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And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

Aug 21, 2012, 6:07 AM EDT

Jayson Werth, Danny Espinosa, Kurt Suzuki,

Nationals 5, Braves 4: I suppose you can yell at Dan Uggla for messing up the play with the infield in and a runner on third in the 13th inning which allowed the winning run to score. But perhaps it’s also worth noting that the Braves played perhaps their most important game to date, in a series that, if they don’t win, the division title is basically out of reach, with their best relief pitcher sitting on his butt. But hey, at least Fredi Gonzalez saved Craig Kimbrel for a save situation that never came. Not having him then would have been terrible. Far better to leave everything up to Cristhian Martinez in a situation when a strikeout is absolutely critical, not the guy who strikes out 15.8 batters per nine innings.

Giants 2, Dodgers 1: In another division battle — with a marquee starting pitching matchup — Madison Bumgarner Dominated the Dodgers, striking out ten in eight shutout innings. Clayton Kershaw struck out ten in eight innings too, but Pablo Sandoval got to him twice, with a sacrifice and an RBI single.

Rangers 5, Orioles 1: The Rangers finally get a Ryan Dempster outing that looked like the Cubs version of Ryan Dempster (8 IP, 4 H, 1 ER). All nine Rangers starters got a hit. You don’t win anything for that, but if you do it nine times in one season, everyone in the lineup gets a free t-shirt. Assuming they all got their little cards punched each time.

Rockies 3, Mets 1: R.A. Dickey was solid but for a home run to Tyler Colvin, and then the Rockies scored a run on a passed ball by Kelly Shoppach. Shoppach was so livid about it not being called a wild pitch that he texted the official scorer with Ike Davis‘ phone in order to voice his displeasure.

Brewers 9, Cubs 5: Jonathan Lucroy hit two homers and drove in four. Pretty fantastic year for him. He’s hitting .328/.379/.554 with 8 homers in 62 games.

Phillies 12, Reds 5: Not a great outing for Roy Halladay — five runs on ten hits in seven innings — but when the offense goes crazy like this, you don’t need to be great. Homers from Ryan Howard, Erik Kratz and John Mayberry, but really everybody got into the act.

Rays 5, Royals 1: The amazing pitching — and the winning — continue for Tampa Bay. Jeremy Hellickson threw seven innings, allowing one run on six hits. You know how you make up for a “meh” first half? You have your rotation turn into the 1998 Braves in the second half. That’s Tampa Bay this year.

White Sox 9, Yankees 6: New York blew a 3-0 lead, hopped back on top at 6-5 and then blew it again. And their lead over the Rays is now down to four games. DeWayne Wise, Gordon Beckham, Alexi Ramirez and Adam Dunn all went yard against a tater-happy Yankees pen.

Marlins 12, Diamondbacks 3: It was all over when the Fish put a nine-spot on Joe Saunders in the fourth innings. Giancarlo Stanton hit two big homers and drove in four and Jose Reyes and John Buck each had four hits in the Marlins 20-hit attack.

Padres 3, Pirates 1: Edinson Volquez — who has been horrifyingly bad lately — struck out ten in six and two-thirds and Will Venable drove in two.

Mariners 5, Indians 3: Michael Saunders continues his recent hot streak, smacking two homers. He’s eight for his last 16 with three homers. Cleveland has no dropped six in a row.

Twins 7, Athletics 2: The A’s lose their first in five games, the Twins with their first in six. How did it happen, Ron Gardenhire?

“Right from the get-go. We got some runs in there early, had a little bit of a lead and kept getting some base hits and quality at-bats,” Gardenhire said. “And Duens did his thing. It was a nice night. We got to run around the bases a little bit. Some guys had some good nights.”

“Duens?” That’s Brian Duensing‘s nickname? Creative, there.

  1. brewcrewfan54 - Aug 21, 2012 at 6:24 AM

    Alteady hard at work I see.

  2. KR - Aug 21, 2012 at 6:27 AM

    Was at Braves/Nats last night, but between getting up for work today (which I’m already hard at, obviously) and needing to relieve the babysitter, didn’t make it to the 13th. Good stuff though.

    • natstowngreg - Aug 21, 2012 at 10:59 AM

      So you missed the second President’s Race? Bummer. I stayed up well past bedtime to watch the whole thing on my high-def idiot box. Extra caffeine is helping me win the battle over sleep depravation (thus far).

      Dan Uggla proves the old adage that, if you have a poor defender on the field, the ball will find him. Though in fairness, the 2 hits before Uggla’s boot were of the “it looks like a line drive in the box score” variety. A grounder up the middle that barely made it to the outfield grass, and a classic Baltimore Chop that Larry Chipper kicked — literally.

      As for the Nats, just another walkoff win for a team that has walked off, among other ways, on a wild pitch (twice) and a botched double play. Fortunately, they triumphed (OK, survived) before Edwin Jackson had to take the mound for the 14th inning. Strasburg vs. Maholm tonight (hopefully, without another rain delay).

      • natstowngreg - Aug 21, 2012 at 12:48 PM

        Just noticed something. When the game ended, the final MASN line score showed the Braves with an error — by Uggla. However, looking at the box score in today’s Washington Post (confirmed by the box score linked above). Uggla wasn’t given an error, even though clearly, he bobbled the ground ball. Chad Tracy was awarded a hit. Happy as I am for Chad, that’s a lame official scoring decision.

  3. brewcrewfan54 - Aug 21, 2012 at 6:31 AM

    And Kelly Shoppach, way to be a team player.

    • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:01 AM

      Come on, the only person who should be thumbs downing this is Kelly Shoppach himself. Not that he’s the first guy to ever try and get an error changed to someone else.

      • natslady - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:16 AM

        Yeah, Colbert Hamels comes to mind. Days and days after the game he gets a hit changed to an error to fix his ERA. Guess who got the error? Rollins–his, y’know, teammate.

      • paperlions - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:19 AM

        And anyone that realizes Craig’s comment was sarcasm.

      • Joe - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:19 AM

        I’m pretty sure the bit about Shoppach using Ike Davis’ phone to try to get the scoring changed was a joke.

      • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:44 AM

        Well I guess I missed that joke then.

      • natslady - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:51 AM

        Knew it was a joke, but can’t miss a chance to dig at “Old School Prestigious” Colbert usin’ his agent to fix his ERA.

      • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 21, 2012 at 9:29 AM

        After reading again I probably should have gotten the joke right away. I wont be losing any sleep over the fact that I didn’t though.

  4. jagsfan11 - Aug 21, 2012 at 7:11 AM

    My Rays are gaining on the Yankees

    • gerryb323 - Aug 21, 2012 at 9:15 AM

      Says “Jagsfan”…just sayin…

  5. uyf1950 - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:07 AM

    The Yankees bullpen just flat out stunk yesterday. I hope Girardi doesn’t let Joba near the mound in a close game or a critical situation. Just my opinion but Joba keeps this up much longer and he’s punching his own ticket out of town.

    • kiwicricket - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:27 AM

      He’s pitched 6 innings after returning from surgery, a free agent in 2014….slightly rash decision to jettison him off to another team don’t you think?

      • uyf1950 - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:40 AM

        kiwicricket, if I had thought it a rash decision I never would have said it.

    • yankeesfanlen - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:36 AM

      Much too mild criticism, gentlemen. THE FAT TOAD has turned into a complete disgrace to the Yankees uniform. I have come to expect him to come in and screw up games, but the beaning Youk like he’s Roger A-hole Clemmons vs. Pizzaman is too much for me to bear.
      Send him down now til he gains the maturity of a 14 year old, which won’t ever happen, then ship him to KC, or better yet, Seattle because that’s farther away.

      • APBA Guy - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:47 AM

        Len, I think the only people thumbs downing your post are those living in KC or Seattle. However, I think you set your sights too modestly. Hanshin or Nippon Ham may be in his future, don’t you think? With an ERA approaching 10 and a mound demeanor that would embarrass the staff of the Petaluma Little Leaguers, THE FAT TOAD may not have much choice as to his next destination.

    • deathmonkey41 - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:54 AM

      Has Clay Rapada ever come in and gotten out the lefty he was supposed to face? Because if he has, I don’t think I’ve ever seen it. I’d like to see his numbers with allowing inherited runs to score. A specialist who can’t do that one job is pretty worthless.

    • deathmonkey41 - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:07 AM

      Also, I know the offense scored 6 runs and that should be enough, but they left the bases loaded twice in the first two innings? They could have blown the game wide open, but the freely-hacking Bombers went up swinging at everything even when the pitchers was doing his best to miss the strike zone. I might be imagining this- but it doesn’t seem like opposing pitchers are throwing many 2-0, 2-1, 3-0, or 3-1 fastballs. They know the Yankee hitters are gearing up to launch the meatballs and instead are throwing a lot of breaking pitches knowing they can get the batters out in front. When you have no fear that the hitter is going to take the pitch and you’re going to walk them, you can risk throwing off speed stuff in that situation. The Yankees need to do a better job of being patient in those counts and waiting for their pitch instead of guessing.

  6. paperlions - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:15 AM

    Machado since his last game with a HR (7 games):

    4 for 24 (.167), with 1 walk (.200 OBP), 6 Ks (24% K rate), and a pair of doubles (.250 SLG)

    He really needs to see some more Hochevar hangers up in his eyes.

  7. Joe - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:20 AM

    Mark Rogers, the pride of Orr’s Island, Maine, notches his first big league win!

  8. hungry joe - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:21 AM

    gardenhire’s a whiz at coming up with creative nicknames. just ask blackie and morny.

    • rooney24 - Aug 21, 2012 at 10:10 AM

      And, the departed Cuddy and Koobs

      • Ben - Aug 21, 2012 at 10:53 AM

        I can’t listen to Twins radio broadcasts because the diminutives are so effing annoying. If I hear “Morny” one more time I might snap.

  9. gnrfan8804 - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:29 AM

    Mariners….2nd best record in the AL since the break. 7 game win streak, plus now a 6 game win streak, along with 4 out of 6 from the Rays and Angels in between the two. i know its crazy, but im liking these guys to stay hot and make the wild card race interesting. Now, begin the jokes…..

  10. Walk - Aug 21, 2012 at 8:41 AM

    His name is dan struggla.

    • number42is1 - Aug 21, 2012 at 9:42 AM

      thought his name was robert paulson?

  11. mplsjoe - Aug 21, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    Want a Ron Gardenhire nickname? Just shorten your last name and add an “s” or “y” (or “ie”). Morny, Blackie, Spansie, Cappsie, or, hell, Gardy. I’m surprised Dunsing’s nick isn’t Dunsingey.

    Anyway, you’d be Calcy. How does that grab ya?

    • Jeremiah Graves - Aug 21, 2012 at 9:50 AM

      It’s actually the Duenslinger…I’m not sure where Gardenhire was coming from on this one.

    • kiwicricket - Aug 21, 2012 at 9:52 AM

      You have just described 20million Australians. Ron should be shipped off down under where he would fit in.

  12. gnrfan8804 - Aug 21, 2012 at 10:16 AM

    gotta correct myself. seattle’s 23-13 mark since the break is. the BEST in the AL, not 2nd best.

  13. vcupats - Aug 21, 2012 at 10:40 AM

    No matter what happens the rest of the Nats/Braves series, I expect more positive chatter about the Braves’ chances than the Nats.

    • wethog66 - Aug 21, 2012 at 10:59 AM

      Why?

      • vcupats - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:32 AM

        I’ll skip over the obvious regarding the Nats. But the Braves? I’ve never seen a team get more hype for staying within shouting distance of the best team in baseball. “Hey the Braves are keeping pace!” Well they’re 6 games back now – they can keep that pace as long as they want.

  14. Brian Donohue - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:05 AM

    Very surprised to see no comment re. Harper’s latest outburst. I really don’t care how he uses his mouth; other players say far worse things than he has so far, the kid’s actually okay with me there. But intentionally busting and splintering a bat with two human beings right beside you is not merely bratty or immature, it’s dangerous. Had I been the HP ump I would have tossed him instantly, and MLB would do well to follow up with a fine/suspension. This is again about the safety of people, not a direct knock on the kid’s maturity or lack of it: players have to learn that professionals don’t endanger others intentionally in this game, case closed.

    For those who missed it the vid’s here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/21/bryce-harper-breaks-bat-nationals-braves_n_1816669.html?utm_hp_ref=sports

    • natslady - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:41 AM

      Have to agree. Davey’s sat him before and may well again. I would expect he got a hefty fine in the clubhouse.

    • natslady - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:44 AM

      Although these guys who throw their bats twenty feet high in the air behind them when they draw a walk, what’s with that? (I think it was Bourn last night, I could be wrong.)

  15. APBA Guy - Aug 21, 2012 at 11:55 AM

    Gardenhire’s nickname fetish aside (I do like “The Duenslinger”) McCarthy could not find any command last night and left after 3.1 with 86 pitches thrown. Not good. Worse, each of his half innings seemed to take forever.

    Such a difference between Cleveland and Minnesota in team comportment, by the way. Cleveland just looked and acted defeated. Minnesota at least plays. They may not have much pitching, but their lineup, at least the top of it, has come together. Last night the first 4 were 10/18. With Morneau at 5 and Plouffe at 6, they have potential there.

    As I said over the weekend, the A’s have to win these games. They go to Tampa next, and they may not get a hit for 3 games against those guys, except by accident. After the following series against the moribund Indians, things get really ugly for the A’s in September.

  16. goawaydog - Aug 21, 2012 at 12:34 PM

    Bumgarner and Kershaw combine for 20 strike outs and Zero walks. Kershaw is now 0-3 against the Giants this year and the Giants have not scored more than 2 runs in any of the 3 games. Kershaws ERA is 1.40-ish against the G’s. He flat out made Posey look minor league at the plate. Then again Bumgarner 0-4′ed Kemp so all was evened out. Both pitchers were referred to by awesome nicknames in post game interrviews with Bochy referring to his pitcher as “Bum” and Dodgers catcher AJ Ellis referring to his pitcher as “Kersh”.

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