FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – It’s the most wonderful time of year for baseball fans across the country as the Major League Baseball playoffs get underway this week. 11 former Razorbacks appeared in at least one MLB game this year and three will get to continue their run to a World Series title as divisional series begin on Thursday.
With Andrew Benintendi, Dallas Keuchel, and Logan Forsythe all expected to be on playoff rosters for their respective clubs, Arkansas is one of 18 schools nationwide with three or more players. The SEC led all conferences with 39 players and the Razorbacks tied for fifth most in the league.
|Andrew Benintendi (BOS)||151||573||84||155||243||26||1||20||90||70||7||112||20||5||.271||.352||.424||.776|
|Logan Forsythe (LAD)||119||361||56||81||118||19||0||6||36||69||1||109||3||2||.224||.351||.327||.678|
|Dallas Keuchel (HOU)||14||5||2.90||23||23||1||0||145.2||116||50||47||15||2||47||0||125||.218||1.12|
#BennyBaseball Returns To Postseason
As one of the most popular rookies in the game today, former Hog outfielder Andrew Benintendi is having an encore-worthy second year with the Boston Red Sox. Benintendi will be making his second-straight postseason appearance with his club when the Red Sox take on the Houston Astros in the best-of-five series starting today at 3 p.m. in Minute Maid Park.
After playing in only 34 games last year, the Ohio native was still considered a rookie in 2017, but didn’t put up rookie-like numbers. His .271 average was sixth among all Red Sox players with 100 or more at-bats and 15th among all rookies in MLB. He was also the only rookie and one of just nine players to hit 20 home runs and steal 20 bases this year.
The 20/20 season for Benintendi made him the youngest left fielder since Barry Bonds in 1987 to notch a 20 home run and 20 steal campaign and only the third Red Sox rookie ever to achieve the feat, joining Nomar Garciaparra and Ellis Burks.
Keuchel Back To Form
Benintendi and the Red Sox will be going up against another former Razorback on Friday as left-handed pitcher Dallas Keuchel is scheduled to be the game two starter for the Astros. The Tulsa, Oklahoma native will be making his second postseason appearance, the last coming back in 2015.
Keuchel’s year was a bounce back of sorts. After winning just nine games and compiling a 4.55 ERA in 2016, the six-year pro went 14-5 with a 2.90 ERA and 125 strikeouts this year. His ERA was the best among all Astros starting pitchers and his win total was tied for ninth among all American League pitchers.
Now with ace pitcher Justin Verlander as part of the rotation, Keuchel and the rest of the Astros are primed to build on their 101-win season and AL Western Division crown. First pitch for Thursday’s game one is scheduled for 3 p.m. on MLB Network. Game two will start at 1 p.m. on Friday on Fox Sports 1.
American League Division Series Schedule
|Date||Time (CT)/TV Network||Matchup|
|Thu, Oct. 5||3 p.m./MLB Network||Boston at Houston|
|Fri, Oct. 6||1 p.m./Fox Sports 1||Boston at Houston|
|Sun, Oct. 8||1:30 p.m./Fox Sports 1||Houston at Boston|
|Mon, Oct. 9||TBD||Houston at Boston (if necessary)|
|Wed, Oct. 11||TBD||Boston at Houston (if necessary)|
Forsythe and Dodgers Ride MLB’s Best Record Into Postseason
The Los Angeles Dodgers have arguably been the best team in MLB since day one and they’ve had no shortage of weapons. Former Hog and infielder Logan Forsythe, who signed with the Dodgers prior to spring training, has been one of those weapons as the Dodgers claimed the National League Western Division title with a 104-58 record. The 104 wins is the most by a team in a single season since 2004.
Statistically, 2017 hasn’t been Forsythe’s best of his seven-year career. He’s hit just .224 in 119 games with six home runs and 36 RBIs, but after spending a month on the disabled list due to a broken toe and hamstring tightness in April, Forsythe has had a strong resurgence in September. In the final month of the season, Forsythe played 26 games and hit two home runs with eight RBIs, eight walks and 14 hits.
His 14 hits tied for fifth on the team and he had the seventh-highest OPS on the team (.676) through the final month.
The Dodgers start their run to the World Series on Friday against the Arizona Diamondbacks with first pitch from Dodger Stadium at 9:30 p.m. on TBS.
National League Division Series Schedule
|Date||Time (CT)/TV Network||Matchup|
|Fri, Oct. 6||9:30 p.m./TBS||Arizona at Los Angeles|
|Sat, Oct. 7||8 p.m./TBS||Arizona at Los Angeles|
|Mon, Oct. 9||TBD||Los Angeles at Arizona|
|Tues, Oct. 10||TBD||Los Angeles at Arizona (if necessary)|
|Thu, Oct. 12||TBD||Arizona at Los Angeles (if necessary)|
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