Saturday, July 29, 2017

Masahiro Tanaka Fans 14, Yankees Take 1st In AL East; Brent Suter Tosses 7 Scoreless As Brewers Top Cubs

Players of the Day for Friday, July 28, 2017

American League

Surging back into first place in the AL East with their fifth straight victory, the New York Yankees topped visiting Tampa Bay, 6-1, as starter Masahiro Tanaka held the Rays in check on two hits over eight full innings.

Tanaka: 14Ks
Tanaka's best performance of the season included a career-high 14 strikeouts, getting every Tampa batter except Adeiny Hechavarria on strikes at least once, fanning leadoff hitter Mallex Smith three times (David Robertson relieved in the ninth and got Smith again for the "golden sombrero").

Perfect past five innings, Tanaka yielded a single to Hechavarria with two down in the sixth and a seventh inning solo homer to Lucas Duda, playing in his first game for the Rays since being acquired from the Mets.

Tanaka (8-9, 5.09) finished strong, striking out the final three batters he faced to end the eighth, throwing 109 pitches and surrendering no bases on balls.

With Boston losing, 4-2, to Kansas City, winners of nine straight, the Yankees took a 1/2 game lead in the division and have taken the first two games from the Rays in their four-game series.

Game three is scheduled for a Saturday 1:05 pm ET start at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx.

National League

Suter: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R
Having relinquished first place in the NL Central to the Cubs earlier in the month, the Milwaukee Brewers took a step toward taking it back with a 2-1 victory over Chicago in the first of a crucial three-game series in Milwaukee.

Rookie hurler Brent Suter, a 6'5" left-hander out of Harvard, tossed seven shutout innings for the Brewers, improving to 2-1 in six starts. Suter allowed four hits and one walk, striking out five, while his teammates scored single run in the second and fourth inning off Cubs' starter, Jose Quintana.

Suter threw just 82 pitches, 54 for strikes.

Chicago finally got on the board after Suter left the mound in the eighth, on Javier Baez's solo home run off reliever Anthony Swarzek, but closer Corey Knebel picked up his 18th save, walking one and whiffing two in the ninth to finish what Suter started.

Milwaukee's win left them 1/2 game behind the Cubs in the division race with game two of the series set for Saturday at 7:10 pm ET.

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