Pitcher of the Day: Dave Bush, Milwaukee Brewers
Thanks to a sharp breaking ball and some nifty defense behind him, Dave Bush nearly pitched a no-hitter.
Bush, who is from the Philadelphia area, gave up a pinch-hit solo homer to Matt Stairs with one out in the eighth, and was lifted after giving up a single two batters later. Bush threw 113 pitches and received a standing ovation from the notoriously nasty Philly crowd.
It was an especially bad day for the Phillies, as 2008 World Series MVP Cole Hamels was forced to leave the game after being hit with a line drive off the bat of Prince Fielder. Fielder also drove in three runs to add insult to injury.
Hitter of the Day: Albert Pujols, St. Louis Cardinals
The way it looks right now, Albert Pujols will successfully defend his 2008 National League MVP Award.
The Machine was 3-for-4 with two homers, four runs scored, three RBI, a walk, and he stole a base for the second straight game. Pujols is hitting .345 and leads the NL with six home runs and 21 RBI. The 29-year-old sits just two RBI shy of 1,000 for his career.
Pujols will be a virtual shoe-in if his team continues to play like it has. The Cardinals lead the Central at 11-5, which ties them for the third best record in baseball.
Game of the Day: Seattle Mariners 1, Tampa Bay Rays 0
Sometimes, one's all you need.
Ichiro swatted the second pitch of the game into the right field seats at Safeco Field. Little did he know that it would go down as the game's only run.
Despite there being 243 other pitches thrown, both Tampa Bay and Seattle were shut down. Healthy and pitching for a first-place team, Felix Hernandez put together one of the more dominant performances of his career.
King Felix pitched seven shutout innings, giving up four hits, and all singles while striking out seven. David Aardsma, who has been one of the best set-up men in baseball, pitched a perfect eighth before Brandon Morrow came on for his fifth save.
Rays starter James Shields gave up just the Ichiro homer in seven-and-one-third innings pitched. Tampa fell to 6-10 while the Mariners jumped to 10-6.
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