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It's from the Baltimore series, but there was no way I could make it to Puerto Rico for this one.
Leo Nuñez likes giving everyone near heart attacks. He blew the save last night, but Florida still managed a win thanks to Dan Uggla.
29 June (David’s Birthday!)
Yomiuri Giants (12) at Hiroshima Carp (9). Six Giants homered (Ramirez homered three times) to put the Giants way ahead of Hiroshima who managed quite an offense themselves. An ugly game that puts them at 27-40-2. At this rate Yakult might pass them.
Rakuten Eagles (0) at Orix Buffaloes (3). Few teams play more erratically than the Orix Buffaloes, but they’re doing consistently well against the Eagles this year. Tanaka’s Tuesday role is not doing the Eagles any favors as he gives up three over eight and the team moves to 32-38-2, good for last in the PL.
Oakland Athletics (4) at Baltimore Orioles (2). A pretty solid start for Brian Matusz, but it just wasn’t enough to keep the Athletics at bay. I’m a little bitter that I’ll be missing Matt Wieters bobblehead night today, so that’s all I’ve got for Baltimore. They are 23-53.
New York Mets (6) at Florida Marlins (7). The Marlins were lucky to win this one in the ninth thanks to a walk-off single by Dan Uggla. The game also featured a Hanley Ramirez grand slam, but far fewer homers than the night before. Florida remains in fourth, but now holds a 37-40 record.
Tampa Bay Rays (5) at Boston Red Sox (8). The pitching just wasn’t there for Jamie Shields who gave up a few too many to an ailing Boston team. Tampa needs to take two out of three in this series to regain second and the wild card. The Rays now sit at 44-32 in third.
Washington Nationals (7) at Atlanta Braves (2). The Nats do everyone in the East a favor by knocking down the Braves and winning their first in ages. It’s a good thing, because Washington starters whose names don’t contain Strasburg have been seriously struggling of late. Their last place record improves to 34-44.
The Fish were involved in a sweep again and it definitely wasn’t the good time. I know the Padres are really strong this year, but this is pathetic. Someone needs to fix this. Maybe Bobby V?
Hiroshima Carp (1) at Chunichi Dragons (3). An off day from Maeda denies him his first 10-game win season of the year by another start (hopefully). It’s uncharacteristic for Kenta Maeda to allow even three runs, so let’s hope this was an aberration.
Softbank Hawks (6) at Rakuten Eagles (2). This one went into the tenth thanks to a strong start by Iwakuma, but the Golden Eagles blew it in the tenth, allowing four runs.
Washington Nationals (6) at Baltimore Orioles (7). This weekend didn’t go very well for Washington either. Tyler Clippard blows the hold/save/win and gives away the game to the Orioles on their home turf.
San Diego Padres (3) at Florida Marlins (0). The one all NL series of the weekend starts bad and gets worse. Volstad doesn’t have a terrible start at all, but where are the Marlins bats?!
Arizona Diamondbacks (1) at Tampa Bay Rays (0). ANOTHER EMBARRASSING NO-HITTER THROWN AGAINST A FLORIDA TEAM. Congrats Edwin Jackson, but I’m angry about your success.
Hawks (2) at Eagles (1). Everything about this weekend is frustrating for me. Seriously, I think I may only have one win among the teams I actually care about. Satoshi Nagai only gives up two, but the Eagles can’t make up for it and they go down yet again.
Carp (0) at Dragons (1). An optimist would be proud of Giancarlo Alvorado for pitching eight innings and only giving up one. Everyone else in the world is wondering when Kenta Kurihara will be back to get these bats swinging.
Nationals (5) at Orioles (6). Washington may have blown this one in the late stages, yet again, but the real question is how this game was so close when Baltimore outhit Washington by seven hits to fourteen.
Diamondbacks (3) at Rays (5). This one ends as it should for Arizona, one of the worst in the league, thanks to David Price’s fantastic pitching. Justin Upton did get to notch one against his brother’s team, but still lost.
Padres (2) at Marlins (1). Surely Josh Johnson can stop the bleeding? No? All it takes are a few mistakes and JJ’s sleeping offense can’t compensate.
Hawks (1) at Eagles (1). Rakuten takes its second tie of the season, but, would you believe it, their struggles have put them behind the god-awful Fighters with their 32-37-2 record. Shameful.
Carp (6) at Dragons (4). The Carp finally remember how to score runs and it’s thanks to Kurihara’s replacement, Justin Huber, remembering that he’s supposed to hit for power again. Those two runs prove to be pretty decisive as the Carp record improves to 27-39-2, still a long ways away from third.
Padres (4) at Marlins (2). The Fish aren’t playing terribly, but they’re not playing particularly spectacularly either. This game was lost by the bullpen (shocker), but it could have gone either way. Florida ends the weekend 35-40, still far from third too. We need something to change and quick. Maybe Bobby V will help?
Nationals (3) at Orioles (4). Clippard’s slipping a little. The guy wasn’t giving up anything at the start of the season, but it looks like the law of averages is catching up to him. Washington slips to 33-43 while Baltimore is looking good at 23-52.
Diamondbacks (2) at Rays (1). Another well pitched game by Wade Davis, but the inconsistent Rays bats can’t buoy him up. Tampa Bay ends the weekend in third with their 44-31 record. Time to turn the jets back on and catch up to the other AL powerhouses. The deficit is only three games at this point.
Which is great, except it was against my team. At least I got me another Adam Jones bobblehead.
Saitama Seibu Lions (2) at Rakuten Eagles (6). Ryohei Isaka tosses his first complete game win as the Eagles dominate Seibu for the win, improving their record to 32-35-1 in fifth. Getting close to fourth…
San Diego Padres (3) at Tampa Bay Rays (5). The Rays FINALLY snap their losing streak and prevent the sweep. Hopefully this is a sign that Tampa Bay is turning things around. They get to face the weak Diamondbacks this weekend allowing the Upton brothers to battle. Their record improves to 43-29, still tied for second.
Florida Marlins (5) at Baltimore Orioles (11). Kept forgetting that Baltimore scored 11 when I recounted the score. Oh well, the Fish were miserable. Nate Robertson only went two and one-thirds and the Fish lost their lead in the 3rd, never able to come back. At least Alex Sanabia’s debut went ok (not the best, but ok). The Orioles just kept POUNDING the outside corner and the Marlins kept swinging at those bad pitches. I swear I saw five straight strikeouts with that happening over and over again. Florida stays just shy of 0.500 at 35-37 while Baltimore improves to 0.278 with 20-52.
A lot of this happened last night.
Florida inexplicably went and replaced their manager, Fredi Gonzalez, yesterday and Edwin Rodriguez stepped in as interim manager. I still don’t understand why this happened, but I guess we’ll have a new manager next year.
Hanshin Tigers (9) at Hiroshima Carp (4). I was really hoping that Hiroshima would have a better showing coming off of some relatively solid interleague play. He’s on the wrong team, but Toritani had himself quite the night (4 H, 2 RBI). Go Toritani! The Carp record drops to 26-37-2, still in fourth.
Saitama Seibu Lions (8) at Rakuten Eagles (10). Remember when Rakuten had no offense to speak of? They’re lucky to have won this considering that Darrell Rasner only went 3.2 innings and gave up five. The Golden Eagles are now 31-35-1 and they’re closing in on fourth.
Kansas City Royals (1) at Washington Nationals (0). I hope Strasburg doesn’t end up one of those pitchers who never gets any run support from his team. Washington has been seriously struggling offensively of late, so I’m not too surprised, but it’s a waste of a quality start. Strasburg K-Kount (see what I did there?) is up to 41. The Nationals record is down to 33-40.
Florida Marlins (7) at Baltimore Orioles (5). Even though their winningest manager in franchise history was fired, the Marlins were still able to show up, offensively, and dominate the birds. Gaby Sanchez has been quietly making a case for Rookie of the Year with his offense while Chris Coghlan is definitely back to his old self, hitting 0.317 since his season low of 0.146 in April. That’s good enough to put his average at 0.280 now. The Marlins record improves to 35-36 while Baltimore drops to 19-52.
San Diego Padres (5) at Tampa Bay Rays (4). So frustrating. They’re still tied for second, but Shields’ loss to San Diego extends their losing streak to three. Maddon needs to sit down with his players, hash this out, and get them back on course, pronto. The Rays are now 42-29 on the season.
I just can’t miss seeing the Fish when they’re in town. I let nothing stand in my way, even the dental surgery I had last night. It was with a sore jaw that I saw them rock Baltimore last night. New York got its chance to beat up on the Orioles and the Indians to improve their record. Now it’s time for Florida.
Hanshin Tigers (13) at Hiroshima Carp (7). A real brutal game for the pitchers. Kan Otake has a bad night, but my boy Higashide manages two RBIs. The Carp still hold on to fourth, but their record drops to 26-35-2.
Saitama Seibu Lions (5) at Rakuten Eagles (3). Could moving Ma-kun’s starts around have affected his rhythm? It’s odd for Tanaka to give up five. We’ll see if he’s this bad next week too. The Golden Eagles are now 30-34-1 in fifth.
Florida Marlins (10) at Baltimore Orioles (4). Not Anibal Sanchez’ best pitched game, but not a total wash either. I think I see Wieters homer most games I go to. The kid’s got some pop. Florida’s record improves to 34-36 in fourth while Baltimore drops to 19-51 in a historically bad last.
Kansas City Royals (3) at Washington Nationals (4). Atilano managed a decent start after a few miscues the last few times up. Facing the Royals can only be good for Washington and tonight’s matchup is bound to be yet another impressive Strasburg start. Washington is still in fifth with their 33-39 record.
San Diego Padres (2) at Tampa Bay Rays (1). This is as hard-luck as they get. Wade Davis has really been struggling, but this could have been turned around with a little more offense. The Rays retain their tie with Boston for second, 1.5 games back with a 42-28 record.
I wasn't at the Bean, but it's also in Chicago. My photos aren't uploaded yet.
Lots of action this weekend, including a game I attended in the Friendly Confines that will not be mentioned because I don’t cover the Cubs or the Angels.
Yakult Swallows at Hiroshima Carp. Rain delayed.
Rakuten Eagles at Chiba Lotte Marines. Rain delayed.
Chicago White Sox (2) at Washington Nationals (1). Strasburg went out for his second home outing and pitched another stellar game, allowing only one over seven innings and striking out another 10. This kid is insane. The game is lost on a bad throw in the 11th, and Strasburg gets his first no decision.
Tampa Bay Rays (4) at Florida Marlins (7). I turn off my Rays switch again to root for another great Marlins game. I’m super bummed I missed it, but this game had Mike Stanton’s first home run and boy was it a doozy. First homers don’t get any better than grand slams.
Baltimore Orioles (2) at San Diego Padres (3). The Padres are the biggest surprise this year. The Orioles, not so much.
Swallows (1) at Carp (5). The Carp have to wait a day to kick off non-interleague play, but they come out with a bang. It’s no surprise Yakult’s score is so low, it was a Kenta Maeda start. That guy is a monster.
Eagles (3) at Marines (0). Iwakuma returns to form against the PL as he blanks the hard-hitting Marines.
White Sox (1) at Nationals (0). Jake Peavy throws an incredible game and the Nats just keep on losing and sliding down.
Rays (9) at Marlins (8). A wild game that went into extras was blown by Jorge Sosa walking in two in the 11th. The Marlins came within one, but couldn’t tack that final one down.
Orioles (5) at Padres (4). Stop the presses, Kevin Milwood FINALLY got his first win of the season. Congrats, buddy, you didn’t deserve to go this long without one.
Eagles (1) at Marines (3). Rakuten went through with its plan to separate Tanaka and Iwakuma, but that means they won’t be winning back-to-back almost every Saturday and Sunday. Rakuten closes the weekend in fifth with a 30-34-1 record.
Swallows (4) at Carp (2). I hate losing to the Swallows. A lot. It’s especially bad when it’s all thanks to the bullpen. The Carp are now 26-35-2 in fourth
Rays (1) at Marlins (4). Price vs. Johnson was one of the best matchups of the weekend, but David was no match for the Fish while the Rays struggled against the Marlins ace. Way to go Florida, you’re now 33-36 in fourth while Tampa drops to 42-27, tied with Boston for second.
White Sox (6) at Nationals (3). The losing streak continues. It’s starting to get really ugly in Washington again. They are now 31-39 in last. Do they have any other rookie phenoms to call up?
Orioles (4) at Padres (9). 19-50. Yikes. Enough said.
Strasburg pitched again and it wasn’t quite as magical, but part of that was due to a bad mound. He still has a sub 3.00 ERA (2.19) and struck out another eight. Rock on Strasburg.
New York Mets (5) at Baltimore Orioles (1). Back-to-back series against the two New York teams can’t be good for Baltimore. R.A. Dickey brings the knuckleball back to confound the Orioles hitters.
Washington Nationals (2) at Cleveland Indians (7). Throwback jersey night does not go well for Luis Atilano. I bet that Atilano gets optioned soon (or goes when Chien-Ming Wang comes back up).
Florida Marlins (14) at Tampa Bay Rays (9). I hate it when the Rays lose, yet I love it when the Marlins win. I can tell that I’m a huge Marlins fan, because I was ecstatic to see them crushing the Rays. Tampa definitely has a potent offense to catch up, but the Fish proved to be too much. I think it’s great that Florida seems to have Tampa’s number a good portion of the time. I think this could develop into a real rivalry.
Hiroshima Carp (6) at Saitama Seibu Lions (2). There’s nothing better than having your team beat one of the best in the Pacific League. Kan Otake notches his first win for the season and the Carp actually see some power without Kurihara.
Yakult Swallows (4) at Rakuten Eagles (1). My two least favorite teams are the Swallows and the Lions. Hirohima did its part and beat Saitama, but Rakuten falls on an uncharacteristically bad night for Iwakuma, who gives up two earned runs.
Mets (3) at Orioles (1). I’m really starting to get fond of Hisanori Takahashi, even if he was a Giant back in Japan. He hurls seven innings and only gives up one. Nice work.
Nationals (1) at Indians (7). Fausto Carmona is having a real resurgence this year. He completely blanks the potent Washington offense while enjoying another seven-run game.
Marlins (5) at Rays (6). A real close one that came down to the wire, but Carlos Peña’s offense the past week has been red hot. Tough loss for Florida.
Carp (4) at Lions (2). Giancarlo Alvorado does his job over six to earn yet another win. Justin Huber, Kurihara’s DL replacement, even goes yard in Kenta’s honor. The Carp end the weekend at 25-34-2, good enough for fourth by 3.5.
Swallows (3) at Eagles (1). Tanaka gives up two in another uncharacteristically bad game to a team whose new manager is paying dividends. Rakuten’s record drops to 29-33-1, good enough for fifth.
Nationals (9) at Indians (4). If the Nationals bats awaken every time Strasburg comes out to toss, his record is going to balloon. He tosses 5.1 innings and ends up walking five, but I put part of the blame there on his super-shaky mound. The Nats record improves to 31-33, which is only good enough for last in the competitive NL East.
Mets (11) at Orioles (4). The Orioles get brutalized by the Mets, giving up four home runs, two of which went to David Wright. Their record is a miserable 17-46.
Marlins (6) at Rays (1). Chris Volstad and the Marlins serve up Jeff Niemann’s first loss of the season and I love it. Mike Stanton still hasn’t hit any home runs, but since he came up last week he’s been hitting a solid 0.368 with an OPS of 0.981. Not too bad. The power is definitely coming. Florida’s record improves to 31-32, barely edging out the Nats for fourth, while the Rays drop into a tie with the Yankees with their 40-23 record.
Last night's attendance was less than half. I guess that's what happens when Strasburg's not pitching.
Pittsburgh debuted some rookies last night too. The Nationals crowd of about 18,000 was not impressed.
Chunichi Dragons (7) at Rakuten Eagles (2). Wei-Yin Chen Tossed six scoreless with five strikeouts as the Dragons got revenge. Rakuten’s record slides to 29-31-1 in fifth.
Hiroshima Carp (12) at Chiba Lotte Marines (7). Eric Stults goes 5.1, but how strange is it to see such a high-scoring game go into the 12th? Wanting desperately to avoid the tie, Hiroshima burst out in a big way, scoring 5 in the 12th. The Carp are now 23-34-2, in sole possession of fourth.
New York Yankees (3) at Baltimore Orioles (4). Jake Arrieta makes his first MLB start in a trial by fire, but comes out only singed by the Yankee heat. Wow, that was quite the bit of sportswriting there. Their record rose to 16-43. Wake me up when their win rate rises above 0.333
Florida Marlins (2) at Philadelphia Phillies (0). The rematch of Josh Johnson and Roy Halladay gets delayed until today and it does not disappoint. The Marlins plate one in the first, which was all they need, while JJ went 8 innings, striking out five. The Fish are now 28-31, making a comeback in the East.
Pittsburgh Pirates (2) at Washington Nationals (4). Liván Hernández does it again. This guy has really reemerged as a great pitcher. The Nats are in fourth with a 29-31 record.
Toronto Blue Jays (3) at Tampa Bay Rays (2). More hard luck for Wade Davis who just can’t keep the Jays down and takes another loss. Thanks to the Yankees loss, the Rays retain their two-game lead with their 39-20 record.
"Honest" Abe and I fist bumping
For some reason Abe has become my favorite of the racing presidents. Maybe it’s his arrogant stride or maybe it’s the way he’s a sore loser when he doesn’t win, but I just love everything about the persona they’ve crafted for #16.
Chunichi Dragons (1) at Rakuten Eagles (4). Satoshi Nagai hurls eight innings of eight hit ball, miraculously only giving up one run. Nice work, Nagai. Rakuten’s record improves to 29-30-1, tied for fourth.
Hiroshima Carp (2) at Chiba Lotte Marines (2). Kenta Maeda battled the Marines to a tie over nine and his bullpen held on for him to secure Hiroshima’s second tie in like a week. The tie allows Hiroshima to edge forward to 22-34-2 in fourth.
New York Yankees (4) at Baltimore Orioles (2). I watched the Orioles blow a bases-loaded opportunity against Sabathia in the 7th (I believe). Such a disappointing team. 16-43.
Florida Marlins at Philadelphia Phillies. The much vaunted Johnson vs Halladay rematch was postponed due to rain.
Pittsburgh Pirates (5) at Washington Nationals (7). Washington proves that it can win without Strasburg. Can they sweep the Bucs? Their record improves to 29-31, putting them in fourth.
Toronto Blue Jays (1) at Tampa Bay Rays (10). David Price has just been unbelievable of late. Very nice work. Tampa retains its two game lead with its 39-20 record.
This is what I think happens to Min after reading these baseball posts.
Only the NPB had games (as far as teams I care about) yesterday, leaving me with little to do but think about how excited I am to see Strasburg pitch today and hear about Stanton’s performance in Philadelphia. Can’t wait until tonight. Until then…
Orix Buffaloes (21) at Hiroshima Carp (10). What in god’s name happened here? Only two of the seven pitchers Hiroshima sent out to the mound managed to not give up a run. This game was UGLY, featuring five home runs by Orix and two by Hiroshima catcher Yoshiyuki Ishihara. The Carp record is 22-34-1, which, remarkably, puts them in fourth, somehow.
Rakuten Eagles (0) at Yomiuri Giants (1). Darrel Rasner is really starting to pitch like he wants to keep his job. Nice work, Darrel, but the Rakuten record falls to 28-30-1 in fifth.
No games (from anyone I care about)