Welcome back to Recaps, and I would like to begin by apologizing for missing yesterday's action, as I currently have some form of death-flu. Doctors say I should be out for six-to-eight weeks...or something like that.
Wednesday seemed to be rally day around the league, as more than a few teams came from behind to take games that the opposition thought were well in the bag. It also included a grand slam by Mitch Moreland that will never be recorded because he apparently angered the rain gods.
Road team standouts are listed first, followed by home teams.
W: Joaqin Benoit (1-2)
L: Matt Capps (1-2)
S: Jose Valverde (8)
Brandon Boesch, 1-for-3, 2 BB, 3 R
Miguel Cabrera, 1-for-3, BB, 2B, 2 RBI, R
Victor Martinez, 3-for-4, BB, HR, 3 RBI
Brandon Inge, 2-for-5, 3B, RBI, R
Jhonny Peralta, 1-for-1, HR, 2 RBI
Jason Kubel, 2-for-3, 2 BB, HR, 4 RBI
Justin Morneau, BB, 2 2B, R
Michael Cuddyer, 1-for-4, BB, 2B, RBI
Matt Tolbert, 2-for-4, 2B, R
The Tigers outlasted the Twins in a back-and-forth affair that saw four lead changes and blown saves by both sides. Down 5-3 in the seventh, Jason Kubel blasted a three-run shot to give the Twins the lead. Detroit answered back in the eighth on a Jhonny Peralta home run, and Minnesota responded in their half of the frame on an RBI-double by Matt Tolbert to tie the game. Detroit then posted two in the ninth to seal the victory. Phil Coke started the day for the Tigers, going five and two-thirds and allowing two runs. Scott Baker started for the Twins, went four and one-third and gave up five.
The bad news: This was one of Minnesota's best outings of the year, and they still couldn't take home a win. The good news: Delmon Young is theoretically going to be back in the lineup on Friday.
W: Chad Qualls (2-2)
L: Kameron Loe (2-4)
Chris Denforia, 3-for-4, 2 BB, HR, 2 R
Jason Bartlett, 4-for-6, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R, SB
Cameron Maybin, 4-for-6, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R
Ryan Ludwick, 3-for-6, HR, 3 RBI
Alberto Gonzalez, 2-for-5, RBI, R
Brad Hawpe, 2-for-2, RBI, 2 R
Ryan Braun, 2-for-4, RBI, 2 R
Prince Fielder, 1-for-5, HR, 2 RBI
Casey McGehee, 2-for-5, RBI, R
Yuniesky Betancourt, 1-for-3, BB, SF, HR, 2 RBI
The previously anemic Padres offense found their bats Wednesday, scoring 13 runs in their shellacking of the Brewers. San Diego had seven batters with multiple hits, including four-hit outings by Jason Bartlett and Cameron Maybin. Tim Stauffer started the day for the Padres, going five and one-third and surrendering six runs. Randy Wolf took the mound for Milwaukee, but lasted only three and one-third while allowing five.
With absolutely no regard for this season's brief history, logic or the space-time continuum which could be unalterably affected by such a disturbance, the Padres scored 13 runs on 23 hits. Just take a minute to look at that and remember: the Padres did that.
W: Mark Melancolon (3-1)
L: Mike Leake (3-2)
Drew Stubbs, 2-for-5, HR
Joey Votto, 2-for-4, 3B, R
Chris Heisey, 1-for-2, HR
Hunter Pence, 2-for-4, BB, 2 2B, RBI
Michael Bourn, 2-for-5, 2B, 2 RBI
Matt Downs, 0-for-2, 2 BB, RBI, R
Hunter Pence hit a walk-off double to plate J.R. Towles, as the Astros avoided the sweep against Cincinnati. The Reds led for most of the game, but down 3-1 in the seventh, Chris Heisey and Drew Stubbs hit back-to-back home runs to tie the game. Wandy Rodriguez started for the 'Stros, lasting seven innings and giving up three. Edinson Volquez pitched four innings, allowing three.
This is an opportune time to mention that Hunter Pence has a 15-game hitting streak, during which time he has gone 22-for-62 with two home runs and 14 RBI.
The game was delayed by rain and will be made up later in the season on a date yet to be announced.
This game actually went about three and a half innings before the rain washed it away. Because the game did not last four and a half innings, rules dictate that the game must be started anew and therefore all stats that had been accumulated are lost forever. This was bad news for Matt Harrison, who pitched four scoreless innings against Oakland to that point. Even worse news for Mitch Moreland, who nailed a grand slam.
This game was cancelled before it ever got started, as Colorado was hit with rain, hail and snow. If weather permits, the game will be made up on Thursday, May 12th.
(Sidebar as a Colorado resident: Getting hit by snow in mid-May is fun. You should come live here. Really.)
W: Joakim Soria (3-0)
L: Buddy Carlyle (0-1)
S: Louis Coleman (1)
Melky Cabrera, 0-for-3, 3 BB, R, SB
Eric Hosmer, 1-for-4, SF, HR, 2 RBI, 2 R
Wilson Betemit, 1-for-3, 2 BB, RBI
Curtis Granderson, 2-for-5, BB, HR, 2 RBI, SB
Jorge Posada, 2-for-3, 2 BB, RBI
The Royals kept battling and battling throughout their extra-inning affair with the Yankees, and were rewarded with a victory. Down a run in the eighth, Wilson Betemit tagged an RBI-single to bring Melky Cabrera home and send the game into extras. Jeff Francoeur doubled in the top of the 10th to score Eric Hosmer, but New York responded when Curtis Granderson singled to plate Russell Martin in the bottom half. The Royals put the game away in the eleventh with a sac fly by Hosmer to score Chris Getz.
Proof alone that Eric Hosmer's career should take off quickly: How many people have their first career home run in New York against the Yankees? Congratulations on your bragging rights, kid.
W: Hiroki Kuroda (4-3)
L: Paul Maholm (1-5)
S: Vicente Padilla (3)
Jerry Sands, 1-for-3, BB, 2B, RBI
Matt Kemp, 1-for-2, 2 BB, SB
Hiroki Kuroda pitched seven shutout innings, holding off the Pirates en route to a Dodgers victory. Paul Maholm started for Pittsburgh, going six innings and giving up two. This was Maholm's fifth quality start, of which the Pirates have amassed only one win.
Kuroda has had six quality starts this year and has never gone less than five innings in any of his outings. His BAA and WHIP aren't ace-like (.252 and 1.20), but they're certainly nothing to complain about. Neither is his 3.21 ERA.
W: Chris Tillman (2-3)
L: Felix Hernandez (4-3)
S: Kevin Gregg (7)
Michael Saunders, 1-for-3, BB, HR
Adam Jones, 4-for-4, 3B, 2 RBI
Derrek Lee, 1-for-3, SF, RBI, R
Adam Jones' perfect 4-for-4 day helped lead the Orioles to their second consecutive win against the Mariners. Up 2-1 in the fifth, Jones launched a triple to the gap in right-center, scoring Luke Scott and Vlad Guerrero to put the game out of reach. Chris Tillman pitched six innings for Baltimore, allowing only one run. Felix Hernandez wasn't quite as sharp, giving up four runs over five innings.
What's somewhat amusing about Jones' four-hit day is the number of pitches he saw in order to accumulate that total—eight. Usually when batters have great hitting days, they bleed out pitch counts with almost infinite patience, waiting for the right pitch. Not Jones. Eight pitches, four hits. Apparently, he didn't see the need to waste the pitchers' time.
W: David Price (5-3)
L: Carlos Carrasco (1-2)
Sam Fuld, 3-for-4, BB, 2B, 2 RBI, SB
Ben Zobrist, 1-for-2, 2 BB, SF, HR, 2 RBI
Matt Joyce, 2-for-5, HR, 2 R
B.J. Upton, 2-for-5, 2B, 2 RBI, R
Matt LaPorta, 1-for-3, 2B, RBI, R
The Indians finally lost a home game, due to a mix of good opposing pitching and 11 hits by the Rays. David Price got the start for Tamps, going eight innings and giving up two runs while striking out seven. Carlos Carrasco was beat up in his first start back from the DL, pitching five innings and allowing four.
Cleveland's home winning streak had to end eventually, and they shouldn't be the least bit upset given that their 14-3 record at Progressive Field is far better than any other team's home record (next best is Kansas City, at 15-8).
W: Jesse Litsch (4-2)
L: John Lackey (2-5)
Red Sox Standouts
Adrian Gonzalez, 2-for-4, HR, 2B, 2 R
David Ortiz, 1-for-4, HR
Blue Jays Standouts
Rajai Davis, 4-for-4, 2 RBI, 2 R, 2 SB
John McDonald, 2-for-4, HR, 2B, 3 RBI, 2 R
Corey Patterson, 2-for-4, BB, 2B, RBI, R, SB
Yunel Escobar, 1-for-3, BB, SF, RBI, R
John Lackey continued to struggle as the Blue Jays lit up the Red Sox for their second straight win. Lackey pitched six and two-thirds innings, giving up all nine of Toronto's runs. Jesse Litsch started for the Jays, allowing three over five and two-thirds.
More than half of Lackey's starts this season have involved giving up six runs or more.
W: Kyle Kendrick (3-2)
L: Leo Nunez (0-1)
S: Ryan Madsen (5)
Pete Orr, 2-for-2, 2 2B, RBI, R
Shane Victorino, 1-for-5, HR
Hanley Ramirez, 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
The Phillies never said die, and the philosophy paid dividends, leading them to a surprising victory over the Marlins. Down 3-0, the Phils scored two in the seventh and tied the game on a Shane Victorino home run in the eighth. Jimmy Rollins drove in Dane Sardinha and Pete Orr in the ninth to cap the rally, and Ryan Madsen closed out the game to complete the win. The late rally wasted the decent start of Ricky Nolasco for Florida, as he pitched six and one-third, giving up two runs (only one earned). Cliff Lee started for Philly, and surrendered three over six innings.
This was Gaby Sanchez's sixth multi-hit outing in the past 10 games. During that time, his average has skyrocketed 47 points (.289 to .336), he has hit three home runs and driven in 13 runs.
W: Drew Storen (3-1)
L: Scott Linebrink (0-1)
Alex Cora, 2-for-2, 2 RBI, R
Ian Desmond, 2-for-6, 2B, 2 RBI, R, 2 SB
Jayson Werth, 2-for-5, BB, HR, 2 RBI, SB
Laynce Nix, 3-for-5, 2B, RBI, R
Wilson Ramos, 1-for-5, BB, 2B, R
Brian McCann, 2-for-5, 2 2B, 2 RBI
Eric Hinske, 1-for-3, HR
With the Nationals down 3-1 in the top of the ninth, Alex Cora knocked a two-run single to plate Laynce Nix and Jerry Hairston, tying the game. From there, Washington put up four runs on an Ian Desmond double and a Jayson Werth four-bagger in the 11th to complete the rally. This spoiled the decent outing by Tommy Hanson, who went five and two-thirds innings for the Braves, giving up just one run. John Lannan got the start for the Nats, pitching six innings and conceding two.
Washington really should change it's name to the Nationyls—to coincide with Laynce Nix and Jayson Werth—and try to find as many other players with unnecessary y's in their names. I'm betting you could also get Ramos to change his first name to Wilsyn.
W: Matt Garza (2-4)
L: Jake Westbrook (2-3)
Nick Punto, 2-for-3, BB, 2B, 2 R
Albert Pujols, 1-for-3, BB, 2 RBI
Starlin Castro, 4-for-4, 3B, 3 RBI, 3 R
Kosuke Fukudome, 2-for-4, 2B, R
Aramis Ramirez, 2-for-3, RBI, R
Carlos Pena, 2-for-3, BB, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R
Alfonso Soriano, 2-for-4, 2 RBI, R
Koyie Hill, 2-for-4, 3B, 2B, 2 RBI, R
The Cubs rode a six-run third inning to a victory over the Cardinals on Wednesday. Starlin Castro led the way, hitting a perfect four hits in as many at-bats, driving in three and scoring three. Matt Garza kept St. Louis in check, pitching five innings, and allowing only one run on three hits. Jake Westbrook was hit hard and early, getting knocked out of the game after just two and a third, giving up five.
Before the series with St. Louis started, Castro was on a dismal 2-for-25 streak. In the past two games, he's gone 6-for-8 with 4 RBI.
W: Sergio Santos (2-0)
L: Kevin Jepsen (0-2)
S: Matt Thornton (1)
White Sox Standouts
Adam Dunn, 4-for-5, BB, HR, 2B, 3 R
A.J. Pierzynski, 4-for-6, 2B, RBI
Paul Konerko, 1-for-4, 2 BB, SB
Omar Vizquel, 1-for-1, SF, 2B, 2 RBI
Torii Hunter, 2-for-5, 3B, 2 RBI
Erick Aybar, 2-for-5, RBI, R, SB
The White Sox had a rally of their own Wednesday night, overcoming a three-run deficit to beat the Angels. Down 4-2 in the ninth, A.J. Pierzynski singled to score Adam Dunn and Omar Vizquel followed with a sac fly to plate Brad Lillibridge. Lillibridge had a sac of his own in the 10th to score Dunn, and Alexei Ramirez scored on a wild pitch to put the game away. This spoiled Tyle Chatwood's respectable six and one-third outing, in which he gave up a mere run. Jake Peavy made his first start of the year for Chicago, pitched six innings and allowed four.
Peavy was aggressively mediocre in his first appearance back on the mound, which is about as much as Sox fans should be asking for after a near year-long absence. He showed lots of composure, consistently working out of jams and pitching well despite the erratic defense behind him. But you can only say a pitcher was so good when he gives up four runs. This is certainly something to build on though, and along with Adam Dunn's bat waking up, this game should give White Sox fans lots of optimism moving forward.
W: Jonathan Sanchez (3-2)
L: Armando Galarraga (3-3)
S: Brian Wilson (12)
Henry Blanco, 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
Kelly Johnson, 2-for-5, 2B, R, SB
Gerard Parra, 1-for-3, BB, R, SB
Miguel Tejada, 3-for-4, 2B, RBI, R
Aubrey Huff, 1-for-4, HR
Andres Torres, 2-for-3, BB, 2B, RBI
The Giants took their second straight one-run victory from the visiting Diamondbacks. Arizona led 3-0 in the fourth until the Giants put together a string of good at-bats, scoring two runs on three singles and three walks. Aubrey Huff tied the game in the next inning with a home run, and Frisco took the lead on an RBI-double by Andres Torres in the sixth. Jonathan Sanchez pitched six innings for the Giants in the win, giving up three runs. Armando Galarraga for the start for the D-Backs, pitching five and one-third and giving up four.
The Giants finally look like last year's world champs again, having won seven of their last eight.