Jacob deGrom looked at catcher Rene Rivera and settled into his stance. He looked towards Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton and fired a pitch that Stanton turned on and launched 436-feet into the left field stands.
Stanton’s solo shot in the sixth inning tied a MLB record of four home runs over his past four at-bats. Not only did he tie the record, but he set a personal milestone, hitting his 200th career home run.
Stanton became the 40th player to hit four home runs in four straight at-bats and the first since Adrian Gonzalez did so in 2015, according to Elias Sports Bureau. He is also the first Marlin since Derrek Lee in 2002.
Stanton also is the first player ever to have back-to-back multi home run games at Citi Field.
The 26-year-old outfielder is the Marlins’ all-time home run leader and after hitting No. 200 in just 781 games, has the potential to join to coveted 500-club if he can stay healthy.
The Miami Marlins have surprised many in 2016 after finishing 20 wins under .500 the year before. Thus far, the team is 44-41, just 6.5 games the National League East-leading Washington Nationals.
Stanton has struggled this season, hitting .231 with 19 home runs and 47 RBI. However, over the past two games, Stanton is 5-for-7 with four home runs and seven RBI.
“Just full-force for the second half, that’s all you can do,” Stanton told MLB.com on his struggles in 2016. “Nothing you can really attest to this first half. I’m nowhere near where I wanted to be. But if I keep looking back at that, it’s not going to get any better. Just take it day by day and keep pushing.”
The three-time All-Star is a career .266 hitter and is known as one of the league’s premier power hitters. While he has been in a slump during the first half of the 2016 season, he has not been lacking in power.
However, when looking deeper at his statistics, Stanton’s numbers have seen a slight decline. Stanton is striking out over a third of the time (33.6%), up about four percent from last season and the highest of his career.
Not only that, but his isolated power (ISO) is currently .238, down almost .100 from his career-best last season (.341). His WAR is also down to 0.6, the lowest of his career.
Stanton’s BABIP has remained the same since last season – down just .001 – and is he walking almost a percent more than 2015.
“He’s swinging the bat good for us, and now we have to get guys on in front of him and just continue on with the rest of our lineup,” manager Don Mattingly said. “One guy gets hot and others get cold. Right now, the way G is swinging the bat, you want to have guys on in front of him.”
A mid-season turnaround may be in store for Stanton, who is trying to hit his way out of a three month slump. He certainly is off to a good start, hitting over .300 in the month of July.