Wednesday, July 2, 2008
5-Hit Wonders Garza, Cook, Stymie Boston, Arizona
Players of the Day from Tuesday, July 1, 2008 American League The Rays topped Boston for the second straight day as Matt Garza virtually silenced the Beantown bats on five hits in Tampa Bay's 3-1 win over the Red Sox. Boston's only run came via a 4th inning J. D. Drew sac fly and was unearned. Other than that, Garza, who didn't walk a batter, continued his mound dominance. In his last start, Garza threw a one-hitter and over his last four starts (three of them wins) he's allowed 16 hits and 5 earned runs in 29 innings. The Rays expanded their lead over Boston to 2 1/2 games and 7 1/2 over the struggling Yankees. Tampa Bay is 5-0 against Boston at Tropicana Field this season. Notes: The Angels beat their only challenger in the West, the Oakland A's, 5-3, on Tuesday, to improve to 5-4 against the A's. The two teams play the rubber game of the 3-game set tonight in Anaheim and meet just six more times - in August and September - this season. If they hope to have any impact in the AL West race, the A's have to do better than play the Angels even. National League The Rockies got all their runs in one inning, but Aaron Cook had to work all nine for his complete game, 4-0 shutout over the punchless Padres. For Cook (11-5), the outing was the first shutout of his 6 year major league career and his 8th complete game. He allowed five hits, striking out four while walking none, throwing just 79 pitches (58 for strikes) and getting 15 outs on ground balls. Oddly enough, these two teams battled down to the wire for the NL West title last season. This game was all about which team would end up in last place. The Rockies are 9 games behind Arizona in the division; the Padres are 9 1/2 back. Notes: The Cubs and Cardinals both lost on Tuesday, making Milwaukee's 8-6 win over the Diamondbacks all the better. The Brewers are 4 1/2 behind the Cubs and just 2 back of St. Louis in the Central division struggle.