May 30, 2017 was a big day for pitchers around the majors as Trevor Bauer had a career high game with 14 strike outs, Robbie Ray pitched his first complete game shutout, and Eric Skoglund pitched 6 1/3 shutout innings in his debut. Throw in a 12th inning walk-off single off the bat of Jay Bruce and you have today’s additions to the Topps Now baseball card series.
Card #199 – Trevor Bauer’s 14K Win
To say that the Oakland Athletics are having a hard time avoiding Ks is a bit of an understatement. In their five most recent games they have a total of 65 strikeouts and Trevor Bauer, despite allowing seven hits and three earned runs, was the bringer of 14 strikeouts in yesterday’s game.
As these things seem to go, what is horrible for Oakland is a career milestone for Bauer who broke his record of 13 set on August 19, 2016 against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Throwing 113 pitches over seven innings, this win brought Bauer’s win percentage above .500 for the first time in 2017. This is the first Bauer card to appear in the 2017 collection.
Card #200 – Robbie Ray’s First Complete Game & Shutout
The Diamondbacks are quietly assembling a solid start to their 2017 season and Robbie Ray is quietly getting the work done on the mound. Now sitting on a 5-3 record and a 2.8 WAR, Arizona is 7-4 in games he starts.
Over 69 nice innings, Ray has allowed 23 earned runs and given up seven home runs leaving his ERA at a flat 3.00. His complete game and shutout on Tuesday came with only four hits, no walks, and 10 strikeouts and he needed only 115 pitches to get the job done. 76 of his pitches were strikes (35 contact strikes, 20 swinging strikes, and 21 strikes looking).
This is Ray’s first Topps Now card of the year.
Card #201 – Eric Skoglund’s Impressive Debut
In a debut Royals fans will not soon forget, Skoglund pitched 6.1 innings of shutout baseball, allowing just two hits and one walk. With an ERA, naturally, at 0.00 and a 0.474 WHIP, the 24 year old lefty made quite an impression by allowing Kansas City to defeat Detroit by a final score of 1-0.
Obviously, this is Skoglund’s first Topps Now card and is listed as a rookie card.
Card #202 – Jay Bruce’s 12th Inning Walk-Off Single
Jay Bruce is enjoying a bit of a rebound from his lackluster 50 games with the New York Mets in 2016. So far, Bruce ranks in the top 20 among National League hitters in the areas of home runs and RBI and has the first positive RAA and WAA since 2013. Whether or not he can sustain and improve over the season for which he is earning $13 million will remain to be seen but for the moment, he’s a Mets hero after hitting a walk-off single to end a 12 inning tie.
The Milwaukee Brewers tied the game 4-4 in the 7th inning and Bruce finished the game going 1 for 6 at the plate but the one he did land, with one out in the 12th inning, was enough to bring T.J. Rivera across the plate and end the four and a half hour campaign.
This is the second Topps Now card for Jay Bruce in 2017. His previous card, #65, sold 406 copies.
As always, these cards are available for 24 hours via Topps’ website (click the banner at the bottom) and a complete checklist of cards and final print runs can be found under the tab at the top of this page.