Monday, September 14, 2009
Matsui Drives Yankees Past O's; Pedro Wins 5th Straight
Players of the Day for Sunday, September 13, 2009 American League For a player who usually bats in the 5 or 6-hole, Hideki Matsui is one tough out, and the Baltimore Orioles found out just how tough Sunday at Yankee Stadium. After taking the first two games of their series with the Yanks, the O's set out Sunday to sweep the AL East leaders in the finale, but with C.C. Sabathia on the hill for New York, it was going to be a tall order. By the time the O's and Yanks reached the bottom of the 8th, the O's still had hope, trailing by just 2 runs, 5-3, but Matsui ended their fantasy with a three-run yard job and the Yankees added 5 more in the inning for the 13-3 shellacking. Matsui earlier had singled in 2 runs and added another single, going 3-for-5 with 5 RBI, boosting his RBI total for the year to 81 with 24 homers in just 404 at-bats. He's had multiple-hit games i 4 of his last 5 starts, raising his batting average from .264 to .275. Sabathia picked up the win to go 17-7, and the Yankees' magic number dropped to 13, despite the second-place Red Sox taking a pair from Tampa Bay. National League Pedro Martinez got a little more revenge against one of his former teams pitching 8 scoreless innings in a 1-0 win over the Mets. After taking the first game of their double-header, 5-4, the Phillies called on the ancient one (37) for some magic, as Martinez dueled with Tim Redding, who lasted only 6 innings, but allowed the one Philly run on three hits. Martinez (5-0) threw 130 pitches (80 for strikes), allowing 6 hits and a pair of walks with 7 Ks. It was the longest outing of the season for him, an encouraging sign as the Phillies race toward their 3rd straight NL East crown. In seven starts, Martinez has garnered 5 wins with a 2.87 ERA and 34 Ks in 37.2 innings. The Phillies' magic number fell to 16, as the Marlins - 6 1/2 back - lost to the Nats.