Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Seattle's Felix Hernandez Wins Third 1-0 Game in August; Brewers' Ryan Braun Having Another MVP Season

Players of the Day for Monday, August 27, 2012

American League

Just go ahead and give the AL Cy Young award to Seattle's Felix Hernandez.

Hernandez: 3rd 1-0
win this month
The guy is 13-5 for a last place team, he's already thrown a perfect game this year and on Monday tossed his fifth shutout of the season in a 1-0 win by the Mariners at Minnesota, the third time this month he's pitched a complete game in a 1-0 win and the fourth time this season.

Although Hernandez has proven that he doesn't need much in the way of run support, it would be amazing to see what he'd do with a high run-producing team like Texas or the Yankees, a thought surely pondered upon by the general managers and coaches of both those and likely, many more.

Hernandez allowed five hits and struck out five, giving up only one walk as he out-dueled Minnesota's Liam Hendricks, the hard-luck, 0-7, rookie loser who gave up three hits, one of them, unfortunately, an eighth inning solo homer off the bat of Eric Thames.

King Felix, as he is known around the league has won seven of his last nine starting assignments, leads all starters in the AL with a 2.43 ERA, is third in strikeouts, at 184, and handily leads the league with 196.2 innings pitched to go with a tiny 1.03 WHIP. Only Justin Verlander is close in innings, with 190.2. No other pitcher has more than 180.

Despite the heroic efforts of Hernandez, Seattle remains last in the AL West, 14 1/2 games behind the Rangers.

National League

Braun's 35 HR
leads NL
The Milwaukee Brewers aren't heading to the playoffs this season, but they took out some of their angst and frustration on a fellow NL Central squad that's going nowhere even faster, hammering seven Chicago Cubs' pitchers for 21 hits in a 15-4 demolition.

Ryan Braun, last year's league MVP, was especially disrespectful to the host hurlers, going 4-for-5 with five RBI and three runs, including two singles, a double and a three-run homer - his 35th - which started a nine-run, ninth-inning outburst which sent the remaining Cubs fans to a slightly early exit.

Braun clearly leads all NL hitters in home runs, his 35 seven better than his closest pursuer, St. Louis' Carlos Beltran. He also tied for the league lead in RBI with the Cardinals' Matt Holliday. Both players have 90 on the year.

Bruan may well earn his second straight MVP award, despite grumbling from baseball writers over alleged use of banned substances that nearly cost Braun a 50-game suspension this season. Braun's appeal was upheld and he's played in 119 of Milwaukee's 127 games, batting .307, the eighth-highest average in the league.

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