Saturday, July 20, 2013

Houston Rookie Brandon Barnes Hits for Cycle in Astros Loss; Ervin Santana Shuts Down Tigers in 1-0 KC Win

Players of the Day for Friday, July 19, 2013

American League

Barnes Hits for Cycle
Here's what happens when you're the worst team in baseball, i.e., the Houston Astros, with an MLB-worst 33-62 record: your number seven hitter goes for the cycle and you still lose the ball game.

That's exactly what happened in Houston Friday night, when center fielder Brandon Barnes went 5-for-5 with all the requisite variety of hits, beginning with a solo homer in the second inning, giving the Astros a 1-0 lead, the only advantage they would enjoy on the night.

In the bottom of the fourth, Barnes tripled in another run, though by then, the Mariners had run in four. In the sixth, Barnes singled, followed by a double in the eighth which completed the cycle, later scoring on a Brett Wallace home run.

Down 10-6 in the ninth, Barnes singled once more, took second on fielder's indifference and scored the Astros' final run on Matt Dominguez's single to complete the 10-7 defeat.

Barmes scored three times and drove in just two runs, though Houston compiled a resume of 16 hits. Seattle's leadoff hitter, Brad Miller, set the pace for the M's with a pair of homers and five RBI.

Game two of the series is set for a 7:10 pm EDT start.

National League
Santana: 7 1/3 scoreless

With one of the more imposing lineups in the majors, it's not easy to keep the Detroit Tigers off the scoreboard, but that's precisely what KC starter Ervin Santana did, hurling 7 1/3 innings of shutout, two-hit ball in the Royals' 1-0 triumph over the current AL Central leaders.

Santana (6-6) walked one and struck out six in his mound stint, relieved in the eighth inning after throwing 106 pitches. The Kansas City win was huge, as the opener of a three-game series in KC with the Tigers. The Royals are still seven games back, but Cleveland is just 1 1/2 behind the Tigers in the divisional race.

The series continues with game two beginning at 7:10 pm EDT.

Today's Trivia: It's not the prettiest way to reach base, but who was hit by more pitches, Frank Robinson or Don Baylor?

Wednesday's Answer: Cal Ripken Jr. appeared in 19 All Star games, the most by any infielder.

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