Thursday, August 20, 2009

Weaver Stops Indians, 3-0; Werth On Fire As Phillies Race to NL East Crown

Players of the Day for Wednesday, August 19, 2009 American League On the strength of Jered Weaver's 7-hit, complete game shutout, the California Angels moved another step closer to their third straight AL West title. With the Angels winning, 3-0, at Cleveland and the Rangers losing at home, 5-4, to the Twins, LA has assumed a 6 1/2 game lead in the division and appears to be ready to shift to cruise control for the remainder of the season. Picking up their 5th straight win, the Angels have only 44 games left to play, though they do play the Rangers 6 times in September, in addition to key dates with the Yankees and Red Sox. For Weaver (13-4, 3.89), it was the second shutout and 4th complete game of the season and his 4-year career. On pace for 16-18 wins this season, Weaver may emerge as a dark horse candidate for the Cy Young award. In Wednesday's outing, Weaver issued only one walk and struck out 3, throwing 72 of 116 pitches for strikes. National League With the Marlins losing to the Astro, 6-3, the Phillies trounced the Diamondbacks, 8-1, for their third straight win and a 5 1/2 game lead in the NL East. Gunning for their third straight division crown, the Phillies got home runs from the middle of their lineup, as Chase Utley and Ryan Howard both went yard and Jayson Werth cleared the fences with solo shots twice and added a single in 4 at-bats. Werth has been swinging a big bat for Philadelphia of late, homering in three of his last four games, upping his season totals to 27 and 74 RBI. In addition to the power stroke, Werth also has employed his speed to steal 13 bases in 16 attempts this year.

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