Friday, September 10, 2010
Damon Smokes Sox; Rasmus Keeps Cardinal Hopes Alive
Players of the Day for Thursday, September 9, 2010 American League While it may seem petulant and slightly mean-spirited, the Detroit Tigers, themselves all but eliminated from post-season contention, are making sure their AL Central rivals, the White Sox, watch the playoffs from their living rooms as well. Detroit and Chicago completed a four-game series in the Motor City and, after losing the first game, the Tigers came back to win the next three, seriously dampening Chicago's hope of catching the Twins, who suddenly lead the division by six games. Johnny Damon, who turned down trade offers earlier in the season and stayed with Detroit, went 4-for-4 as the Tigers took a 6-3 decision. Damon scratched out four singles, the first of which drove in Detroit's initial run, plating Austin Jackson in the bottom of the first inning. It was Damon's only RBI of the game, but he scored twice, crossing home plate in the 3rd and 7th innings. Detroit isn't done punishing the White Sox just yet. The two teams meet again for the last time this season in a three game series at Chicago, September 17, 18 and 19. National League In the midst of a losing streak a few weeks ago, Colby Rasmus attracted the attention - and ire - of teammate Albert Pujols when he mentioned something about wanting to be traded. Pujols responded that if he didn't want to be in St. Louis, he should go. Well, Rasmus didn't go anywhere, the two may have patched things up, but Rasmus provided starter Adam Wainwright with enough offense to win his 18th game of the year, going 4-for-4 with a pair of homers as the Cardinals stomped the Braves, 11-4. Pujols hit his 37th home run of the season to put the Cards up, 7-3, and after that it became the Rasmus show as the outfielder homered in the 5th, drove in two more with a single in the 6th and hit his second solo homer of the night in the 9th. The win, coupled with the Reds' 5th straight loss, has the Cardinals back in the hunt for the NL Central, just five games behind the Reds and four games behind in the loss column. Cincinnati spent their day losing the 4th straight to the Rockies, who've won seven in a row and have sliced into San Diego's lead in the West. The Giants topped the Padres, 7-3, and trail by just one game. Colorado is just 3 1/2 off the pace as the season winds down to the final three weeks. Idle Philadelphia benefitted from Atlanta's demise, picking up a half game to lead by one in the NL East.