Saturday, August 5, 2017

Houston Hammers Toronto, 16-7, Tyler White 2 HR, 5 RBI; Yu Darvish, Dodgers Tame Mets, 6-0

Players of the Day for Friday, August 4, 2017

American League

White: 4-5, 2 HR, 5 RBI
As August began, the Blue Jays remained in last place in the AL East, and, starting a three-game series in Houston on Friday, this could be the series that ultimately defines Toronto's season, because Houston is heading to the post-season and, more than likely, the Blue Jays are not.

After game one, it became evident that the two teams on the field were not of the same caliber. While the Blue Jays have some solid hitters, Houston has more of them. In terms of pitching, it was no contest, as the Astros battered six Toronto hurlers for 18 hits and 7 walks in a 16-7 runaway.

Five different Astros had multiple hits and there were 10 extra base hits by Houston, including five home runs. Two of those home runs - in addition to a single and a double - were provided by first baseman, Tyler White, a player who's only been in eight games this season.

White was 4-for-5 with five RBI and three runs. His two homers were the first of the season for the 26-year-old, who spent most of 2017 in AAA with the Fresno Grizzlies of the Pacific Coast League, where he hit .299 with 19 homers and 69 RBI in 91 games.

Called up the last week of July, White was not going very well (4-for-20, no home runs, 3 RBI) until hitting his groove on Friday. In Houston's nine-run fourth inning, he doubled and singled, drove in two runs and scored once. His two-run blast came in the sixth and White added a solo shot in the eighth to complete the rout.

Thanks largely to Toronto pitching, Houston snapped a three-game losing streak but still leads the AL West by 15 games. Game two of the series is Saturday, 7:10 pm ET.

National League

Darvish: 7 IP, 3 H, 0 ER
With Clayton Kershaw on the mend, the Dodgers went out and got themselves a little insurance prior to the trading deadline, and it appears that their choice of plucking Yu Darvish from the Texas Rangers was a solid one.

In his first start in a Dodger uniform, Darvish was sparkling, allowing three hits over seven scoreless innings, as the Dodgers took game of of their three-game series in New York, 6-0 over the struggling Mets.

After giving up a single and a walk in the opening inning, Davish settled down, allowing harmless singles in the third and fifth innings, and putting down the last eight batters he faced in order. He struck out 10 and the first inning free pass was the only walk he issued. With a six-run lead and Darvish at 99 pitches, the bullpen took over in the eighth. Josh Fields and Luis Avilan each tossed a scoreless inning.

6-9 with the Rangers this year, Darvish looks like a keeper for LA, winning his first start and keeping the Dodgers 14 games in front of the Diamondbacks in the NL West. LA is 77-32, which is easily the best record in the majors.

Game two of the series at Citi Field begins Saturday at 4:05 pm.

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