MLB Weekly Roundup: Tim Anderson is the King of Swag and our Six-Tool Player
By Ben Verlander
FOX Sports Baseball Analyst
I sure didn’t think I’d be writing this week’s weekly roundup and talking about Albert Pujols being a Los Angeles Dodger, but here we are.
That’s right. The legendary Pujols, who was designated for assignment by the Los Angeles Angels, is staying in L.A. and joining the Dodgers. It’s a move that shocked me and shocked a lot of people around the baseball world.
That said, let’s take a look at some of the best storylines from the week that was and dive into some storylines of the coming week.
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
The Toronto Blue Jays are on a roll, and so is their young shortstop. Bo Bichette is firing on all cylinders right now at the plate, and this week’s photo of the week features him and his luscious locks.
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SIX-TOOL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
This week’s six-tool player of the week is the king of swag himself, Tim Anderson.
This man is an absolute electricity factory on the field, and he has fun playing this beautiful game. He has emerged as one of the best shortstops in the league, and this past week saw him truly catch fire.
Thursday afternoon, he led off the game with a demolished homer. If you haven't seen a no-doubt Anderson homer, I advise you to do so. Whether it’s a bat flip or a slow walk out of the batter's box, they are always fun to watch.
One of my favorite moments of the week was when time was called on the field, but the pitcher, who had already started his motion, threw the ball halfway up the backstop. Anderson jumped up like a little kid and swung in the ball’s direction anyway.
That’s what this award is all about: having fun, being exciting and playing hard, and Anderson embodies all of that. He also hit over .400 this week, which always helps.
TEAM OF THE WEEK
After a rather up-then-down start to the year, the Houston Astros are playing as you would expect them to with their talented roster, going 6-1 on the week and winning nine of their past 11 games.
The offense is really getting hot. Jose Altuve had a five-game stretch with multiple hits, getting him to the .300 mark on the season. The middle of the order, with Michael Brantley, Alex Bregman and Yuli Gurriel are all over the .300 mark on the season, is looking great as well.
The Astros' hot stretch earned them the honor of Team of the Week.
WHAT TO WATCH THIS WEEK
1. Astros at A’s
The AL West has two clear front-runners, and they are facing off this week in Oakland. The winner of this series will be the division leader, and the Astros are surging heading into the midweek showdown.
2. Mets at Braves
This is a huge series coming up this week for the Braves. It’s only May, but Atlanta is struggling, and the Mets have inched ahead in the division. The Braves, who were the favorites to win the division at the start of the year but have won only 19 of their first 40 games, need to turn things around soon. This series would be a great time to do it. I will be locked in on this NL East showdown this week.
3. Christian Yelich's return
The NL Central is totally up for grabs, and the Brewers are right there in second place behind the Cardinals. Their rotation is one of the best in baseball, but their offense has been struggling quite a bit without superstar Christian Yelich. He is expected to finish a rehab assignment this week and potentially make his return to the big-league squad, which would be a huge boost for this team.
THIS WEEK ON THE POD
Last week on "Flippin' Bats with Ben Verlander," we had our first World Series champion as a guest in Lance Lynn. This week, we're going even bigger: Bernie Williams, a four-time World Series champion, five-time All-Star and one of the best switch-hitting center fielders of all time, joins me!
This is a can’t-miss episode for sure.
Ben Verlander is an MLB Analyst for FOX Sports and the host of the "Flippin' Bats" podcast. Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, Verlander was an All-American at Old Dominion University before he joined his brother, Justin, in Detroit as a 14th-round pick of the Tigers in 2013. He spent five years in the Tigers organization. Follow him on Twitter @Verly32.