Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Miguel Cabrera in Serious Triple Crown Hunt; Kyle Lohse Goes Seven Scoreless for Cardinals

Players of the Day for Tuesday, September 18, 2012

American League

With 15 games remaining in the regular season, the Detroit Tigers - still three games behind the White Sox in the Central after Chicago beat Kansas City, 3-2, and the Tigers hammered the A's, 12-2 - are running out of time, but Miguel Cabrera hasn't yet run out of hits, homers and RBI.

Cabrera: 2HR 6RBI
Cabrera belted a pair of home runs, including a grand slam, in Detroit's win, going 3-for-4 (the other hit was a double) with six RBI, putting the Tiger slugger in a realistic position to complete the triple crown for the first time since Carl Yazstremski did it in 1967.

Cabrera's .333 average leads the league; he is tied for the RBI lead with Josh Hamilton with 129 and trails Hamilton in homers by two, at 40.

The Tigers either have to catch the White Sox or make up significant ground on the wild card teams, an unlikely occurrence since they trail the A's by six games and Baltimore and New York by 5 1/2, after the Orioles topped the Mariners, 4-2, in 18 innings.

Baltimore's win resulted in a tie atop the AL East with the Yankees, whose scheduled game against the Blue Jays was rained out.

To make up for the postponed game, the Yanks and Jays will play a day-night double-header on Wednesday.

National League

Lohse: 7 scoreless
With the largest lead in any of MLB's divisions at 11 games, the Cincinnati Reds need to win just four more games to capture the flag and be the first team to qualify for the playoffs.

Since there is no plausible reality by which the Cardinals could catch the Reds, St. Louis continues to cling to the second wild card, after beating the Astros, 4-1, Tuesday night, behind seven innings of four-hit, shutout ball by Kyle Lohse (15-3).

Lohse stymied the Astros, fanning five and walking two, while the Cardinals scored a single run in the second, added two in the fifth and another in the seventh. The St. Louis starter has been a godsend for the Cardinals. With just three losses, Lohse has the best winning percentage of any starter in the league, his 2.71 ERA is third in the NL and he is among the leaders in innings, at 199.

The St. Louis win kept the Cardinals 1 1/2 ahead of the Dodgers and 2 1/2 in front of fast-closing Milwaukee, which shut out the Pirates (3 1/2 back), 6-0, for the second wild card spot.

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