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Weekend Buzz: Uggla done being like Dunn, halfway to Joe's mark


The Weekend Buzz, while you were debating Frank McCourt's credit rating ...

1. Uggla's hitting streak (that began with a walk): Four weeks ago, Dan Uggla was hitting like Adam Dunn. Almost exactly like Dunn. He was hitting .173. Dunn was hitting .171.

Dunn is still hitting like Dunn. Uggla is hitting like Joe DiMaggio.

He's only halfway to 56 ("You can't even fathom that," Uggla said), but Uggla's 28-game hitting streak already feels just as improbable.

For one thing, it began with a walk.

Uggla's batting average is still only .220, but that's still 47 points higher than four weeks ago. (Getty Images)  
Uggla's batting average is still only .220, but that's still 47 points higher than four weeks ago. (Getty Images)  
Uggla and Braves hitting coach Larry Parrish both say Uggla's season turned around with his July 4 walk against Rockies left-hander Rex Brothers. Uggla hit two long foul balls, and came back from an 0-2 count.

"[Parrish] talked to me about it that day, and he said that at-bat was amazing," Uggla said.

Uggla went hitless in the walk game, but the next day, he went 2 for 2. And he's had at least one hit in every game since. He has the second longest streak in the majors this year (Andre Ethier had a 30-gamer), and the third longest streak in Atlanta history (Rico Carty has the record, at 31).

He's hitting .355 during the streak, and he's now among the National League leaders in home runs.

And Adam Dunn?

He's hitting .163. His longest hitting streak this year was five games.

2. CC and the Sox: Last week, we were asking why the Yankees couldn't trade for a real No. 2 starter. This week, we're asking why their No. 1 starter, CC Sabathia, can't beat the Red Sox. Sabathia gave up seven runs in a 10-4 loss Saturday, and he's 0-4 with a 7.20 ERA in four starts against Boston this season. The last Yankee to lose to the Red Sox four times in one year? Pat Dobson, in 1975.

3. Phils and Giants, Round 3: They played last October. They fought last Friday. Is there anyone out there who doesn't want to see the Phillies and Giants meet again in this year's playoffs (except maybe for fans of the Braves, Diamondbacks, Brewers and Cardinals)?

4. Scary times in Colorado: The Rockies have had a tough season, but nothing compares to what they watched Friday night, when an Ian Desmond line drive hit Rockies pitcher Juan Nicasio in the head. Nicasio, a promising 24-year-old who was making just his 13th big-league start, underwent surgery for a broken bone in his neck, and doctors said Sunday that there's a chance he will eventually come back and pitch. Let's hope so.

5. Tough times in Pittsburgh: OK, so the Pirates aren't heading to the World Series to play the Indians. They're not going to go from 105 losses last year to a division title this year.

But did they have to fall apart this fast?

Sunday's loss to the Padres was Pittsburgh's 10th straight, and now that the Pirates are 54-59, is anyone out there predicting that they'll break that record-setting string of 18 straight losing seasons?

The pitching that was so good earlier in the year has deserted them. The Pirates gave up 35 runs in their three weekend losses to the Padres. Before this weekend, the Padres hadn't scored double-digit runs in back-to-back games against the same opponent in more than six years.

6. Everything's wrong with the Mets: The Mets still have those "Prevention and Recovery" signs all around their clubhouse. But prevention doesn't seem to be working, and recovery isn't going well, either.

The weekend began with the news that Ike Davis (already out three months with a bone bruise) won't be back this year, and that Johan Santana (shoulder surgery) may not return, either.

The weekend ended with the news that Daniel Murphy (the team's hottest hitter) is headed to the disabled list with a possibly severe knee injury, and that Jose Reyes (the team's best player) is hurt again, with a hamstring injury.

By the late innings Sunday, David Wright was playing shortstop. At least he wasn't hurt.

7. Strasburg pitches: The Nationals allowed Stephen Strasburg to throw 31 pitches Sunday at Class A Hagerstown. Then they allowed him to say 31 words to reporters, who were asked to keep 31 feet away to avoid distracting him.

8. Lawrie hits: Did you hear that Brett Lawrie went 5-for-11 with a home run in his first three big-league games? If you live in Toronto, where they're already pushing Lawrie as "the franchise's first-ever Canadian superstar," I'm guessing you did.

9. Verlander wins again: When he beat the Royals on Saturday, Justin Verlander became baseball's second 16-game winner, joining CC Sabathia. And Verlander hasn't lost to the Red Sox this year. Not even once.

10. The other Braves streak: Uggla's hitting streak continued Sunday, but rookie first baseman Freddie Freeman's streak ended at 20 games. It was the longest by a Braves rookie since Alvin Dark had a 23-gamer for the 1948 Boston Braves, and it gave the Braves the first pair of 20-game hitting streaks since the 1980 Rangers (Al Oliver and Mickey Rivers).


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