Monday, September 6, 2010

Hernandez Blanks Indians; Davis, Tejada Lead Mets to 18-5 Smashing of Cubs

Players of the Day for Sunday. September 5, 2010 American League It's been another long, fruitless season in Seattle, the Mariners having been hopelessly out of any post-season contention since June. While the team has struggled to score runs and win games, starting pitcher Felix Hernandez, the unblemished ace of the staff, has remained resolute and ferocious on the mound. Despite and 11-10 record, achieved via his latest outing, eight solid shutout innings over the Cleveland Indians in a 3-0 triumph the numbers Fernandez has produced are startling: a 2.30 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 209 strikeouts, which leads the American League. Hernandez fanned nine on Sunday, allowing a mere four hits, walking one. The Indians barely touched his pitches; the hits were all singles. David Aardsma relieved in the ninth, getting the side in order, for his 28th save, itself quit an accomplishment on a team that's won only 54 games and has the third-worst record in the majors. National League Some of the runs scored by the Mets in their 18-5 lambasting of the Cubs might have been better used spread out over a number of games. The Mets, one of the lowest-scoring teams in the NL - better than only Houston and Pittsburgh - took batting practice on Ryan Dempster and five relievers, banging out 21 hits and their season-high in runs. Rookies Ike Davis (left) and Ruben Tejada (right) led the assault. Davis went 4-for-6 with a double and a home run, scored three times and drove in three. Tejada, who entered the game batting .185, went 2-for-4 and drive in five runs. Tejada got a run home in the second with a sac fly, singled in two more in the 5th, hit his first major league homer in the 7th - a solo job - and was issued a bases-loaded walk in the 9th. Tejada raised his batting average to .193, though the smooth shortstop is batting .320 over his last ten games. PENNANT NOTES: There were no changes in the AL races, as the Yankees and Rays both lost, keeping the Yankees 2 1/2 ahead in the East. Chicago and Minnesota were both winners, so the Twins remain 3 1/2 ahead in the Central. In the NL East, both the Braves and Philles lost. Atlanta remains one game in front. San Diego continued to stumble, losing their 10th straight game, a 4-2 loss to the Rockies, who completed the sweep and now trail San Diego by 4 1/2 games. The Giants topped the Dodgers, 3-0, closing the gap between themselves and the Padres to one slim game. The Dodgers head to San Diego for a three-game set beginning Monday, while the Giants play at Arizona and Colorado hosts Cincinnati.

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