Sunday, July 22, 2018

Pirates Win 9th Straight Behind Corey Dickerson's 4-for-5; Ryon Healy Belts 2 3-Run Homers In Seattle Win

Players of the Day for Sunday, July 22, 2018

American League
Healy: 2 HR, 6 RBI

Seattle took two of three from the visiting White Sox, the series ending with Sunday's 8-2 victory.

Ryan Healy socked a pair of three-run homers to lead the way for the Mariners. Healy's first blast capped a five-run first inning; his second shot (#20) came in the eighth, turning a 5-2 Mariner lead into a laugher.

Healy is batting .244 and has driven in 53 runs this season, helping the Mariners to second place in the AL West, five games behind the Houston Astros.

Seattle will have a day off Monday, prior to a two-game meeting with the incoming Giants. Game time is 7:10 pm PDT.

National League

Corey Dickerson may be one of the better-kept secrets in the majors, but after his 4-for-5 game in a 9-2 Pittsburgh win at Cincinnati the story of the Pirates' leadoff hitter may be leaking out.

Dickerson scored the first run of the rout in the opening frame, doubling on an 0-2 pitch and scoring on Gregory Polanco's two-run homer.
Dickerson: 4-5, HR, 3R, 2RBI

Pittsburgh put up four in the second, highlighted by Dickerson's two-run homer, making the score 5-0.

In the fourth, Dickerson singled and scored. He singled again in the sixth before flying out in the eighth, finishing up the game with a homer, double, two singles, three runs, and two RBI.

Batting a solid .315 (5th in the NL), Dickerson has 107 hits, scored 47 runs and is batting .391 in July, hitting safely in 13 of 16 games this month, including eight multiple-hit games.

Consequently, the Pirates have won nine straight and 11 of their last 12, sweeping five from Milwaukee and three in a row in Cincinnati. Their Sunday jaunt earned them third place in the NL Central, eight games behind division leader, the Chicago Cubs.

The Pirates will try to extend their winning streak when they open a three-game series in Cleveland, Monday, 7:10 pm EDT.

Keon Broxton Lifts Brewers Over Dodgers; Dylan Covey Blanks Mariners In White Sox Win

Players of the Day for Saturday, July 21, 2018
Dylan Covey

American League

Dylan Covey blanked the Mariners for 8 1/3 innings; Joakim Soria got the final two batters in the ninth to finish off a 5-0 White Sox whitewash in Seattle.

Striking out five in his outing against the Mariners, Covey threw 105 pitches, allowing two hits and two walks, taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning. Dee Gordon's single with one out in the sixth broke up the no-hit bid, but Seattle failed to break through.

Covey, 26, took some great strides forward in his brief major league career. Last season, he was 0-7, with a 7.71 ERA. This year, in 12 starts, he's 4-5 with a 4.95 ERA.

The win was just the 15th road victory for Chicago, while the Mariners saw their hold on the second wild card spot slipping away with the loss. Oakland topped San Francisco, 5-4, in 11 innings, and are just three games behind Seattle.

The series wraps up Sunday at 4:10 pm EDT.

National League

Keon Broxton
Both the NL West and Central division races became more compressed on Saturday, as the Rockies took over second place in the West from the Diamondbacks with a 6-5 win at Arizona, while the Dodgers dropped a 4-2 decision at Milwaukee.

Those results left the Dodgers with a one-game lead over Colorado with Arizona another 1/2-game back.

In the Central, Milwaukee's win left them 2 1/2 behind the Cubs, as the Brewers snapped a seven-game losing streak.

Milwaukee's win was courtesy of outfielder Keon Broxton, who has played in just 20 games this season.

Facing Claton Kershaw, Broxton, 28, got the Brewers on the board in the second inning with a ground out that scored Ryan Braun from third, then put Milwaukee ahead by two in the sixth with a triple to right center that plated Manny Pina and sent Kershaw to the showers.

Milwaukee hosts the Dodgers in the rubber game of their three game series, Sunday at 2:10 pm EDT.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Matt Carpenter's 5 Extra Base Hits Lead Cardinals Past Cubs; Wade LeBlanc Hurls Mariners Over White Sox

Players of the Day for Friday, July 20, 2018

LeBlanc: 7.1 IP, 1 ER, 10 K
American League

Seattle snapped a four-game losing streak that they took into the all star break with a 3-1 victory over the White Sox as starter Wade LeBlanc (6-1) worked into the eighth inning.

LeBlanc, a long reliever and spot starter, allowed just four hits and one run over 7 1/3 innings, walking one and striking out 10 would-be Chicago hitters. He needed just 84 pitches for the effort.

After allowing a run on two first-inning doubles, LeBlanc settled down, giving up only two more hits, setting down 11 straight before Omar Narvaez's single in the eighth prompted a call to the bullpen.

The Mariners kept pace with Houston in the AL West, trailing the division leaders by five games as the Astros took a 3-1 decision over the Angels.

Seattle hosts Chicago in game two of their three-game series, Saturday, 7:10 pm PDT.

National League
Carpenter ties record.

Matt Carpenter tied a major league record for most extra base hits in a game, going 5-for-5 with three home runs and a pair of doubles, propelling the St. Louis Cardinals to an 18-5 slaughter of the Cubs at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

Batting in the leadoff spot, Carpenter victimized Cubs' starter, Jon Lester (12-3), with a leadoff homer and a two-run, second-inning blast as the Cardinals built a 5-1 lead. Lester lasted into the fourth inning, allowing a leadoff double by Carpenter, and two walks, leaving the bases loaded for Anthony Bass. St. Louis eventually sent 11 batters to the plate in the frame, including Carpenter again, who doubled in one of the seven Cardinal runs scored in the inning.

Carpenter completed his record-setting spree with a three-run homer in the sixth, driving in seven runs, scoring four times. The record of five extra base hits in a game is held by 14 different players.

St. Louis and Chicago face each other again on Saturday (1:05 pm EDT) in game three of their five -game series.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Cubs Stay Hot through Break, Shuffle Cards, 9-6, Behind Jason Heyward

Players of the Day for Thursday, July 19, 2018

National League

Heyward: 3-5, 2RBI, SB
Leading into the all star break, the Milwaukee Brewers lost six straight while the Cubs won four of six - including their last three straight - and took over the lead in the NL Central.

As play resumed following the mid-summer classic, the Cubs continued their surge with a 9-6 victory over the visiting Cardinals in the first of a five-game series.

Jason Heyward stroked three singles in five at-bats, drove in a pair of runs, stole a base and scored twice, helping the Cubs out-slug the struggling Cardinals, losers of four of their last five.

St. Louis is just a game over .500 (48-47) and has fallen 8 1/2 games off the pace being set by Chicago in the division. Manager Mike Matheny was fired last week, replaced by bench coach, Mike Shildt, who will run the team on an interim basis.

The Cards and Cubs renew their rivalry in game two, Friday, 2:20 pm EDT.

American League

There were no American League games Thursday. A full slate of games is scheduled for Friday, following the AL's 8-6, 10-inning victory over the National League in Tuesday's all star game.

It was the sixth straight win for the American League, the game featuring all but one run delivered by home runs, 10 in all, including solo shots by Houston teammates Alex Bregman and George Springer in the top of the 10th inning.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Walk-Offs To All Star Game: Trevor Story Completes Rockies' Sweep; Twins' Brian Dozier Slams In 10th

Players of the Day for Sunday, July 15, 2018

American League

Dozier: Walk-off Slam
Brian Dozier is known around the league as a dangerous hitter in the clutch and he proved to be just that when he came up with the bases loaded in the bottom of the tenth inning Sunday against the visiting Rays.

Dozier took a one out, 1-1 offering from Tampa's Matt Andriese - the Rays' ninth pitcher of the game - and deposited it in the seats beyond the left field wall of Target Field for an 11-7 victory. His grand slam was his 16th home run of the season and sent Minnesota into the second half in a good way, winners off nine of their last eleven and three of four over the Rays.

Dozier and the Twins underperformed through June, but they seem to have awakened in July. Dozier has especially improved, raising his average from .181 at the end of June to .292 at the all star break.

He's hit safely in 12 of 15 games with five homers and 17 RBI.

The 44-50 Twins are in second place in the AL Central, 7 1/2 games behind Cleveland.

National League

Story: Walk-off Homer
In the National League, there's no doubt which division is the tightest.

It's the NL West, where the Dodgers, Diamondbacks, Rockies, and Giants are all within four games of each other. The Dodgers take a 1/2-game lead into the break with their 5-3 win over the Angels, but, in Colorado, Trevor Story had a significant send-off as he belted a solo homer in the bottom of the ninth for a 4-3 win over Seattle and a sweep of the Mariners in their three-game series.

Story's shot was his 20th of the year, his 68th RBI tying him with teammate Nolan Arenado for fourth in the league.

Colorado heads into the second half on a five-game win streak and winners of 13 of their last 16. They are in third place, two games behind the Dodgers, with a 51-45 record.