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Three strikes: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hits three homers, Twins' troubles continue

Steve Gardner, USA TODAY
·3 min read
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Even if you already know the scores, we'll try to shed some light on some underappreciated aspects of what happened in the previous day's games -- and how they could affect the players and teams going forward.

There was a full slate of action on the diamond Tuesday evening, but with apologies to Ronald Acuña Jr.'s 481-foot home run (second-longest of the 2021 season), someone else stole the show on offense.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. nearly hit for the home run cycle on Tuesday vs. Washington with a solo homer in the fifth inning, a two-run shot in the seventh and a grand slam in the third.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. nearly hit for the home run cycle on Tuesday vs. Washington with a solo homer in the fifth inning, a two-run shot in the seventh and a grand slam in the third.

Like father, like son

It was a clash of generations when the Washington Nationals traveled to face the Toronto Blue Jays.

In the battle between Max Scherzer and Vladimir Guerrero Jr., the youngster definitely had the upper hand on this occasion. Vlad Jr. launched a grand slam off the Nats ace in the bottom of the third. Facing Scherzer again in the fifth, he crushed a solo shot.

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And for good measure, with Scherzer out of the game and Kyle Finnegan on the mound, Vlad Jr. went deep a third time -- a two run shot that gave him seven RBI for the game.

Interestingly, the 35-year-old Scherzer is old enough to have faced Guerrero's father, Hall of Famer Vladimir Sr., who was 4-for-9 (.444) with a double and two home runs against him.

Guerrero Jr. matched his dad with the two homers Tuesday night and is now 2-for-6 (.333) in his career against the three-time Cy Young award winner. (h/t: Baseball-Reference.com's Stathead)

Fun fact: In Vlad Sr.'s 2,147-game major league career, he never had a three-homer game.

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Jazz unplugged

One of the nice surprises of the young season has been the emergence of Miami Marlins rookie infielder Jazz Chisholm.

After barely earning a roster spot in spring training, the energetic Chisholm, 23, has sparked the Marlins -- in much the same way Fernando Tatis Jr. has done for the San Diego Padres -- by hitting .279 with four home runs and six stolen bases.

And who doesn't love the name "Jazz"?

However, the music stopped abruptly against the Milwaukee Brewers when Chisholm had to leave the game with a strained left hamstring, after he had already singled, stolen his seventh base and scored a run.

We'll have to wait for further word on the extent of his injury, but hopefully it won't be too long before we see more of young Jasrado Hermis Arrington Chisholm.

Twins in need of a spark

The Twins have demoted Alex Colome from the closer's role after a shaky start to the season in which he blew three save chances and on Monday gave up a game-winning two-run homer in the 10th inning to Cleveland's Jordan Luplow.

Colome and his 6.75 ERA were back on the mound Tuesday, but in the eighth inning of a game the Twins were losing 5-4. He faced six batters, walked three, hit one, got two out and allowed two runs. The defending AL Central Champion Twins (7-15) have lost four in a row and are now have the worst record in baseball.

Taylor Rogers, who recorded 30 saves for Minnesota in 2019 and has yet to allow an earned run this season, will take over closing duties going forward.

Follow Gardner on Twitter @SteveAGardner

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. has done something his Hall of Fame dad hasn't