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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

Aug 15, 2012, 5:30 AM EDT

Yankees Kuroda pitches to Rangers in MLB game in New York

It was shutout Tuesday, apparently. Let’s tally the goose eggs:

Yankees 3, Rangers 0: Hiroki Kuroda with the two-hit shutout. He was masterful, but man, there were a lot of ill-advised Texas swings in the parts of this one I watched. Either Kuroda had them more fooled than someone on the foolingest day of his life if he had an electrified fooling machine, or else the Rangers were just hacking for the hell of it.

Dodgers 11, Pirates 0: L.A. is on fire. Chad Billingsley with eight shutout innings and an 11 run, 13 hit attack by L.A., all without the benefit of a homer. Five of six down for Pittsburgh. Pirates fans: panicking yet?

Braves 6, Padres 0: Tim Hudson shut out the Padres for six and a third and the pen took it the rest of the way. A Martin Prado three-run homer in the seventh put the game out of reach.

Phillies 1, Marlins 0: A first inning mistake to Jimmy Rollins was all that marred Josh Johnson‘s night, but that’s all that was needed because Kyle Kendrick, Josh Lindblom and Jonathan Papelbon combined to shut out the Marlins. Philly has won four of five.

Reds 3, Mets 0: Tough luck for the Mets as they tried to join the shutout party, shutting out the Reds until Jay Bruce hit a three-run homer to win it in the bottom of the ninth.The Reds did join the party though. In fact, they were so unimpressed with the Mets bats in this one that they left Aroldis Chapman on the bench so as not to totally humiliate everyone. Mat Latos carried the laboring oar here for the Reds.

Royals 5, Athletics 0: Jeremy Guthrie, Tim Collins and Greg Holland do the honors here. Notice the sameness to these recaps? Shutouts are awesome if you’re rooting for the team doing the shutting out. They’re kind of boring for the rest of us, though.

Cardinals 8, Diamondbacks 2: The Dbacks, just when they looked to be making a move in the West, have dropped four of six. Homers from Matt Holliday and Jon Jay.

Orioles 7, Red Sox 1: Two homers for Mark Reynolds. Another disaster of a start for Josh Beckett. I wonder if anyone is texting the front office to tell them that they won’t play with him anymore.

Astros 10, Cubs 1: Man, a Darwin Barney fielder’s choice deprived us of another shutout. Lucas Harrell was still pretty spiffy, though (8 IP, 6 H, 1 ER).  And he was staked to a lead even the Astros bullpen couldn’t blow.

Tigers 8, Twins 4: Doug Fister has been really strong of late. He’s won 3 of 4 and has helped stop the bleeding after bad Anibal Sanchez outings. He did it again here, going eight innings in which he allowed four runs, though none of them were earned. Miguel Cabrera becomes the first member of the 100 RBI club this year.

Rockies 8, Brewers 6: A 14-run, 28 hit game that took just over three hours. Not bad, actually, given all that carnage. A 4 for 4 night for Carlos Gonzalez, who I have decided is the most invisible superstar in baseball. There, I just called it.

White Sox 3, Blue Jays 2: After the game Robin Ventura said “It was good for us, a big win.”  I wish once a manager would say something like “Eh, we won. Whatever. No big deal. It’s not like it mattered or anything.”

Giants 6, Nationals 1: Like I said yesterday, “statements” in baseball last one day sometimes. Madison Bumgarner restores order with a five-hitter. Brandon Belt with two RBI singles and an RBI double.

Mariners 3, Rays 2: Facing a golden sombrero and down 0-2 to Fernando Rodney, Eric Thames avoided his fourth strikeout of the game in the ninth and, instead, hit a walkoff RBI single. This is fun:

“Casper (Wells) said to me in the seventh inning, ‘Hey, in the ninth, you’ll be the hero, don’t worry about it,'” Thames said. “It’s crazy how this game works.”

Hurm. And I was told you can’t predict baseball.

Angels 9, Indians 6: Zack Greinke wasn’t fantastic or anything, allowing four runs over seven innings, but he got his first win as an Angel. Thanks in part to Ubaldo Jimenez, who was much farther from fantastic. Albert Pujols doubled and homered and drove in four.

  1. uyf1950 - Aug 15, 2012 at 5:43 AM

    Kuroda looked just fantastic and the Yankees were able to muster enough offense to take the first 2 games of this series. Add on top of that the Rays unexpected loss to the Mariners and the Yankees hold a 6 game lead over both the Orioles and Rays.

    • yankeesfanlen - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:25 AM

      The Universe is too dependent on home runs. Eeeeeyup, that’s the way I like it. (Pardon to KC and the Sunshine Band)

      • ajcardsfan - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:01 AM

        Len, I didn’t read that in the KC and the Sunshine Band style, I read that in Goldmember’s voice from the Austin Powers series…an unusual start to my morning

  2. uyf1950 - Aug 15, 2012 at 5:48 AM

    Can’t help but contribute my 2 cents worth to the Orioles/Sox game. The Orioles look like a team that just plain wants it. And I have to say the Red Sox look like they are just going through the motions. I realize pretty much everyone says it’s on the players to perform, but motivation is such a large part of the game and like any business motivation starts at the top and works it way down. To this outsider looking in the Sox just don’t seem to have it.

    • wlschneider09 - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:10 AM

      I’m not sure avid Yankee fans count as “outsiders” in anything involving the red sox.

      • paperlions - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:25 AM

        All fans are outsiders. If you have to pay just to watch, you aren’t part of an organization.

    • rockthered1286 - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:29 AM

      I’ll agreee to some extent (albeit biased as an O’s fan). BoSox didn’t ALL look out of it. Some? Yes. But not every player. Ciriaco and Pedroia looked like they wanted it while burning around the bags for some extra-base hits last night (impressive triple by DP). But it’s not like they had to make any outstanding plays that required extra effort on the defensive side. It seemed like the O’s were either hitting it out of the yard or directly to the Sox players. The part where I do agree is that the O’s flat out want it. They all played hard, and I think the fact that you have guys like Quintanilla, Reynolds and Machado playing to keep their starting spots helps with that effort. Great all around game by the birds and Chen, again without his best stuff, found a way to grind it out and get the W.

      Now if the Rays could go ahead and take on a losing streak I’d feel much better…

      • psuravens19 - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:44 AM

        I agree with you about Chen and getting out of the first without any runs was huge. Everyone has talked about Machado’s bat since being called up, but that kid made a huge play on the Ciriaco bunt in the first; if he doesn’t make that play it’s 1st and 2nd with no outs.

        People and the main stream media are going to focus on the Red Sox and their failures last night, but no matter how you look at it; they were completely outplayed by the O’s in every aspect of the game. As an O’s fan, I love beating the Sox and Beckett more than any other team out there.

    • randall351 - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:10 AM

      Any team that keeps playing Mike Aviles regularly is clearly not motivated to win.

  3. Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 6:37 AM

    Macondo voted last night to retain its ban on pitbulls and related breeds, and the Feesh lineup, which could use a few – dogfeesh, as it were – set an alltime franchise record for fouling the yard with its third straight shutout. And they face Doc Halliday this afternoon, which strongly predicates an even longer flirtation with pointlessness. Incredibly, the Feesh actually have a worse record at this point in the season than the gutter lining team of last year, and are taking up the caboose position in MLB in runs scored – they’re on course to score about 560 runs total for the 2012 campaign. At 13 games behind the Strange Attractor, some of the cracker fundamentalists on the team – no, I don’t mean the ones who practice sound baseball; we haven’t got any of those – are beginning to preach that there is no such thing as a strange attractor, and that the season was originally created by the baseball gods with no won and lost record.

    • kiwicricket - Aug 15, 2012 at 7:00 AM

      Trajectories within a strange attractor appear to skip around randomly. It’s a numbers game.

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:41 AM

        Most of the balls hit by the Feesh lately – on the rare occasion that they make solid contact – plot quite directly into a fielder’s glove. Randomness occurs so randomly that it’s predictable down here.

        Or something occasionally like that.

        Speaking of cricket, ever read James’ Beyond a Boundary? Baseball needs its own version of that. I might have to write it myself.

    • yankeesfanlen - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:20 AM

      Perhaps the strange attractor should be traded in for an electrified fooling machine. Oh wait, they’re too big to be shipped from the Bronx.

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:42 AM

        We already have Tommy. We also have an American flag out there. Why don’t the pentacles keep the evil spirits away?

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:44 AM

        PS – will you be joining Mutt Romney in the War on Coal?” I know I will. Oh, we’re marching, marching to Shibboleth, with the eagle and the sword….

      • stex52 - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:11 AM

        “Zion, oh mighty Zion ……….”

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:12 AM

        Or perhaps “Ryan, facetious Ryan…”

      • anxovies - Aug 15, 2012 at 1:36 PM

        “Dey got chickens and pigs… dey live here man!” (maybe not the exact quote, my LP is so scratched I can’t listen to it anymore)

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:55 PM

        They live here Lieutenant! They got wives and pigs and gardens an’ everything…..

  4. kiwicricket - Aug 15, 2012 at 6:54 AM

    I was once in a vehicle with a former employer, when he referred to his wife as the laboring oar of the family. She was in the passenger seat.
    I actually thought about asphyxiating myself with the seat-belt, as it was bound to be more pleasant than the 45min drive.

    • chadjones27 - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:31 AM

      I was going to give you a thumbs up, but, I think that would mean I am giving a thumbs up to the breakdown of marriage.

  5. cleverbob - Aug 15, 2012 at 7:19 AM

    Phils are scrapping for the “best team with a losing record” title.

    • kiwicricket - Aug 15, 2012 at 7:27 AM

      A worthy endeavor

    • snowbirdgothic - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:46 AM

      I believe you are no longer allowed to use the verb “scrapping” once your payroll tops $150M.

  6. lewp - Aug 15, 2012 at 7:22 AM

    Matt Harrison deserved a better fate. The 26-year-old left-hander gutted through 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball, but received no run support — or help from his bullpen. Harrison (13-7), who threw 106 pitches, scattered five hits, walked three and struck out two. He was pulled by manager Ron Washington in favor of Ogando after surrendering a single to Derek Jeter with one out in the seventh. The move proved costly.

    • henryd3rd - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:43 AM

      The look on Matt Harrison’s face said it all, “I could have done that”! He pitched his heart out against that Yankee lineup for 6 1/3 innings and Ogando gave up back to back jacks. What a way to get another notch in the right column! Wish Ron had left him in just to see if he could have wiggled out of that jam?

    • Detroit Michael - Aug 15, 2012 at 11:24 AM

      I don’t think Matt Harrison in his 7th inning of work is a better pitcher than Alexi Ogando in his first inning of work. It’s at least close enough that I wouldn’t second guess the manager for choosing Ogando.

  7. kiwicricket - Aug 15, 2012 at 7:37 AM

    New Zealand’s Prime Minister(John Key) is in Bangor, Maine to watch his son in the Little League WS.
    They qualified after winning the Asia Pacific qualifying competition.
    Best of luck to them.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10827013

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:35 AM

      Are they going to give a hangi after the game? I’ll fly up….

      • kiwicricket - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:01 AM

        Now Gator….I trust you are not confusing the Hangi with the Hongi? Do you have a hankering to press your nose and forehead with our current leader as a form of greeting?

        You have seen ‘Once Were Warriors’ right? Standard NZ social gathering…

      • cur68 - Aug 15, 2012 at 11:05 AM

        Now that was a good movie. Depressing, but really good. Jango Fett can act.

  8. biffnasty - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:09 AM

    Baseball takes a backseat now that #Sharkweek is upon us in all it’s glory

    • kopy - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:36 AM

      I’ve never understood this hype. You can YouTube shark clips any day of the year!

      • sportsdrenched.com - Aug 15, 2012 at 11:42 AM

        I don’t get Shark Week either. Now, Tornado Week is a different story. But I can watch Stormchasers on Netflix, while drinking Stormchaser Summer IPA, while reading about the Omaha Stormchasers on twitter. #multitasking

        ….until a real storm knocks out my power.

  9. randygnyc - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:11 AM

    Uyf1- you’d think between the massive payroll checks players receive, in addition to the adoration of the fan base, players would have more than enough inspiration to perform commensurately with their contracts. Who knew that wasn’t enough for the red sox players.

  10. Charles Gates - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:18 AM

    Carlos Gonzalez (321/390/549) may be invisible, but no one’s watching Matt Holliday go 315/395/544.

    • paperlions - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:30 AM

      And Gonzalez is only dangerous at Coors, hitting .245/.312/.414 on the road. He probably has the most crazy H/R splits you will ever see: .406 pt difference in OPS, 157 pt difference in wOBA, and a 106 pt difference in wRC+

      • tmohr - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:28 AM

        Gonzalez seems to be the new Dante Bichette (go look up his Denver vs everywhere else splits).

      • paperlions - Aug 15, 2012 at 9:46 AM

        Apparently, Gonzalez’s splits are accentuated because he struggles with breaking pitches (which don’t break as much in thinner air), so he benefits at Coors by seeing less break on pitches (or because he murders hanging breaking balls and more are hung at Coors) as well as from the distance they travel when he hits them.

      • Francisco (FC) - Aug 15, 2012 at 11:12 AM

        Gonzalez better become a life-long Rockies then, OR learn to hit the damn breaking ball in its native environment.

  11. stex52 - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:20 AM

    Luke Harrell, a 2011 waiver pick up from the White Sox (27 year-old rookie) has quietly become the most dependable pitcher in the Astros’ lineup. Of such bits and pieces will the road back to respectability be constructed.

    Never mind the ten runs the Astros scored last night. I put that in the same category as blue moons, two-headed calves being born, and comets portending the end of civilization.

  12. 4d3fect - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:27 AM

    To paraphrase Crash Davis, shutouts are fascistic.

  13. chadjones27 - Aug 15, 2012 at 8:33 AM

    So, as long as the Phils only give up no runs per game from here on out, they should be back in playoffs in no-time soon.

  14. angrycorgi - Aug 15, 2012 at 10:43 AM

    “Either Kuroda had them more fooled than someone on the foolingest day of his life if he had an electrified fooling machine, or else the Rangers were just hacking for the hell of it.”

    It had a lot more to do with the first few at-bats. He was throwing sliders that were all borderline pitches at best and got Ks called on every one of them. Harrison was throwing fastballs that were landing in the same places and only getting balls called. Harrison was getting squeezed and the batters were seeing everything that looked like a ball get called a strike in the first two innings so they had to expand their plate protection. Harrison had 4-pitch walks early on that were striking the exact locations of Kuroda’s called strikes. As awful a homeplate ump performance as I’ve seen this season. But hey, crap like that happens. It’s just one game.

  15. APBA Guy - Aug 15, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    The A’s are searching Kaufmann for the electrified fooling machine that the Royals seem only to employ against them, as last night was the Royals 4th shutout in 8 games against the now slumping, beloved A’s, 5-7 in August.

    What I saw last night was a pitcher with good movement facing a tired team, with minor dings all around, and no depth to cover the dings. The tired players are guys who are playing more than they’ve played before, or are mentally worn by facing a higher level of competition: guys like Reddick and Parker, for example, who are just a fraction off.

    Last night Parker, after extended rest, just lost it in the 5th, could not find the strike zone with anything, and KC just waited for the inevitable “get me over” pitch. Parker went to 3 balls on the first 4 batters that inning, and three of them reached base with one run scoring. After that things got worse.

    Since Guthrie had decided to throw nothing straight and everything on the black, it was going to be a tough night for the A’s who can hit bad pitching but are incapable of grinding against good pitching.

    • sportsdrenched.com - Aug 15, 2012 at 11:49 AM

      I’m not pitching mechanicly inclined to know, or even notice what, if any changes Guthrie has made to his delivery or approach. But he’s been on fire in his last two starts. I don’t know what it is, but I like it.

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