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Stay For A Night Cap! - Full Moon Cheating

Nationals 4 Phillies 2
WP: Livan Hernandez (7-11) LP: Cole Hamels (3-7) S: Drew Storen (31)
SB: Rick Ankiel 2 (10)

The last thing Charlie Manuel thought about was dealing with a loss to the Nats tonight. The Phils were riding a three-game winning streak, headed home after a successful, 9-1 West Coast trip.  However, Hamels (5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 5) wasn't all there in the second inning (88 pitches total) and the Nationals never looked back. Rick Ankiel (2-4, BB, R, RBI), Ian Desmond (2-4, R) and Hernandez (2-3, 2 RBI) led the way at the plate.

Ryan Howard (2-4, K, R) was the only Phils hitts able to reach a multi-hit night on Livan.

Braves 10 Cubs 4
WP: Mike Minor (2-2)  LP: Carlos Zambrano (9-7)
HR: Freddie Freeman (16), Dan Uggla, 2 (26), Chipper Jones (10), Jose Costanza (2), Starlin Castro (7)

Two teams currently, out of their playoff races, one worse than the other.  Things went as expected tonight, as Zambrano (4.1 IP, 8 H, 8 ER, 3 K) was shelled and the Cubs got one game further into fourth place in the Central, while the Braves managed to gain a bit of ground in the East with the Phils loss. Mind you, Minor (5.2 IP, 9 H, 3 ER, BB, 6 K) wasn't exactly terrific, but kept the Cubs offense quiet in comparison to Zambrano, who struggled and was thrown out subsequently. Though both teams had 11 hits, The Braves (3.1 H, R, 5 K) pen endured the late innings better than Chicago (3.2, 3 H, 3 R, 3 K). Atlanta had several hitters cash in at the plate, but none more than Dan Uggla, who went 3-3 (3 R, 2 RBI) during his two home run night.

-Alfonso Soriano (1-4, K, 2 RBI) extends his hitting streak to five games.
-Freeman (2-4, 2 R), Chipper Jones (2-4, 2 R, 3 RBI) and Davis Ross (2-4, R) each had a two-hit night at the plate. Jones is 10-20 (5 RBI) since coming back to the lineup.

EDIT: After being tossed, Zambrano blew his gaskett again, Needless to say, Mike Quade was not pleased. "I'm really disappointed," Quade said. "His locker is empty. He walked out on 24 guys … I don't know where he's gone or what he's doing. 

Tigers 5 Orioles 4
WP: Brad Penny (8-9) LP: Troy Patton (0-1)
HR: Wilson Betemit (5), J.J. Hardy 2 (23)
SB: Felix Pie (3)

No, Alfredo Simon (4.2 IP, 11 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, K) wasn't as solid as he's proven to be over the last two months, but still he kept the O's in the game.  Hanging on long enough not to lose, his counterpart, Penny (5.1 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, BB, 2 K), hung on long enough to win. In the end it came down to bullpens, and although both were fairly good it was Patton (2.2 IP, 4 H, ER, K) and the O's that lost the showdown. Andy Dirks (4-4, BB, R, RBI) singled home Austin Jackson (2-3, R, RBI) to put this one away for Jim Leyland.

Indians 3 Twins 2
WP: Rafael Perez (5-2) LP: Glen Perkins (4-3) S: Chris Perez (24)
SB: Ben Revere (20)

Despite the fact that every hitter in Cleveland's starting lineup had at least a base-hit, the Indians, who out-hit the Twins 12-5, barely squeaked out this win. After Rafael Perez came in and clamped things down for Masterson (7.2 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, BB, 4 K).  Pavano (7.1 IP, 10 H, ER, 4 K) kept the Twins in the game, allowing for the top of the 8th inning comeback, but just couldn't keep things under control when it counted. Carlos Santana and Matt LaPorta helped the tribe to a two-run 8th inning.  From there Chris Perez shut things down on just 15 pitches.

-Justin Morneau (0-4) and Shin- Soo Choo (1-4, R) both returned to the lineup

Rays 5 Yankees 1
WP: David Price (10-10) LP: C.C. Sabathia (16-7)
HR: Johnny Damon (10), Evan Longoria (18), Casey Kotchman (8), Kelly Shoppach (7), Elliot Johnson (4)

Although the Rays will get their chance at the end of the season – four of their last six series in 2011 are against the Yankees or Red Sox – perhaps they saw tonight as the beginning of a solid, third-place. Nine and a half games out going into the last eight weeks of the season, if there's a time to make your move it's now. Well, the Rays made their move early (3rd inning) and often, but the Yankees could only manage one run off Price and company.  Though, he worked eight innings, C.C. Sabathia (10 H, 5 ER, 7 K) never recovered from giving up homers to three of five Rays batters in the third inning.

-Price (2 BB, 4 K) allowed one run on six hits, throwing 114 pitches in eight innings of work.
-Though he still left four runners on base, regardless of the Rays playoff hopes, it looks like Longoria (2-5) might be back to his old ways, extending to a season-high nine-game hitting streak.

Brewers 7 Pirates 2
WP: Zack Greinke (11-4) LP: Paul Maholm (6-13)
HR: Ryan Braun (22), Prince Fielder (27)

Before the season, many thought the Pirates to continue their southward division rankings, while the Brewers were considered favorites to be masters of the Central. While this seemed the unlikely ending through the first few months of the season, the simple natural-tendencies of Baseball have taken over, and now the two teams meet heading in very different directions.  After a much delayed 2011 debut, Greinke (7.2 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, BB, 9 K) has been everything the Brewers could have hoped for, and proved it once again, grabbing the win they're expected to get. As for Maholm (5 IP, 7 H, 3 ER) and the Pirates, August (2-9) has not been good to them.

-Ryan Braun (2-3, 2 R, 2 RBI), Prince Fielder (3-4, 2 R), Casey McGehee (2-4, R, 2 RBI) and Jonathan Lucroy (2-4, RBI) account for the majority of their production tonight.

Angels 5 Blue Jays 1
WP: Ervin Santana (9-8) LP: Brandon Morrow (8-7)
HR: Vernon Wells (17), Eric Thames (6)
SB: Erick Aybar (25)

Not even 'cheaters' can beat Santana nowadays.  Aside from all the press on the Jays and their secret ways, they were confronted with the task of Santana, seemingly, at the prime of his career.   Having pitched less than seven innings, three times in last 11 starts, Ervin is officially the hottest pitcher in the Cy Young race. Although the Jays out-hit the Angels, the Angels capitalized on three Blue Jays errors. -Torii Hunter hit the knockout punch in the top of the third, doubling in Albert Callaspo (1-4, R, RBI) and Bobby Abreu (0-3, BB, R)

-Santana has given up a total of four earned runs in his last five starts.
-Morrow (7 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 4 BB 3 K) wasn't bad, but just couldn't provide a pitch for pitch atmosphere
-Brett Lawrie (.348, 2 HR, 6 RBI) continued the beautiful beginning of his big-league career, earning a walk and hit against Santana.

Marlins 2 Giants 1
WP: Ricky Nolasco (9-8)  LP: Matt Cain (9-9)  S: Leo Nunez (32)
HR: Pablo Sandoval (14)
SB:  Bryan Petersen (3)

Sandoval (2-3, BB, R, RBI) has been and remains the most consistent hitter on a Giants team struggling for offense. Unfortunately it wasn't enough to beat, statistically, the coldest team in baseball heading into tonight. All fans of baseball should feel a bit jipped, as all three runs in the game were scored in the first inning. Well, jipped if you're an offensive guy, cause Nolasco (8 IP, 6 H, ER, BB, 4 K) and Cain (6 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K) we're solid tonight and minimized all plate-crossing to the first inning of ball. Mike Stanton's RBI single knocked in Logan Morrison (2-4, R, RBI) and became the eventual game-winning hit.

- Petersen went 3-3 in the seventh spot of the lineup.

Reds 5 Padres 3
WP: Bill Bray (3-2)   LP: Josh Spence (0-1)   S: Francisco Cordero (23)
HR: Nick Hundley (4), Jay Bruce (24)
SB:  Logan Forsythe 2 (3)

Once again, on this full-moon evening, a pitcher's matchup developed, as both Mat Latos (7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, BB, 5 K) and Bronson Arroyo (6 IP, ER, 2 BB, 6 K) kept their teams in a tight 2-2 game. But Jay Bruce went on to tattoo Padres reliever Spence for the game-winning three-run home run to rightfield. Orlando Hudson (2-3, BB, R, RBI), Hundley (3-3, K, BB, R, RBI) and Forsythe (2-3, BB, RBI) all had good nights in the loss.

Royals 5 White Sox 1
WP: Bruce Chen (7-5) LP: Zach Stewart (1-2) S: Greg Holland (2)
HR: Melky Cabrera (15), Billy Butler (14)
SB: Alex Gordon (11), Melky Cabrera (16), Johnny Giavotella 2 (3), Alcides Escobar (17)

Although it looks like it was closer, after a two-run scoring single by Butler (2-4, BB, R, 2 RBI) to right center in the first, this game was never in question.  Chen (6 IP, H, 3 BB, 4 K) baffled the Sox a bit, overshadowing a fairly confident start by Stewart (6.1 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 3 K). Most interesting is Joakim Soria's day off since blowing a save on Wednesday (8.10.11) night. Though, I wouldn't go swapping Soria for Holland (2 IP, 2 H, ER, BB), he's someone to consider on your radar. The Royals number nine through three hitters went a combined 8-15 tonight, with five runs scored and five runs batted in.

Cardinals 6 Rockies  1
WP: Kyle Lohse (10-7) LP: Aaron Cook (2-7)
HR: Carlos Gonzalez (17)

Cook (5.2 IP, 9 H, 6 ER, 3 BB, K) was his usual self, while Lohse (6.1 IP,  4 H, ER, 3 BB, 3 K) stayed consistent. There's not a lot to analyze about the Cards/Rocks game tonight.  Cargo (1-4, BB) is healthy again, so he's the only production.  A good amount of attention was drawn to the slide of Lance Berkman (1-1, 3 BB, R) to score the games' first run. Albert Pujols (RBI) and David Freese (3 RBI) each scored two runs and had two hits

Diamondbacks 4 Mets  3
WP: Ian Kennedy (15-3) LP: Dillon Gee (10-4) S: J.J. Putz (28)
HR: Justin Upton (24)

A game of two tales occurred as The Dbacks got to Gee (5 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, BB, 3 K) early and often in the first two innings, while the Mets waited for Ian Kennedy to exit before they decided to make it a game. Unfortunately for Jason Bay (3-4, K, R, RBI) and Mets fans, too little too late. Without a doubt, a nominee for Cy Young, Kennedy  (7 IP, 6 H, ER, 3 BB, 5 K) pitched solidly, extending his current streak to 7-0 in as many games, and 9-1 in his last 13 starts. Justin Upton lead the way, going 2-3 (R, RBI, BB), while Sean Burroughs (2-3, R) registered just his second multi-hit game of season.

Rangers 9 Athletics 1
WP: C.J. Wilson (11-5) LP: Brandon McCarthy (5-6)

 For the first time in three outings, McCarthy (3.1 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 5 ER) of old showed up and it was against the team he wanted so bad to spur for not resigning him. It didn't take long for the Rangers to figure out his pitches and the Rangers go on to a game-one win in a fairly imperative road series. Only Josh Hamilton (0-5) went hitless on the balanced Rangers starting lineup. More impressive, of that lineup, only Mike Napoli (1-4, R) lacked an RBI tonight.

-Endy Chavez continues his screams for post-season inclusion, going 3-4 (RBI) with two runs scored.
-Michael Young went 2-5 (R, RBI)
-C.J. Wilson (6 IP) scattered one run on four hits, walking three and striking out seven batters

Red Sox 6 Mariners 4
WP: John Lackey (11-8) LP: Blake Beavan (3-3) S: Jonathan Papelbon (27)
HR: Jed Lowrie (4), David Ortiz (24), Josh Reddick (6)
SB: Franklin Gutierrez 2 (10), Dustin Pedroia (23), Carl Crawford (14)

You can't tell by looking at his box score, but outside of the two-run spot in the second inning, Beavan (6.1 IP, 11 H, 6 ER, BB, K) didn't do too shabby. Yielding a big home run to Ortiz (2-5, 2 RBI) in the aforementioned second inning, it was the fifth and sixth innings by the time the Red Sox were consistently getting to the rookie pitcher.  Lackey (6 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 3 K) on other hand pitched oppositely, allowing three runs in the first two innings, but eventually settling down. In the end it was Reddick's (1-3, BB) two-run home run to deep right in the sixth that put Boston on top for good.

-Adrian Gonzalez (2-4, R), Pedroia (2-4) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (2-4, R, 2 K) each had two hits tonight.
-Mike Carp (3-5, 3 RBI) extends his hitting streak to 12-games, and notched his third three-hit game in the last ten days.

Dodgers 1 Astros 0
WP: Josh Lindblom (1-0) LP: David Carpenter (0-2)
Little had more odds tonight than the Stros and Dodgers going into the 10th inning scoreless. So useless, the ugliness of either organization this season should make for an interesting mid-August series in Los Angeles.  Bud Norris (7 IP, 2 H, 4 BB, 8 K) and Nathan Eovaldi (6 IP, 2 H, 4 BB, 3 K) though both had control problems, neither one gave up a run or more than two hits. Alas one team had to win... That team was the Dodgers when Matt Kemp (1-5) singled home Casey Blake with a shallow hit to right. James Loney went 2-2 (2 BB). Andre Ethier (0-2) and Dioneer Navarro (0-1) each drew three walks apiece tonight.