MLB Notebook: Dynamic duo powering Tigers
Cabrera and Fielder have each had multiple four-RBI games this season
Last season, Detroit's Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder combined to drive in 247 runs -- the most in the Major Leagues for any pair of teammates, and the most for a Tigers duo since Rocky Colavito and Norm Cash combined for 272 RBIs in 1961.
Fielder -- starting all 162 games in the cleanup spot -- drove himself in 30 times and plated Cabrera 24 times and Austin Jackson 22 times. Cabrera -- the No. 3 hitter in all 161 of his starts in 2012 -- drove himself in 44 times and drove in Jackson 38 times. With Cabrera and Fielder again stationed back to back in the No. 3 and No. 4 spots in the Tigers' order, and with both leadoff man Jackson and two-hole hitter Torii Hunter off to blazing starts, one wonders if that combined RBI total from last year could be surpassed this season.
Cabrera drove in four runs as part of a three-hit night Tuesday, and the Tigers defeated the Mariners, 6-2, to improve to 8-5. Cabrera has a pair of four-RBI games already this season, as does Fielder. The last time teammates each had a pair of games with at least four RBIs so early in the season was in 2005, when the Giants' Michael Tucker and Pedro Feliz each had two. Dating back to 1916, this is the first time the Tigers have had teammates do it this early.
Hunter went 2-for-4, giving him his Major League-leading ninth multihit game of the season. Since 1916, only two other Tigers players have had as many as nine through the club's first 13 games: Dale Alexander in '31 and Charlie Gehringer in '36.
Jackson had a pair of hits and scored a pair of runs in the Tigers' win. He now has scored at least one run in 11 of the team's first 13 games, and he leads the Majors with 19 runs scored. Since 1916, Jackson is one of four Tigers to score a run in 11 of the club's first 13 contests. Al Kaline did it in '67, and Gehringer did it in '29 and '36.
In the first game of a doubleheader in Colorado, the Mets' David Wright hit his first two home runs of the season. Wright, who entered the game with a .385/.461/.670 career batting line at Coors Field, gave the Mets at least one home run in each of their first 12 games.
The streak, which came to an end in the second game, when the Mets could only muster one extra-base hit (a double) among their 12 hits, was among the longest for any team to open the season since 1916. The 2002 Indians opened with homers in their first 14 games, and the 1954 Cubs began their season with at least one long ball in each of their first 13 contests. The Mets matched the 12-game streaks compiled by the '86 Reds, '97 Rockies, 2001 D-backs and the '07 Devil Rays.
Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez went a combined 5-for-8 in the doubleheader sweep of the Mets. He scored five runs, had two singles, a double, a triple and a home run, drove in pair of runs, walked twice and stole a base.
With a pair of multihit games (driving his slash line up to .380/.467/.740), Gonzalez has seven of them on the season. Those seven through the team's first 14 games ties him with 10 others for the fourth most in team history. Ellis Burks had nine in 1994, and Andres Galarraga ('93) and Dante Bichette ('98) each had eight. Greatly assisted by his performances in the two games, Gonzalez leads the National League in runs scored, with 17.
Braves stay hot
The Braves hit five solo homers (including three in the eighth inning), defeated the Royals, 6-3, and improved to 12-1 on the season.
The Braves are the 11th team since 1916 to win at least 12 of their first 13 games.
The club hadn't collected so many solo home runs in one game since May 28, 2006, when it amassed seven.
For the second straight game, Minnesota catcher Joe Mauer collected four hits, and the Twins defeated the Angels, 8-6.
Mauer, who is the first Twins player with back-to-back four-hit games since Danny Valencia in 2010, now has 19 career games in which he has collected at least four hits while starting a game as a catcher. Those 19 are ninth most since 1916.
Mauer is a career .324 hitter, with his career OPS now standing at .874.
• Among all players since 1901 with at least 4,000 plate appearances through their age-30 season (Mauer is in his age-30 season), that .324 mark is currently tied for the 32nd highest. Mauer owns the second-highest batting average among those with at least 67 percent of their games at catcher, with Mike Piazza possessing a .328 mark through his age-30 season. Bill Dickey finished his age-30 season with a career average of .323.
• Among all catchers (at least 67 percent of their games at the position) since 1901 with at least 4,000 plate appearances through their age-30 season, Mauer's .874 OPS is the fourth highest, behind the marks produced by Piazza (.966), Mickey Cochrane (.902) and Dickey (.882). Mauer's 135 OPS+ trails only Piazza's 156.
A's triple their fun
Entering the game tied for the second-most home runs in the Majors, the Athletics went homerless Tuesday but tripled three times and defeated the Astros, 4-3.
Before the game, the club hadn't collected a trio of three-baggers since Aug. 3, 2002, when John Mabry had one and Mark Ellis had a pair. The most recent game in which the team had more than three was played on Aug. 29, 1967, when Bert Campaneris had three and John Donaldson had one.
The American League record for triples in a game is six, last accomplished by the Tigers in 1922.
Easy as 1-2-3
The Yankees defeated the D-backs, 4-2, with Mariano Rivera picking up his third save of the season with his first 1-2-3 outing of the year. Rivera -- who upped his career save total to 611 -- has 256 saves in which he's thrown at least one inning without allowing a baserunner. That total is second most, behind Trevor Hoffman's 260. No other pitcher has reached 200, with Billy Wagner third, with 184
Roger Schlueter is senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.