Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Stephen Drew, Mike Carp Power BoSox over Rangers, 17-5; Yasiel Puig Impressive As Dodgers Down Padres, 9-7

Players of the Day for Tuesday, June 4, 2013

American League

There are plenty of reasons why the Red Sox are the top team in the AL East, but one of them is the overall plate aggressiveness of their lineup, and, not just a few guys, all of them.

Stephen Drew
For instance, take Boston's 17-5 beat-down of the Rangers Tuesday night. In a game in which two of Boston's best hitters - Dustin Pedroia and Mike Napoli - go 1-for-5 and 0-for-2, respectively, the Sox bang out 19 hits and score a season=high runs.

Mike Carp
Six different players had multiple hits, but shortstop Stephen Drew, who's been struggling (batting just .213 entering the game), came up with a 4-for-5 effort, including a single, two doubles and a home run, his fifth of the season, drove in two runs and scored three times. Mike Carp, stationed in left field, went 3-for-5 with a homer of his own, drove in three and scored three runs.

The victory kept the Red Sox 2 1/2 in front of the Orioles and Yankees, both of which were winners Tuesday. Texas, recently feeling the heat from the fast-charging A's, got a break as Oakland lost at Milwaukee, 4-3, in 10 innings.

Game two of this first-place fray comes 7:00 pm EDT, Wednesday.

National League

Yasiel Puig
While Arizona, Colorado and San Francisco battle for the top spot in the NL West, the Dodgers and Padres are meeting to determine which will be in or out of last place in the division, though the Dodgers, after their 9-7 win over the visiting Padres are still 1/2 game behind San Diego, but just 7 1/2 out of first place.

LA's win was largely the result of raw rookie Yasiel Puig, who had a super spring (.517, 3 HR, 11 RBI), but played in just his second game as a pro as the Dodgers scramble to overcome a rash of injuries.

Puig was 3-for-5 with a pair of homers, a double and five RBI, batting out of the leadoff spot. The 22-year-old Cuban outfielder had two hits in his debut game on Monday, and set of fireworks with his outstanding performance in his second start.

His first homer - a three-run poke - erased a 5-2 Padres lead in the fifth and his two-run belt in the sixth finished the Dodgers' scoring.

Puig figures to be in the starting lineup regularly, and surely in Wednesday's series finale at 7:10 pm PDT, where the Dodgers will be looking for the sweep and an escape for last place.

Today's Trivia: Who is the current active leader in career plate appearances? (answer tomorrow)

Yesterday's Answer: Ubaldo Jiminez tied Ian Kennedy with 16 wild pitches for the NL lead in 2010, then had the same number of wild ones, leading the AL in 2012.

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