Just a day pounding out 20 hits in a 14-2 win over the Indians, the Red Sox punched out 16 more hits against another AL Central squad and once again, it was Carl Crawford leading the charge.
Crawford, 4-for-4 on Wednesday, went 4-for-5 on Thursday with a pair of triples, two singles, three RBI and two runs. In the past two games, Crawford's batting average has gone from .212 to .244.
Better yet, by winning 11 of their last 13 games, the Red Sox have run down the Yankees and are tied with them for first place in the AL East. The Yankees were idle on Thursday.
For Detroit, it was another setback in the quest to catch the runaway White Sox. Prior to Thursday's outing, they had drawn to within five games of Chicago, but fell back to six out as the White Sox defeated Toronto, 3-1.
The Giants were without catcher Buster Posey, who is likely out for the season after suffering multiple injuries in a home plate collision on Wednesday. Without him in the lineup, the Giants could muster just five hits off Sanchez, who walked two but struck out eight for his second complete game and first shutout of the season. Ryan Vogelsong allowed eight hits over eight innings for the Giants, the Marlins breaking through for the only run of the game in the 6th inning.
The Phillies beat Cincinnati, 10-4, to maintain their slim, one-game edge over the Marlins in the East, while Arizona won for the 9th time in their last 10 games, topping the Rockies, 6-3, and have drawn to within 1 1/2 of the suddenly-vulnerable Giants in the West.