Next Level Player of the Week
Varitek had a key two-run home run in the eighth inning to give the Red Sox some insurance in their 9-5 win over the Yankees on Wednesday. The blast came on a Luis Ayala fastball on the first pitch of the at-bat. This season, Varitek is 14-for-25 (.560) with four home runs and 11 RBIs on first pitches of at-bats.
Pujols hit a home run in both of his first two at-bats against the Brewers on Sunday, the second of which was a grand slam. In the top of the third inning, Yovani Gallardo threw a fastball high and out of the strike zone to Pujols, who took it opposite field to clear the bases. For the season, Pujols has 13 hits, six home runs and 13 RBIs in at-bats that end with a fastball high and outside. His six home runs when facing the pitch lead the majors.
Lee was able to handle the pressure of stepping in as the starter against a top-five opponent on Saturday. He did not throw an interception in 22 pass attempts. When Oregon tried to add pressure, Lee made them pay by completing 66.7 percent of his passes against the blitz, including a touchdown.
Griffin was named the national player of the week after throwing for 359 yards and a career-high five touchdowns. He was able to get the ball downfield, completing five throws of 25-plus yards -- including three touchdowns. Griffin also completed a 19-yard throw to Kendall Wright, after which Wright ran 9 more yards to the end zone. Griffin's four touchdown completions of 25-plus yards tied his career high.
SAMSUNG NEXT LEVEL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
The Samsung Next Level Player of the Week pits four athletes with the most impressive statistical performances against each other.