The Chicago Cubs could use a strong second half from Anthony Rizzo and right out of the gate the kid has been on fire! Announced yesterday by MLB.com, Rizzo won the player of the week for his performance against the Arizona Diamondbacks. During the three-game set Rizzo went 5-11 with three home runs, giving him 23 on the year, which matches his career high. Watch the video here.
Rizzo’s line for the year is as follows: .281/.384/.522 with 23 home runs and 53 RBI. Surprisingly Rizzo has done a majority of his damage this year when he is first-pitch-swinging. According to ESPN.com, Rizzo is hitting .432 with eight home runs and 13 RBI on the first pitch. He has also been particularly good when he is leading off an inning, hitting .355 with five home runs.
Rizzo has made great strides this season in becoming a more complete player; the type of player who can anchor a lineup and change the outcome of a game. His biggest accomplishment has been his success hitting against left-handed pitching. According to Fangraphs.com, Rizzo hit a mere .189 against south paws in 2013 but this year he has made the adjustment and is batting .312 against lefties, which is more than 40 points better than his average against righties.
Anthony Rizzo has had quite a week: going to his first all-star game, winning his first MLB player of the week and hopefully he can continue his hot streak tomorrow when the Cubs take on the San Diego Padres at 7:05 at Wrigley Field.
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