Dose: Thrice is Nice Kendrys!

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David Shovein
Brad Johnson breaks down the latest home run exploits including the continuation of the Ronald Acuna Beanball Extravaganza and a torrid week from Kendrys Morales
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Already in the midst of an outstanding offensive season, Kendrys Morales had himself quite the memorable afternoon as the Royals thrashed the Tigers in Motown on Sunday. The 32-year-old slugger blasted a career-high three home runs and tripled, finishing the day 4-for-4 plus a walk, with five runs scored and three RBI.

Morales tagged Tigers starter Alfredo Simon with the first two long balls, solo blasts in the third and fourth innings. He then launched his final shot off right-hander Jeff Ferrell in the eighth inning. He finished the game in the on-deck circle, coming just short of having another opportunity to add to his offensive onslaught.

In addition to being a personal best, his 15 total bases in the contest set a new Royals franchise record. The previous record holder had been George Brett, netting 14 total bases on May 28, 1979. It was also just the eighth time in franchise history that a player has hit three homers in a game, and the first since Danny Tartabull accomplished the feat in 1991.

Astonishingly, Morales became the 10th player in the league this season to blast three homers in one game. Adrian Gonzalez, Bryce Harper, Edwin Encarnacion, J.D. Martinez, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Joey Votto, Yoenis Cespedes, Lucas Duda and Alex Rodriguez have also turned in the hat trick this season.

A very strong contender for Comeback Player of the Year award honors in the American League, Morales has been an extremely valuable bat in the middle of the Kansas City lineup. He's now hitting .293/.355/.490 with 21 home runs and a team-leading 105 RBI.

Brewers hire top young gun

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports and Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reported Sunday that the Brewers are set to name Astros Assistant General Manager David Stearns as their next general manager on Monday.

The Brewers were said to be in the market for a younger candidate with a knowledge of analytics, and Stearns certainly fits the bill. The 30-year-old Harvard graduate has risen quickly through the ranks and is considered one of the brightest young minds in the game. He served as the manager of labor relations for the Office of the Commissioner from 2008-2011 before joining the Indians as their Director of Baseball Operations from 2011-2012.

He signed on as the Astros Assistant General Manager in 2013, a role in which he has worked hand-in-hand with GM Jeff Luhnow to rebuild an organization primed for a playoff berth in 2015.

He will be replacing Doug Melvin, who has served as the team's GM for the past 13 seasons but announced in August that he would be stepping down from that post. He will remain onboard as an advisor to Stearns, at least initially. Brewers owner Mark Attanasio has already made it clear though that one condition of the hiring a new GM is that Craig Counsell will remain on as the Brewers manager in 2016.

The only significant contracts on the books that he will inherit are owed to Matt Garza and Ryan Braun, so it's far from a disastrous situation. There are also plenty of intriguing young pieces in place in the organization, including the haul that they received back from the Astros in the Carlos Gomez trade.

Down goes Yadi!


Yadier Molina is set to undergo an MRI on Monday after suffering a sprained left thumb during Sunday's victory over the Cubs. The injury occurred when he made an impressive swipe tag to nab a sliding Anthony Rizzo at home plate, who would have been the game's tying run in the eighth inning.

Molina noted that his left thumb has bothered him for some time now, due simply to the regular wear and tear of working behind the plate during the big league season. He remained in the game for the remainder of the inning, but was lifted for a pinch hitter as manager Mike Matheny didn't want to chance doing any additional damage while swinging the bat.

The Cardinals will have an update on his status after Monday's exam, but fantasy owners will need to have an alternative option ready to go in the event that the All-Star backstop is looking at an extended absence from the lineup. Tony Cruz replaced him on Sunday and would see the bulk of the playing time in his absence.

American League Quick Hits: Masahiro Tanaka will miss his scheduled start against the Blue Jays on Wednesday due to a grade 1 hamstring strain... Felix Hernandez was removed from Sunday's start due to stiffness in his elbow, though he's expected to make his next start... Giovanny Urshela continues to miss time due to a lingering right shoulder injury... Tommy Milone will miss his next scheduled start due to left shoulder fatigue... Rich Hill piled up 10 strikeouts in a victory over the Blue Jays... Collin McHugh hurled eight innings of one-run ball in a critical victory over the A's... Colby Rasmus smashed a pair of home runs and plated three in that same contest... Chris Davis blasted his league-leading 43rd home run in a losing effort against the Rays... Josh Tomlin fired 5 2/3 shutout innings in a win over the White Sox... Tyler Duffey struck out seven over seven shutout innings in a win against the Angels... Derek Holland was blasted for seven runs over 4 1/3 innings in a loss to the Mariners... Robinson Cano homered and plated four runs in that win over the Rangers... Barry Zito appeared in a major league game for the first time since September of 2013.

National League Quick Hits: Casey Kelly will start for the Padres on Friday against the Diamondbacks... Ryan Braun missed another game due to his lingering back issue... Jonathan Lucroy (concussion) caught a bullpen session on Sunday and remains hopeful for a return before the end of the season... Michael Foltynewicz was hospitalized on Sunday due to blood clots in his right arm... Adrian Gonzalez missed Sunday's contest due to back stiffness... The Phillies have shut down Adam Morgan for the remainder of the 2015 season... Yasiel Puig continues to experience tightness in his left hamstring and manager Don Mattingly says that he's only at 65 percent right now... Juan Uribe was forced to leave Sunday's game with a bruised chest... Julio Teheran carried a perfect game into the seventh inning in a victory over the Phillies... Stephen Strasburg whiffed 10 Marlins over seven innings of one-run ball... Tim Hudson spun six shutout innings against the Diamondbacks to earn his 222nd career victory... Gerrit Cole earned his 17th victory, punching out nine Dodgers over seven innings... Matt Harvey struck out seven over five scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Yankees.