Sunday, August 29, 2010
Hudson, Prado Lift Braves; Braden Shuts Out Rangers
Players of the Day for August 28, 2010 American League If the Oakland A's are going to run down the Texas Rangers in the AL West, they're probably going to need the kind of pitching provided by Dallas Braden in Saturday's 5-0 blanking of the division leaders. Braden, who tossed a perfect game against Tampa earlier in the year, evened his record at 9-9 with a powerful performance from the mound, throwing 86 of 120 pitches for strikes, allowing just four hits without walking a batter and striking out one. It was Braden's fifth complete game of the season and second shutout. The Rangers were never able to put more than one runner aboard in any inning and went down in order in five of the nine frames, From the 4th through 7th innings, Braden set down 13 straight potential hitters. The win evened the series at Texas at a game apiece. The two will settle their score on Sunday. With the win, Oakland moved back to 8 1/2 games behind, but time is slipping away. Texas hasn't played well of late, going 9-9 since August 10, but the Athletics have not taken advantage, going 8-9 over the same span. National League In the NL East, the race has boiled down to two teams, the Braves and the Phillies. After both teams notched wins on Saturday, it's still Atlanta in the driver's seat, two games to the good over Philly. Atlanta continues to get timely hitting and outstanding pitching. In beating the Marlins brains out, 14-3, Tim Hudson (left) did the hurling, while Martin Prado (right) did the hurting. Making his own case for Cy Young consideration, Hudson improved to 15-5 with seven powerful innings, silencing the Florida bats on six hits and a walk, fanning a season-high 13 batters. He allowed just one earned run. The Braves gave Hudson more support than he needed, scoring six times in the second inning, including a walk to Prado which forced in a run. Prado singled in two more in the 3rd and socked his 15th home run of the season in the 7th. Overall, Prodo went 2-for-5 with five RBI. The Phillies gutted out a 3-1 win in San Diego to keep pace.