Kris Bryant could not get out of Cleveland fast enough. During the Cubs’ recent trip to Progressive Field, he not only battled illness but was hit by a pitch on the left wrist when he attempted to play again.
A day off to shake off that experience, plus a change of locale, did Bryant a world of good.
“He looked like the K.B. of old,” Cubs manager David Ross said after Friday’s 4-2 win over the Tigers at Comerica Park.
Specifically, Ross was referring to the classic Bryant swing that generated a two-run, opposite-field blast off Detroit lefty Tarik Skubal in the third inning. The home run jump-started a Cubs offense that labored to deliver the kind of breakthrough hit that could have avoided the pair of one-run losses to the Tribe.
Bryant’s home run in Detroit gave him 10 on the season, making him one of eight MLB players in double-digits on the year. It also gave him an MLB-leading 24 extra-base hits and helped Chicago’s superstar utility man boost his slugging percentage to an MLB-best .667.
Only Angels center fielder Mike Trout has a better OPS than Bryant (1.069), who ranks fourth in the Majors with 2.1 WAR (per Fangraphs). With a .309 average, .403 on-base percentage and 80 total bases, Bryant is looking very much like the National League MVP he was five years ago.
“I mean, Kris has shown what he can do over his career,”…