And That Happened: Sunday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Yankees 12, Red Sox 8: The London games were successful in certain respects. They were successful as a phenomenon. As an event. As a first step into a new baseball landscape. As a celebration for and of the small but passionate group of baseball fans in a country where baseball has never been appreciated beyond that small and passionate group of baseball fans. Kudos to MLB for pulling all that off. It’s a worthy thing to do and from what I can tell they did a good job of making it happen. No one I’ve heard talking about it who experienced has had any major complaints.

From a purely from a baseball perspective, however, it was terrible. Two ugly, sloppy games with bad pitching, bad defense, bad base running and nothing really to recommend it beyond some big dingers which, obviously, are not something that is in short supply in 2019. In the end, fifty runs were scored and two games with no extra innings amounted to over nine hours of baseball. Whether it was jet lag, or the distractions of a big festival, or the aerodynamics of the ballpark, or everyone just sorta bringing their C-game at the same time or, perhaps, an extra-extra juiced ball, these were ugly contests that on their own probably didn’t do a lot to create a ton of new baseball fans.

I ended up turning this one off in the middle innings, in fact, because the broadcast was simply terrible, even by ESPN standards. I didn’t miss much. Games that turn on nine-run innings like this one did are super fun for a fan of the team that scores the nine runs but it’s rarely an aesthetic gem. In other news, the Red Sox may want to investigate putting a bullpen together.

Mets 8, Braves 5: The Mets get a lot of heat for their bullpen meltdowns but the Braves are no slouches in that department and showed what they’re capable of here. A Freddie Freeman RBI double made it 5-3 Braves heading into the eighth but then the Mets plated five, thanks to a Todd Frazier solo homer, a two-run RBI single from Jeff McNeil and then a two-run double from Pete Alonso. With that a seven-game Mets losing streak comes to an end, freeing up New York sports fan angst to be fully leveled at the Knicks.

Brewers 2, Pirates 1: Zach Davies allowed only one run while pitching into the sixth and he also [all together now] helped his own cause by singling in a run. Eric Thames put the Brewers over with a leadoff homer in the eighth. In other news, Yasmani Grandal was one of the Brewers selected for the All-Star Game. Here was his comment on that:

“I was looking forward to going on the lake for about three days and not doing anything. But I guess Cleveland has somewhat of a lake too. It could be an ocean. I don’t know.”

Makes you think, man.

Indians 2, Orioles 0: Shane Bieber was dominant, striking out 11 and allowing only three hits in eight shutout innings. Carlos Santana singled in both of the Indians runs. This one salvaged a series that very much needed salvaging for Cleveland after they were beat 13-0 on both Friday AND Saturday.

Royals 7, Blue Jays 6: Jorge Soler homered, reached base three times and drove in two, Whit Merrifield reached base three times and Alex Gordon drove in a pair of runs as the Royals salvage one. Justin Smoak homered twice for the Blue Jays in a losing cause. Aaron Sanchez was staked to an early 5-1 lead and ended up getting rocked for six runs in three innings. He’s got a 6.31 ERA now. 2016 seems like a million years ago.

Rays 6, Rangers 2: Blake Snell had been rocked all month long coming into this one, having given up 23 earned runs in 17.1 innings in five starts, but he figured it out here, striking out 12 Rangers in six innings of two-run ball. The Rays close the book on June having gone 13-16. Not great, but could’ve been worse.

Nationals 2, Tigers 1: Max Schezer came back to Detroit to remind Tigers fans of what used to be. And, maybe, what still could’ve been if some different decisions had been made. Either way, he was fantastic, allowing one run over eight and striking out 14. The Tigers’ starter — Jordan Zimmermann — also faced his old team and also had a nice day (6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER), but just not nice enough. Anthony Rendon homered to help the Nats take two of three.

Reds 8, Cubs 6: Eugenio Suárez hit a 450+ foot homer and Phillip Ervin and Nick Senzel drove in two runs each for the Reds, who are often called the Redlegs but, in this game, it was literally true:

(Getty Images)

Kinda like it?

Phillies 13, Marlins 6: Bryce Harper homered and had two run-scoring singles, finishing with four RBI on the day, as the Phillies avoid being swept by the Marlins. Again. Jean Segura and Cesar Hernandez each had three hits. Brad Miller hit a homer and drove in another on a single. Seventeen hits in all, including a two-run single from starter Jake Arrieta.

Astros 6, Mariners 1: Gerrit Cole did Gerrit Cole things, which usually means striking out like ten dudes. Here he did it while allowing only one run in seven innings of work. Yordan Álvarez came back from a couple of days off with a bum knee and drove in three runs. Houston sweeps the M’s. They’re 9-1 against Seattle this year, in fact.

Dodgers 10, Rockies 5: Joc Pederson had three hits and three RBI, Matt Beaty doubled twice and drove in two and the Dodgers earned a split of the four-game set. The Dodgers finished a seven-game road trip 3-4, which I suppose qualifies as a rough patch for them.

Giants 10 Diamondbacks 4: Kevin Pillar homered, had four hits in all and drove in five runs, Buster Posey had three hits and Madison Bumgarner allowed one run in seven innings and struck out nine, continuing what has been a successful trade deadline audition of late.

Athletics 12, Angels 3:  Matt Chapman hit a three-run homer, a triple and a three-run double on his six-RBI day. He hit that double in the same inning in which he also hit a triple. Shohei Ohtani hit two homers for the Angels in a losing cause. The Angels dropped all three at home to the A’s, in fact, which is not what you wanna do when there’s at least a glimpse of light of contention. The A’s, meanwhile, have won five of six overall.

White Sox 4, Twins 3:  Lucas Giolito allowed one hit in five shutout innings to gain his 11th win on the season. Yoan Moncada backed him with a 3-for-4, 1-dinger, two-RBI day. James McCann and Jon Jay also drove in runs for the Pale Hose.

Cardinals 5 Padres 3: The Padres blew a 3-0 lead and it went to extras where Matt Wieters hit a two-run homer with two outs in the 11th inning to help the Cards salvage one in the three-game set and snap a five-game losing streak.