Friday, August 31, 2007

Sweeps Week: Yankees, Angels, Phillies turn up the heat

American League Boston 0 NY Yankees 5 - Chien-Ming Wang threw a no-hitter for six innings, finished with a 1-hit shutout over 7, and Robinson Cano belted a pair of solo home runs off Boston starter Curt Schilling, as the Yankees completed their sweep of the first-place Red Sox. New York trails Boston by five games in the AL East and also took over the lead in the wild card race as Seattle lost their 6th straight. The Yankees lead Seattle by one and Detroit by 3 games in the wild card standings. Wang (right) joined Boston's Josh Beckett and Tim Wakefield, and the Angels' John Lackey atop the AL wins list with 16. Wang is 16-6. Seattle 5 Cleveland 6 - Cleveland won their 6th straight and maintained their 4 1/2-game lead in the AL Central, sending Seattle in the other direction, with their 6th straight loss. The Mariners are now finding new ways to lose, as reliever Rick White walked Kenny Lofton with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 9th, forcing home Jesse Barfield with the winning run. The Mariners were swept at home by the first place LA Angels earlier in the week. Tampa Bay 8 Baltimore 6 - And speaking of losing, the Baltimore Orioles have not recovered from their 30-3 drubbing by the Texas Rangers on August 22. Since then, they've lost 8 more, putting their losing streak at nine games. During the stretch, the O's have been outscored 97-38. Other AL Scores Detroit 6 Kansas City 1 Chi White Sox 1 Texas 5 National League NY Mets 10 Philadelphia 11 - Chase Utley (right) knocked in Tadahito Iguchi from 2nd base in the bottom of the 9th inning to complete the Phillies' 4-game sweep of the Mets and close to within 2 games of first place in the NL East. Pat Burrell homered twice and Aaron Rowand and Ryan Howard also left the yard. For Howard, his 1st inning 2-run shot was his 36th and boosted his NL-best RBI total to 110. Milwaukee 4 Chi Cubs 5 - The Cubs took the rubber game of their 3-game series with Milwaukee and moved ahead by 2 1/2 games in the NL Central.
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Alfonso Soriano hit his first home run since returning from the DL three days ago - his 19th. Arizona 8 San Diego 7 - Third baseman Mark Reynolds drove in 5 runs with a single, double and a 2-run homer as the Diamondbacks reclaimed first place in the NL West. Arizona had lost three straight to the Padres, and nearly blew an 8-0 lead in this one, as San Diego scored 3 in the 7th, 3 in the 8th and 1 in the ninth on Milton Bradley's solo homer. Closer Jose Valverde gave up the Bradley homer, but struck out the side to earn his MLB-best 41st save. Other NL Scores St. Louis 1 Houston 2 Cincinnati 5 Pittsburgh 4

Thursday, August 30, 2007

National League races are red hot

American League LA Angels 8 Seattle 2 - The Angels completed their sweep of the Mariners and distanced themselves by 5 games in the division. The win was largely a team effort, as 7 different players drove in at least one run as the Angels pounded out 17 hits. Vladimir Guerrero socked his 22nd home run - a solo shot - and Garret Anderson stroked four hits in five at-bats. Starter Jered Weaver allowed just 1 run over 8 innings, striking out 5 without walking any. Boston 3 NY Yankees 4 - Alex Rodriguez cracked his 44th homer, but the real story was Roger Clemens (right), the ageless veteran who outdueled Boston's ace, Josh Beckett, allowing just two hits and one run on a solo homer by David Ortiz. Clemens (6-5) nibbled at the corners and walked five batsmen while fanning just two. The Yankees won their second straight over the Red Sox and can complete the sweep in Thursday's afternoon game. New York is 6 games behind the Sox in the division, but have caught Seattle for the wild card lead. Minnesota 3 Cleveland 4 - The Indians scored all of their runs in the first inning off Twin's starter Johan Santana, and C. C. Sabathia made them stand up, allowing two earned runs over 7 innings for his 15th win against 7 losses. By sweeping the three-game series with the Twins and Detroit falling apart with two straight losses to the lowly Royals, the Indians have suddenly opened up a 4 1/2-game lead in the Central division and dropped the Twins to 8 1/2 back in third place. Other AL Scores Toronto 4 Oakland 5, 11 innings Tampa Bay 5 Baltimore 4, 12 innings Detroit 0 Kansas City 5 Chi White Sox 4 Texas 5, 11 innings National League NY Mets 2 Philadelphia 3 - The Phillies surely have the Mets' attention now, after sweeping the first three games of their 4-game series between the two top NL East contenders. Jimmy Rollins and Pat Burrell (right) socked solo homers in the first inning off Mets' starter Oliver Perez, but the game winner came when Jamie Moyer scampered home from third on Burrell's sac fly to left. Moyer (12-10) walked to lead off the inning and made third on singles by Rollins and Tao Iguchi. He also earned the win (12-10), with sic innings of mound work, giving up 2 earned runs before handing the ball over to the bullpen. The trio of J. C. Romero, Tom Gordon and Brett Myers each turned in an inning of scoreless relief, with Myers picking up his 15th save. Philly is now 3 games behind the Mets and they'll have one more crack at them with a day game on Thursday to complete the series. The Phillies are 8-5 on the season against the Mets, but, after losing three straight to them at the end of June, have taken six straight from the division leaders. The two teams will conclude their season series with 3 games at New York on September 14, 15 and 16. Arizona 1 San Diego 3 - Greg Maddux allowed one earned run over 7 innings, but didn't get the decision, as the Padres rallied for two runs in the bottom of the 8th to take their third straight from the Diamondbacks and tie them for first place in the NL West. San Diego can complete the sweep and dethrone Arizona with a win on Thursday as the series concludes. Milwaukee 6 Chi Cubs 1 - Ben Sheets (11-4) came off the DL, worked six innings and limited the Cubs to one earned run, as the Brewers evened the series at a game apiece. The Brewers took back second place in the division as the Cardinals lost at Houston. Chicago leads by 1 1/2 over Milwaukee and 2 games over St. Louis. The series concludes tonight at Wrigley field. Other NL Scores Colorado 8 San Francisco 0 Washington 9 LA Dodgers 10, 12 innings Cincinnati 8 Pittsburgh 0 - K. Griffey Jr., 3-run HR (29) Atlanta 7 Florida 4 St. Louis 0 Houston 7

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Howard's end; Flying Angels sink Mariners

American League LA Angels 10 Seattle 6 - After a disastrous first inning in which starter Ervin Santana gave up 5 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks and got just one batter out before being pulled, the LA Angels regrouped and came away with an important win. Vladimir Guerrero (right) was 4-5, and drove in 3 runs, two of them in the key 4-run 8th inning. The win puts the Angels 4 games to the good over Seattle in the division and LA can complete the 3-game sweep tonight in Seattle.LA has won 3 straight and 7 of their last 10. What's worse for the Mariners is that not only are they disadvantaged in the division, but the loss helped New York to within a game in the wild card standings. Boston 3 NY Yankees 5 - Johnny Damon got a measure of revenge over his former team with a 2-run, 7th-inning homer that proved to be the winning margin in the opener of the 3-game series. The Yankees trail the Red Sox by 7 games in the AL East. Minnesota 5 Cleveland 6 - The Indians have suddenly opened up a healthy advantage in the Central, whacking the Twins for the second straight night and boosting their lead in the division to 3 1/2 over Detroit and 7 1/2 over Minny. Jake Westbrook (5-7) won for the 4th time in his last 6 starts, scattering 10 hits and 3 runs over 6 2/3 innings. Travis Hafner and Grady Sizemore homered for the Tribe. Other AL Scores Tampa Bay 15 Baltimore 8 Detroit 3 Kansas City 6 - Tigers, 16 hits, 13 LOB Chi White Sox 3 Texas 4 Toronto 5 Oakland 4 National League NY Mets 2 Philadelphia 4, 10 innings - After Jimmy Rollins solo homer in the 8th inning, Aaron Rowand's 50-foot dribbler down the third base line brought home Shane Victorino with the tying run. Two innings later, Ryan Howard blasted his 35th home run of the season into the left field stands and the Phillies were within 4 games of the first place Mets. Philly's dramatics overshadowed an impressive pitching performance by Tom Glavine, who blanked the Phillies for the first seven innings. The Phillies have won the first two of this crucial 4-game series, which continues tonight, with Jamie Moyer going for the Phils against the Mets' Oliver Perez. Milwaukee 3 Chi Cubs 5 - The Cubs sent the reeling Brewers down to third place in the Central division, scoring 4 times in the 7th inning to turn a 3-1 deficit into a 5-3 advantage. The Brewers' bullpen has been a major factor in their fall from first place. They've lost 5 straight and 11 of their last 14. Since the All-Star break, the Brewers are 16-27, with a horrific 7-17 record in the month of August. They've nearly completely flamed out after leading the division for most of the first half. The Cubs and Brewers have two more in this series, Wednesday and Thursday. St. Louis 7 Houston 0 - Milwaukee's loss was the Cardinals' gain, as St. Louis took over 2nd place in the division and trail the Cubs by just two games. Bradon Looper (11-10) hurled 7 innings of shutout ball against the punchless Astros and Chris Duncan went 3-5 with a 3-run, 1st-inning homer. The Cardinals finally got back to the .500 level, for the first time since they were 6-6 on April 16. They are 64-64. Arizona 4 San Diego 6 - The Padres took their second straight from the Diamondbacks and now trail Arizona by only a game, as they scored 4 times in the 7th to chase Brandon Webb, snapping his 6-game win streak. The Padres find themselves in a very sweet spot with two more games against Arizona in their 4-game series. They have the same number of losses as the D-Backs, but have played two games less, and they also lead the wild card standings by 3 games over Philly and 3 1/2 over the Dodgers. Besides that, they send Greg Maddux, who last week became the only pitcher ever to win 10 or more games in 20 consecutive seasons, to the mound on Wednesday and Chris Young and his 2.12 ERA on Thursday. The Padres are looking mighty solid. Other NL Scores Cincinnati 4 Pittsburgh 6 Cincinnati 2 Pittsburgh 3 Atlanta 3 Florida 4, 11 innings Washington 3 LA Dodgers 4 Colorado 1 San Francisco 3 - Giants, 6 straight wins

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Lackey blanks Mariners; Utley returns to menace Mets

American League Minnesota 3 Cleveland 8 - The Indians put a stamp on their season with a signature win over the Twins, improving their record against Central division teams to 32-20. Paul Byrd improved to 13-5 and Victor Martinez sparked the offense with a 2-run homer (20) in the 3rd inning. The Indians retained their 2 1/2 game lead over Detroit and sunk the Twins back to 6 1/2 out in the division. LA Angels 6 Seattle 0 - John Lackey (right) owns the Seattle Mariners. The veteran righty set the tone for the showdown in the AL West with a complete-game, 7-hit shutout over the Mariners, matching his July 31 effort - an 8-0 win at Seattle. Lackey improved to 16-8 while fanning 5 without walking a batter. Garret Anderson provided all the offense needed with a 2nd inning solo homer and a two-run double in the third. The Angels lead Seattle by 3 games in the division. NY Yankees 0 Detroit 16 - Justin Verlander (14-5) blanked the Yankees on 3 hits over 7 innings while his teammates were pounding his mound counterpart, Mike Mussina, scoring 6 runs on 9 hits over the first 3 innings. For Mussina, who will turn 39 in December, it was his third straight troubling outing and the signs that something's missing are apparent. Over his last three starts, he's managed to last a total of only 9 2/3 innings, allowing 25 hits and 19 earned runs. He's walked five batters and stuck out only 3 over that span as his ERA has ballooned from 4.50 to 5.53. His only wins over contending teams were a pair of 7 2/3 inning games against Arizona and Cleveland and he's lasted 5 innings or less in 9 of his 23 starts. Possibly the most telling stat is his strikeout to walk ratio, which, over his entire career, has been 3.54-1. This season, that's slipped to 2.62-1. The arm is obviously tired and the Yankees are pondering whether to take Mussina out of the rotation and onto the DL, put him in the bullpen or release him outright. None of the options are good as the Yankees fall further out of the playoff picture and are in need of quality starts. The Bombers are 8 games behind the Red Sox and begin a three-game series with them tonight. They are still chasing Seattle for the wild card spot, 2 games back with Detroit another game behind them. Other AL Scores Tampa Bay 4 Chi White Sox 5 Toronto 6 Oakland 2, 12 innings National League NY Mets 2 Philadelphia 9 - Chase Utley (right) returned from a month on the DL just in time to make the Mets miserable. The gritty second baseman, who was sidelined with a broken finger, rapped his 18th home run, singled, doubled and drove in 2 runs to get the Phillies off to a flying start in their four-game showdown series with the first-place Mets. The win put the Phillies 5 games behind New York and 3 games behind San Diego in the wild card race. Arizona 1 San Diego 3 - The Padres aren't ready to concede anything to the Diamondbacks and apparently don't want to settle for a wild card spot in the playoffs. Jake Peavy (15-5) allowed just three hits over 7 innings, one of them a solo homer by Eric Byrnes, striking out 11 to extend his NL-best K total to 197. Geoff Blum stroked a 2-run homer in the 7th inning and Milton Bradley added a solo shot in the 8th for all of the Padres' runs. San Diego trails Arizona by 2 games in the division and host the D-Backs for 3 more games through Thursday. Other NL Scores Atlanta 13 Florida 2 - B. McCann, GS HR (16) Washington 4 LA Dodgers 5 Colorado 1 San Francisco 4

Monday, August 27, 2007

Escobar stifles Blue Jays; Holliday weekend

American League Boston 11 Chi White Sox 1 - In the season's worst series drubbing, Boston soiled the White Sox by a combined score of 46-7 over the four games at Comisky. Sunday's victim was Javier Vazquez who managed to strike out 10 over 6 innings, but gave up 7 runs on 6 hits. Meanwhile, Boston's Julian Tavarez pitched his best game of the season, allowing just 2 hits and one earned run over 6, leaving the final three innings to the bullpen, which gave up just one more hit to the pathetic Chicago offense. The Red Sox scored in double-digits in each of the four games and after a day off Monday, head to New York to square off with the Yankees in a three game set. The White Sox hope to regain a little lost confidence when Tampa Bay comes calling for a single game on Monday.
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NY Yankees 4 Detroit 5 - All scores came via the home run in this one, with Curtis Granderson leading off the Tigers' first with an inside-the-park job. Marcus Thames and Carlos Guillen added two-run shots for Detroit. Jason Giambi hit a solo shot for New York and Robinson Cano belted a three-run homer in the 4th inning. The Yankees dropped another game further behind Boston - now 7 1/2 back - and must realistically be thinking more about the wild card race than catching the Red Sox, even with the Sox coming to Yankee Stadium this week. Cleveland 5 Kansas City 3, 11 innings - Travis Hafner and Victor Martinez singled home a run each in the 11th and Joe Borowski set down the Royals in the bottom of the inning for his 37th save, tying Seattle's J.J. Putz for tops in the AL. Minnesota 11 Baltimore 3 - The Twins won their 5th straight, sweeping a four-game series in Baltimore and remain just 5 1/2 behind Cleveland in the division. Toronto 1 LA Angels 3 - There are six or seven pitchers vying for the AL Cy Young award, but the most deserving of the bunch may be Kelvim Esccobar (right), who improved to 15-6 with another in a series of dominating performances on Sunday. Escobar allowed one earned off of 6 hits while striking out 5 without walking a batter over 8 innings. The win gave the Angels an additional game up on Seattle, who lost at Texas. The Mariners host the Angels in a pivotal three-game series beginning Monday. LA leads the division by 2 games over Seattle. Other AL Scores Oakland 4 Tampa Bay 7 Seattle 3 Texas 5 National League Washington 5 Colorado 10 - Matt Holliday (right) had an enjoyable weekend at Washington's expense. On Friday night, his 9th inning solo home run ignited a 5-run rally for a 6-5 Rockies win. In Saturday's 5-1 win, he joined Carlos Lee and Ryan Howard in the National League 100-RBI club, and on Sunday, he knocked in three more with a 2-run homer (his 24th), a single and a double in 4 at-bats, hoisting himself to the NL batting lead at .338. The Rockies won all three games, and stayed tied with the Dodgers in third place in the NL West, 6 1/2 behind Arizona. San Diego 2 Philadelphia 14 - Don't count the Phillies out just yet. After losing the first two games in their series with the Padres, Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth let their bats do the talking. Howard pounded his 34th home run - a 3-run blast - and drove in another, going 3-4 and scoring 3 times. Werth went 5-5 - all singles - drove in 4 runs and raised his batting average from .270 to .294. With the Mets losing, the Phillies trail the division-leaders by 6 games with the New Yorkers coming for a four-game visit starting Monday. San Diego continues to lead Philly by 3 games in the wild card race. Chi Cubs 4 Arizona 5 - Arizona took 2 of 3 from Chicago and lead the Padres by 3 games in the West. San Diego will play host to the Diamondbacks in a four-game series starting Monday. The Cubs - still up 1 1/2 in the Central, head back to the Windy City for a three-game series with Milwaukee on Tuesday. Atlanta 1 St. Louis 4 - The Cardinals are still a game under .500 but only 2 back of Chicago in the division. Adam Wainwright (12-9) turned in 7 solid innings, allowing one earned on 6 hits. Wainwright has been St. Louis' most consistent starter, leading the club in wins, ERA and strikeouts. The Cards, who have the best record within the division at 30-22, head to Houston on Tuesday for a 3-game series. Florida 3 Cincinnati 9 - Don't look now, but the Reds have won six straight and are 6 1/2 back in the NL Central. Cincy scored 6 times in the first inning and cruised to the 3-game sweep of the fading Marlins. Other NL Scores Pittsburgh 4 Houston 5 Milwaukee 4 San Francisco 5 - Brewers, 4 straight losses LA Dodgers 6 NY Mets 2

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Griffey, Dunn lead Reds to 5th straight; Lowell propels Red Sox

American League Boston 14 Chi White Sox 2 - The Red Sox are on cruise control and Mike Lowell (right) is one of the big reasons why. Lowell connected for 4 singles in 6 at-bats, drove in two runs and scored a pair, as Boston hammered the White Sox for the third straight day. Boston took both ends of a double-header - 11-3 and 10-1 on Friday prior to Saturday's drubbing. Lowell leads the team in hits, with 150, and RBI, with 92. His .324 batting average is just .001 shy of David Ortiz' team lead. Lowell's hitting backed Tim Wakefield's 7 shutout innings as the knuckler joined teammate Josh Beckett the majors' only 16-game winners. NY Yankees 7 Detroit 2 - The Yankees remained 6 1/2 behind the Red Sox as Chien-Ming Wang (15-6) kept the Tigers in check for his 15th win. Wang allowed one earned run on five hits over 8 innings of work. Johnny Damon tripled and homered to spark the offense. The Yanks picked up a game on wild card leader Seattle and now trail the Mariners by 2 games. Cleveland 9 Kansas City 4 - Detroit's pain was Cleveland's gain. The Indian's improved their AL Central lead to 2 1/2 games over the Tigers with a drubbing of the Royals. The Indians banged out 17 hits - 9 for extra bases - with 7 of the 9 regulars getting at least 2 knocks. Victor Martinez had two doubles and his 19th home run from 5 at-bats, drove in 2 runs and scored 3 times. Minnesota 8 Baltimore 1 - Almost without notice, the Twins have snuck back into the AL Central fray with their 4th straight win. Torii Hunter smacked a 3 run homer in the 6th inning and drove in another with a double in the 8th. Hunter has 90 RBI on the season. The Twins trail the Indians by 5 1/2. Other AL Scores Oakland 3 Tampa Bay 14 Seattle 3 Texas 5 = Mariners still 1 game back of Angels in AL West Toronto 9 LA Angels 2 National League LA Dodgers 3 NY Mets 4 - The Mets extended their dominance in the NL East as both the Phillies and Braves were losing Saturday. New York has opened a 7-game lead on both as they squeaked by the Dodgers to take the second straight in the 3-game series. Tonight's finale is ESPN's featured game. Atlanta 4 St. Louis 5 - The Cardinals refuse to die, picking up a game on both the Cubs and Brewers in the NL Central race. The Cards ended up just 3 games behind Chicago as they scored all of their runs in the 6th inning, batting around on loser Tim Hudson (15-6). The Cardinal bullpen worked the final five innings, with Jason Isringhausen fanning two in the ninth for his 26th save. Chi Cubs 1 Arizona 3 - The D-Backs kept their slim 2-game lead over San Diego intact with more solid starting pitching, this time from Doug Davis (11-11), who scattered 6 hits over 7 innings while striking out 8. Jose Valverde picked up his 39th save, tops in the majors. San Diego 4 Philadelphia 3 - The Padres kept pace in the West with four homers accounting for all of their runs, and now lead the wild card standings by four games over the Phillies and Braves. Mike Cameron, Milton Bradley and Kevin Kouzmanoff all had solo shots, and pinch hitter Terrmel Sledge's solo slug to center provided the winning margin in the ninth. The Philadelphia bullpen, overworked and under pressure, gave up a lead again, sending the Phillies to their 4th straight loss. The Padres have won 4 straight. Florida 7 Cincinnati 11 - Adam Dunn (left) hit his 36th home run and Ken Griffey Jr. (right) knocked career #591 as the Reds slugged their way to their 5th straight win and are just 7 1/2 games out in the Central division. Over the five game span, the Reds have scored 35 runs, but their average margin of victory is just 2.2 runs per game. A little pitching could put the Reds right in the thick of things. Other NL Scores Pittsburgh 4 Houston 1 Washington 1 Colorado 5 Milwaukee 2 San Francisco 6 - Brewers, 3 straight losses

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Ortiz powers Red Sox; Bradley knocks in 6 for Padres

American League Boston 11 Chi White Sox 3 Boston 10 Chi White Sox 1 - The Red Sox took both ends of their double-header with the stumbling White Sox and when the Yankees lost to Detroit late in the evening, found themselves with a cushy 6 1/2-game bulge over New York. With a key 3-game series next week at New York, the Sox seem to have little to worry about in the division. In the opener, Mike Lowell went 3-4 with a pair of RBI and two runs scored. The second game was all David Ortiz (right), as the slugger went 4-5 with a pair of homers, 3 RBI and 3 runs. NY Yankees 6 Detroit 9, 10 innings - Roger Clemens was shelled for 6 runs on 6 hits over 5 innings, Magglio Ordonez went 4-6 with a 2-run homer, raising his league-leading batting average to .357. Carlos Guillen ended the late-night affair - delayed 3 hours due to rain - with a 3 run blast in the bottom of the 10th inning. Detroit's win moved them to within 1 1/2 of Cleveland in the AL Central division as Cleveland lost at KC. Alex Rodriguez pounded his 43rd home run and increased his stunning RBI total to 123. Ordonez continues in hot pursuit, culling 2 more RBI with his 25th homer, to give him 115. Toronto 0 LA Angels 3 - The Angels kept their slim 1-game advantage in the West, getting 6 shutout innings from Jered Weaver. Seattle 4 Texas 2 - Ichiro Suzuki went 3-5, with an RBI and a run scored to keep the Mariners hot on LA's heels. The Mariners host the Angels for three games beginning on Monday. Other AL Scores Minnesota 7 Baltimore 4 Oakland 2 Tampa Bay 12 Cleveland 1 Kansas City 2 National League San Diego 14 Philadelphia 3 - The Padres cemented their lead in the wild card race with a win over their closest pursuer and now lead the Phillies and Atlanta by 3 games. With Arizona losing, the Padres also closed to within 2 games of first place in the NL West. Milton Bradley (right) smoked a couple of 2-run homers and doubled in two more runs, giving him 6 RBI on the night. The Padres pounded out 22 hits against the exhausted Philadelphia pitching staff. Jose Mesa worked the 9th, allowing 4 runs on 6 hits. Chi Cubs 6 Arizona 2 - In the battle of division leaders, round one went to the Cubs, who led all the way. Jacques Jones stroked 3 singles and a double, scoring a run and driving in another. The two teams meet for the second of their 3-game set on Saturday. Chicago leads Milwaukee by 1 1/2 in the Central. LA Dodgers 2 NY Mets 5 - The Mets continued to roll along, atop the NL East, with their 8th win in their last 11 games. David Wright knocked his 23rd home run and Oliver Perez (12-8) pitched 7 innings of shutout ball, allowing just 3 hits while fanning 6. The Mets got to Dodger starter Brad Penny (14-4), who failed to get win #15 for his second straight start. After an incredible 13-1 start, Penny is 1-3 over his last 6 starts, stretching back to July 31. Milwaukee 6 San Francisco 11 - Barry Bonds hit his 27th home run, and career #761, as the Giants won for the 7th time in their last ten games. Other NL Scores Florida 3 Cincinnati 5 Pittsburgh 8 Houston 3, 15 innings Atlanta 7 St. Louis 2 Washington 5 Colorado 6

Friday, August 24, 2007

Ichiro stokes Mariner hopes; Dunn homer finishes Braves

American League Cleveland 3 Detroit 1, 10 innings - Starters Jake Westbrook and Nate Robertson each put up zeros for 8 innings and Cleveland finally broke through against Joel Zumaya in the 10th to put down the Tigers for the 2nd consecutive night and take the pivotal series, two games to one. The win gave Cleveland a 2 1/2 game lead over Detroit in the AL Central and dumped the Tigers five games behind surprising Seattle in the wild card race. The effort by Westbrook was his 4th solid outing in his last five starts, th eonly loss coming against the Yankees. Over that span, he's allowed just 6 runs in 36 innings, for a superb ERA of 1.50. If he continues to pitch at that level, the Indians will be hard to beat down the stretch. Seattle 9 Texas 4 - The Mariners scored 7 times in the 6th inning, keyed by Ichiro Suzuki's (right) bases-loaded double. Suzuki went 3-5 and drove in 3 runs, raising his batting average to .352, just .001 behind Detroit's Magglio Ordonez for the major league batting lead. Suzuki is just 15 hits shy of the 200 mark, a number he's hit in all six of his previous seasons with the Mariners. The Mariners, 14-6 during August, have closed to within one game of the LA Angels, who have led the division nearly the entire season. After 3 more games at Texas, Seattle heads home for a three-game series with the Angels. Other AL Scores
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Minnesota 5 Baltimore 2 Toronto 5 LA Angels 4 Oakland 12 Tampa Bay 2 - M. Piazza, 4-5, HR (5), 5 RBI National League San Diego 9 NY Mets 8, 10 innings - In a game both Trevor Hoffman and Billy Wagner blew save opportunities, Adrian Gonzalez had the final say with his 20th home run of the season, a game-winning solo shot that gave the Padres a two-game edge over Philly in the wild card standings and put them 3 games behind Arizona in the NL West. The Mets maintained their 5-game bulge in the East as both the Phillies and Braves were losers on Thursday. Atlanta 7 Cincinnati 9, 12 innings - Adam Dunn (right) launched his 35th moon shot into the right field stands, sending Atlanta to their 3rd straight defeat and taking the series 3 games to 1. The Braves have lost 6 of their last 8 and are in danger of falling out of both the divisional and wild card races. They currently trail the Mets by 6 games and San Diego by 3 in the wild card. Other NL Scores LA Dodgers 5 Philadelphia 2 Pittsburgh 5 Colorado 1 Chi Cubs 1 San Francisco 4 - Cubs hold 1/2-game lead in NL Central Washington 7 Houston 6 Florida 11 St. Louis 3

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Don't mess with Texas; Pujols homers for 5th straight game

American League Texas 30 Baltimore 3 - You know when the Dodgers score 15 runs (see below), that there are some tired arms in the legions of major league pitching staffs, but Texas actually doubled that against the O's. Actually losing 3-0 after 3 innings, the Rangers took the lead with 5 in the 4th and were just getting started on a record-setting night. Texas scored 9 times in the 6th inning, 10 in the 8th and 6 more in the 9th inning to total 30 runs, an American League record. Every batter had at least one hit, including grand slams by Marlon Byrd and Travis Metcalf (right) and 4-fo-6, 2 home run, 7 RBI efforts by the 8 and 9 hitters, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Ramon Vazquez. According to published reports the Rangers are the first team to score 30 or more runs since 1897, 110 years ago. Here's the box score. It's mind-blowing. Texas 9 Baltimore 7 - Texas continued the thumping by taking the nightcap.Trevor Metcalf completed an impressive night by knocking in four more runs with a single and double in 3 at-bats, to give him a line of 3-4 with 8 RBI in the twin bill. NY Yankees 8 LA Angels 2 - The Yankees got a game back against both the Red Sox in the Al East and the Mariners in the wild card race with a win over the Angels. Andy Pettitte was effective over 7 innings, allowing just one earned run on 5 hits and Jorge Posada went 3-4 with a pair of doubles, two runs and two RBI. The Yankees trail Boston by 5 and Seattle by 1 1/2. Cleveland 11 Detroit 8 - Franklin GutiƩrrez bopped a 3-run homer to lead a 16-hit Indian uprising over Detroit, increasing their lead in the division to 1 1/2 games. Tiger starter, Justin Verlander (13-5) lasted only 4 innings, allowing 7 runs on 10 hits. Other AL Scores Oakland 4 Toronto 1 Seattle 4 Minnesota 8 Kansas City 7 Chi White Sox 6 Boston 1 Tampa Bay 2 National League Florida 4 St. Louis 6 - The Cardinals are closing in on the NL Central leaders and Albert Pujols (right) has gotten hot at the right time. Pujols homered in his fifth straight game, a two-run shot in the 1st inning that got the Cards headed towards another win - their 10th in the last 14 games. Jim Edmonds unknotted a 4-4 tie with another 2-run blast in the 7th for the winning margin. In addition to the home run streak, Pujols has hit safely in 9 straight and is 14-for-36 (.389) over that span. His homer in Wednesday's game was his 30th. Milwaukee 2 Arizona 3 - Brandon Webb's 42-inning scoreless streak ended in the first inning, but he still pitched well enough to notch his 6th straight win for the first-place Diamondbacks. Webb (14-8) gave a single runs in the 1st and the 6th on five hits as he worked through the 7th inning. Jose Valverde picked up his MLB-best 38th save with a scoreless 9th. Arizona maintained their 3-game edge over the Padres in the NL West. Chi Cubs 4 San Francisco 2, 10 innings - Chicago took over sole possession of first place in the volatile NL Central when the Cubs scored a pair of unearned runs in the 10th inning, taking the second straight in their 3-game series with the Giants. Starter Rich Hill struck out 10 over 7 innings but did not receive a decision. The Cubs lead Milwaukee by one game and the Cardinals by 3. LA Dodgers 15 Philadelphia 3 - The Dodgers won for the 5th time in their last 7 games and set a season high for runs, hammering the depleted Phillies pitching staff into submission. Matt Kemp was 4-6 with 3 runs and 2 RBI, and Rafael Furcal scored 4 runs while going 3-5. The Dodgers are still 6 games back of Arizona in the division, in third place. San Diego 7 NY Mets 5 - Jake Peavy (14-5) worked only 6 innings, but he struck out 11 and allowed just 2 earned runs on two hits and five walks. The Mets scored 3 times in the ninth inning to make the game closer, but Trevor Hoffman nailed down the final two outs for his 32nd save. The Padres crept back to within 3 games of Arizona in the division and lead the Phillies by 1 game in the wild card race. Other NL Scores Atlanta 2 Cincinnati 4 Washington 2 Houston 3 Pittsburgh 11 Colorado 2

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Anderson brings home 10 in Angels romp; Beltran powers Mets

American League NY Yankees 9 LA Angels 18 - The season's best, in the category of best individual single game performance, goes to Garret Anderson, who had four hits in six at-bats, all for extra bases - 2 doubles, a 3-run homer and a grand slam - and drove in 10 runs, outscoring the entire Yankees' team by a run. His teammates added another 8 runs in the debacle, pushing New York 6 games behind AL East-leading Boston and 2 1/2 behind Seattle in the wild card standings. Alex Rodriguez did his best to keep the his team in the game with a pair of homers and 3 RBI, but the night belonged to Anderson and the Angels. Yankee starter Mike Mussina (8-9) was absolutely shelled, giving up 7 runs on 7 hits in his shortest outing of the season, 1 2/3 innings. Seattle 7 Minnesota 2 - In not-as-dramtic fashion, the Mariners continued to dog the Angels with their 5th straight win. Ichiro Suzuki went 3-6 and stole his 35th base. Seattle is 13-5 in August and trails Los Angeles by 2 games. Cleveland 1 Detroit 2 - Two swings did in Fausto Carmona and the first-place Indians. Magglio Ordonez and Carlos Guillen knocked back-to-back homers in the 5th inning, while starter Jair Jurrjens, a rookie from Curacao, allowed the Tribe just one hit - Jhonny Peralta's 6th inning home run - over 6 2/3 innings. From there, the Tigers' stingy bullpen, revitalized with the return of Joel Zumaya and Francisco Rodney, put in a no-hit effort, with Todd Jones working the 9th for his 32nd save. Other AL Scores Texas 2 Baltimore 6 Oakland 6 Toronto 4 Boston 8 Tampa Bay 6 Kansas City 2 Chi White Sox 5 National League San Diego 6 NY Mets 7 - It was moving night in the National League, as most of the divisional and wild card contenders were in action against each other. The Mets came away winners when Luis Castillo singled home Marlon Anderson with the game-winner off closer Trevor Hoffman, who suffered his 4th blown save of the season. Carlos Beltran singled, doubled, and homered in 3 at-bats, driving in 5 runs for the Mets. Beltran has 6 homers in his last 10 games and is hitting .351 (13-37) and has 18 RBI since returning from a stint on the DL August 10. LA Dodgers 4 Philadelphia 5 - The Phillies kept pace, but remain 5 back of the Mets, though they did get some help from their division rivals. With the Mets defeating the Padres, Philly moved into a tie atop the wild card standings with San Diego. Florida 2 St. Louis 5 - In the Central, the Cardinals remained 3 back of both the Cubs and Brewers, scoring 4 times in the 8th inning for the come-from-behind win. Milwaukee 7 Arizona 4 - The Brewers used Gabe Gross's grand slam in a 5-run 7th inning to snap a 2-2 tie and overwhelm the NL West-leading Diamondbacks, beating them for the second straight night. Chi Cubs 5 San Francisco 1 - The Cubs waited until their final at-bat to ruin the night for San Francisco fans. Giants' starter Tim Lincecum protected a 1-0 lead until the ninth, when the Cubs finally broke through on Derrek Lee's RBI single. After Lincecum was lifted, it got worse, as Cliff Floyd and Jason Kendall drove in two runs each for the win. Other NL Scores Atlanta 7 Cincinnati 8 Washington 11 Houston 6 Pittsburgh 2 Colorado 9

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Wakefield gets 15th win for Sox; Teixeira pounds D-Backs

Boston 6 Tampa Bay 0 - Tim Wakefield (right) continued his dominance over the Devil Rays, improving his career record over them to 19-2, while boosting his season record to 15-10 with a 4-hit shutout effort over 7 innings on Monday. Wakefield, who has earned a decision in each of his 25 starts this season, won for the 8th time in his last ten outings. Boston regained a 5-game bulge over the Yankees in the AL East when New York lost to the Angels later in the evening. NY Yankees 6 LA Angels 7, 10 innings - Little-used Ryan Budde, sporting a 1-11 at-bat record this season, got his second hit - and first career double - at an opportune moment. His 10th inning walk-off two-bagger sent Howie Kendrick home with the winning run in a compelling matchup of AL contenders. Alex Rodriguez gave the Yankees a 4-3 lead in the sixth inning with a two-run - his 40th - home run, but the Angels countered with 3 of their own in the 7th. Jorge Posada tied the game at 6 with a two-run shot in the eighth. The win kept the Angels 2 games clear of the pressing Mariners, who won their 4th straight. Seattle also moved 1 1/2-games ahead of the Yankees in the wild card race. Seattle 9 Minnesota 4 - Raul Ibanez homered twice, drove in 3 runs and scored 3 times as the Mariners routed the Twins in the first of their 3-game series. Other AL Scores Oakland 6 Toronto 4 Kansas City 3 Chi White Sox 4 National League Atlanta 14 Cincinnati 4 - Mark Teixeira single-handedly pounded the Reds with a pair of 3-run homers and 6 RBI, smacking one in the 2nd and the other in the 4th inning. Teixeira also doubled and walked, scoring four times in the rout. The Braves tied the idle Phillies for 2nd place in the NL East, five games back of the Mets. Atlanta is also one game behind San Diego in the wild card hunt. Milwaukee 9 Arizona 0 - The Brewers offense exploded early, scoring 3 runs in each of the 1st, 2nd and 4th innings. Prince Fielder (right) pounded his league-leading 39th home run and a double, racking up 4 RBI, tying him with the Rockies' Matt Holliday for third place at 96. Meanwhile, rookie hurler Yavani Gallardo (5-6) was working 6 innings of shutout ball, allowing just 5 hits and a walk while punching out 6 on strikes. Gallardo also added to the offensive onslaught with a solo homer in the 2nd inning - his first in the majors. St. Louis 6 Chi Cubs 4 - A couple of recent additions have paid off handsomely for manager Tony LaRussa's Cardinals. Joel Piniero reeled off his third straight win and Rick Ankiel hit his 4th homer in 10 games to lead the Cards to a crucial win over the Cubs. Scott Rolen continued his hot hitting (10-26) with a single, two doubles and 3 RBI and Albert Pujols chipped in with a solo homer - his 28th. The Cardinals salvaged the win in Chicago after losing two straight to the Cubs and having Sunday's game rained out. Overall, it was a great week to be a Cardinal, as the Redbirds took 4 of six from Milwaukee and Chicago, having swept the Brewers earlier in the week. St. Louis trails both the Cubs and Brewers by 3 games in the division even though they are 3 games under .500. The schedule looks positive for the Cards, as their next four 3-game series are against Florida (6 straight losses), Atlanta, Houston and Cincinnati. The Cubs have San Francisco (5 straight wins), Arizona, Milwaukee and Houston upcoming, while the Brewers have Arizona, San Fran, Chicago and Pittsburgh. It's winner-takes-all in the Central, as none of the teams has any hope of taking the wild card spot. Other NL Scores San Francisco 8 Florida 7 Washington 7 Houston 0 Pittsburgh 4 Colorado 2, 11 innings

Monday, August 20, 2007

Santana's 17 sets team record; Beltran does yard work

American League Detroit 3 NY Yankees 9 - The Yankees took 3 of 4 from the visiting Tigers and closed to within 4 games of Boston in the AL East. Wilson Betemit, spelling Derek Jeter at shortstop, drove in a pair of runs with a single in the 7th, giving the Yankees a 6-3 lead, and doubled home two more in the 8th. Betemit was acquired in a trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers prior to the trading deadline. LA Angels 3 Boston 1 - The Angels salvaged a spilt in their 4-game trip to Boston, capitalizing on the 7-hit, 1-run pitching of Joe Saunders, who worked 7 1/3 innings and improved to 7-1.
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Francisco Rodriguez picked up his 31st save, striking out two in a hitless 9th. Chi White Sox 5 Seattle 11 - Jose Guillen hit a 2-run homer in the first inning, drove in two more with a single in the 2nd and knocked in his 5th RBI of the game with a sac fly in the 5th. Ichiro Suzuki went 3-5, drove in 2 and scored 3 times, boosting his average to .347, good for 2nd in the AL behind Magglio Ordonez at .351. Texas 0 Minnesota 1 - Johan Santana (right) set a Twins franchise record by setting down 17 Rangers on strikes, getting at least one K on every Texas starter, and fanning Michael Young, the 2005 AL batting champ, 3 times. Santana (13-9) allowed just 2 hits over 8 innings, both to Sammy Sosa. The 9th inning was finished by Joe Nathan, who picked up his 27th save, fanning Brad Wilkerson and Young to end the game. Cleveland 3 Tampa Bay 4, 12 innings - With Cleveland losing at Tampa Bay, the races in all three divisions and the wild card tightened up on Sunday. The Yankees trail Boston by 4 in the AL East, Cleveland is 1 1/2 up on Detroit and the Angels hold a slim 2-game lead over Seattle in the West. The Mariners have a 1/2-game edge over New York in the wild card hunt. The Tigers have fallen 3 1/2 off the wild card pace. Minnesota continues to hang around, 6 back of Cleveland in the Central. Other AL Scores Baltimore 2 Toronto 3, 10 innings Kansas City 1 Oakland 6 National League NY Mets 8 Washington 2 - Carlos Beltran (right) socked a pair of 2-run homers as the Mets completed the 3-game sweep at Washington. The win boosted the Mets to a 5-game edge over Philadelphia and 5 1/2 over Atlanta in the East division. Beltran has 5 homers in 9 games since returning from the DL on August 10 and has 24 on the year. Cincinnati 7 Milwaukee 6 - With the Cubs and Cardinals idled by rain, a win could have given the Brewers a share of 1st place in the NL Central. Instead, Jose Valentin's ground-rule double in the 8th off reliever Scott Linebrink turned a 6-5 Milwaukee lead into a 7-6 loss. The Brewers pounded out 4 homers, including Prince Fielder's league-leading 38th, but it was hardly enough, as Adam Dunn sent #34 into the stands and the Brewers lost for the 10th time in their last 13 outings and fell a full game behind the Cubs. Houston 3 San Diego 5 - Greg Maddux stopped the Astros on 2 hits and one earned run over 6 innings as the Padres picked up a game on the Diamondbacks and are now 4 behind in the West. The Dodgers regained 3rd place, taking 2 of 3 from the Rockies. LA is 6 1/2 back, Colorado, 7. Other NL Scores Arizona 2 Atlanta 6 San Francisco 6 Florida 5 Philadelphia 4 Pittsburgh 8 Colorado 3 LA Dodgers 4

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Ortiz keeps Sox on top; Owings hits, pitches D-backs to victory

American League Detroit 2 NY Yankees 5 - Roger Clemens (5-5) stymied the Tigers, allowing only 2 earned runs on 10 hits over 6 innings, while fanning 8. The win kept New York 5 behind Boston in the AL East and 1/2-game behind Seattle in the wild card race. Cleveland 8 Tampa Bay 1 - Jake Westbrook won for the third time in his last four starts, giving up just 2 hits over 7 innings while his teammates built a healthy lead. Cleveland's won 3 straight and has a 1 1/2-game lead over Detroit in the AL Central. LA Angels 5 Boston 10 - David Ortiz (right) helped erase a 5-0 Angels lead with a grand slam in the Red Sox' 6-run 5th inning. Julio Lugo had already driven in a pair of runs in the inning, when Ortiz popped one into the right field stands. Chi White Sox 5 Seattle 7 - Seattle drew to within 2 games of the Angels in the Western division with their 2nd straight over Chicago. The series concludes on Sunday. The Mariners play a 3-game series at Minnesota and 4 at Texas before returning home for a three game showdown with the Angels, August 27-29. Other AL Scores Baltimore 5 Toronto 3 Texas 5 Minnesota 0 Kansas City 7 Oakland 3 National League Arizona 12 Atlanta 6 - The Diamondbacks have a found themselves a rookie who can hit with power. Micah Owings (right) went 4-5, with a single, double and a pair of homers, drove in 6 runs and scored 4 times against the Braves on Saturday. Oh, and he was the starting pitcher and got the win, by the way, allowing 3 hits - all 2-out solo homers - over 7 innings. Owings (6-6) struck out seven and walked none, but his performance at the plate overshadowed his mound work. The Diamondbacks won their 4th straight and are 12-4 in August. In a division that was a dead tight race between San Diego, Los Angeles and Arizona until just two weeks ago, the D-Backs have now sprinted ahead of the pack, opening up a 5-game bulge on the Padres and have left the slumping Dodgers (6-11 in August) for dead, 7 1/2 back. NY Mets 7 Washington 4 - Try as they like, nobody can catch the Mets in NL East. New York won for the 5th time in their last 6, as both Philadelphia and Atlanta lost. The Mets have a 4-game lead over the Phillies and lead Atlanta by 5 1/2. Luis Castillo hit his first home run of the season and first as a Met, drove in a pair of runs and scored twice. Castillo, brought over from Minnesota on July 31, has hit safely in 14 of 17 games with the Mets. Notable for making consistent contact, home runs are rare for the native of the Dominican Republic. His 24 career long balls have come in 1372 games for a ratio of 1 per 57 games. Barry Bonds need not worry. St. Louis 3 Chi Cubs 5 - Daryle Ward hoisted a grand slam over the ivy in center field and the Cubs scored all of their run in the 3rd inning, besting the Cardinals for the second straight day. The win kept the Cubs in first place, 12-game to the good over Milwaukee and 4 games better than St. Louis. Other NL Scores Philadelphia 6 Pittsburgh 11 San Francisco 4 Florida 3 Cincinnati 4 Milwaukee 8 - G. Jenkins, 3-run HR (19) Houston 3 San Diego 2 Colorado 7 LA Dodgers 4, 14 innings

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Webb's streak at 42 innings; Bad Vlad bounces Boston

American League Detroit 1 NY Yankees 6 - Jason Giambi powered a pair of homers as the Yankees continued the hunt for at least a wild card spot. They trail the Red Sox by 5 games in the division and Seattle by just 1/2 in the wild card, with Detroit another game back. The Tigers are only 1/2-game out of first place in the AL Central. Cleveland 2 Tampa Bay 1 - The Indians took back first place in the division as Paul Byrd (11-5) scattered 8 hits over 6 innings, allowing one lonely Tampa Bay run while striking out 5. Cleveland knocked out 12 hits, including 3 doubles and a triple, but could only muster 2 runs. LA Angels 4 Boston 8 - David Ortiz pounded his 20th home run as the Sox took the first game of the double header between AL Eat and West leaders. LA Angels 7 Boston 5 - Eric Gagne cost the Red Sox a win, giving up three runs in the 9th, the final blow delivered by Vladimir Guerrero (right) who doubled home the tying and winning runs with his 40th double and 95th and 96th RBI. Vlad was bad, falling just a homer short of the cycle, going 3-5 with 3 RBI. Other AL Scores Baltimore 2 Toronto 5 Texas 1 Minnesota 2, 10 innings Kansas City 9 Oakland 2 Chi White Sox 4 Seattle 5 National League Arizona 4 Atlanta 0 - Brandon Webb (13-8) tossed his third consecutive shutout, running his scoreless innings streak to 42, tying Rube Foster for the 12th-longest streak in MLB history. Webb (right) baffled Atlanta's batters on 2 hits, while striking out 6 and issuing just one walk. Webb still has a way to go to reach Orel Hershiser's record of 59 straight scoreless innings, set in 1988, but the win boosted Arizona's lead in the NL West to 4 games over losing San Diego. The Diamondbacks are streaking through August into baseball's final month. Friday was their third straight win and 10th in their last 13 games. St. Louis 1 Chi Cubs 2 - The Cubs are once again in first place in the NL Central, and they got there by beating the team that helped jettison the formerly first-place Brewers. The Cardinals disposed of Milwaukee by sweeping their three-game series before heading to Chicago, and were rudely welcomed by Rich Hill (7-7) who allowed just 3 hits over seven innings. The Cardinals' only run came on Albert Pujols' 26th home run - a solo shot in the 6th, which gave the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. Jacques Jones countered with a 2-run shot in the bottom of the inning, after which neither team could score. The Cubs have a 1/2-game advantage over Milwaukee and lead the Cardinals by 3, though the Cards and Cubs still have three games left in their head-to-head series. Cincinnati 8 Milwaukee 3 - Adam Dunn smacked his 33rd home run and the Reds knocked the Brewers out of first place, handing them their 5th straight loss. NY Mets 6 Washington 2 - Tom Glavine notched career win #301 and Moises Alou homered for the 4th time in his last 5 games as the Mets maintained their NL East lead. Jose Reyes boosted his major league leading stolen base total to 62 with a pair of swipes. Philadelphia 11 Pittsburgh 8 - Pat Burrell singled, doubled and homered, driving in 3 runs and scoring twice as the Phillies outlasted the Pirates in the first of a 3-game series. The Phillies kept pace with the Mets, who are 3 in front, and separated themselves from the Braves, who lost to Arizona. Other NL Scores San Francisco 3 Florida 0 Houston 3 San Diego 1 Colorado 4 LA Dodgers 6

Friday, August 17, 2007

Guillen slams Yanks; Cards sweep Brewers

American League Detroit 8 NY Yankees 5 - For the Yankees, now comes the hard part. After going 25-10 since the All-Star game, with all but three of those games against either Toronto, Tampa Bay, Baltimore, Chicago and Kansas City (the other three were a sweep of Cleveland), the Bombers began a string of 14 games against upper-eschelon teams Detroit, Los Angeles and Boston with a loss to the Tigers. While the Yankees picked up a lot of ground on the Red Sox and in the wild card race during their span against some of the league's bottom-feeders, finishing the deal may not be so easy. Things started out badly for the Yankees, as starter Mike Mussina only got one out in the first inning before surrendering a grand slam to Detroit's Carlos Guillen (right) Mussina wasn't entirely to blame, however, as Alex Rodriguez misplayed what could have been an inning-ending double play grounder, leading to a runners on first and second. It went downhill from there, as the Tigers scored two more in the 2nd, and the Yankees were never in it after that. Justin Verlander (13-4) didn't pitch all that well but picked up the win, which vaulted the Tigers into first place in the Central division, 1/2 ahead of Cleveland. New York fell to 5 1/2 behind Boston and 1/2 back of Seattle in the wild card race. LA Angels 4 Toronto 3 - Kelvim Escobar (13-6) allowed just one run over 7 solid innings, but Francisco Rodriguez had an adventuresome 9th inning, allowing two runs in earning his 20th save. The Angels stretched their lead over Seattle to 3 1/2 games in the West Other AL Scores Chi White Sox 5 Oakland 8, 10 innings - Chicago, 5 straight losses Kansas City 6 Texas 2 National League St. Louis 8 Milwaukee 0 - Adam Wainwright allowed just 2 hits and struck out 8 over 7 innings as the Cardinals completed their sweep of the slipping Brewers. The Cards, still two games under .500 (58-60) are now 2 1/2 back of Milwaukee in baseball's weakest division. Yadier Molina led the offensive attack, going 3-3 with a pair of homers, scoring three times with 3 RBI. Troy Percival, an interesting addition to the Cardinals' bullpen, gave up one hit while fanning two in the ninth. Percival, who missed half of 2005 and all of 2006, has 22 Ks in 21 innings with the Cards. From the mid-90s through 2005, Percival was one of the most dominating closers in baseball, racking up 324 saves. Cincinnati 4 Chi Cubs 12 - The Cubs won for just the 5th time in their last 15 games to draw within 1/2-game of the Brewers. Chicago got a career-best 5-for-5 efforts from Mark DeRosa (right), who doubled and singled four times, driving in 4 runs. The Cubs' struggles of late can largely be tied to the absence of leadoff man Alfonso Soriano, who was last seen pulling up lame in an 8-3 loss to the Mets on August 5. The Cubs have scored three runs or less in 7 of their last 10 losses. NY Mets 7 Pittsburgh 10 - Pitching is not the Mets' strong suit and it proved to be their undoing as the Pirates overcame deficits of 5-0 and 7-4, scoring in each of the 4th through 8th innings, finally putting the Mets away with 3 in the 8th. Philadelphia 4 Washington 2 - The only winner from the NL East on Thursday, the Phillies leapfrogged over Atlanta into second place... again, and now trail the Mets by 3 games.
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With a 4-game series with the division leaders looming (Aug. 27-30, at Philly), the Phils will have another shot at the Mets, against whom they are 5-7 this season, and first place. Philly will host the Dodgers and Padres in consecutive 3-game series just prior to the division showdown. The Phillies are at Pittsburgh for a 3-game set this weekend while the Mets travel to Washington. Colorado 9 San Diego 11 - The chase continues in the NL West. The Padres scored 9 times in the 5th inning to stay 3 games back of Arizona and put some space between themselves and 3rd place Colorado. The Rockies are now 6 games out after dropping two of three to the Padres. Other NL Scores Arizona 5 Florida 4 San Francisco 9 Atlanta 3 Houston 2 LA Dodgers 6

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Carmona tames Tigers; Hudson wins 14th for Braves

American League Detroit 2 Cleveland 5 - The Indians took back 1st place in the AL Central, getting even with Detroit in their brief 2-game series as rookie sensation Fausto Carmona (right) kept the Tigers caged, allowing 1 earned run off 4 hits over 8 innings while striking out 10. Carmona improved to 14-7 with a 3.16 ERA Each of the AL contenders - the Yankees, Red Sox, Mariners and Angels - lost on Wednesday, keeping the standings in the same order as when the day started. Daisuke Matsuzaka took his 9th loss (14 wins) for Boston and Mariano Rivera took his 4th loss, just two nights after blowing a save and getting his 3rd win in New York's 7-6 win on Monday. Torii Hunter's 9th inning grand slam took care of Seattle. Other AL Scores Tampa Bay 6 Boston 5 Baltimore 6 NY Yankees 3, 10 innings Minnesota 6 Seattle 1 LA Angels 1 Toronto 2 Kansas City 3 Texas 4 Chi White Sox 2 Oakland 3 National League San Francisco 3 Atlanta 6 - Tim Hudson (right) gave up a home run to Barry Bonds (#759), but lasted eight innings, allowing just 3 earned runs, to improve to 14-5 and vault the Braves over Philly into 2nd place in the NL East. Bonds' 6th-inning blast tied the game at 2-2, but Atlanta responded with a 4-spot in the bottom of the inning and Hudson continued. Hudson won his 8th straight and kept his ERA in a quality area at 3.02. Manager Bobby Cox, who set a major league record for being ejected the night before, was tossed for the 133rd time in the 3rd inning for arguing a balk called on Hudson. The Braves and Giants play the rubber game of the series tonight. NY Mets 10 Pittsburgh 8 - The Mets won their 3rd straight, and with their lineup intact, they look like heavy favorites to win the NL East title for the second straight year. The win maintained their 3 1/2-game lead over Atlanta, and 4 better than Philadephia. The two teams chasing them have flip-flopped 2nd and 3rd places over the past weeks and months, though neither has been able to catch the Mets. Moises Alou proved his worth again on Wednesday, driving in 3 runs with a 2-run homer in the first inning and an insurance-run single in the 9th to complete the Mets' scoring. Colorado 3 San Diego 0 - The Rockies continue to hang around, evening their series at San Diego. They are 2 games behind the Padres and 5 back of division-leading Arizona. St. Louis 8 Milwaukee 3 - The Cardinals continue to surge in the Central division. Besting the Brewers for the second straight night, St. Louis is now just 3 1/2 off the pace. Scott Rolen (right) doubled, homered and singled twice in 5 at-bats, driving in 2 and scoring 3 times to spearhead the attack. Albert Pujols and Jim Edmonds also homered for the Cardinals, who look to sweep the 3-game set tonight in Milwaukee before heading to Chicago for four games with the 2nd-place Cubs. Other NL Scores Arizona 9 Florida 6 Philadelphia 2 Washington 4 Cincinnati 11 Chi Cubs 9 - 4th straight loss for Chicago Houston 3 LA Dodgers 6

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Cardinals on the move; Ordonez raps Indians

American League Baltimore 12 NY Yankees 0 - On the night honoring Yankee legend Phil Rizutto, who passed away earlier in the day at the age of 89, the Bombers came up firing blanks. Daniel Cabrera (9-12) limited them to just 2 hits over 6 2/3 innings, while issuing 6 walks and striking out 5. Aubry Huff hit a grand slam in the 3rd inning and added another RBI with a 6th inning single. Tampa Bay 1 Boston 2 - The Red Sox took advantage of the Yankees' ineptitude at the plate, rallying in the 9th inning to steal a game from the Devil Rays. Trailing 1-0 with one out, Mike Lowell homered to deep left. After a Kevin Youkilis strikeout, Jason Varitek hit a ground rule double and Coco Crisp drove in the game winner with a single to right. Both runs came off Al Reyes, spoiling an excellent effort by Scott Kazmir and a pair of Tampa relievers, who had held the Sox in check throughout. The Red Sox improved their AL East lead to 5 games over New York. Detroit 6 Cleveland 2, 10 innings - Magglio Ordonez went 3-5 and drove in four runs, including a 3-run homer in the top of the 10th to help the Tigers take a 1-game lead in the contentious AL Central. The teams take to the field for the second and final game in this short series Wednesday night. Ordonez leads the majors with a .359 batting average and has 108 RBI, just 6 behind AL leader Alex Rodriguez. Chi White Sox 3 Oakland 4 - Jack Cust drove in 3 of Oakland's 4 runs with a pair of solo homers and a sac fly. Cust has 20 home runs and 63 RBI. Other AL Scores LA Angels 1 Toronto 4 - R. Halladay, W (14-5), 9 IP, 5 H, 1 ER ,1 BB, 2 K Kansas City 3 Texas 5 Minnesota 11 Seattle 3 - T. Hunter, 3-4, 4 R National League St. Louis 12 Milwaukee 4 - The Cardinals have hung around in the NL Central race just long enough to get themselves into a contending position. Opening a critical 7-game stretch in which they play the top two teams in the division, the Cards took the first of their three-game series with division-leader Milwaukee, banging out 19 hits in the rout. Jim Edmonds rapped out four hits in six trips to the plate and drove in four runs. Prince Fielder hit is league-leading 37th home run in the first inning. The Cardinals are now just 4 1/2 behind the Brewers and 3 games back of 2nd-place Chicago, winning their third straight. The Cardinals are 16-15 since the All-Star break, but the Brewers have gone 13-18 over the same span. NY Mets 5 Pittsburgh 4 - Carlos Beltran knocked his 21st home run and he and Moises Alou each had 2 RBI as the Mets kept their slim edge over Philly and Atlanta in the NL East. New York leads the Phillies by 3 games and the Braves by 3 1/2. Arizona 5 Florida 14 - Miguel Cabrera blasted his 29th home run and drove in 3 runs (86) to lead the romp over Arizona. Colorado 0 San Diego 8 - Greg Maddux (8-9) scattered 8 hits over 5 2/3 innings and the Padres scored 6 runs in the second inning, picking up a game on losing Arizona. The Padres are 2 back of the Diamondbacks in the NL West. Colorado is in 3rd place, 5 back. Other NL Scores Philadelphia 3 Washington 2 San Francisco 4 Atlanta 5 Cincinnati 6 Chi Cubs 5 - Cubs, 3rd straight loss Houston 7 LA Dodgers 4 - LA loses 4th straight, 8th of last 10

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Wakefield Knuckles D-Rays; Dodger Blues

American League Tampa Bay 0 Boston 3 - There are any number of good reasons why Boston keeps Tim Wakefield (right) around. Monday's 3-0 win over Tampa Bay was just another reminder of how valuable the knuckleballer has been to the franchise over the years. Wakefield improved to 18-2 lifetime against Tampa Bay, one of Boston's divisional foes, a team they simply have to beat consistently. Wakefield (14-10) worked a no-hitter into the 7th inning, ending up with a 2-hit performance over 8 innings. Sometimes, when the knuckler is working, it's almost impossible to hit. Besides having Tampa's number, Wakefield contributes to the Boston staff in a variety of ways. He's consistent. Beginning in 2002, Wakefield's started 158 games and compiled a record of 71-55. He's had a winning record in 5 of his last six seasons, the only blemish coming last year when he was beset with injuries and finished 7-11. He could be on his way to his winningest season. He's got 8 more starts to surpass the 17 wins he put up in 1998. Baltimore 6 NY Yankees 7 - The Yankees kept pace with Boston as Melky Cabrera scored on Derek Jeter's tapper back to pitcher Chad Bradford in the bottom of the 9th. The Yanks have won 4 straight and 9 of their last 10. Minnesota 3 Seattle 4 - Richie Sexson homered to lead off the bottom of the 9th, spoiling another solid performance by Minnesota ace Johan Santana, who allowed 3 runs over 7 innings but received no decision. Besides wins, Santana (12-9) has 4 no decisions and 5 losses in games in which he's pitched at least 6 innings and allowed 3 runs or less. Sexson's walk-off blast was his 19th of the season. With their third straight win, the Mariners picked up 1/2 game on idle Los Angeles and are just 3 back, and remain tied with the Yankees for the wild card lead. Minnesota has lost 5 straight. Other AL Scores Oakland 7 Detroit 2 - Tigers fall into 1st place tie with Cleveland Toronto 2 Kansas City 6 National League Houston 4 LA Dodgers 1 - Roy Oswalt (right) did his part to contribute to the demise of the Dodgers with 8 innings of mound mastery Monday night. The Houston stopper gave up 1 earned run on 6 hits to improve to 13-6, and sink Los Angeles further behind in the NL West. The Dodgers have lost 3 straight, 8 of their last 10 and trail Arizona by 6 1/2 games. Other NL Scores San Francisco 1 Pittsburgh 3 San Francisco 10 Pittsburgh 3

Monday, August 13, 2007

Ordonez launches 2 in 2nd; Howard's homer boosts Phils

American League Seattle 6 Chi White Sox 0 - Jeff Weaver (4-10) pitched his second complete game shutout of the season on Sunday, blanking the White Sox on 5 hits, striking out 8 without walking a batter. Weaver dominated like he did back on June 20, when the Mariners whitewashed Pittsburgh, 7-0. Starting out 0-6, Weaver's gone 4-4 since mid-June and the Mariners have contended in the AL West and wild card races. NY Yankees 5 Cleveland 3 - The Yankees completed their 3-game sweep of the Indians, as Jason Giambi homered for the second straight game since returning from the DL on August 7, and Andy Pettitte (9-7) won his third straight decision. The Yankees' romp through Cleveland did serious damage to the post-season hopes of the Indians, dropping them out of first place in the AL Central (Detroit now leads by 1/2 game), and placing them in 3rd place in the wild card race, 1 1/2 games behind co-leaders NY and Seattle. Left for dead in early July, the Yankees have been relentless in their pursuit of Boston, and now trail the Red Sox by just 4 games, compiling a 23-8 record since the All-Star break. Oakland 6 Detroit 11 - Magglio Ordonez (right) led off the 2nd inning with a home run to right, and completed the 8-run Detroit outburst with a 3-run shot to left. Detroit's win gave them a 1/2-game lead in the AL Central. Ordonez leads the league with a .357 batting average, is second in RBI with 102 and his 21 homers are the 9th most in the league. Other AL Scores Boston 3 Baltimore 6, 10 innings Minnesota 2 LA Angels 6 - Angels sweep Twins, have best home record in majors at 40-17 Toronto 4 Kansas City 1 Tampa Bay 1 Texas 9 National League Florida 4 NY Mets 10 - Moises Alou may turn out to be the savior of the Mets' season, returning to full strength off the DL just about the same time slugger Carlos Beltran went to the bench for his own stint on the DL. Beltran has been back for three games now, but he's yet to produce tangible results, with just 1 hit in 10 at-bats. Alou smashed a pair of homers on Sunday and added a single to go 3-4 with 4 RBI and 3 runs scored. Alou has hit 5 homers in his last 8 games, helping the Mets stay 3 games ahead of Philly and 3 1/2 in front of Atlanta in the NL East. Atlanta 3 Philadelphia 5 - The Phillies took 2 of 3 and a 1/2-game edge from the Braves in the battle for 2nd place in the division. Ryan Howard (right) socked his 33rd home run, a 3-run shot in the 5th inning which turned a 2-1 deficit into a 4-2 advantage. Starter Jamie Moyer picked up win #11 against 9 losses, and the Philly bullpen shut out the Braves over the final 2 2/3 innings. The Phillies have somewhat of an easy road week upcoming, with 3 games at Washington followed by a 3-game series at Pittsburgh. Meanwhile, the Braves are home against San Fran and Arizona, while the Mets flip-flop with the Phils, playing consecutive three game sets at Pittsburgh and at Washington beginning Tuesday. San Diego 10 Cincinnati 4 - The Padres picked up a game on Arizona with their second double-digit output in the last three games, giving them a 2-1 split at Cincy. Kahlil Green went 4-5 with 3 RBI and Brian Giles hit two home runs for the second game in a row. Both of Giles' homers on Sunday were solo shots. Jake Peavy gave up 2 earned runs over 6 2/3, improving to 13-5. LA Dodgers 2 St. Louis 12 - While the Cardinals may be hitting their best stride at just the right time, the Dodgers are hurtling headlong into the abyss of of the National League.
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The Cardinals have won 4 of their last six, but the Dodgers are a pitiful 3-11 over their last 14 games. On Sunday, Ryan Ludwick smashed a 3-run homer in the first inning and delivered a run-scoring single in the 3rd to lead the Redbird assault with 4 RBI. The Dodgers fell to 4th place in the NL West, 6 games out, while the Cardinals closed to within 5 1/2 of Milwaukee in the Central. The Cardinals have a critical week ahead, beginning with a three-game series at Milwaukee, followed by a 4-game set at 2nd place Chicago. It's put up or shut up time in the Central, especially for the Cardinals, who have yet to crack the .500 mark (55-60). Other NL Scores Washington 7 Arizona 6 San Diego 10 Cincinnati 4 Milwaukee 4 Houston 6 Chi Cubs 3 Colorado 6 - Cubs, Rockies split 4-game series Pittsburgh 5 San Francisco 0

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A-Rod cracks a pair; Webb blank streak at 33

American League NY Yankees 11 Cleveland 2 - Alex Rodriguez (right) is having what some might describe as a "dream season." On Saturday, A-Rod, already leading the universe in home runs and RBI, belted another pair of 2-run moon shots, giving him 39 while boosting his RBI total to 114. Even better, the Yankees knocked off the AL Central leader for the second straight day and can sweep the Indians with a win on Sunday. Rodriguez is on pace to hit 54 homers and drive in about 155 runs, clearly an MVP-type season. If he gets hot down the stretch, he could challenge the American League single-season home run mark, still held by Roger Maris, who hit 61 in 1961. The Yankees also remained tied for the wild card lead with Seattle and continue to trail Boston by 5 games in their division. Boston 6 Baltimore 2 - Josh Beckett joined the Angels' John Lackey as the AL's only 15-game winners, getting to within 1 out of a complete game before being lifted with 2 out in the ninth. Beckett allowed 8 hits and 2 earned run, struck out 8 and lowered his ERA to 3.24. Seattle 7 Chi White Sox 6 - The Mariners nearly blew a 5-run lead as Josh Fields hit a grand slam in the bottom of the ninth off closer J.J. Putz, who, nevertheless, picked up his 34th save. Seattle trails the Angels by 3 1/2 in the AL West. Other AL Scores Oakland 2 Detroit 5 Toronto 1 Kansas City 4 Tampa Bay 3 Texas 0 Minnesota 3 LA Angels 4 National League Washington 0 Arizona 1 - Brandon Webb (right) pitched his second straight complete game shutout, extending his scoreless streak to 33 innings. Webb (12-8), gave up just 5 hits and one walk, while fanning 10. The Diamondbacks scored the game's only run on Justin Upton's 4th inning triple, which plated Erik Byrnes. With their 4th straight win, Arizona increased its lead in the division to 4 games over the losing Padres. LA Dodgers 1 St. Louis 6 - Rick Ankiel continues to impress with his power. The pitcher-turned-outfielder smacked a pair of homers to help St. Louis knock off the Dodgers, who are quickly slipping out of contention for both the division and the wild card. The Dodgers (60-56) are 6 behind Arizona and trail San Diego, the wild card leader, by 2 games. Ankiel added a single to go 3-4, drove in 3 runs and scored 3 times. Milwaukee 7 Houston 4 - The Brewers may be waking up at just the right time. Fending off injuries and a month-long slump - they've gone 13-16 since the All-Star break - Milwaukee won their second straight and opened up a tiny bit of breathing room in the NL Central as the Cubs lost at Colorado. The Brewers have a 1 1/2 game edge in the division. Rookie Ryan Braun went 2-5 with his 22nd home run and 4 RBI. He's hitting .346. Slugger Prince Fielder whacked his NL-best 36th home run in the 9th. Atlanta 7 Philadelphia 5 - With the Mets losing for the third straight day, the NL East race got a little more interesting. The Braves closed to within 2 1/2 of New York, with Philly 3 back. The rubber game of this critical 3-game series is the featured game on ESPN, tonight at 8:00 pm. Other NL Scores Pittsburgh 13 San Francisco 3 San Diego 3 Cincinnati 8 Florida 7 NY Mets 5

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Cust's 7 RBI tames Tigers; the Philly Flash is back

American League NY Yankees 6 Cleveland 1 - The Yankees did more than just beat the Central division leaders on Friday. They also tied Seattle for the lead in the wild card race and drew to within 5 games of Boston in their own division. Alex Rodriguez pounded his 37th home run of the season to get the scoring started in the 2nd inning and rookie starter Phil Hughes gave up just one earned run from 4 hits over six innings to improve to 2-1.
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Hughes struck out 6 and walked one. Yankees' center fielder Melky Carbrera extended his hitting streak to 15 games. Oakland 16 Detroit 10 - In light of the Indians' loss, Detroit had the opportunity to close the gap in the division, but the slumping Tigers dropped their 3rd straight and 14th of their last 18. The main problem for Detroit seems to lie in their pitching staff, which, over those 14 losses, has allowed an average of 7.8 runs per game, 4 times allowing 10 or more. With no quick fix to pitching woes, the Tigers head into a rough part of their schedule once they conclude their 4-game series with the A's on Monday. Following that, they play 13 straight games against the Indians and Yankees, their principal division and wild card foes. In Friday's win by the A's, Jack Cust (right) delivered two devastating blows. First, a bases-loaded double in the 3rd, then, in the 6th inning, a grand slam homer, his 18th round-tripper. Cust finished 2-5 with 7 RBI. Minnesota 1 LA Angels 10 - Starter Kelvim Escobar improved to 12-6, allowing one earned run on 5 hits over six innings as his teammates scored 2 in the third and 4 in each of the 6th and 7th innings. The win increased the Angels' edge in the division to 3 1/2 games over Seattle. Other AL Scores Boston 5 Baltimore 6 - Boston blows 5-1 lead Toronto 2 Kansas City 1 Seattle 3 Chi White Sox 5 Tampa Bay 4 Texas 7 National League Atlanta 4 Philadelphia 5 - With the Mets losing to Florida, the two main contenders for the top spot in the NL East squared off in the opener of a crucial 3-game series, with the home boys taking the advantage. A couple of subs accounted for the game-winner, as Greg Dobbs singled home Jayson Werth in the bottom of the 7th, snapping a 4-4 tie. After J.C. Romero and Antonio Alfonseca held the lead in the 8th, Tom (Flash) Gordon (right) recently back from the DL, picked up his first save since May 1 with a scoreless 9th. The Phillies took a 1.2-game edge over the Braves and trail the Mets by 3 1/2. Cole Hamels (13-5) got the win. Chi Cubs 6 Colorado 2 - The Cubs won their 2nd straight at Colorado, remaining 1/2-game back of Milwaukee in the NL Central. Jason Marquis (9-7) didn't allow an earned run over 6 2/3, giving up 5 hits and no walks, while striking out 5. Washington 4 Arizona 11 - The D-backs maintained their 3-game edge in the West, winning their 3rd straight and 8th of their last 10. Conor Jackson smashed a pair of home runs (9) and drove in 4,on a 3-3 night. San Diego 12 Cincinnati 7, 11 innings - Adrian Gonzalez went 3-4, with a pair of doubles and a 3-run homer - his 19th - and scored three times as the Padres kept pace with Arizona, putting up a 5-spot in the top of the 11th for the win. Ken Griffey Jr. homered for the Reds, his 27th. Pittsburgh 8 San Francisco 7 - Barry Bonds homered for the 4th time in his last 6 games, giving him 24 on the season and 758 lifetime. His 3 RBI, however, could not prevent another San Francisco loss, as the last-place Giants fell to 49-65, 15 1/2 games out in the NL West. Other NL Scores Florida 4 NY Mets 3 Milwaukee 5 Houston 4, 11 innings LA Dodgers 2 St. Louis 1

Friday, August 10, 2007

Rick Ankiel Returns; Ichiro Tops AL Batters

American League Seattle 13 Baltimore 8 - The Mariners took a 1-game lead in the wild card race over the Yankees and Tigers and are still 2 1/2 games behind the Angels in the AL West. Ichiro Suzuki (right) went 3-5, drove in 3 runs and scored twice, boosting his batting average to .350, tops in the league, signaling that the batting race is now officially over. Ichiro, who has had more than 200 hits in each of his 6 full seasons with Seattle, has 165 and has had 3 hits in each of his last 3 games. Other AL Scores Cleveland 7 Chi White Sox 5 Tampa Bay 8 Detroit 1 - Tigers lose 7th of last 10. Minnesota 0 Kansas City 1 National League Atlanta 7 NY Mets 6 - The Braves took another series from the Mets, this time, 2 games to 1, and are now 3 1/2 back in the NL East. Chipper Jones socked a 3-run homer in the 5th (his 19th), to give the Braves a 4-3 lead that they would not give up. Chi Cubs 10 Colorado 2 - Jacque Jones went 4-5 and drive in 4 runs as the Cubs got back to just 1/2-games back of Milwaukee in the NL Central. San Diego 0 St. Louis 5 - Rick Ankiel (right) returned to the majors - as an outfielder - and delivered a three-run shot to lead the Cardinals over the Padres for the second straight day. The Cards took 3 of 4 from San Diego and are now just 5 1/2 back of Milwaukee, while pushing the Padres a full 3 games back of Arizona in the West. Other NL Scores LA Dodgers 5 Cincinnati 4, 11 innings Washington 3 San Francisco 1 Florida 4 Philadelphia 2 Pittsburgh 2 Arizona 4

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Vidro boosts Mariners, Atkins powers Rockies

American League Boston 9 LA Angels 6 - The Red Sox won a crucial game and avoided being swept by the Angels as Mike Lowell went 4-4 and Dustin Pedroia broke a 6-6 tie in the 7th inning with his 6th home run of the season. The Boston bullpen shut down the Angels for the final 4 innings, with Jonathan Papelbon earning his 26th save. NY Yankees 4 Toronto 15 - Earlier in the evening, the Yankees were shocked back to reality by the Blue Jays, who snapped New York's 5-game win streak, hammering out 16 hits, sending Chien-Ming Wang to the showers after just 2 2/3 innings. Wang (13-6), allowed 9 hits and 8 earned runs in his shortest start of the season. Vernon Wells (right) went 3-4 with 4 RBI. The loss dropped the Yankees back to 6 games behind the Red Sox in the AL East. Seattle 8 Baltimore 4 - The Mariners tied the Tigers for the wild card lead as Detroit, New York and Cleveland all lost. Jose Vidro went 3-3 drove in four runs and scored twice, belting a 2-run homer and a pair of sac flies. Other AL Scores Cleveland 4 Chi White Sox 6, 13 innings Tampa Bay 7 Detroit 1 Oakland 6 Texas 3 Minnesota 11 Kansas City 4 National League Milwaukee 4 Colorado 19 - The Rockies took over third place in the NL West, pounding out 23 hits against the slumping Brewers. Garrett Atkins (right) went 4-4, including a pair of doubles, and drove in six runs. Colorado won their third straight while the Dodgers lost their sixth in a row. The Rockies are 4 behind Arizona in the division. Second place San Diego is 2 back. Prince Fielder knocked his league-leading 34th home run for the Brewers. LA Dodgers 0 Cincinnati 1 - The Dodgers, who were in first place just a week ago, lost their sixth straight and have been on the losing side of the ledger in 13 of their last 17 games. Their second straight loss to the Reds was also the third straight game in which they failed to score, having lost to Arizona, 3-0, on Sunday. The Reds won 4-0 on Tuesday and Wednesday's shutout was delivered by Aaron Harang (11-3), who worked the Dodgers over for 8 innings, allowing 4 hits while fanning 8. David Weathers pitched a perfect ninth for his 22nd save. Atlanta 3 NY Mets 4 - The Mets rallied for 2 runs in the 7th and Moises Alou capped the comeback with a solo homer in the 8th, expanding New York's NL East lead over the Braves to 4 1/2 games. With Atlanta losing, Philadelphia slipped into 2nd place in the division, 4 back. Florida 4 Philadelphia 6 - The Phillies won their third straight as Aaron Rowand socked his 18th home run, a two-run shot in the sixth that put the Phillies ahead to stay. Pittsburgh 6 Arizona 10 - Chris Snyder drove in four runs with a double and 2-run homer as the Diamondbacks extended their lead in the West to 2 games over the Padres. Arizona has been red hot, going 14-3 since July 20. Other NL Scores Chi Cubs 2 Houston 8 San Diego 1 St. Louis 2 Washington 0 San Francisco 5 - B. Bonds, 2-run HR (757)