Monday, June 30, 2008
Slowey Gets Twins Back on Winning Track; Aurilia Drives SF past A's
Players of the Day from Sunday, June 29, 2008 American League After winning 10 straight, the Twins dropped a 5-1 decision to Milwaukee on Saturday, but on Sunday, Kevin Slowey pitched a complete game, 3-hit shutout to get the Twins back to their winning ways as Minnesota downed the Brewers 5-0. Slowey (5-6) didn't walk a batter and struck out 8, throwing 109 pitches, of which 79 were strikes. The shutout extended Slowey's scoreless innings streak to 16, dating back to June 18, when Washington's Felipe Lopez led off the 5th inning with a solo homer in an 11-2 Minnesota win. Slowey's won three of his last four starts - all against NL foes - and has an ERA of 3.47 to go with a 1.03 WHIP. Notes: With interleague play done for the season, teams can focus on divisional races. In the AL there are two good ones. In the East, Boston gave way to the pesky Rays and now trail Tampa Bay by 1/2 game, with the Yankees 5 1/2 back. The Central has Chicago on top by 1 1/2 over the Twins and 5 better than the Tigers. The Angels lead the West by 4 1/2 over the A's, though that division always seems to go the Angels' way, as they grind down the opposition in September. National League Rich Aurilia singled twice, hit a two-run homer and drove in five runs in five at-bats to lead the Giants to an 11-1 win at Oakland and finish interleague play by taking two of three from their crosstown rivals. Notes:All three divisions have good pennant races going. In the West, the Giants have pulled to within 5 games of Arizona. Ahead of them, the Dodgers are 2 1/2 back. The Central is a three-way joust, with the Cubs 2 1/2 clear of the Cardinals and 4 1/2 to the good over Milwaukee. The East has four teams in contention. The Phillies lead the Marlins by 1, the Mets by 3 and the Braves by 4. The AL went 9-5 in interleague games Sunday, extending their dominance over the National League. Since June 13, the tally stands at AL: 138; NL: 83.