This is probably going to make Giants fans ill, but the blue moon is rising once again in the NL West. The Los Angeles Dodgers are now just three games behind the San Francisco Giants, and their +40 run differential has actually eclipsed San Francisco’s +38 mark. Since the Giants topped out at 42-21 on June 8th, San Francisco has scuffled to a 3-10 mark while Los Angeles has raced to a 10-5 record, picking up an incredible 6.5 games in a span of just over two weeks. The teams don’t play again until after the All-Star Break, but the Giants have a much tougher road than the Dodgers – they play a hot Reds team, the Cardinals, and the A’s, while the Dodgers only have four with the Dodgers and a pair in Detroit against a scuffling Tigers team. Even with their banged up roster, Los Angeles might still occupy first place during the midseason break next month.
Game of the Night: Diamondbacks 9, Indians 8 (14 innings). Arizona led this one 6-5 going into the top of the ninth, but closer Addison Reed decided to lay an egg and blow his third save of the year. He walked Asdrubal Cabrera to lead off the inning, and after a Michael Brantley line out and a Cabrera stolen base, walked Carlos Santana. Reed struck out Jason Kipnis for the second out, but then gave up an RBI single to Yan Gomes to knot the game at six. He got out of the inning, Cody Allen pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the innings, and we went into extras. In the 11th, Randall Delgado walked Brantley and gave up a go-ahead two-run homer to Santana. Bryan Shaw tried to close out the game in the 11th, but allowed a solo homer to David Peralta to make it 4-3, and exited after walking Didi Gregorius and allowing a single to Tuffy Gosewich. John Axford relieved Shaw, and immediately gave up a game-tying single to Ender Inciarte. He somehow escaped without allowing the winning run, however. The game continued along into the 14th, and Mark Lowe ended up being the goat for the Indians. He allowed a single to Gerardo Parra to begin the frame, watched Parra steal second, and allowed him to advance to third on a Paul Goldschmidt fly out. Lowe intentionally walked Miguel Montero, only to watch Aaron Hill deliver the walk off single to win it for the Snakes.
Pitching Lines of the Night: Bartolo Colon dominated the A’s in a 10-1 Mets romp, allowing one run on four hits in eight innings, striking out eight while walking one. Clayton Kershaw shut down the Royals in the Dodgers’ 2-0 win, giving up six hits over eight scoreless frames, walking one and punching out eight. Jake Arrieta was solid for the Cubs in their 7-3 victory over the Reds, allowing two runs on three hits in seven innings, striking out nine without a walk. Jose Quintana was great in the White Sox’ 4-2 win over Baltimore, giving up one run on six hits in seven innings, walking three and striking out eight.
Hitting Lines of the Night: Justin Morneau raked in Colorado’s 10-5 win over St. Louis, going 3/5 with a homer, two runs, and six RBI. Carlos Santana hit a ton for the Indians in their loss to Arizona, going 4/5 with a double, a homer, two runs, two RBI, and two walks. In the win for Arizona, Gerardo Parra went 5/7 with a double, two runs, a walk, and a stolen base. Chris Young had a big night for the Mets in their win over the A’s, going 2/3 with two homers, three runs, and a walk. Dioner Navarro helped the Blue Jays beat the Yankees 7-6, going 3/4 with a homer and three RBI. Anthony Rizzo stayed hot for the Cubs in their win over the Reds, going 3/4 with a double, a homer, and two runs scored.
Other Games: The Phillies beat the Marlins 7-4. The Pirates held on to beat the Rays 6-5. The Nationals beat the Brewers 4-2 in 16 innings. Atlanta topped Houston 3-2. The Tigers smashed the Rangers 8-2. The Angels defeated the Twins 8-6. The Mariners prevailed over the Red Sox 8-2. The Padres dispatched the Giants 7-2.
Today’s Games: Charlie Morton and David Price will square off in St. Pete. Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals take on the Brewers. Marco Gonzales makes his major league debut for the Cardinals in Denver. Ian Kennedy and the Padres take on the Giants and Tim Lincecum. Ubaldo Jimenez and the Orioles host the White Sox. Mat Latos gets the nod for the Reds in Chicago against the Cubs. Hiroki Kuroda starts for the Yankees in Toronto. Henderson Alvarez and A.J. Burnett will face off in Philadelphia. Zack Wheeler and the Mets host the A’s. Anibal Sanchez starts for the Tigers in Texas. James Shields and the Royals host Dan Haren and the Dodgers. Corey Kluber starts for the Indians in Phoenix. Garrett Richards and the Angels host the Twins. Hisashi Iwakuma and the Mariners host the returning Clay Buchholz and the Red Sox.
National TV: Nationals-Brewers (2 PM, MLB Network), Cardinals-Rockies (3 PM, MLB Network), Tigers-Rangers (8 PM, ESPN2)
Enjoy your day of baseball, everyone.