Sunday, August 9, 2015

Blue Jays Win 7th Straight on Justin Smoak Grand Slam, David Price; Stephen Strasberg Returns for Nationals Win

Players of the Day for Saturday, August 8, 2015

American League

Smoak: Grand Slam
Price: 7 Shutout Innings
New York is in first place in the AL East, but the Toronto Blue Jays are making their stay to the top quite uncomfortable.

Toronto took down the Yankees for the second straight game, blanking them, 6-0, behind stellar pitching from newly-acquired David Price and a grand slam by first baseman, Justin Smoak.

Yankees starter, Ivan Nova, kept the ball game tied at 0-0 through five innings, but got into trouble in the sixth, loading the bases until Smoak unloaded on him for his 10th homer of the season.

Price, confident and dominant throughout, took the four-run advantage and made the best of it, finished after seven complete innings, allowing three hits, three walks, no runs and fanning seven.

Since Price was traded from Detroit to the Blue Jays, he's won both of his starts, allowing six hits and one earned run over 15 innings of work, for an ERA of 0.60.

Strasberg fans 12
Toronto's victory was their seventh straight, and they have closed ranks on the Yankees, now just 2 1/2 games back in the division.

The Blue Jays will have ten more meetings with the Yankees after this series. They look to complete the sweep at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. Game time is 1:05 pm EDT.

National League

While the New York Mets overtook the Nationals in the NL East earlier this week, it appears that Washington is not taking matters sitting down.

Stephen Strasberg returned from a stint on the DL on Saturday, turning in a sizzling pitching performance, with seven strong innings in a 6-1 Washington victory.

Strasberg allowed just three hits, one run (a fourth inning solo homer by Nolan Arenado), didn't walk a batter and struck out 12.

It was just what the Nationals needed, coming off a 2-6 slide recently. Meanwhile, the Mets were cooled down by Tampa Bay, taking a 5-4 loss, leaving them a mere 1 1/2 games to the good over the Nationals.

Washington will try to win the rubber game of the series when the two teams meet at Nationals Park, Sunday afternoon at 1:35 pm EDT.

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