Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Stephen Strasburg Fans 10 In 6-1 Washington Win; Jake Odorizzi Allows One Hit In 3-2 Tampa Victory

Players of the Day for Monday, July 17, 2017

American League

Khris Davis launched a solo home run - his 26th - in the fourth inning, as the A's cut Tampa Bay's lead in half.

Odorizzi: 1-hit winner
As it turns out, that was the only hit the A's would get off Rays' starter, Jake Odorizzi, the 27-year-old righty going seven innings to improve to 6-4 as the Rays out-dueled the Athletics, 3-2, in the opener of their three game series in Oakland.

Odorizzi struck out five, walked two, and worked around a pair of errors - one by himself - throwing 103 pitches, 61 for strikes. Of the 15 outs made by balls in play, Ordorizzi registered just one by ground, but 14 on fly outs.

Evan Longoria grounded into force that provided a run in the third. He and Steven Souza Jr. each had solo homers for the three Tampa runs.

Tommy Hunter worked a hitless eighth inning for the Rays and closer Alex Colome gave up a leadoff double to Yonder Alonzo and allowed him to score on a wild pitch, cutting the Rays' lead to 3-2. Nonetheless, Colome picked up his 27 save as Tampa moved closer to the Red Sox, who lost, 4-3, to Toronto. Boston leads the AL East, and the Rays, by two games.

Game two is slated for 7:05 pm PT, Tuesday at the Oakland Coliseum.

National League

Question: What happens when the Washington Nationals stake Stephen Strasburg to a 5-0, first inning lead?

Strasburg: 7 IP, 4 H, 1 R
Answer: Strasburg allows one run on four hits over seven innings, strikes out ten and improves to 10-3 in a 6-1 Nationals' victory, finishing off a four-game sweep of the Reds and their fifth straight win overall.

That was the scenario Monday night in Cincinnati, as Washington improved its lead in the NL East to 10 1/2 games over the Braves, as Atlanta dropped a 4-3 decision to the visiting Cubs.

Strasburg walked one and threw just 105 pitches. Joe Blanton and Matt Grace each pitched a perfect inning, getting the Nationals through the eighth and ninth, respectively.

The 10 whiffs gave Strasburg 139 on the year, fifth in the NL, but nowhere near teammate Max Scherzer, who leads the league with 183.

The Reds' only run came on a second inning solo homer by Eugenio Suarez. After that, all Cincy could muster were singles. After plunking Adam Duvall to open the seventh, Strasburg finished his stint by fanning the final three batters he faced.

With their fourth straight loss, the Reds have fallen 11 1/2 off the pace set by the Brewers in the NL Central. Washington heads West to play two games with the Angels, Tuesday and Wednesday.

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