Thursday, May 3, 2007

Beckett Goes to 6-0; Brewers Complete Rout of Cardinals

Wednesday's Peak Performers and Fabulous Flops American League Josh Beckett (6-0) became the first pitcher in the majors to reach 6 wins as the Red Sox handed a 6-4 decision to the visiting Oakland A's. Beckett allowed 4 earned runs on 6 hits over 7 innings, striking out 7 and yielding a pair of walks, but his teammates did enough at the plate to keep their ace undefeated in 2007 and boost their AL East lead to 4 1/2 games over Toronto. Torii Hunter extended his hitting streak to 17 games, but the Minnesota Twins' bullpen gave away a 4-3 decision at Tampa Bay, Closer Joe Nathan allowed 2 runs in the 9th to tie the game and reliever Matt Guerrier gave up the game winner in the 10th. Hunter did what he could, going 3-5 with a 2-run homer (6), a pair of singles and a stolen base. Gary Sheffield cracked his 3rd home run of the season, drove in a pair, scored and stole a base in a 4-4 performance Wednesday night, powering the Tigers to a 3-2 win over the visiting Orioles and a sweep of their 3-game series. Sheffield, who was batting just .119 on April 21, has been on a tear since, going 14-34 (.412) in his last 9 games. Other AL Scores Seattle 3 Chicago White Sox 2 Kansas City 3 LA Angels 1 Cleveland 7 Toronto 6, 11 innings - J. Peralta, 3-run HR (6) NY Yankees at Texas, Ppd. National League The Milwaukee Brewers and reigning world champion St. Louis Cardinals continue to head in opposite directions. On Wednesday, the Brew Crew completed a 3-game sweep of the Cards, with an odd 4-0 win. The Brewers got only 4 hits and their starter, Chris Capuano left the game with a knee injury after 3 innings, but relievers Carlos Villanueva and Matt Wise pitched the final six innings without allowing a Cardinal run. Villanueva gave up just 2 hits in 4 innings and Wise finished the 8th and 9th with one-hit work. The Brewers outscored the Cardinals 23-3 in the 3 game series. The 10-16 Cardinals dropped into sole possession of last place in the NL Central with their 5th straight loss, 7 1/2 back of the 1st place Brewers, who have won 4 in a row and lead the division by a solid 5 games over the Reds. One - and maybe the only - bright spot for the fading Cards is Albert Pujols' 11-game hitting streak. The 1, 2 and 3 hitters in the Cubs lineup did all the damage and Jason Marquis allowed just 4 hits and a walk over 8 innings as the Chicago Cubs won, 7-1 at Pittsburgh. Alfonso Soriano went 3-5 with a solo homer, double and single and scored twice.
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#2 hitter Ryan Theriot was 3-4 with a pair of doubles, 2 RBI and 3 runs scored. Following him was red-hot Derrek Lee who raised his batting average to .415 with a single and his 17th double of the season, plating 2. Lee is having an incredible season thus far. Not only has he reached base in all 26 games, he's doubled in 8 straight and is riding an 11-game hitting streak. Teammate Soriano has a 12-game streak going. Earlier in the day the Cubs completed Tuesday's suspended game with an 8-6 win to take 2 of 3 from the Pirates. The LA Dodgers got 6 innings of 3-hit ball from spot starter Mark Hendrickson and beat the Diamondbacks 2-1 for the second day in a row to take control in the NL West by 1 1/2 games. Hendrickson, who has replaced injured Jason Schmidt in the rotation, won for the 2nd time in 3 starts without a loss. He struck out 7, walked 1 and did not allow a runner past second base. An NBA refugee, the 6'9" Hendrickson is sporting an ERA of 1.30 with a 0.69 WHIP. He spent parts of 1996-2000 with the NBA's 76ers, Kings, Nets and Cavaliers, but has officially ended his basketball career, much to the delight of the Dodgers organization. Edgar Renteria and Chipper Jones both extended their hitting streaks to 12 games as the Atlanta Braves turned back the visiting Phillies, 4-3, keeping the Braves 1/2-game ahead of the Mets atop the NL East. Barry Bonds smacked career home run #743 and delivered a 2-run single to lead the Giants to a 5-3 win over visiting Colorado. Bonds is just 12 shy of Hank Aaron's all-time mark of 755 and tied for 2nd in NL homers with Philly's Jimmy Rollins at 9. Atlanta's Chipper Jones leads the league with 10 long balls. Colorado's Matt Holliday went 0-3, halting his 14-game hit streak. Other NL Scores NY Mets 6 Florida 3 - O. Perez (W, 3-2), 10 Ks Houston 3 Cincinnati 1 - R. Oswalt (W, 4-2), 8 IP 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, A. Dunn, HR (8) San Diego 7 Washington 3 - Nationals, 9-19, 1-6 vs. NL West

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