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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

Sep 4, 2013, 7:13 AM EDT

Jon Lester

It’s cool and crisp here in America’s Heartland and there were some games last night that felt like the playoffs. Can we please just skip September and move straight on into October? Would anyone object to this?

Red Sox 2, Tigers 1: An ALCS preview? Jon Lester outduels Max Scherzer in a tight game with a decided October feel to it. Especially the moment in the fifth inning when Miguel Cabrera came up with the bases loaded and got ahead of Lester 2-0 before grounding out.  How about we just skip September and fast-forward to the playoffs now? I’d be down for that. Anyone else?

Reds 1, Cardinals 0: Another playoff preview, perhaps. The wild card game, actually, if it happened today. Homer Bailey wouldn’t be the worst choice for the Reds in such a game. He tossed seven shutout innings. Billy Hamilton made his MLB debut as a pinch runner in the seventh, stole second off Yadier Molina and then was doubled in by Todd Frazier for the only run of the game.

Braves 3, Mets 1Dodgers 7, Rockies 4: In Atlanta, Kris Medlen allowed one run over seven and Andrelton Simmons and Evan Gattis each went deep. In Colorado, Ricky Nolasco was solid again and the Dodgers sprung out to a 4-0 lead before it got close and before they once again pulled away. Ho-hum. More wins for Atlanta and L.A. I’d like to fast-forward both the Braves and Dodgers to October too to see them challenged a bit.

Pirates 4, Brewers 3: Travis Snider hit a pinch hit homer in the ninth and with that the Pirates end the streak of losing seasons at 20. They also increase their lead over the Cardinals to two games which, at the moment, is a bit more important right now.

Nationals 9, Phillies 6: Wilson Ramos hit a three-run homer and the Nats won despite a sloppy effort. After the game Davey Johnson said “That was an ugly game, one of the ugliest I’ve seen. That’s not the way to win a pennant, I’ll tell you that.” Don’t worry, Davey. You aren’t winning the pennant.

Indians 4, Orioles 3: What have the Indians done with the real Ubaldo Jimenez and who was the man pitching six shutout innings for them last night? Terry Francona put Chris Perez in the game in the ninth and coughed up three runs but managed to finally set the O’s down. In his defense, Perez’s ERA on days he pleads guilty to criminal drug charges has always been high.

Yankees 6, White Sox 4: Chris Sale outpitched Hiroki Kuroda but the White Sox bullpen was awful, allowing two runners inherited from Sale and three runs of their own doing to score in the eighth. Then Mariano Rivera came in and notched his 40th save. It’s the ninth time he has reached 40 saves in his career. He’s pretty good if you didn’t realize that.

Royals 4, Mariners 3: Sal Perez homered in the fourth and hit the go-ahead single in the eighth. Bruce Chen allowed two runs in six innings. His ERA is 2.81 somehow.

Marlins 6, Cubs 2: The Marlins and Cubs probably would like to fast-forward to October too. Lots of good fishing and hunting and stuff to be done that accomplishes more than these meaningless games. Here the Marlins bullpen tossed four and two-thirds hitless innings.

Twins 9, Astros 6: More meaningless than Marlins-Cubs? I feel like it might be. The go-ahead run scored on a wild pitch in the 12th and then Minnesota added a couple of insurance runs.

Rays 7, Angels 1: Matt Moore returns to the Rays for the first time in over a month and looked OK, tossing five and a third innings. Walked four guys, which isn’t great, but not having him around was kind of a drag for Tampa Bay.

Blue Jays 10, Diamondbacks 4: Homers for Rajai Davis, Edwin Encarnacion, Adam Lind and Moises Sierra. Who I am going to choose to believe is the love child of Moises Alou and Ruben Sierra because the idea of that makes me giggle.

Rangers 5, Athletics 1: Martin Perez allowed one run in seven innings for his sixth straight win and the Rangers take the lead back in the division. Bartolo Colon allowed only one earned run but the unearned ones came via his own error so there’s that.

Padres 3, Giants 2: All kinds of runners stranded for the Giants helping waste a good Madison Bumgarner start. I realize all of those also-ran teams may want the season over but I can’t imagine anyone who wants it over more than the Giants. It’s just been depressing this year.

  1. dondada10 - Sep 4, 2013 at 7:26 AM

    Hopefully Matt Moore’s return is enough to fuel the Rays through September. They must not let the Yankees in the post-season.

    • southofheaven81 - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:47 AM

      Go team racist child-molesting, wife-beating birthers! At least you aren’t PED users from New York!

      • Kevin S. - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:54 AM

        Child molesting? Lueke’s a rapist, but I’m pretty sure she was over 18.

      • indaburg - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:59 AM

        Child molesters and wife beaters? Holy crap, what did the Rays do last night after I went to sleep? This is all news to me.

        What, “anti-Semite homophobic rapists” isn’t bad enough for you? You have to make up transgressions? Some people are just never satisfied.

      • aceshigh11 - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:29 AM

        Hmm, never saw the Rays described that way.

        I LIKE IT!

      • km9000 - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:24 PM

        Yeah, because everyone just loved the Yankees until A-Rod’s steroid troubles ruined it for them…

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  2. janessa31888 - Sep 4, 2013 at 7:37 AM

    Oh, Chris Perez, you drive us crazy!!! He has been quite the headcase this year. At least he isn’t talking to the media anymore. He tends to alienate people when he does that. Keep an eye on that dog, Chris!!

  3. cur68 - Sep 4, 2013 at 7:41 AM

    E5’s season has been the lone bright spot for My Boys. He’s been en fuego coming down the stretch, even though its meaningless baseball from the standpoint of playoffs. He’s all I got to root for right now, so no, I do not wish it was October.

    PS: Way to go Rays and welcome back to Matt Moore. A Rays Way Win was nice to see. Lets do that again today, eh boys?

  4. proudlycanadian - Sep 4, 2013 at 7:52 AM

    Moises Sierra was channeling his inner Jose Bautista when he homered for the Jays. Not sure if Bautista will return from the DL this season, so his replacement hit one out for him. Edwin’ s home run was #36. He loves hitting in Arizona. I think that he has 7 home runs in the five games he has played in that stadium. Too bad the Jays play there infrequently.

  5. historiophiliac - Sep 4, 2013 at 7:53 AM

    My consolation is that our run was scored on a double by Iglesias.

    What kind of baseball fan hates the end stretch? It’s the second best month of baseball.

    PS I can’t believe Craig didn’t work in Leyland’s Bo Derek line.

  6. joeflaccosunibrow - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:04 AM

    My Orioles team batting average is dropping faster than Obama’s approval rating! This teams offense was on a mission the first half of the season and now they are P.O.W.s.

    What the heck?

    • jarathen - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:34 AM

      “Those clowns in congress did it again. What a bunch of clowns.”

    • km9000 - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      Subtle much?

  7. droogleeddie - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:23 AM

    As a Yankee fan, I object to skipping September.

  8. jarathen - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:33 AM

    Glad to see the Angels return to form.

    Jason Vargas isn’t bad, but he shouldn’t be your #3 starter.

    • km9000 - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:19 PM

      He’s a better #3 than Blanton is a… whatever he is.

      • jarathen - Sep 4, 2013 at 1:46 PM

        Blanton should be everyone’s home run derby pitcher.

  9. jwbiii - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    Updated playoff odds:

    Team   Cool   B-Pro
    Cle     6-1     8-1
    NYY     6-1    10-1
    Bal    17-1    10-1
    KCR    56-1   125-1
    WsN    25-1    70-1
    Ari   167-1   333-1

    The AL continues their little dance; Indians on top today.

    So, how are those Rest of Season Expected Winning Percentages calculated? There are three ways:

    1. The easy way, which you can do in your head for a single game;
    2. The hard way, which you probably can’t and is marginally more accurate for games involving very good or very bad teams (and by “you” I mean “I”); and
    3. The Baseball Prospectus way, which is probably method 2 with a PECOTA-laced dipping sauce.

    Here’s the easy way:

    W% – OppW% + .500 +/- Home Field Advatage = ExpW%

    Home field advantage from 2010-12 is .042.

    So, for the Orioles playing in Cleveland, we have:
    .539 – .526 + .500 – .042 = .471

    I am writing this yesterday, I have no idea what verb tenses to use, and the numbers will be different now.

    In a related note, the Marlins join the Astros as mathematically eliminated. Likely next out: the White Sox, with a tragic number of 5.

    • proudlycanadian - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:00 AM

      Keep up the good work! The way the White Sox have played lately is tragic. They have rolled over and played dead for both the Red Sox and the Yankees. Not much of a Wild Card race in the NL Arizona is only 1 game above .500! The Nationals are only 2 games above .500!

      • jwbiii - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:01 AM

        Yeah, the fun in the NL now is the beetle battle puddle muddle in the Central.

  10. pitpenguinsrulez - Sep 4, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    FINALLY!!! For the first time in my twenty years on this planet, myself and others born after Game 7 of the 1992 NLCS finally get to see a winning a baseball team in the Steel City! FINALLY!!!

    • chill1184 - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:14 AM

      As I said in the last Pirates thread, they (at least to me) look like the most complete team that will give the rest of the NL hell. I wont be surprised if the Jolly Roger is waving during the World Series, however with playoffs its always a crap shoot.

      • bravojawja - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:38 AM

        Dear Pittsburgh Pirates fans,

        The playoffs are always a crapshoot.

        Atlanta Braves fans

        PS: But we taught y’all that back in ’91 & ’92, didn’t we?

      • historiophiliac - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:19 AM

        Dear bravo:

        You are a poor sport and that’s the kind of thing that makes other fan bases dislike you. Kindly recall that the Pirates gave Larry a farewell tribute — that’s what sportsmanship looks like.


        Tigers fan

      • happytwinsfan - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:06 AM

        i refused to switch my allegiances from the tigers to the twins until that fine, fine, balanced twins team of 92, which our braves fan might remember

      • Kevin S. - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:05 PM

        Why would the Braves’ fans remember a team that lost its division by six games?

      • nbjays - Sep 4, 2013 at 1:46 PM

        Yes, bravojawja, who can forget those great Braves World Series wins in ’91 and ’92… oh, wait…

      • bravojawja - Sep 4, 2013 at 2:04 PM

        historio – everybody gave Chipper a farewell tribute, except the people who still think calling him “Larry” is funny and/or some sort of insult. And if any team’s fans know about playoff crapshoots, it’s Braves fans.

        twinsfan – I think you mean 1991 (which I do remember – we had a parade), but why did you switch allegiances?

        nbjays – exactly. crapshoot. Except ’95. That was destiny.

      • happytwinsfan - Sep 4, 2013 at 5:01 PM

        bravojawa – yes i did mean 91. i switched because i thought having lived in minny since 78 it was about time and that 91 team really was sweet

      • historiophiliac - Sep 4, 2013 at 7:17 PM

        Just let them enjoy right now. Don’t try to depress them with crapshoot talk. Dang. It’s been a long time for them.

        Oh, and I’ll never stop hating Larry. I am not using a familiar for him.

  11. bostonstandup - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:11 AM

    Looks like Lester might be returning to his true self and with Buccholz set to return to the bigs soon things are looking alright here in Beantown. Great game last night, I could see that being a sure ALCS matchup that could go 7.

  12. happytwinsfan - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    the holiday weekend messed up sadtwinsfan internal clock. he thought, it being the first work day of the week, that monday night modern marvels marathon would be on and that with morneau gone we would watch that rather than the game. with the best viewing alternative turnign out to be a cheesy old bond flick, i was allowed to watch most of the game, although by the time extra innings finished drunkentwinsfan had taken over the room. i believe the twins won.

    game highlight:
    mastaroni (one of our many earnestly striving bubble players) makes a really nice falling catch by the bullpen fence in left center. somehow his belt breaks in the process. one of the twins relievers promptly takes off thier own belt and passes it to mastaroni through the fence who puts it on, while, being a minnesota twin, remebering to tuck in his shirt.

  13. Old Gator - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:01 AM

    I heard the Feesh won last night, but since I was busy elsewhiles I didn’t get to check it out until I got home. No stupidphone gazing through the construction zones on the Palmetto for me. So what did I find out by arriving just in time for the postgame show? Well, for one thing, that the Cubs have the worst home record in baseball – yes, worse than the Astros, worse than the Feesh – and that they have the worst home record this season in their entire history. Can you imagine such a thing? In the history of the Cubs.

    Another thing: the Feesh are now trying out Chris Coghlan at third base. And what could this mean, aside from perpetuating the proud post-Mike Lowell Feesh tradition of never playing a real third baseman at third base, aside from Placido Polanco, who hasn’t played there much this season even when he’s played there? Right. It means that Scrooge McLoria won’t be spending beeg on a third baseman this orfseason. Is that a shock, or is that a shock?

    • proudlycanadian - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:23 AM

      A shock? You were right the first time. No, the second time. Er nevermind!

  14. APBA Guy - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:44 AM

    El Capitan was the cause of his own demise, that and a suddenly impressive Martin Perez (did not take a loss in five August starts). The first and second time through the lineup Colon had a beautiful tight slider working to get key strikeouts an Beltre and Kinsler with men on. But the third time the Rangers had seen enough: Colon’s bobble of Gentry’s come-backer was painful to watch, a dancing hippo not enough Fred Astaire but too much Fred Flintstone. Profar doubled in the very fast Gentry, then Kinsler forced Colon to attempt another play, this time he just waved at it and Kinsler was safe. No strikeouts this time through the lineup as both Profar and Kinsler eventually scored and that was the game. Texas made sure to remind the A’s faithful that they too have an excellent game-saving bullpen, just in case the A’s fans were feeling in any way good about their team-Joe Nathan’s ERA is a run lower than Balfour’s. Perez was excellent, ending the A’s 15 games with a homer streak.

    The Ranger’s take a one game lead ahead of tonight’s marquee pitching matchup of Darvish v. Parker. Darvish in the big park should be something to behold. There’s no doubt the Rangers are missing Cruz’ thump, but they are scratching and clawing, running a lot and relying on pitching and a still credible defense to win games. Sounds a lot like the A’s.

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