Monday, June 3, 2013

Yunel Escobar Torches Indians as Tampa Takes Series; Domonic Brown Powers Phillies Past Brewers

Players of the Day for Sunday, June 2, 2013

American League

As tight as the AL East race has been, it doesn't seem to have bothered the first place Red Sox, who traveled to New York for a weekend series with the Yankees sporting a two-game lead on their ageless rivals. The Red Sox left on Sunday, having taken two of three, sending the Yankees back into a tie for third with Tampa Bay, three out, while Baltimore improved to second place, 2 1/2 back.

Yunel Escobar
All the action wrapped up a little earlier than expected, the Red Sox taking a 2-0 decision in six innings, the game called for rain. Clay Buckholz earned his eighth win without a loss with a two-hit, abbreviated shutout.

Earlier in the day, the Orioles finished off the Tigers, also taking two of three, with a 4-2 win, and Tampa Bay crushed Cleveland, 11-3, in another 2-1 series win for the AL East, leaving Cleveland 1/2 game behind Detroit in the Central.

The Rays were led by Evan Longoria's and Yunel Escobar's two-run homers. Escobar had one of his best days of the season at the plate, going 3-for-5 with the two RBI and a couple of runs scored. Traded from Toronto to the Rays during the off-season, Escobar was 6-for-12 in the Cleveland series.

Tampa touched up five different Cleveland pitchers for a total of 14 hits. The Rays have a day off Monday before opening a series at Detroit on Tuesday.

National League

Domonic Brown
Not exactly tearing up the league, the Philadelphia Phillies, following a 6-10 start to the season, have played better than .500 ball since and have climbed back into the NL East race, a game behind second place Washington, but still 7 1/2 behind division-leading Atlanta.

Part of their recent success has been the emergence of Domonic Brown, who's been absolutely tearing it up, homering eight times in his last nine games, including a three-run, first-inning blast that propelled the Phillies to a 7-5 win over visiting Milwaukee.

With the win, the Phillies avoided being swept, Brown adding a run-scoring triple in the second and a single later in the game to go 3-for-3 with four RBI.

Brown, who had just 12 home runs in three partial seasons - all with Philly - has 16 this year, along with 40 RBI. With 16 hits in his last 37 at-bats, nine of those hits have been homers.

The 27-30 Phillies hope to gain more ground as the open a three-game series with Miami on Monday at 7:05 pm EDT. The Marlins are in the division basement, but just completed a three-game sweep of the Mets.

Today's Trivia: Who holds the single-season batting average record for the World Series? (answer tomorrow)

Yesterday's Answer: Barry Bonds holds the career World Series mark of .700 on-base percentage, in 30 plate appearances.

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