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And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

Jul 30, 2012, 6:06 AM EDT

Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves Getty Images

Braves 6, Phillies 2: Pretty good day for me yesterday. I took Mookie and Carlo to an amusement park and the Braves swept the Phillies. All I needed as a nice steak or something to cap the day and it would have been perfection.  Only the Astros, Rockies and Cubs have a bigger division deficit than the Phillies do in all of baseball.

Dodgers 4, Giants 1: Clayton Kershaw tossed a five-hit shutout to help the Dodgers sweep the Giants and now the NL West essentially tied up.  The Dodgers outscored the Giants 19-3 in the series. I gotta tell ya, I was prepared to watch the Dodgers slowly slip away throughout the second half, but they ain’t doin’ it. Looks like we’ll have a nice little race out there.

Reds 7, Rockies 2: Ten in a row for the Reds. They gotta be hoping Joey Votto doesn’t come back at this point, right?  OK, maybe not. But you know some nudnik is gonna suggest that there’s a chemistry problem when he does come back and the Reds actually stop winning every single baseball game.

Mariners 7, Royals 6: Wait, another sweep? This is starting to look like last weekend. King Felix pitched well but got a no-decision because of his pen. Dude just doesn’t know how to win.

Twins 5, Indians 1: How about one more sweep?  Brian Duensing got the spot start to cover for the departed Francisco Liriano. He had no idea. Found out the news from his Twitter followers and then saw it on the team website. Worked out nice for him all the same (6 IP, 5 H, 1 ER)

Cubs 4, Cardinals 2: Anthony Rizzo with the walkoff homer in the tenth, finishing a 3 for 4 day. Walked once too. The dude is hope.

Mets 5, Diamondbacks 1: R.A. Dickey won his 14th game. The Mets split the series, somewhat arresting their precipitous post-break slide.

Rays 2, Angels 0: Zack Greinke made his Angels debut. And, aside from looking weird in that uniform, did OK, allowing two runs in seven innings while punching out eight. But he got no help from the offense while Jeremy Hellickson and three of his mates combined to shut out Anaheim.

Nationals 11, Brewers 10:  Michael Morse hit a game-tying, two-run homer in the ninth inning, then hit a two-run double in the 11th which provided the winning margin. Not bad. Oh, and this was ridiculous.

Orioles 6, Athletics 1Wei-Yin Chen struck out 12 and Matt Wieters hit a three-run homer to help the O’s avoid the sweep.

Astros 9, Pirates 5: Another avoided sweep, as the Astros finally snap their losing streak. Marwin Gonzalez had three hits and drove in three. He had been 0 for his previous 16. Fun Fact: Gonzalez has, at every level of baseball he’s played since he was a teenager, driven in three runs on July 29th. Actually that’s a lie, bus since only like three of you guys pull for the Astros and know who Marwin Gonzalez is I coulda just left that hangin’ out there and none of you would have been able to dispute it.

Tigers 4, Blue Jays 1: Jhonny Peralta homered twice and drove in all four of Detroit’s runs to help the Tigers, you guessed it, avoid a three game sweep.

Marlins 5, Padres 4Justin Ruggiano hit the game winner in the tenth of what could be Josh Johnson‘s last start as a Marlin. If so, somewhat dubious — six walks — but he was effective enough to keep his team in the game.

Red Sox 3, Yankees 2: It’s  Pedro Ciriaco’s world. He’s just letting us live in it for a little while.

Rangers 2, White Sox 0: Eight shutout innings from Scott Feldman. Now four games against the Angels.

  1. wlschneider09 - Jul 30, 2012 at 7:39 AM

    Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.

    So I’m guessing Rizzo is immortal?

    • wlschneider09 - Jul 30, 2012 at 7:41 AM

      The twins need to get some of these new immortal type players. You know, the ones that aren’t light hitting middle infielders. Where do these immortals come from? Trades you say?

      Sigh….

      • cur68 - Jul 30, 2012 at 7:44 AM

        Sadly the only 2 immortals left in baseball, Moyer & Vizquel, aren’t really improvements for the Twins…have you guys tried locating Franco?

      • kiwicricket - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:52 AM

        I would gladly pay 20bucks to watch Omar Vizquel play baseball. Not so sure about the Astros however…

    • kiwicricket - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:44 AM

      Shawshank ref. at 7.39am. +1.

  2. deathmonkey41 - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:09 AM

    Another one run game, another loss, and another dropped series for the team that thinks they can actually make, then advance in the playoffs by only hitting homeruns. What you saw against the A’s, King Felix, and 2 of the 3 Red Sox games are just a foreshadowing of the playoffs. Yanks are one and done unless they figure out how to hit situationally. I’m surprised the great Kevin Long hasn’t converted Ichiro into a guy that jumps out of his shoes trying to pull every ball out of the stadium every single time he’s up there.

  3. cleverbob - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:17 AM

    Does this mean we should stop clinging to the fantasy that the Phillies are still in it?

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:20 AM

      In what?

    • mybrunoblog - Jul 30, 2012 at 10:11 AM

      The Phillies are still in it if you are referring to the race to be a .500 team.

  4. natslady - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:41 AM

    Totally exhausted from yesterday’s game… Nats have an off-day at home home home to recover from a 6-1 road trip. That Fiers is the real deal, but the Brew Crew ain’t got much else, especially if Livo and the guy they called up after 10 years in the minors are their most effective relievers. Shutting down Braun was fun, right after shutting down Wright in the previous series. BTW, it didn’t show in the recap, but Braun misplayed/dogged a ball in the 11th, allowing Ryan Zimmerman to score. That turned out to be the difference when Clippard gave up the 99th HR of the day.

    Hey, Gator, how about your Feeeeeeeeesh makin’ themselves useful today and puttin’ a knock on the ATL?

    • Old Gator - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:11 AM

      I hear your cry.

      When you said that, I immediately thought of the reeducation camp’s Maoist commissar in The Last Emperor who, when confronted by the deposed Pu Yi that he only wanted to use him for propaganda purposes, replied, “and what is so wrong with being useful?”

      The whole question of how the Feesh could be useful intrigues me and I haven’t got an answer for you. They visit children’s hospitals. They sign baseballs at card shows. They donate generously to funds for unwed mothers, they maintain cohesiveness among right-wing Cuban dinosaurs, defend the public morality, and they’re now under orders to support the La Leche Society.

      As far as getting in the way of the Braves, I haven’t seen any evidence that orders to do so have trickled down from the notochord trust this season.

    • natstowngreg - Jul 30, 2012 at 3:13 PM

      The NL East race has clarified. The Phillies visit Washington as a spoiler. This is a reversal of previous roles. The Nats have considerable experience as a spoiler (ex., for the 2007 Mets), but no experience as the potential spoilee. Meanwhile, the Fish visit Atlanta as a spoiler. Once the Mets return east, they will have the opportunity to play spoiler. Which of the 3 teams will do the best job of spoiling the leaders’ chances? Stay tuned.

  5. chill1184 - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:46 AM

    After Dickey got rocked by the Nationals, internet toughs all over starting flexing their internet muscles in screaming that Dickey is a fluke. However once again after a bad start Dickey picks himself up, enters the snake pit and only allows them one run.

    • kiwicricket - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:48 AM

      I became somewhat confused reading your post, but liked it none the same.

  6. whodeyx - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:46 AM

    Votto Scmotto, who needs the guy anyways? AMIRITE?

    Oh wait, sorry I blacked out there for a second and went on a nudnik tangent. Wait ’til the redlegs start playing someone who doesn’t have a team ERA over 8000 and his absence will become much more glaring.

  7. kiwicricket - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:47 AM

    The Brewers managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory once again. Brutal stuff.

    • deathmonkey41 - Jul 30, 2012 at 8:52 AM

      That bullpen is clutch- especially K-Rod.

  8. Old Gator - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:00 AM

    Okay, now hear this: JJ did rather more than keep the Feesh in the game; he walked six for the first time in yonks, but then cleaned up his own messes, inning after inning, like a responsible adult with Montezuma’s Revenge, and left with a two run lead. Edward the Mooheeka Man blew the lead (Heath Bell never emerged from confinement) but Justin “The Franchise” Ruggiano emerged on his white charger to save the day with his walkoff seengle in the tenth.

    JJ noise has really diminished in Macondo over the weekend, what with football camp and the big question about whether or not the Dolfeens ever plan to have a quarterback working for them again, and whether Michael Cain was in town preparing for his role as an airboat guide in The Hand II. Incidentally, when they got finished dissecting the alligator that bit that idiot’s hand off last week they also saw something glittering under a mass of half-digested python carcass and it turned out to be….the Hanster’s accursed .342 amulet! Nice try, Hanster. It’s being Fedexed back to LA first thing this morning.

    Going unmentioned through all of this, of course, is the problem of finding a third baseman for the Feesh. If the Dolfeens think they’ve got quarterback issues, the Feesh haven’t had a real genuine hotsacker since they traded Mike Lowell to the Beanbags – which was so long ago that you can’t even carbon-date the press releases anymore. They’ve rotated assorted other kinds of infielders and outfielders through the position in the meantime, plus a couple of backandforthandbackandforthandbackandforthball goalies, Bugs Bunny and an unnamed meerkat. I hate meerkats, by the way. It was hoped that the Rainbow Warriors could snag that highly rated prospect from the Rangers – Oort, or something – for JJ but that doesn’t seem to be panning out. This could change bigtime by midnight tomorrow, of course, but at the moment the Feesh seem prepared to move JJ over the weenter instead. There haven’t been any rumors swirling around about any of the other Feesh hurlers like the good Reeky Nolasco or his evil pod twin, or about perhaps cauterizing the gaping wound in the lineup that is Black Hole Buck. So it looks like this might actually be the assortment of miscreants and reprobates that will see us through to the end of this misbegotten season after all, discounting the assortment of wannabes and hasbeens that will spill onto the field from Nawlins on Sept. 1 like the trolls El Topo let out of the cave. Praise be to Nero’s Neptune; the Titanic sails at dawn.

    • bravojawja - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:56 AM

      The Phins haven’t had a quarterback since Dan Marino chose acting over football. If only they had been as wise as the Packers when Favre made the same choice.

      • Old Gator - Jul 30, 2012 at 10:14 AM

        Becoming a pitchman for car dealers and jewelry stores isn’t “acting.” In New Agey parlance, it’s called “getting in touch with your inner whore.”

      • cleverbob - Jul 30, 2012 at 12:06 PM

        Don’t forget diet plans for men.

    • natstowngreg - Jul 30, 2012 at 2:37 PM

      Just curious, but why do you hate meerkats?

      • Old Gator - Jul 30, 2012 at 3:18 PM

        I don’t like the way they look at me.

      • natstowngreg - Jul 30, 2012 at 3:24 PM

        ummm, OK…

  9. brewcrewfan54 - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:02 AM

    As a Brewer fan this season has been harder to watch than when we were losing 100 games 7-8 years ago. At least I have the olympics to watch instead for the next 2 weeks.

  10. sdelmonte - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:05 AM

    While obviously the Mets are not making the playoffs, there is still enough going on with them to make me keep watching. You never know who’s going to show up for a game, even if it’s Ike Davis in a losing effort.

    Of course, you know who isn’t going to show up: Jason Bay. I suspect he will get next spring’s Oliver Perez trophy and be cut, contract and all. I don’t think there is anyone on Earth would take him in a trade under any condition. This has to trump Mo Vaughn and Bobby Bonilla as the worst free agent the Mets have signed.

    I know they won’t be buyers, though I still want to see them get bullpen help. What can they get for Hairston?

    • brewcrewfan54 - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:10 AM

      You can have KRod back. Although his nickname has been changed to BBRod or HRRod, whichever you prefer.

      • Old Gator - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:14 AM

        Find some vowels for his new nickname. Not everyone in Nyorc is from Czechoslovakia, you know?

      • chill1184 - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:27 AM

        Naw thats ok I’m glad hes gone

      • sdelmonte - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:31 AM

        If you take Bay, we’ll take K-Dud.

  11. beefytrout - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:43 AM

    So, it’s come to this… the Rangers’ pitching staff has to throw out shutouts in order to earn a victory. Texas goes 0-10 w/ RISP on Sunday, and 1-30 on the weekend. Their all-world MVP is getting booed by the home crowd and got demoted in the lineup, and now Scott Feldman has worked his way into the mix for “most dependable starting pitcher.”

  12. frenchysplatediscipline - Jul 30, 2012 at 9:49 AM

    Yeah I wouldn’t get to excited about the Braves sweep this weekend. I watched all 3 games and I truly believe that the Phillies have given up. This wasn’t so much as the Braves playing good ball as it was them just showing up against a listless team going through the motions (not that I am complaining about that).

    But if I hear one more analyst say “watch out for the Phillies and their late season run” I am going to puke. Do these guys actually watch the games? There is no denying the Phillies talent (Howard and Utley out for months were crushing blows), but that team lacks the swagger it used to have and I was struck by just how bad they were defensively this series. Injuries put them in a big hole and it just keeps getting deeper.

    Hey – at least the Braves are beating the teams they should at this point. Really would be happy if it continues with the dead Fish and the ‘Stros over the next week.

    • Francisco (FC) - Jul 30, 2012 at 10:19 AM

      Injuries compounded the problem but the issues have been there for a while now. Ruben acquired the most expensive reliever in Baseball and forgot he also had to get quality arms for those important 7th and 8th innings where at least 10 leads were surrendered by the Phillies this year so far. I guess he unrealistically expected the big three to reproduce their 2012 pitching season by pitching 8 innings every start. I think it’s unfair to expect those guys to produce at those same lofty levels.

      In his attempt to upgrade the bench he got guys with some batting but absolutely no fielding, coupled with the fact that Polanco has gotten old real real fast and they also lost Galvis who could at least save runs defensively if not actually produce them) and you have a defensive infield that’s comparable to the Detroit Tigers.

      Basically Ruben seems to be only good for the Megadeals, these small little sordid details like bull pen and bench pieces he can’t seem to be bothered with doing his homework properly. Except for Pierre I guess who he lucked out on more than anything else.

      • frenchysplatediscipline - Jul 30, 2012 at 10:47 AM

        You are probably correct and since you follow them a little more closely than I do, I won’t argue. However, I do want to point out that other than the closer role – I remember your bullpen being pretty stout last year. I seem to remember Bastardo being superman for most of 2011 and he just hasn’t been able to replicate it this season. So you can’t fault your GM in thinking me may have some pieces in place while he concentrates on others.

        Although I tend to agree with your assessment that he only knows how to consummate the megadeal. And in which case, he probably gets too much credit anyway…

      • Francisco (FC) - Jul 30, 2012 at 11:04 AM

        True on Bastardo, but remember he fell off a cliff in September, so they knew there were issues in getting him back to form. Ruben did attempt to acquire a complementing piece, so he didn’t bet the farm on Bastardo, but he got Chad Qualls… that threw me for a loop in the offseason and didn’t get any better once it started. Stutes was injured this season who was also very effective throughout most of 2011. Add in an injured David Herndon (not great but usually effective guy) and we had the likes of Brian Sanches and Valdes pitching extra-inning games throughout April, May and early June… YIKES!

      • frenchysplatediscipline - Jul 30, 2012 at 11:38 AM

        YIKES is appropriate there. I know because its the same reaction I get every time I have to look at Varvaro, Avilan, or Martinez warming up in our bullpen…

  13. bravojawja - Jul 30, 2012 at 10:08 AM

    Is there a more manic-depressive team than the Braves? They started the season 0-4, then won 10 of 11. In May-June, they dropped 8 in a row, then won 8 of 9, then lost 8 of 9. Now in July, they won 7, lost 2, won 3, lost 3, and won 5 going into the Marlins series.

    Somebody please put some Prozac in their Gatorade. Or put Demerol in mine.

    • chill1184 - Jul 30, 2012 at 10:24 AM

      Welcome to baseball, please enjoy your stay. Smoking is allowed on the back deck.

  14. bouwel92 - Jul 30, 2012 at 11:32 AM

    Thank God my Astros finally won again. I was starting to wonder if it woul happen again this season. Although Craig, I was kind of expecting to wake up and see a post from you saying holy sh!t batman the ‘stros finally win against a competitive team, being you was saying how bad we was last week. O well theirs always next year boys.

  15. phillyphan83 - Jul 30, 2012 at 11:42 AM

    You know Craig, you’ll never move up from being a simple blogger to a REAL writer if you can’t keep your bias out of your posts. Doesn’t look good on the resume.

    • kkolchak - Jul 30, 2012 at 12:06 PM

      Crybaby.

    • wlschneider09 - Jul 30, 2012 at 12:39 PM

      You know PP, Craig would be far more likely to stop baiting the Phans if they didn’t rise up to take the worm so often.

      But then, what fun would that be for the rest of us…

    • natstowngreg - Jul 30, 2012 at 2:59 PM

      Not sure which is worse — the phoniness of the argument that a writer can’t have a point of view, or the bitterness of a fan who can’t accept that the team’s run as a championship contender has come to an end.

  16. APBA Guy - Jul 30, 2012 at 12:13 PM

    Have to give it Wen yesterday, when he missed he missed out of the zone, so it didn’t hurt him. But he didn’t miss much, did he, in striking out 12 in 5.1 innings. And the O’s wouldn’t be a .500 team if they couldn’t win behind good pitching.

    Blackley was in control yesterday until he fell awkwardly trying to field a grounder in the 3rd. It looked like he was stunned a bit, though not injured, and he left two pitches in the middle for the A’s to wallop, which they did to great effect.

    Still the A’s were 4-2 on the road trip making them 18-4 for the month. Tonight they take on the Rays who have been pitching very well lately, with David Price going in the Mausoleum against AJ “Mix-a-Lot” Griffin.

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