Nolan Arenado hit for the cycle on Father’s Day, but the way he did it was what was special. The Colorado Rockies were vying for a four-game sweep of the San Francisco Giants, and entered the 9th inning trailing 5-3. After striking out in the 7th inning, Arenado came up to the plate with runners on the corners, one out, down by 5-4 and a home run short of the cycle.
Not only did Arenado complete the cycle, but he’s the first player to complete the cycle with a walk-off home run since 2010 when his teammate Carlos Gonzalez did it.
In his career, Arenado has four career walk-off hits. Three of those four hits have come against the Giants.
That’s not why he’s proving himself as one of the elite players in baseball. He’s making a serious case for the best third baseman in baseball. The favorite comparison among the masses is Arenado vs Kris Bryant. This season, it’s not even close; Arenado has a higher batting average, slugging and OPS, along with more home runs, RBI’s and extra-base hits.
With a batting average of .361 in the month of June, he’s pushed his average from .278 to .299, and he has a hit in all but four games this month. His batting average on balls in play (BAbip) is a whopping .451 this month, which means almost half the time he puts it in play he’s getting a hit.
Arenado regained his lead in doubles this weekend by recording five total; four of them coming in his first six at-bats. The reigning RBI champ also closed the gap on baseball’s current RBI leader, Jake Lamb.
Arenado is currently projected to finish the season with 34 home runs and 115 RBI’s, which wouldn’t really be up to the standard we’re used to. Since 1901, only three third basemen have recorded 40+ home runs and 130+ RBI’s multiple times. Those players are Miguel Cabrera, Jimmie Foxx and Nolan Arenado.
Defensively, Arenado is as good as gets. The Rockies are 72 games into the season, and Arenado has one error is 186 total chances. He believes he can get an out on any ball hit to him, and when he makes plays like this, you’d be inclined to believe him.
There’s no question that Arenado is one of the best the game has to offer, but this year it looks he’s on a mission along with the Rockies. Coors Field was jam-packed on Sunday afternoon, and when he hit the walk-off, the crowd went wild. Rockies baseball hasn’t been this exciting since their miraculous run to the World Series in 2007, and Arenado is leading the charge.