Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:
Rays 1, Nationals 0: I wrote about this one yesterday. Short version: the Nats are in a funk and Romo is a punk.
Mariners 3, Orioles 2: James Paxton punched out 10 Orioles (not literally; that’d be illegal, though pretty badass if you think about it) and Kyle Seager was a one-man gang, homering and driving in two on an RBI single. Seager was batting cleanup because Nelson Cruz was a late scratch. Someone asked him if he thought he’d like batting in the four-hole on the regular:
“No, I don’t think that’s a good idea,” Seager said. “I like when Mr. Nelson is in there.”
When my kids were little most of their little friends would call me “Mr. Craig” and other adults by their first names with a title like “Mr. Robert” or “Ms. Megan. It lasted until the kids were in around the second or third grade, maybe. I thought it was really weird. No one ever did that when I was a little kid. If you were on a first name basis with an adult, it was just like you’d be now, calling them “Craig” or “Megan.” If you weren’t it was “Mr. Calcaterra” or “Ms. Smith.” Does anyone know when that changed? Guessing it was sometime between my childhood and Kyle Seager’s.
Yankees 6, Phillies 0: Yesterday, as I mentioned in the recaps, there were four seven-inning shutout performances from starting pitchers. A few years back someone — it was either David Pinto of Baseball Musings or David Schoenfield of ESPN, I can’t remember which — observed that bullpen use was such that traditional nine-inning shutouts were rare birds and that maybe we should have a stat which recognizes an achievement in the context of the new starting pitching philosophy. He called them “short shutouts.” I was kind of dismissive of the idea and of course, it didn’t take. With a few years to think about it, I’m wondering if I was too dismissive too quickly. I’m not saying we should have a stat for, say, a seven inning shutout, but I do think we should probably recognize and accept that that’s about the best we can expect most days and give it some sort of due. Or not, I dunno, but I have to admit that I am more impressed with seven shutout innings than I used to be. Viva low expectations.
In related news, the Yankees got seven shutout innings for Luis Severino and homers from Aaron Hicks and Didi Gregorius. The other four runs came via means other than homers, so maybe that’ll make the New York press happy. If I can cheer seven shutout innings, they can cheer sac flies and RBI singles.
Athletics 9, Tigers 7: For the second straight game Jed Lowrie drove in the tie-breaking run in the top of the ninth inning, this coming four innings after he went deep. All of this was in the service if a big comeback, as the Tigers held a 6-0 lead after three innings. Oakland has won eight of ten.
Red Sox 9, Angels 1: Jackie Bradley Jr. doubled home a couple of runs, singled in another and hit himself a bomb. David Price was sharp, limiting the Angels to five hits and a run over six. The Angels’ loss, combined with the Athletics’ win, dropped Anaheim to fourth place in the West, 11.5 games behind Houston. My god did the shine come off the halo quickly this year.
Mets 4, Pirates 3: Things got temporarily chippy in this one but it was over a lot of nothing and it calmed down quickly. As for the none jawing-at-each-other part of the game, Michael Conforto tied things up at three with a seventh inning homer and Wilmer Flores drove in three, including the game-winner in the 10th on a single. That busted the Mets’ seven-game losing streak though, for obvious reasons, their celebration was subdued.
Diamondbacks 5, Marlins 3: John Ryan Murphy drove in three, David Peralta had three hits and drove in a run and Jake Lamb had two hits and knocked in one himself. “This is an awesome team,” Murphy said after the game. No word if he then said “Remem–remember that time we scored those five runs and beat Miami? That was so cool.”
Reds 5, Braves 3: Matt Harvey allowed only one run while pitching into the seventh inning against one of the better offenses in baseball. Everyone declared him dead when the Mets unloaded him, but I guess he was only mostly dead. There’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead, of course. Mostly dead is slightly alive. With all dead, well, with all dead there’s usually only one thing you can do. For example. In less morbid news, Jesse Winker had three hits and two RBI. Cincy has won eight of nine.
Padres 3, Rangers 2: Texas held a 2-0 lead until the eighth when Wil Myers doubled in a run Christian Villanueva hit a sac fly and Hunter Renfroe doubled one in. Tyson Ross allowed two over six in a no-decision. Austin Bibens-Dirkx — who cannot be a ballplayer but, rather, must be the seventh in line to some title of lesser English nobility which his father has imperiled due to his scandalous and spendthrift ways — pitched well but was betrayed by his bullpen.
Brewers 5, Royals 1: Freddy Peralta pitched one-hit ball over seven scoreless innings — short shutout! — and Milwaukee got homers from Jesus Aguilar, Christian Yelich and Ryan Braun. Peralta was a minor league callup who has tossed 13 consecutive shutout innings.
Astros 7, Blue Jays 0: Charlie Morton tossed seven scoreless innings and struck out 13 — short shutout! — Jake Marisnick hit a three-run homer, Alex Bregman hit a two-run shot and Evan Gattis knocked in two with a single. I feel like I’m writing about Gattis in every Astros recap lately but I look up and see he’s basically being normal, good Evan Gattis. It’s one of his best years so far, but it seems to be within reasonable variance as opposed to some outlier, monster year. Guess he’s just making his hits count.
Cardinals 11, Indians 2: Corey Kluber has an argument for being the best pitcher in baseball right now but even the best pitcher in baseball gets his ass handed to him once in a while. At least the Cardinals had the courtesy of handing it to him in fewer than two innings last night, allowing him to go into the locker room and apply his choice of balm. St. Louis knocked the reigning Cy Young winner around for six runs in an inning and two-thirds, as Matt Carpenter homered twice and drove in three. Jose Martinez homered once and drove in three himself.
Cubs 9, Dodgers 4: Javier Baez hit two homers, one of which was a grand slam and Jon Lester played stopper, winning his sixth straight start to help the Cubs snap their four-game losing streak. Yasiel Puig helped open the floodgates with some bad defense and some poor decisions on he base paths. In that respect it was sort of vintage Puig, but unlike the Puig of old he took full responsibility for it after the game, saying he cost the team the game and that it was all on him. Someone’s gonna make a Baseball Man out of him yet.
Giants 3, Rockies 2: Gorkys Hernandez homered and drew a go-ahead, bases-loaded walk in the eighth. The Rockies had a chance to even things up late thanks to Hernandez booting a ball in the outfield but the baserunner, Tom Murphy, didn’t look at his base coach who was imploring him to take third, held up at second and was stranded when the game ended.