Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sam Fuld Misses Cycle by a Single; Tulowitzki an RBI Machine for Flying Rockies

Players of the Day for Monday, April 11, 2011

American League

Sam Fuld
Should Sam Fuld have stopped at first base?

After all, his Tampa Bay Rays were killing the Red Sox.

When he hit that 9th inning shot to left, the Rays were already ahead, 14-4, and Casey Kotchman was heading home with run #15 for the Rays. Fuld already had a double, triple and home run to his credit; stopping at first would have given him the cycle.

On to second base he ran. Rookie mistake. Call it the cycle, plus one. But there was no doubting the outcome of the game as Fuld and teammates absolutely battered Daisuke Matsuzaka for eight hits and seven runs over the first two innings. They weren't very kind to Tim Wakefield, either, pounding the aging knucklehaller for five more runs on seven hits.

Dennis Wheeler finished the game by allowing four more runs in the ninth. The only Red Sox pitcher to escape the barrage was Alfredo Aviles, ironically, a Yankee transplant, who went 2 2/3rds without allowing a hit. Tampa Bay won the laugher, 16-4, whacking Boston for 20 hits.

But Fuld, the rookie left fielder and leadoff hitter had a night to remember, scoring three times, driving in three runs and going 4-for-6. The cycle, plus one.

National League

Troy Tulowitzki
So far this season, Troy Tulowitzki is only batting at a .250 clip, but he's getting his hits when they count.

Tulowitzki has just 8 hits in 32 at-bats, but his nine RBI are good enough to tie him for fifth place in the National League. He added RBI 7, 8 and 9 in Colorado's 7-6 win over the Mets, going 2-for-4 with a run-producing single and a 2-run homer which completed the Rockies' scoring in the 8th inning.

The homer was his second of the season, helping the Rockies to one of their best starts in franchise history. Their 7-2 record matches their best 9-game start to a season, and they lead the NL West by 1 1/2 games.

Tulowitzki is a career .290 hitter. Last season he battled injuries but still put up a .315 average in 122 games. Expect the hits to keep on coming.

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