Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Three Mike Lowell Doubles Ignite Red Sox; Ubaldo Jimenez Notches 6th Win for Rockies

Players of the Day for Monday, May 3, 2010 American League Doubles are nice. Players love hitting them almost as much as home runs. Stroking a double into either of the outfield gaps or down the lines is a nice feeling. Doing it three times in a game usually translates into being named Player of the Day, and that's just what the Red Sox's Mike Lowell did on Monday as Boston clobbered the Angels, 17-8. Lowell went 4-for-4 with a walk, so reached base safely in all 5 plate appearances. His barrage began with a single in the second 2nd inning, though he was forced out at second on a fielder's choice. He came up again in the third, this time with two aboard, whom he plated with a drive deep to center field for his first double and 2 RBI. After taking a walk in the 4th inning, Lowell smacked his second and third two-baggers in the 6th and 7th, driving in a run and scoring each time. By the time he crossed the plate in the 7th, the Red Sox were well on their way to the 20-hit, 17-run outburst. Lowell drove in four runs and scored twice, as his teammates added four homers and four doubles of their own. Lowell has only played in 13 games this season, though he's likely to begin seeing more playing time as Boston desperately needs an RBI bat like his. He has 12 hits in 40 at-bats (.300) and 8 RBI. National League San Diego still leads the NL West, though their lead is a slim one game over the Giants. Three back are the Colorado Rockies, at 13-13, thanks largely to Ubaldo Jimenez, who has accounted for nearly half their wins, getting his 6th without a loss in Colorado's 5-2 win over the first-place Padres. Jimenez threw 120 pitches over 7 complete innings to nail down the win, allowing one earned run on four hits and 2 walks while striking out a season-high 13 batters. The baker's dozen of Ks earned him the top spot in the NL strikeout race. Jimenez leapfrogged past 11 other hurlers, including Cole Hamels, Roy Halladay, Chris Carpenter, Dan Haren, Josh Johnson (42), Tim Lincecum (43), to top them all with 44. Jimenez also leads the league in wins (6) and is tops among NL starters with a ridiculous 0.87 ERA, qualifying him for the early-season pitching triple crown.

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