Tuesday, May 3, 2011

GS Means Grand Slam for Gaby Sanchez; Paul Konerko Powers White Sox over Orioles

Players of the Day for Monday, May 2, 2011

American League

Off to one of their worst starts in memory, the Chicago White Sox went through a sorry weekend, losing three straight to the Baltimore Orioles before finally breaking the slide with a win on Monday.

Paul Konerko
While the Sox don't exactly have a wrecking crew of a lineup, they are fortunate enough to have a wrecking man in the person of one Paul Konerko, who has quietly become one of the most fearsome power hitters in baseball.

Monday's 6-2 win was more about Konerko's power stroke than anything else - the Sox were actually outhit, 11-9 - as the cleanup hitter accounted for four of the White Sox runs.

Konerko made the score 2-0 in the 4th inning with a solo homer, tacked on another run in the 6th with a sac fly RBI and made it 6-0 with his second homer of the game, a two-run shot in the 8th inning.

With most of the starters struggling - Alex Rios and Adam Dunn are both batting below .200 - Konerko's .304 batting average is a standout on a team that has underachieved. His 8 homers and 24 RBI are good for 2nd in the AL in the respective categories. With the win, the White Sox moved 1/2 game out of last place, ahead of the Twins in the AL Central.

National League

The Philadelphia Phillies had the day off Monday, and maybe some of them made time to watch the Florida Marlins take one in St. Louis, a come-from-behind, 6-5 victory that tied them with Philadelphia in the NL East.

Gaby Sanchez
We can only imagine the Phillies' players looking over their shoulders - like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid - as they are being chased down, wondering, "who are those guys?"

While "those guys" - the Marlins - may not be household names, they are playing at a high level. At 18-9, they are tied with Philly with the best record in the National League.

In Monday's win, the bullpen held St. Louis scoreless after the third inning, allowing for the comeback on Mike Stanton's solo homer in the 5th and Greg Dobbs' sac fly in the 8th, plating Stanton with the game-winner.

The comeback was made possible, however, by a third inning grand slam off the bat of Gaby Sanchez that gave the Marlins a short-lived, 4-2, lead and made Matt Holliday's three-run homer in the bottom frame a little less damaging.

Sanchez powered a blast to the left field stands off Kyle Lohse after the St. Louis starter had loaded the bases on a single and a pair of walks. Sanchez also singled in the 9th to go 2-for-5 on the night.

STREAKING: Andre Ethier's hitting streak hit 28 straight games as the Dodgers beat the Cubs, 5-2, on Monday. Ethier went 1-for-4 with a 5th inning RBI single. He's batting .378 and is now half way to Joe DiMaggio's MLB record 56-game streak.

No comments: