Friday, June 27, 2008
One Hit, Two Hit: Garza and Harden Dominate for American League
Players of the Day from Thursday, June 26, 2008 American League Matt Garza allowed just one hit - a seventh-inning solo home run by Hanley Ramirez - in a dominating, complete game, 6-1 win over Florida, completing a three-game sweep of the in-state series by the Rays. Garza (6-4) had a no hitter through six innings before giving up the leadoff blast to Ramirez, who smoked his 17th home run into the left center field stands. Unfazed, Garza retired the next nine batters in order, ending the game by getting Ramirez to ground out harmlessly to short. Garza struck out 10 and walked one. Notes: With the win, the Rays moved to within 1/2 game of the idle Red Sox atop the AL East. National League With the National League taking such a serious thumping from the AL in interleague play, it's only fitting to feature Rich Harden of the Oakland A's in this spot. Harden worked over the punchless Phillies on 2 hits over 8 innings, striking out 11 in the process as the A's downed Philadelphia, 5-0. Harden (5-0) threw 96 pitches, 64 of them for strikes. The A's took 2 of 3 from Philly. Notes: Just how bad a beating is the AL putting on the NL in this current round of interleague play which began June 13? Pretty bad. Over the past two weeks, the American League has won 112, the Nationals, 66. That's a winning percentage of 63%, currently good enough to win any divisional race. The teams go back to playing within their own leagues on Monday, June 30.