, either. He still managed to make one of the best catches of his career. But that’s nothing when compared to Cole Hamels hitting a home run.

What to Watch on Tuesday

In the name of focusing on the remaining playoff races, let’s start by recommending the Brewers and Cardinals at 8:10 p.m. ET. Both teams are fighting for spots, and this game (this series, really) is incredibly important. Gio Gonzalez and Austin Gomber are your starters.

If you prefer the NL West to the NL Central, the Rockies are still fighting for the division title, and they’re playing the struggling Phillies at 8:40. Vince Velasquez and the seemingly omnipresent TBD will toe the rubber.

And finally, the Athletics and Mariners are going at 10:10. Seattle already has been eliminated, but Oakland is still chasing the Yankees for the right to host the Wild Card game. Brett Anderson and Mike Leake get the ball first. It makes you wonder if Cole Hamels will do this again:

Thank you for reading

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Nick, I heard a rumor that Cole Hamels hit a home run, can you confirm? Seems like the sort of thing that ought to be properly covered in this column...