Friday, June 6, 2008
Ramirez Drives in Five as Sox Sweep Rays; Dukes' Walk-Off Blast Folds Cards
Players of the Day from Thursday, June 5, 2008 American League Manny Ramirez cracked a three-run homer in the first inning and drove in another pair of runs in the 4th with a single to lead the Red Sox to their third straight win over Tampa Bay, 7-1. With the five RBI, Ramirez has moved into third place in the RBI race, chasing Josh Hamilton (68) and Carlos Quentin (50). The Red Sox, by sweeping the series with the Rays in Boston, have retaken first place in the AL East and lead the Rays by 1 1/2 games. Notes: Texas earned a split in the slugfest series with Cleveland, winning 9-4 on Thursday. Kevin Millwood (4-3) got the win, with C.C. Sabathia (3-8) taking the loss. The 21 hits and 13 runs the two teams combined for was a low of the series. The totals for the four games were 113 hits and 80 runs. Texas shortstop Michael Young, who extended his hitting streak to 21 games, had 10 hits in the series, raising his batting average from .289 to .306. Milton Bradley homered for the 4th time in the last three games. He has 13 and is batting .337. Ian Kinsler went 0-for-4, snapping his 19-game hitting streak. National League Elijah Dukes - budding star or flash-in-the-pan? Dukes, 23 and technically a 2nd year pro, smacked a two-run, 10th inning, walk-off homer to push the Nationals past St. Louis, 10-9 in the second game of a double-header, after losing the first game, 4-1. The blast was Dukes' first homer of the year. Earlier, he singled twice and tripled, going 4-for-6 for the game with 4 RBI and 3 runs scored. Dukes entered the game batting .155. He left it with a .203 average. Last season, in 52 games, Dukes played in 52 games, getting to the plate for 184 official at-bats. Of his 35 hits, 10 were of the home run variety, and while he was issued 33 walks, he struck out 44 times while batting a mediocre .190. Notes: Chipper Jones hit the 400th home run of his career, and went 4-for-5, raising his batting average to .418. Chipper, who has never had 200 hits in a season, already has 89.