Sunday, August 24, 2014

Kennys Vargas Drives in Five as Twins Spilt Double Bill with Tigers; Pirates Win Third Straight as Pedro Alvarez Socks Two Homers

Players of the Day for Saturday, August 23, 2014

American League

Vargas: 5 RBI
It was quite a day for hitters in Minneapolis, where the Twins and Tigers split a day/night double-header, the hometowners taking the opener by a 12-4 score before falling to the visiting Tigers in the nightcap, 8-6.

What it wasn't a good day for was being a pitcher on either team, as the two squads accounted for a total of 52 hits - 24 in the first game, 28 in the second.

Rookie first baseman, Kennys Vargas, playing in just his 21st and 22nd games since being called up from AA New Britain August 1st, had a nice game in the opener, going 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles and a sac fly. His bases-clearing two-bagger in the seventh inning completed the scoring for the Twins.

While the Twins have been out of contention for some time, the split didn't particularly help the Tigers, as both the Royals and Mariners were winners on Saturday, leaving the Tigers three games behind Kansas City in the Central division and a game short of Seattle in the wild card race. Even the Yankees - with their 5-3 win over the White Sox - picked up 1/2 game on the Tigers in the wild card, now trailing them by just 2 1/2 games.

The Tigers haven't fared well at all against the last-place Twins, losing the opener of their four-game series, 20-6 Friday night. They wrap up their visit Sunday at 2:10 pm EDT.

National League

Alvarez: 2HR, 4RBI
The Central divisin continues to be the hottest race in the majors, especially since the Pirates have taken two straight from front-running Milwaukee.

After an 8-3 victory Friday, the Pirates doubled their fun with a 10-2 triumph at Miller Park in Milwaukee as Pedro Alvarez led a 12-hit assault with a pair of home runs, both off Milwaukee ace, Wily Peralta, who lasted just five innings and took the loss (15-8).

Alvarez unloaded for his 16th in the fourth inning with a three-run shot, then followed up the next inning with a solo blast right after Russell Martin connected for a three-run jolt.

Coming off a rough patch in mid-month in which they lost seven in a row, the Pirates have rebounded with three straight wins and will be looking for the sweep when they complete their series in Milwaukee Sunday afternoon at 2:10 EDT.

Four games behind the Brewers in the Central, they have helped the Cardinals, who now trail Milwaukee by just 1/2 game. The Pirates are still in the wild card hunt, trailing the Giants by 1 1/2 games and Atlanta by 1/2.

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