Friday, May 25, 2012

Melky Cabrera Leads Giants to 14-7 Win at Miami; Albert Pujols, Dan Haren Star in 3-0 LA Win

Players of the Day for Thursday, May 24, 2012

American League

If the LA Angels are going to get hot and back into the race in the AL West, this weekend would be a great opportunity to do so.

Albert Pujols
Dan Haren
The Angels climbed out of last place in the division, taking the first of a four-game series at Seattle with a 3-0 win, highlighted by Dan Haren's four-hit complete game shutout and a 3-for-4 performance by slugger Albert Pujols, who socked his fifth home run of the season to stake Haren to a 2-0, first inning lead and later, singled, stole second and scored on Kendry Morales' single to left field in the sixth.

While Pujols was supplying the bulk of the offense, Haren needed little cushion to pick up his second win against five losses, striking out 14 Mariners without issuing a walk. After a first inning leadoff single, Haren didn't allow another hit until the sixth inning, setting down 15 in a row. He also finished strong, fanning the first two batters in the ninth, before getting the final out on a routine grounder to second.

LA moved 1/2 game ahead of the Mariners and are incredibly only 6 1/2 games behind Texas and 1 1/2 behind second place Oakland in the division. After an 8-15 start to the season, the Angels are 13-10 in May and have won three straight.

National League

Melky Cabrera
The Giants have a solid grip on second place in the NL West after they opened a four game series in Miami with a 14-7 victory over the Marlins. While they are still 6 1/2 games behind division-leading Los Angeles, they are four games clear of Arizona, with Colorado and San Diego well back.

Melky Cabrera spearheaded the 15-hit Giant assault, scoring three times with a single and two doubles in four at-bats, driving in four runs.

Cabrera has been a bright spot in the usually moribund Giants' lineup, leading the majors with 67 hits while carrying a .362 batting average, third best in the NL. Derek Jeter of the Yankees leads the AL with 64 hits.

After batting .305 with the Royals in 2011, Cabrera joined the Giants for the 2012 campaign.

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