Cincinnati Reds starter Homer Bailey, who threw his second career no-hitter on July 2nd, and Atlanta Braves backstop Brian McCann, who had 15 hits in six games, have been named National League Co-Players of the Week for the period ending July 7th. The announcement was made earlier today on MLB Network.
On Tuesday, Bailey tossed the first no-hitter in the Majors this season, throwing 109 pitches while fanning nine and walking just one for a 3-0 victory over the San Francisco Giants at Great American Ball Park. Prior to last week's gem, the 27-year-old had thrown the most recent no-hitter (September 28, 2012 at Pittsburgh) in the Majors, making him the first pitcher to be responsible for the Major Leagues' last two no-hitters since fellow Texas native Nolan Ryan (1974-75). In doing so, Bailey joined a class of four active pitchers with two no-hit efforts on their resume (Philadelphia's Roy Halladay, Detroit's Justin Verlander and Toronto's Mark Buehrle). Bailey's performance was the 16th no-hitter in franchise history and he joined Johnny Vander Meer and Jim Maloney as the only Reds pitchers to notch two career no-hitters in the Club's history. Bailey improved his record to 5-6 with the no-no, and his ERA dropped to 3.57 (44 earned runs in 111.0 innings pitched). This is his third career weekly award (also: September 28-October 3, 2009 and September 25-31, 2012).
In six games last week, McCann led the Majors in batting average and hits, going 15-for-25 for a .600 mark. The six-time N.L. All-Star led the Senior Circuit with a .600 on-base percentage and 22 total bases and ranked second among N.L. hitters with an .880 slugging percentage. McCann hit safely in every game last week while collecting two-or-more hits in five of his six, including a career-high-tying four-hit performance in a 13-4 win at Philadelphia on Saturday. The Georgia native went 4-for-5 with a double and had two runs scored in the contest. He went 3-for-4 in a losing effort on Sunday, extending his current hitting streak to eight games. It was his first outing in seven straight games (6/29-7/6) that he had not recorded at least one extra-base hit. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, his streak was the longest by a Braves catcher since Earl Williams accomplished the feat in July 1972 (also seven games). With the torrid week, McCann saw his average rise from .250 to .304 on the season. This is his first career weekly award.
Other noteworthy performances last week included Milwaukee's Norichika Aoki (.424, 14 H, 4 RBI, .424 OBP); Washington's Wilson Ramos (.500, HR, 8 RBI, .833 SLG) and Ryan Zimmerman (.346, HR, 8 RBI, .400 OBP); Chicago's Alfonso Soriano (3 HR, 9 RBI, .625 SLG); Juan Uribe (.300, 2 HR, 11 RBI, .750 SLG) and 2013 N.L. All-Star Clayton Kershaw (2-0, 0.53 ERA, 11 SO, 17.0 IP) of the Los Angeles Dodgers; Jeremy Hefner (2-0, 1.29 ERA, 14 SO, 14.0 IP) of the New York Mets; and Philadelphia's Jonathan Pettibone (2-0, 1.64 ERA, 12 SO, 11.0 IP).
In recognition of their National League Player of the Week Award, Homer Bailey and Brian McCann will each be awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.