A golden sombrero is awarded to a player who manages to strike out four times in a single game (real golden sombrero not included). It's quite the feat unless you're Ryan Howard or Mark Reynolds. Unfortunately, cycles and no-hitters are all the rage nowadays. Not for me, though. I will pour over the box scores to bring you the finest at swinging and missing.
Oh, I had to look Chris Valaika up. We here at Off Base have a both coasts bias. We often overlook what's going on in your precious midwest. So I'll occasionally miss a prospect from Cincinnati or Milwaukee or Pittsburgh. Basically anyone from the NL Central. But we're bringing in an intern to help us out with the divisions we don't care about.
Valaika, a 25-year-old second baseman, was called up a week ago and wasted no time collecting his first Golden Sombrero. The Sombrero almost got past me because it was slightly overshadowed by Aroldis Chapman's debut and 103.9 MPH fastball. Aroldis couldn't have gotten to the bigs at a better time after baseball recently lost that pitching prospect for the Nationals. I already forgot his name. I want to say Sam Steinberg. Anyway, Chapman will be all the talk until he has surgery when his elbow explodes.
I guess we might as well take a look at Valaika's poor night at the dish before Chapman completely hijacks this post...
Bottom 3rd: Valaika struck out swinging against Yovani Gallardo. He actually singled in the first so the night was "Mark Reynolds terrible."
Bottom 5th: Valaika struck out looking against Gallardo. Gallardo gave up 8 runs in 5 innings but it was better than his last start. I assume he wasn't robbed at gunpoint again last night.
Bottom 6th: Valaika struck out swinging against Gallardo.
Top 8th: Chapman strikes out Jonathan Lucroy by ridiculousness. Lucroy might as well have been swinging a spoon against the last pitch.
Bottom 8th: Valaika struck out swinging against Todd Coffey.