Tag: Trevor Plouffe

Clayton Kershaw

And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights


Dodgers 3, Mets 0: When I noticed that Clayton Kershaw — who, after a slow-for-him start has been his old dominant self lately — was going to be facing the Mets this week, my first thought was that it was gonna be a slaughter. Then my second thought was that baseball is weird and unpredictable and you can’t ever hype games in advance and hope that they’ll conform to the hype, so that it’d probably be the case that the Mets would score six runs off of him in five innings. Just go with your first impulse, Craig. Just go with your first impulse. A perfecto into the seventh which ended in a three-hit shutout on 104 pitches with 11 strikeouts. He now has 29 consecutive scoreless innings and is on pace for a 300+ strikeout year.

Yankees 9, Orioles 3: The sweep, as the Yankees are just rolling. It must suck to be a Yankees columnist now, what with there being no controversy and stuff. Maybe you can write a “are the Yankees peaking too soon?!” alarmist column, but that only really gets you a day. Thoughts, prayers.Jacoby Ellsbury singled, doubled and homered — but did not “finish a triple shy of the cycle because that is not a notable thing as it has happens hundreds of times a season — and drove in four runs. Chase Headley hit a bases-clearing double in the first inning.

Blue Jays 5, Athletics 2: Russell Martin drove in three  — two of ’em on a two run homer — to back R.A. Dickey who pitched into the ninth inning. So if it was just the two of them playing the Jays would win. Wait, not. If it was just the two of them there would be a LOT of inside the park homers. Never mind.

Pirates 7, Nationals 3: Francisco Liriano pitched into the seventh, allowing three hits and struck out 11. Crazy stat/factoid thingie from the AP wire story: Liriano retired the first 12 hitters he faced on either strikeouts or grounders back to the mound. So maybe in this one the pitcher, catcher and first baseman could’ve been the only ones to play and the Pirates would’ve been just fine?

Cardinals 4, Royals 3: World Series preview? Well, maybe not quite as this was just a rainout makeup and the real World Series will last longer than one game. At least as long as we don’t have a “Dark Knight Rises” situaish happen with some garbled-mouth terrorist taking over Kansas City. Of course if that does happen it’ll be a lot easier to escape what with K.C. really only having a river on one side of it and a lot of ways to leave it without having to cross major bridges and things. Oh, this game, right: John Lackey pitched well. Grichuk and Carpenter each hit two-run homers. As for these two teams matching up, ugh. We’re all sort of tired of the Cardinals, right? If they’re playing deep into October again I *Bane voice* won’t fear death. I’ll welcome it. Our punishment must be more severe.

Mariners 3, Tigers 2: Mike Zunino had an RBI double in the top of the 12th inning. He also extinguished a scoring threat in the 10th by throwing out Anthony Gose trying to steal. All this after entering the game late following Jesus Sucre being lifted for a pinch hitter. Which means that, technically speaking, he wasn’t even supposed to be here today.

Marlins 4, Padres 0: In Soviet Russia, Koehler flushes YOU! Tom Koehler: 7 IP, 3 H 0 ER. The Fish put up a four-run sixth on a wild pitch a throwing error and a couple of singles.

Twins 3, Angels 0: Ervin Santana tossed eight four-hit shutout innings against his old mates. And this time it could be meant literally as there are a lot of dudes on that Angels team who were there when Santana played for ’em. Trevor Plouffe hit a three-run homer for the game’s only offense. This thing lasted two hours and sixteen minutes. Getaway day, man. Getaway day.


White Sox 8, Indians 1: Jeff Samardzija could’ve just made his last start as a White, um, Sock. If so it was a good one: he allowed one run on four hits in eight innings. Meanwhile, Melky Cabrera went 2-for-3 with two homers.

Astros 5, Red Sox 4: Jose Altuve’s walkoff homer sent the Sox to their eighth straight loss. Altuve had four hits on the night. When does Patriots training camp start? Heck, folks in Boston may even settle for the Celtics right about now.

Diamondbacks 8, Brewers 3: Zack Godley made his major league debut and all he did was strike out seven in six shutout innings. From the AP story, this quote from Chip Hale:

“The umpire, Brian O’Nora, came over and said, `This guy has got really good stuff.'”

That’s pretty good, yes? According to Elias, Godley is the first pitcher since at least 1900 to throw at least six scoreless innings with no walks and seven or more strikeouts in his major league debut. That’s also pretty good.

Video: Brian Dozier hits walk-off homer as Twins stun Tigers

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JULY 10: The Minnesota Twins celebrate a Brian Dozier #2 heads into home plate after hitting a walk-off three-run home run against the Detroit Tigers during the ninth inning of the game on July 10, 2015 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Twins defeated the Tigers 8-6. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

The Tigers entered the bottom of the ninth inning last night with a 6-1 lead over the Twins. They somehow ended up losing the game.

Joe Mauer got the rally started with an infield single off Bruce Rondon before Miguel Sano followed with a ground-rule double. Rondon was able to strike out Trevor Plouffe, but Eddie Rosario singled in a run which caused Tigers manager Brad Ausmus to bring in his closer, Joakim Soria. However, Soria walked Aaron Hicks to load the bases before hitting Kurt Suzuki to force in a run. Danny Santana followed with a two-run single to bring to the Twins within one run, which brought Brian Dozier to the plate…

It was his second walk-off homer this week. Dozier is now batting .259/.331/.521 with 19 home runs, 49 RBI, nine steals, and 66 runs scored over 86 games this season. Somehow that’s not good enough to be an All-Star.

By the way, this sort of comeback hasn’t happened much recently:

It was a brutal loss for the Tigers, who are now a season-high eight games back in the American League Central.

And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

Bartolo Colon

source: Getty Images

Mets 4, Marlins 3: Bartolo Colon is cunning. He set up this RBI double by intentionally hitting poorly for 18 seasons, lulling Ichiro into a false sense of security which caused him to play extremely shallow, thereby being unable to cut off the ball turning this into an RBI double:


Colon playing the long con. I love it.

Reds 8, Nationals 2: Todd Frazier and Brandon Phillips each homered and drove in two and Joey Votto drew a three-ball walk which no one noticed at the time:


I get you, me and any other fan losing the count. And I get a broadcaster losing the count on occasion as they have a lot of stuff they’re keeping track of. But I’m not sure how the ump, pitcher, catcher and batter can. Maybe one of ’em. But all of ’em? Or maybe Votto didn’t lose it but just heard the ump say “ball 3!” or “ball 4!” and went with it? Oh well, that ended up being a six-run inning for the Reds who swept the Nats.

Rockies 4, Phillies 1: Everyone got mildly excited when the Phillies won six in a row not too long ago. Now they’ve lost seven in a row so did it even happen? The Rockies, meanwhile, have won four straight and seven of eight. Of course come October they’ll both be home and we’ll wonder whether any of this mattered, and we’ll be forced, once again, to consider how matchups between teams going nowhere serve as an apt metaphor for the futility of life when nothing awaits us other than certain death. Or, um, maybe I’m the only one who does that.

Brewers 7, Diamondbacks 6: If that Phillies-Rockies recap wasn’t depressing enough for you, how about extending the metaphor to a crazy exciting life, filled with highs and lows, yet still ending in the grave? Because that’s what you can take away from a 17-inning game between two losing teams which ends on a walkoff homer. Add in the notion that the walkoff was hit by Martin Maldonado, who was batting .157/.222/.209 before yesterday, and it also provides a metaphor for the fundamental injustice of those less worthy than you doing better in life. Bright side: those people die one day too.

Twins 6, Blue Jays 5: Hi, it’s June and Minnesota has the best record in the American League. As noted above, futility and certain death are a part of life, but there is also serendipity and surprise too, which makes it all worth while. Trevor Plouffe hit a two-run homer, and Torii Hunter had a go-ahead double in the seventh. The last time the Twins had a 20-win month was the month I graduated from high school: June 1991. The choir sang “One Moment in Time” at that graduation ceremony. Nirvana’s “Nevermind” was released three months later. And the month after that the Twins were World Series champions.

Rays 9, Orioles 5: When you have two dudes who hit two home runs in a game, you usually win that game, I’d reckon. Here Delmon Young and Manny Machado each went deep twice but the O’s got beat anyway. Baseball, man. Steve Souza Jr. homered for his third straight game for the Rays and Jake Odorizzi got some rare run support from everyone else.

White Sox 6, Astros 0: John Danks allowed 10 hits, including five extra-base hits, yet still pitched a shutout. That’s some 80-grade scattering. The last time a pitcher gave up 10 hits in a shutout was Carlos Silva, 11 years ago. No one has done it with five of those hits going for extra bases dating back to 1914, which is as far back the STATS, Inc. people have all of the relevant stats of which this factoid is comprised.

Cardinals 3, Dodgers 1: Carlos Martinez pitched one-hit ball over seven shutout innings. He now has 20 and a third scoreless innings. Jhonny Peralta homered and drove in all three of the Cardinals’ runs.

Cubs 2, Royals 1: A walkoff RBI single in the 11th for David Ross and the Cubs. Or the Whales, which is the old Federal League club they were honoring with their throwbacks yesterday:


Pretty sweet. Including that authentic matte batting helmet which I assume everyone in the Federal League wore. The league went belly-up due to the fact that fabricated plastics weren’t really available in 1915 and thus each batting helmet had to be created from mined plastic. The only plastic mines at the time were located in Belgium, which made it insanely expensive and dangerous for plastic miners due to the war. Really, if the people who ran the Federal League were more pragmatic, it may still exist today.

Rangers 4, Red Sox 3: Josh Hamilton came in to pinch hit in the ninth and smacked a walk-off two-run double. According to ESPN, it was the first pinch hit, walkoff double for the Rangers since Sept. 8, 1991. Which was 15 days before Nirvana’s “Nevermind” came out and . . . stop looking at me like that. If the STATS and ESPN people can trot out somewhat interesting but basically meaningless and non-predictive or explanatory stats to fill out their copy, so can I.

Athletics 3, Yankees 0: Jesse Chavez wasn’t John Danks or anything, but he did scatter seven hits over eight shutout innings. All the runs came off the bat of Stephen Vogt, who hit a two-run homer and had a sac fly. Martinez-Peralta, Chavez-Vogt: yesterday’s two-man teams.

Braves 7, Giants 5: The Bravos managed a four-run ninth inning off of Santiago Casilla, highlighted by a Jace Peterson bases-loaded triple. A little before that Freddie Freeman hit a homer. So I guess homers don’t always kill rallies. Sometimes they start them.

Indians 6, Mariners 3: Three runs in the 12th inning for Cleveland, including a two-run single from David Murphy. The Mariners were lucky to get to extras here, actually, notching only five hits in the whole dang game. Jason Kipnis had two doubles. His May: .429/.511/.706 4 homers, 17 RBI and 30 runs scored. He also is not even in the top 5 for All-Star voting at second base.

Angels 4, Tigers 2: The Angles sweep the sputtering Tigers in four games. David Price after the game:

“It’s frustrating. We’re not playing the way we’re capable of playing right now,” Price said. “Every team goes through it, and every team is going to feel this throughout 162 games. So you’ve just got to grind through it. We know we’re a better team. Everybody knows that.”

That’s true. And it has often been true of the Tigers in recent years. But in recent years the AL Central has not been anywhere near as good as it is this year, what with the Royals and Twins playing as well as they have and with the Indians and White Sox being far stronger teams than their current records suggest. I have not written off the Tigers nor should anyone else, but I feel like things are a lot different now than they have been since the Verlander-Cabrera Tigers came to prominence.

Padres 7, Pirates 1Odrisamer Despaigne allowed one run on seven hits in eight innings. It’s the best pitching performance by a person whose name could easily pass for the name of a high-end Belgian ale in baseball history. Seriously, go put that on Untapped and people will start rating it and acting like the only reason you haven’t heard of it is because it’s only available in their town right now. “Try the Tripel,” your friend will say. “If you can find it anyway.”

And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

Bartolo Colon

source: Getty Images

Mets 6, Phillies 3: Wilmer Flores hit a three-run homer in the sixth to break a 3-3 tie and to help put Bartolo Colon in the win column for the the seventh time this year. Colon also singled and actually ran the bases and stuff. Like this:


Yankees 14, Royals 1: Jeremy Guthrie got shellacked, giving up eleven runs while recording only three outs. It’s the first time a pitcher has allowed 11 runs while recording three outs or fewer in eight years. It’s also the first time a pitcher allowed four home runs while recording three or fewer outs in ten years. Three RBI a piece for Brett Gardner, Chase Headley, Brian McCann and Stephen Drew. It was just the Yankees’ second win in 12 games. It should count for two or three at least, you figure.

Pirates 4, Marlins 2: Charlie Morton scattered eight hits and allowed two runs over seven innings in his first action of the year. According to the AP game story Morton is said to have gone on “a six-week journey to rebuild his delivery from the ground up” as he recovered from offseason surgery. Morton once famously remade his delivery to be just like Roy Halladay. I wonder who he picked this time. Is there a big glossy catalog to be leafed-through in a big shiny and futuristic delivery-remaking clinic from which you can choose? “I want to be . . . Fergie Jenkins this time!” “Excellent choice, Mr. Morton!” Or is it more of a back-alley kind of place, like how Jack Nicholson was patched up to achieve his Joker look in the Tim Burton Batman?

Blue Jays 6, White Sox 0: Drew Hutchison with The Maddux. Which is not, contrary to popular opinion, a performance in which he yelled “F**K!” so loud from the mound that it was picked up by TBS microphones and ignored by Skip Caray, followed by him peeing on the feet of his teammates in the shower. I mean, yes, those are classic Maddux trademarks. But I’m referring to the fun stat created by Jason Lukehart three years ago and which MLB and its Twitter feed continuously reference these days without any acknowledgment that Lukehart made it up. Oh well. As for Hutchison, he gave up only four hits, struck out eight and didn’t walk a soul.

Dodgers 6, Braves  3: L.A. hit three homers in the eighth inning — Andre Ethier, Alex Guerrero and Jimmy Rollins did the honors — to key the Dodgers’ win. Ethier also drew a bases-loaded walk. Braves starter Williams Perez allowed only that walked-in run and scattered seven hits in six innings. The homers came off of Nick Masset who, apparently, gets to stay in no matter how many homers he gives up in close games. Must be a weird provision of his deal or something.

Angels 4, Padres 3: Tied at three in the ninth with two men on, Bud Black decided to intentionally walk Mike Trout to pitch to Albert Pujols with the bases loaded. While walking the bases loaded to pitch to Pujols was unthinkable back during the Bush Administration, it’s pretty defensible these days, at least to get around Trout. But Pujols made Black pay by hitting a game-winning single to left field.

Rockies 5, Reds 4: Nolan Arenado homered, had three hits and drove in the go-ahead run with a sac fly in the ninth off of Aroldis Chapman. That’s nine straight losses for Cincinnati. Three wins in a row for Colorado.

Orioles 4, Astros 3: I guess Dallas Keuchel was going to lose eventually. Not that the Orioles totally murdered him. As a team they only got six hits in the whole game and went down in order in six of their eight innings at the plate. But when two of those six hits were two-run homers — from Caleb Joseph and Steve Pearce — and when your four pitchers don’t walk anyone and pitch out of trouble enough times, it’s sufficient.

Giants 8, Brewers 4: Weirdness abounded in this one. Carlos Gomez has a gold glove and a stellar defensive reputation, but he also had two errors in one inning to help fuel the Giants’ seven-run rally in the sixth. Also weird: Khris Davis hit a home run in the first, after which he was called out for allegedly failing to touch home plate. The Brewers challenged that call and he was then called safe. Davis homered again in the third inning. This time, when he scored, he stomped on home plate. I may have slid.

Twins 7, Red Sox 2: Ricky Nolasco pitched well and Trevor Plouffe hit a three-run homer. The Twins are 26-18 and are only two games back of the Royals in the AL Central. If the season ended today they’d be in the playoffs as the first Wild Card in the American League. And I’m not sure if the season ending on May 26 for some reason would be any more surprising than the Twins actually finishing the season in the playoffs. If they do make the playoffs, though, can we agree to officially abolish preseason predictions for eternity? Because it’s unseemly for people to pretend they’re experts and have any special, authoritative insight into a pursuit as random as baseball.

Nationals 2, Cubs 1: Denard Span and Wilson Ramos homered. Kris Bryant homered in a losing cause. Really, those three hits were the whole game.

Athletics 4, Tigers 0: Jesse Hahn pitched a four-hit shutout to give the A’s their third win in a row. This despite his infield committing three errors behind him. Marcus Semien’s made it 17 for him on the season. The A’s have 49 overall, leading the league.

Rangers 10, Indians 8: Six wins in a row for the Rangers and the end of a six-game winning streak for the Indians. This game marked the return of Josh Hamilton, though he didn’t do much. He was 0-for-3 with two strikeouts, but he did walk and score once. Prince Fielder hit his fourth homer in four games and is now at .365/.417/.575 on the year and is on pace to hit 32 homers and drive in 126. Last year, when everyone said his bat would come alive in Texas? They were right. Just a year and a healthy Prince Fielder too early.

Cardinals 3, Diamondbacks 2: Jhonny Peralta with the walkoff homer in the 10th. This was the Cards’ eighth extra-innings win this year, which leads all of baseball. And, given that most analysts believe that, over time, extra innings wins tend to be heavily influenced by luck and random chance, it is evidence that the Cardinals possess black demon magic from an unholy source powering their success.

Mariners 4, Rays 1: Robinson Cano went 2-for-4 and drove in two runs, so I guess he’s not dead. Factoid of the day courtesy of the Associated Press:

This was the first-ever matchup of major league managers who played in the Little League World Series. McClendon was with Gary, Indiana, in 1971, while Cash was part of the 1989 Tampa, Florida, team.

Alrighty then.


And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

Evan Gattis

Astros 7, Mariners 6: Make it ten in a row for Houston. Evan Gattis, whose name seems to be leading the Astros’ game stories every day, hit two homers. That’s five homers in six games for him now. As for the Astros, they’re 18-7 and in first place with an astounding seven-game lead. Now, to be sure, it’s early, and to be surer, the AL West has had a history of teams leaping out to big leads only to see them go away over the course of the summer. But this is really somethin’ so far, eh?

Athletics 7, Rangers 1: Sonny Gray walked seven. He also struck out ten. In addition he hit the sportswriter, the public address announcer, the bull mascot twice . . . Stephen Vogt homered twice, driving in four.

Giants 5, Angels 0: The good Tim Lincecum came time-traveling from five or six years ago to grace us all with his presence and provide eight shutout innings. The current Jered Weaver remained, however, allowing five runs on ten hits in five innings. The dude has just fallen off a cliff.

Dodgers 1, Diamondbacks 0: Anderson tossed six shutout innings. So too did Anderson. Neither Brett nor Chase figured in the decision, however, as this one went scoreless for 13 before Yasmani Grandal hit a walkoff homer. The half-inning before Grandal recovered from a wild pitch nicely to throw out a runner trying to score from third. A 13-inning game that ends 1-0 is some serious 1968 noise.

Indians 10, Blue Jays 7: They Jays had a 6-1 lead in the fourth, but unfortunately for them we play nine around these parts. The Indians rallied, featuring a six-run fifth inning. Players said they had a little team meeting in the dugout in the middle of the game and that made a big difference:

“Guys were very forward in being vocal and said what needed to be said,” Kipnis said. “We’re not good enough to play that stupid the way we did in the first couple of innings.”

The worst thing about life is when you find that, very often, people get by with being stupid quite well. They shouldn’t, and they should really be concerned that they are so stupid, but they seem to manage and not care. We’re all Frank Grimes watching Homer Simpson, incredulous that their system works for them and wondering why they don’t have far worse lives than they do, but there they are.

Nationals 1, Mets 0: Losing a 1-0 game feels like a gut-punch. The Mets just lost two in a row. This one thanks to Doug Fister, who pitched shutout ball into the seventh and was backed up by four relievers. The game’s only scoring came on a Ryan Zimmerman RBI single in the first.  The Mets have lost seven of their last ten. The Nats have won five of six. Everyone who wrote “what have we learned?” columns after the first week or two of the season is a moron.

Phillies 6, Marlins 2: Ryan Howard had a triple (!) and an RBI single, helping the Phillies avert the sweep. Before I saw the triple I would’ve guessed “ball kicks off the base of the ball and rolls for a year.” Not quite! Marcel Ozuna took a bad route to it and couldn’t cut it off, and it did kick a bit, but this was a legit, leg-it-out triple to the deepest part of the park. Respect for the big man:

Orioles 4, Rays 2: The “home” team Orioles take two of three from Tampa Bay in St. Petersburg. Adam Jones had four hits, including a tie-breaking single. Afterward he talked about his hitting philosophy:

“I’ve got one simple philosophy … get the heater and try not to miss it,” Jones said.

He’s the Ricky Jay of hitting. He’s going to tell you he’s waiting for your fastball. He’s going to make you throw him your fastball and he’s going to hit your fastball anyway.

Braves 5, Reds 0: Julio Terhran gave up three singles in six shutout innings as the Braves and Reds split. Teheran needed that following three straight starts with too many crooked numbers. Atlanta got to Johnny Cueto. Fredi Gonzalez:

“If you would have told me we’d score five runs against Johnny Cueto, and he would only go six innings, I’m may have stopped and got some Lotto tickets”

People older than, say, 45, say “Lotto tickets.” People younger tend to say “Power Ball” or “Mega Millions.” Older people also say “cash machine” instead of “ATM” a lot. These are the sorts of things I used to make fun of more until it was pointed out to me by someone that I say “Lotto” and “cash machine.” Get off my lawn.

Tigers 6, Royals 4: Anibal Sanchez had a perfect game into the sixth to help give the Tigers the series split. Miguel Cabrera hit a two-run homer and Alex Avila drove in three. The Royals sold out all four games and had their biggest four-day attendance total since their ballpark’s capacity was reduced in a renovation back in 2009.

Twins 13 White Sox 3: Trevor Plouffe smacked a grand slam and drove in five and Brian Dozier had four hits. The Twins are 13-12. Not bad for a club that was supposed to be one of the worst if not the worst team in the majors this year.

Cardinals 3, Pirates 2: Kolten Wong with a 14th inning walkoff homer to give the Cards the sweep. I said earlier that a 1-0 loss is like a gut punch? An extra inning loss is like a gut punch too. The Cards won all three of the games in extras.

Brewers 5, Cubs 3: The Brewers won consecutive games for the first time all year. After the game, they fired Ron Roenicke. I’m guessing the decision to can him was made a few days before and that the timing of it had to do with getting back to Milwaukee after the road trip and stuff, but it’s still weird. It’s also likely to be of little consequence. This club just doesn’t have the horses. They’re going to be down a horse for a bit too, it seems, as Jean Segura left after he was hit on the helmet by a pitch from Pedro Strop, feeling nauseous.

Padres 8, Rockies 6: Lots of homers here, as the Padres and Rockies played a Coors Field Special in Petco Park somehow. The ball just flies better there during the day. Justin Upton, Derek Norris and Jedd Gyorko went yard. Nolan Arenado and Charlie Blackmon each homered twice. Thirty homers were hit in Petco in the nine-game homestand which just ended. Twenty by the opposition, ten by Padres hitters.

Yankees 8, Red Sox 5: The Yankees sweep the Sox and keep their good thing going. It was the first sweep of the Red Sox for New York since 2006. Unless you count two-game series which, really, never count those for they are an abomination unto God. Jacoby Ellsbury reached base four six times, including a walk and being hit by a pitch once. The Yankees have won 13 of 16.