Oh, go ahead and look at who’s at the top of the NL West – it’s the Los Angeles Dodgers. LA is three games up on the Giants, and that three game lead is the second-largest of any division leader (behind just the Tigers in the AL Central). Just like the Nationals in the NL East, the Dodgers are getting hot at the right time. And because of their stacked farm system, Los Angeles can acquire any talent they want in the next day and a half to potentially bolster their roster for a postseason run once again. It’s time to fear the Dodgers, but if you’re smart, you probably already were.
Game of the Night: Yankees 12, Rangers 11. What a nutty game. The Rangers led 4-1 after five innings, but the Yankees offense exploded on Nick Martinez and the Rangers bullpen afterwards, scoring a total of nine runs in the sixth and seventh innings to take a 10-4 lead. In the bottom of the seventh, Adam Warren laid an egg for New York, and Dellin Betances allowed a grand slam to J.P. Arencibia to make it a 10-8 game. The Yankees extended their lead in the eighth after Neal Cotts gave up a two-run homer to Mark Teixeira, but the Rangers made it 12-9 after an Adrian Beltre RBI groundout in the bottom of the inning. In the ninth, Texas threw up one final prayer, loading the bases with two outs against David Robertson. Elvis Andrus singled to score Leonys Martin and Daniel Robertson to make it 12-11, and Alex Rios was then walked to keep the bases loaded for Beltre. But he just missed hitting a walk off grand slam, flying out to Brett Gardner to end the game and give the Yankees an unexpectedly difficult win.
Pitching Lines of the Night: In Tampa Bay’s 5-1 win over Milwaukee, Alex Cobb gave up one run on three hits in eight innings, striking out 12 and walking two. Kyle Gibson ran through the Royals in Minnesota’s 2-1 victory, allowing two hits in seven shutout frames, walking a pair and punching out seven. Cole Hamels dominated the Mets in Philly’s 6-0 win, giving up six hits over eight scoreless frames, striking out eight without a walk. Mike Leake held the course for the Reds in their 3-0 win over the Diamondbacks, tossing 7 2/3 shutout innings while allowing five hits, punching out eight, and walking none. Francsico Liriano trucked the Giants in Pittsburgh’s 3-1 win, giving up one run on four hits in seven innings, walking one and striking out 11. In Miami’s 3-0 win over Washington, Henderson Alvarez ceded three hits in seven shutout frames, walking four and striking out four.
Hitting Lines of the Night: J.P. Arencibia played well for the Rangers in their loss to the Yankees, going 4/5 with two doubles, two homers, and seven RBI. In the win for the Yankees, Brett Gardner went 4/5 with two doubles, a solo homer, and three runs scored. Matt Kemp helped the Dodgers beat the Braves 8-4, going 3/4 with two homers and four RBI. Yasiel Puig chipped in by going 4/5 with a double, a triple, and two runs scored, while Adrian Gonzalez went 3/5 with two doubles, two runs, and two RBI. Jose Abreu stayed hot in Chicago’s 11-4 romp over the Tigers, going 3/4 with a double, a homer, two runs, four RBI, and a walk. Emilio Bonifacio had an interesting night in the Cubs’ 4-3, 16 inning win over the Rockies, going 4/7 with a double, a homer, two runs, and two RBI. In the Angels’ 7-6, 12 inning loss to the Orioles, Josh Hamilton went 3/6 with a double, a homer, and three RBI. Ben Zobrist went 2/4 with a double, a homer, two runs, and two RBI in the Rays’ win over the Brewers.
Other Games: The Mariners beat the Indians 5-2. The Blue Jays doubled up the Red Sox 4-2. The Padres topped the Cardinals 3-1. The A’s used a six run ninth to beat the Astros 7-4.
Today’s Games: David Price makes…aw hell with it, HIS LAST START IN JULY WITH THE RAYS as Tampa Bay hosts Yovani Gallardo and the Brewers. Zack Wheeler and the Mets host the Phillies. Wade Miley and the Diamondbacks take on Alfredo Simon and the Reds in Cincinnati. Tanner Roark starts for the Nationals in Miami. Jason Hammel and Dallas Keuchel duel in Houston. Charlie Morton takes the hill for the Pirates in San Francisco. Garrett Richards starts for the Angels in Baltimore. Felix Hernandez and Corey Kluber will cross swords in Cleveland. Max Scherzer and the Tigers host the White Sox. Mark Buehrle starts for the Blue Jays in Boston against Jon Lest…er, Brandon Workman. Hiroki Kuroda gets the nod for the Yankees in Arlington. Danny Duffy and the Royals host the Twins. Zack Greinke takes the hill for the Dodgers against the Braves.
National TV: Nationals-Marlins (12:30 PM, MLB Network), Diamondbacks-Reds (12:30 PM, MLB Network), Pirates-Giants (3:30 PM, MLB Network), Angels-Orioles (7 PM, ESPN)
Enjoy your day of baseball, everyone.