So….how about those Royals? Kansas City was on top of the world a month ago, at 39-32 and sitting in first in the AL Central after taking the first three games of a four game series with the Tigers. Since then, Kansas City has fallen into a downward spiral. They’re 9-18 since, and have moved from a game and a half up in the AL Central to a shocking eight games behind the Tigers. They’re closer to the last place Twins than they are the Tigers. They’re even with the White Sox in the win column, and are only two games ahead in the loss column. Even if you want to think about the Wild Card, there are three teams and 4.5 games between them and the Mariners for the second playoff spot. So…maybe Dayton Moore should look into selling some of those assets and revamping the process, huh?
Game of the Night: Twins 4, Indians 3. This one was a back and forth contest in the early going, but Kris Johnson’s bid for his first major league win was dashed in the eighth. With one out, Michael Brantley hit a pinch hit double off of Casey Fien to put himself in scoring position as the tying run. Nick Swisher moved him up to third with a ground out, and Roberto Perez tied the game up with a single. Bryan Shaw came in for Cleveland in the bottom of the eighth, and after striking out Kendrys Morales, Shaw allowed a go-ahead homer to Josh Willingham. In the ninth, Glen Perkins set down the Indians in order to close out the win for Minnesota.
Pitching Lines of the Night: Julio Teheran dominated the Marlins in Atlanta’s 3-1, ten inning loss, giving up one run on four hits in seven innings, walking one and striking out 11. Tom Koehler was nearly as good in Miami’s win, allowing one run on five hits in 6 2/3 innings, walking a pair and striking out seven. John Lackey shut down the Blue Jays as Boston rolled 14-1, allowing one run on two hits in seven innings, punching out three without a walk. In Milwaukee’s 5-2 win over Cincinnati, Wily Peralta trucked the Reds, giving up one run on three hits in seven innings, walking a pair and striking out five. Chris Sale pitched like Chris Sale as the White Sox topped the Royals 3-1, allowing one run on seven hits in seven innings, walking one and punching out eight.
Hitting Lines of the Night: Washington beat Colorado 7-2 thanks to Ian Desmond going 5/5 with a homer, three runs, and two RBI. In the Orioles’ 4-2 win over the Angels, Adam Jones went 2/4 with two homers and four RBI. Hunter Pence spurred the Giants to a 7-4 win in Philadelphia, going 3/5 with a triple, a run, two RBI, and a stolen base. Adrian Gonzalez played well for the Dodgers in their 5-2 win in Pittsburgh, going 3/3 with two doubles, a run, an RBI, and two walks.
Hitting Lines of the Night, Red Sox edition: A trio of Boston stars went off at Rogers Centre. First there was David Ortiz, who went 2/5 with two homers and four RBI. Then there was Mike Napoli, who went 3/5 with a double, a solo homer, and three runs scored. Finally, there was Stephen Drew, who went 2/4 with a homer, two runs, four RBI, and a walk.
Other Games: The Rangers shockingly earned a win, beating the Yankees 4-2. The Tigers edged the Diamondbacks 4-3. The Mariners beat the Mets 5-1.
Today’s Games: Mike Minor and the Braves host the Marlins. Josh Beckett starts for the Dodgers in Pittsburgh. Danny Salazar makes his first major league start in two months as his Indians take on the Twins. Homer Bailey gets the nod for the Reds in Milwaukee. Jake Odorizzi and Adam Wainwright will square off in St. Louis. Jordan Zimmermann and the Nationals take on the Rockies. Rick Porcello starts for the Tigers in Phoenix. Scott Kazmir and the A’s welcome the Astros to Oakland. Jacob deGrom and the Mets take on the Mariners.
National TV: Giants-Phillies (7 PM, MLB Network), Marlins-Braves (7 PM, MLB Network)
Enjoy your day of baseball, everyone.