Saturday, July 14, 2007

Bedard Shuts Out Sox; Phillies' Top 5 Terrific

American League Chi White Sox 0 Baltimore 2 - Who's the best pitcher in the American League. Some votes will go to Baltimore's Erik Bedard (right), who dispatched the slumping White Sox with relative ease last night, allowing just 3 hits over 7 complete innings while fanning 7. Bedard (8-4), ran his scoreless streak to 16 innings, following his 2-hit, complete game effort of July 7 - a 3-0 whitewash of Texas. He also leads the majors with 156 strikeouts and has an ERA of 3.22. All of that while playing for one of the weakest teams in the league. Baltimore, at 39-50, is better than only Texas, Kansas City and Tampa Bay. NY Yankees 4 Tampa Bay 6 - With Toronto and Boston battling each other, the Bombers had the perfect opportunity to make up some ground last night, but Roger Clemens lasted only 5 1/3 innings, and was victimized for 3 early runs in the 2nd, from which the Yankees could never recover. Clemens allowed 5 hits and 4 walks, resulting in 5 earned runs, dropping his record to 2-4. New York and Toronto are tied for 2nd, 10 games back of the Red Sox in the AL East. Detroit 6 Seattle 3 - Gary Sheffield's 3rd inning grand slam was enough support for Jeremy Bonderman, who improved to 10-1, allowing 3 earned on 6 hits over 7 innings. The win kept the Tigers 1/2-game ahead of Cleveland in the AL Central and snapped a 4-game Seattle win streak. The Mariners fell 3 1/2 behind LA in the West. Texas 1 LA Angels 2 - With Seattle suddenly breathing down their necks, the Angels needed a boost, and they got it from starter Kelvim Escobar, who held the Rangers to one run over 8 innings on 6 hits, but did not get the decision. That went to Francisco Rodriguez, who pitched a scoreless ninth, just before Casey Kotchman singled home Gary Matthews Jr. with the winning run in the bottom half of the frame. Escobar's been rock-solid for the Angles of late, having registered wins in 6 of his last 7 decisions, while the Angels have won 8 of the last 10 games he's started. Other AL Scores Kansas City 4 Cleveland 5 Toronto 6 Boston 5 Oakland 3 Minnesota 5 - A's have lost 5 straight National League Houston 0 Chi Cubs 6 - Carlos Zambrano (11-7, right) blanked the Astros for 6 2/3 innings on 3 hits, putting away 7 on strikes, as the Cubs continued their relentless pursuit of the Brewers in the NL Central. Coupled with Milwaukee's loss to Colorado, Chicago is now only 3 1/2 games back. Contributing to his own cause, Zambrano singled twice in 3 at-bats, driving in a run in the 4th and scoring one in the 6th. St. Louis 3 Philadelphia 13 - The first five batters in the Phillies' lineup may be the best in baseball. Last night they combined to go 15-25, with 8 RBI and 8 runs scored, three doubles and a pair of homers. Chase Utley was 4-5 with a solo homer, 3 RBI and 2 runs to lead the way. Over the course of the season so far, Utley, leadoff batter Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino, Ryan Howard and Aaron Rowand have put up impressive combined stats: 500 hits in 1678 at-bats for a .298 average; 76 home runs, 277 RBI, 293 runs. Five good reasons why the Phillies are battling for the AL East title, 4 games behind New York and 2 1/2 back of Atlanta. Cincinnati 8 NY Mets 4 - Brandon Phillips pounded Mets' starter John Maine, blasting a grand slam in the first inning and delivering run-scoring singles in both the 5th and 6th innings to send the Mets to their 7th loss in their last 10 tries.
Go Hunting
... in Canada.
The Reds, meanwhile, remain one of the hottest teams in the league - although they are hopelessly far back to contend - winning 6 of their last 8. They are 12 1/2 back and they are in the NL Central, so anything can happen. Pittsburgh 1 Atlanta 9 - catcher Brian McCann went 3-4 with a pair of homers and 4 RBI to get the Braves to within 1 1/2 of the sliding Mets. Tim Hudson threw 7 innings of shutout ball, allowing just 5 hits. Atlanta has won 5 of their last 6. LA Dodgers 9 San Francisco 1 - Chad Billingsley notched his 6th win without a loss as the Dodgers kept pace with the Padres in the West. Those two lead Arizona by 2 1/2 and Colorado by 4 1/2. Billingsley blanked the Giants on 4 hits and 3 walks over 6 innings. Other NL Scores Washington 14 Florida 10 Colorado 10 Milwaukee 6 - Rockies just 4 1/2 back in NL West San Diego 3 Arizona 8

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