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Justin Upton is a freak of nature

Somewhere Bob Melvin is still skeptical


Justin Upton was misguidedly benched on Opening Day by a manager who's since been fired, went hitless in his first 13 at-bats of the season after getting into the lineup ... and is batting .345/.415/.689 with nine homers, 20 total extra-base hits, 14 walks, 26 RBIs, and 26 runs in 32 games since.

Upton went 4-for-7 with two homers and six RBIs in the Diamondbacks' extra-inning victory over the Marlins last night, blasting a three-run bomb in the 13th inning, and now ranks sixth among NL hitters with a 1.011 OPS. Oh, and he won't be 22 years old until August.

If he keeps up this pace, Upton would become just the seventh 21-year-old in baseball history to post a 1.000 OPS. The six who've done it so far? Jimmie Foxx, Joe Jackson, Ted Williams, Mel Ott, Eddie Mathews, and Albert Pujols. And last season he became one of just 15 players to post an .800 OPS as a 20-year-old.

As teammate Augie Ojeda put it: "He's a freak of nature."

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