Zack Greinke finally secures second victory

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Early this season the Royals’ lineup and bullpen robbed Zack Greinke of wins and then he began to earn the losses with some shaky starts recently, but the reigning Cy Young winner got back on track yesterday with a complete-game victory.
He allowed three runs, including a pair of Joey Votto homers, but struck out 12, walked zero, and needed just 105 pitches to record 27 outs against the NL Central-leading Reds. The victory is Greinke’s first since May 13, during which time he was 0-4 with a 6.59 ERA.
However, his 22/8 K/BB ratio in 27 innings was solid during that stretch and he certainly looked like his usual self Sunday. He won’t repeat last season’s 2.16 ERA, but should be able to settle into the 3.50 range soon enough. Unfortunately the Royals aren’t getting any better, so whether his ERA is 2.16, 3.50, or 6.59 wins will be tough to come by.
With the win Kansas City improved to 42-51 when Greinke starts since 2007. During that time he has a 3.06 ERA in 589.1 innings.

Astros’ bullpen throws combined one-hitter for MLB-best 30th win

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The Astros’ bullpen did yeoman’s work in place of the injured Dallas Keuchel on Monday against the Tigers. Keuchel is temporarily sidelined with a pinched nerve in his neck.

Brad Peacock made the spot start, limiting the Tigers to one hit and two walks with eight strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings. Chris Devenski took over with one out in the fifth, finishing out that inning as well as the sixth and seventh, facing the minimum. Will Harris pitched a perfect eighth and Ken Giles closed out the 1-0 victory in the ninth. Devenski, Harris, and Giles each had two strikeouts.

The Astros scored their only run in the bottom of the first inning as George Springer drew a leadoff walk, then scored on Jose Altuve‘s one-out double. Tigers starter Brad Fulmer pitched well enough to win on most days, giving up the lone run in seven frames.

After Monday’s win, the Astros became the first team to reach 30 wins, sitting on a 30-15 record. With a +55 run differential, even their expected record matches up with their actual record.

Brandon Phillips hit his 200th career home run

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Braves second baseman Brandon Phillips became the 337th player in baseball history to hit 200 career home runs, driving a solo home run to left-center field during Monday night’s home game against the Pirates. Phillips is the 14th second baseman (who played a min. of 75 percent of his career games at the position) to rack up at least 200 career home runs.

Phillips, 35, entered Monday’s action batting .290/.345/.405 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 142 plate appearances. If he’s anything, he’s consistent, as he finished with an adjusted OPS between 90-99 (100 is average) every year between 2012-16 and it was sitting at 97 coming into Monday.