Jose Fernandez dazzles as Marlins top Pirates

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Marlins starter Jose Fernandez, 21 years old on July 31, continued to make his case both for NL Rookie of the Year and for NL Cy Young with a stunning eight-inning performance against the Pirates this afternoon. The right-hander allowed two runs on five hits, walking none and striking out a whopping 13 batters. He lowered his ERA to 2.71 in the process, now the sixth-best mark in the NL.

The Marlins won 3-2 with the deciding run coming in the sixth inning on a Giancarlo Stanton solo home run to center field. Despite snapping a streak of 37 consecutive scoreless innings earlier in the week, the Marlins have been playing markedly better baseball over the last two months as compared to the first two months. Fernandez is a big part of that.

Angels’ Pujols passes Mays for 5th on homer list with No. 661

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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Los Angeles Angels slugger Albert Pujols passed Willie Mays for fifth place on the career home run list, hitting No. 661 on Friday night against Texas.

The 40-year-old Pujols connected for a solo homer with two outs in the fifth inning. He sent Wes Benjamin‘s fastball on a 1-2 count over the wall in left field.

Pujols has hit five homers this season. He tied Mays last Sunday at Colorado.

It is only Pujols’ second home run since Aug. 4. He now trails only Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755), Babe Ruth (714) and Alex Rodriguez (696).

Pujols has one more season left on his contract with the Angels after this year.

Benjamin was the 428th different pitcher Pujols homered against in his career. Only Bonds has homered against more pitchers (449).