Friday, April 22, 2011

Felix Hernandez silences A's; Kyle Lohse Tosses 2-Hitter at Nationals

Players of the Day for Thursday, April 21, 2011

American League

Felix Hernandez
At this juncture, a four-game series with the Oakland A's might not seem so important, but the Seattle Mariners need to get something started as they are already mired in last place in the AL West.

The solution, it seems, is to hand the ball to your ace starter, Felix Hernandez, and send him out to the mound.

Sounds simple enough, but Hernandez had to hold the A's scoreless for 7 2/3 innings in order to get the desired result, a 1-0 win, to open the four-game set at Seattle.

Hernandez dueled with the A's Brandon McCarthy, who pitched a whale of a game himself, going the full nine innings, and allowing just four hits, though one was a solo homer by Adam Kennedy in the 4th inning that proved to be the game-winner.

As for Hernandez (2-2), he allowed four hits and three walks over 7 2/3 innings and left with two on and two out in the 8th. Jamey Wright slammed the door on the A's by getting the final out of the inning and Brandon League locked it and threw away the key, working a scoreless ninth inning for his 4th save.

National League

Kyle Lohse
With Adam Wainwright lost for the season, the St. Louis Cardinals were looking for another starter to step up and pick up the slack.

At 3-1, Kyle Lohse has heard the call and answered it, throwing a 2-hit shutout Thursday night against the Washington Nationals.

Lohse, who started off the game by setting down the first eleven men he faced in order, finished with just the two hits and two walks against him, all of the damage spread over the 4th, 5th and 6th innings. After walking Rick Ankiel with two outs in the 6th, that was it, except for Lohse plunking Danny Espinosa to lead off the 9th inning, as he finished the game getting ten of eleven in a row.

Loshe threw 72 of 111 pitches for strikes, fanning six in the 5-0 Cardinal win that kept them tied for first place with Cincinnati in the tight NL Central.

Lohse is 3-1 with a 2.01 ERA and a WHIP of 0.73.

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