With Major League Baseball near midterm, now is a perfect time to look at some of the best performers of the first half of 2017. Some bats are on fire, threatening the 50 home run mark. It looks like Boston Red Sox ace Chris Sale and Washington’s Max Scherzer are contenders for the Cy Young award.

Sale is 10-3 with 155 strikeouts and he allows less than one batter to reach base per inning he hurls. His win above replacement is 3.6, according to Baseball Reference. One is the league average. The Nats bullpen has cost Mad Max a couple of wins so far this season, but Scherzer is 9-5 with 151 strikeouts and also he allows less than one batter to reach base per inning.

Scherzer leads hurlers with a 4 WAR.

Hitters wild

The best American League hitter so far is Yankee rookie Aaron Judge. The behemoth has already knocked 26 dingers, is batting .331, and has an On Base + Slugging Percentage of 1.141. By way of comparison, an OPS of 1 is almost unheard of, and to exceed that is out of this world. Most telling of all, Judge’s wins above replacement statistic was an MLB-leading 4.8 as of June 27th.

Today’s baseball geeks generally agree WAR is the best statistic by which to judge players. However, the plethora of stats is one of the things that attract followers. Three numbers long-time fans have looked at to weigh hitters are batting average, home runs, and RBI. Other names emerge using these.

Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner leads the MLB with a .385 batting average, but his power numbers are weak. He has about 100 less at bats than league leaders. Still, Turner posts a 3.2 WAR. Seattle Mariners rookie Ben Gamel leads American League hitters with a .346 average. He also boasts a .910 OPS and a 2 WAR.

He is also on the lower end of the at bat register.

Close races

Judge is running away with the American League homerun title at this point. The National League is much tighter. Cody Bellinger of the Dodgers, leads the mix with 24 long balls, but 10 other hitters have 20 or more homers.

Arizona Diamondback Paul Goldschmidt leads MLB with 65 RBI.

He has a WAR of 4.2 and an OPS of 1.053. Mariner Nelson Cruz was one RBI ahead of Judge—59-58—as of this writing.

Gems on the mound

Sale and Scherzer are the pitchers in their respective leagues so far. Others of note include Houston Astro Dallas Keuchel—whose 9-0 record ties for MLB best win/lost percentage—with the MLB leading 1.67 ERA and .872 WHIP—second to Scherzer’s .808. Kansas City Royal Jason Vargas is tied for baseball’s most victories with the Dodgers Clayton Kershaw at 11.

As the trade deadline approaches at the end of July, relievers are expected to be dealt from teams building for the future to those looking to contend now. Some of the best will stay where they are. Greg Holland leads the MLB in saves with 25.

He has a 1.63 ERA and 1.012 WHIP. The Colorado Rockies are in contention and Holland—a free agent acquisition before the season—is part of it. Boston’s Craig Kimbrel has an AL leading 21 saves. Tampa Bay Ray Jesus Colome and Minnesota Twin Brandon Kintzler each have 20 saves. All of their clubs are either in first place or in contention.

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