What do Jeremy Hellickson, Kyle McClellan and Jesse Litsch all have in common? They each walked as many or more batters than they struck out, but gave up two or fewer runs and won their Monday starts. Better lucky than good.
Rangers 2, Tigers 0
-We've got a live one, folks. Alexi Ogando outdueled Justin Verlander with seven innings of scoreless, two-hit ball. Ogando's now 2-0 with just four hits and three walks allowed over 13 innings. The strikeout number is a bit low, at eight total, but we have here a guy who's starting for a good team and had a 1.30 ERA in 41.2 innings of relief last year. Caveat: In yearly leagues, I'll be selling Ogando at the All-Star break on speculation that he won't hold up for 200 innings.
-Verlander went nine on the other end and allowed just two runs for the hard-luck loss.
-Elvis Andrus went 0-for-4 to drop his average to .188, and he's stolen just one bag in eight games.
-Miguel Cabrera went 2-for-3 with a walk and is hitting a cool .382.
-Magglio Ordonez left the game with Achilles tightness. He'll sit a couple, it seems.
-Neftali Feliz picked up his fourth save in as many tries.
Rays 16, Red Sox 5
-Sam Fuld overachieved in this one, picking up a homer, a triple... and two doubles. Sorry, Sam, no cycle for you! You hit too well. As Jeff Erickson said to me, the homer was "about as Sam Fuld as you can get," a cheap shot down the right field line in Fenway, going into the first row. That's honestly a shallow fly ball in most stadiums, but he made up for it with the triple, which was easily a 400-footer.
-Fuld, Johnny Damon (second homer of the year) and the Rays' offense chased Daisuke Matsuzaka after just two innings of seven-run ball, then Tim Wakefield gave up another five runs over the next 3.1.
-Sometimes you lose on hard luck, other times you win on good luck. Jeremy Hellickson gave up five hits and five walks over 5.1 innings while striking out just one batter, yet held the Sox to two runs for his first win of the year.
-Rare Adrian Gonzalez triple sighting! The ninth of his career.
-Jacoby Ellsbury has a couple homers, but is hitting .194. Something's wrong with this picture.
Rockies 7, Mets 6
-Mike Pelfrey was, well, better than his other starts, anyway. Still not a pretty final line – 10 baserunners and four runs (three earned) in 5.1 innings, although he wasn't helped by the bullpen. His stuff did look better, though.
-If you bought Bobby Parnell for holds, it's time to cut ties. He's looked quite shaky and could be demoted.
-Jason Hammel wasn't helped by consecutive errors in the fourth that led to a pair of unearned runs on a Willie Harris double. He was able to finish six innings, allowing four runs (two earned).
-Jose Reyes hit two triples. The old Reyes is officially back; he's got a nine-game hitting streak and a .340 season average thus far.
-David Wright (2) parked a Rafael Betancourt pitch to deep right center field – good to see him flashing power the other way. Troy Tulowitzki's (4) eighth-inning blast gave Colorado just enough cushion.
-The Mets are starting to look like a team anyone can run on, with non-speed demons Seth Smith and Ian Stewart joining the disturbingly long list of guys who have unexpectedly swiped bags against them recently.
-Carlos Gonzalez picked up the three easiest RBIs of his career – one on a comebacker that Parnell threw away and two on a slow roller that trickled through the infield.
Cubs 5, Astros 4
-Nelson Figueroa continues to prove that having a rotation spot doesn't make you useful in fantasy, giving up five runs on eight hits over just four innings to fall to 0-2 with a 10.61 ERA and 2.36 WHIP.
-Ryan Dempster won for the first time in three tries on the other end, allowing four runs but striking out nine over 6.1.
-Carlos Marmol allowed a couple baserunners, but picked up a four-out save (his fourth) with three strikeouts.
-Sneaky second-base pick Bill Hall hit his first homer of the year – an in-the-park job.
-Starlin Castro had three hits (now hitting .364), three runs scored (now 10 on the year) and his first steal of the season.
-Darwin Barney had two hits and two walks, and is now hitting .381. Don't expect that to persist.
-Kosuke Fukudome was out with a hamstring strain; the hope is it's a short-term thing.
-Part-timer Jason Bourgeois stole his third bag as a pinch-runner and Angel Sanchez hit his first home run of the season for Houston.
Athletics 2, White Sox 1
-Mark Buehrle went eight shutout innings, allowing just two hits (and, as per usual, striking out just one while getting 12 ground balls), but Matt Thornton fell to 0-for-3 in save opportunities after Juan Pierre muffed Daric Barton's fly ball for a two-base error.
-Pierre also was caught stealing and made the last out of the game, so not a good day for him all around.
-Dallas Braden recovered from an iffy first start with six nice innings – one run, five hits, 7:2 K:BB.
-Kurt Suzuki won the game with a 10th-inning homer, his first.
-Brian Fuentes is 4-for-4 in place of Andrew Bailey; he struck out a pair, too.
-Brent Lillibridge hit his first homer of the year for Chicago's lone run; he's looked good as a part-time player.
-Adam Dunn still isn't back, and we don't know when he will be. I hope soon; he's in my lineup in Staff League 2 this week.
Cardinals 8, Diamondbacks 2
-Kyle McClellan worked in and out of trouble for six innings, allowing seven hits and four walks, but just one run. He struck out four for his first win of the year. As relievers turned starters go.... I don't trust him very much. Even with the Dave Duncan Effect. He did help his own cause with the bat, though, hitting an RBI double.
-Barry Enright gave up four runs in six innings for the second time in two starts. He's not a guy I'd roll out in a normal mixed league.
-Lance Berkman bombed a couple home runs off the D-Backs' bullpen, his first two of the year.
-John Jay added a pinch-hit homer.
-Early-season success story Willie Bloomquist went 1-for-5 and was picked off.
Reds 3, Padres 2
-Padres ace Mat Latos (shoulder) was mostly effective in his season debut, striking out seven over six innings, but made mistakes to Chris Heisey (1) and Jonny Gomes (3), giving the Reds all three runs they needed.
-Edinson Volquez was effective on the other end, going six and allowing two runs on three hits to go to 2-0.
-Maligned closer Francisco Cordero picked up his second save in two attempts.
-Orlando Hudson had a pair of hits and a pair of steals, giving him four on the year.
Indians 4, Angels 0
-Mitch Talbot finessed his way through eight shutout innings, throwing a lot of strikes (72 of 112 pitches) and inducing 14 ground balls – a nice formula for success. He allowed five hits and two walks, and struck out four.
-Overly aggressively promoted prospect Tyler Chatwood made his first major league start for the Angels and had some jitters, throwing barely half his pitches for strikes and allowing four runs in five innings. He walked four and allowed four hits, including homers by Asdrubal Cabrera (4!) and Matt LaPorta (2). Don't go running out to get Chatwood.
-Bobby Abreu had the lone extra-base hit for Los Angeles (a ninth-inning double that finally chased Talbot) and walked twice; he's hitting .378 with a 10:8 BB:K.
Mariners 8, Blue Jays 7
-Felix Hernandez gave up 12 hits – the most he's surrendered since his final start of 2008 – and seven runs to the Jays, who seem to just hit everywhere they go. At least he struck out six.
-Jesse Litsch wasn't quite on top of his game, allowing five hits and four walks, but made it through five innings scoreless. He struck out four.
-Corey Patterson made his season debut for Toronto and went 2-for-5 with a two-run homer off King Felix.
-Milton Bradley hit his first homer of the year and Michael Saunders stole his first base of the year for Seattle; many more are expected from both. Brendan Ryan also swiped a bag.
-Jose Bautista came into the game with a .533 OBP and actually improved on it, going 2-for-3 with two walks and his first steal of the year. He certainly doesn't look fluky out there.
-Ichiro Suzuki had probably his best game of the year, picking up two hits, his fourth steal, and two walks (one intentional).
-Shawn Camp absorbed the blown save and loss on Luis Rodriguez's two-run single, set up by Michael Saunders' leadoff double, a sacrifice, and an Ichiro intentional walk and steal. Temporary closer Jon Rauch wasn't used because the Jays blew through pretty much their entire bullpen other than him. Camp has pitched four innings over the last four days, so he's likely to be avoided over the next couple games.
-Josh Lueke picked up his first major league win in relief.
Dodgers 6, Giants 1
-Clayton Kershaw picked up the win with 6.2 shutout innings, striking out seven while allowing six hits – all singles – and two walks.
-Madison Bumgarner struggled with his control again on the other end, allowing 12 baserunners and five runs over five innings. For the second time in two starts, he had more walks than strikeouts.
-Pat Burrell hit his fourth homer of the year. Unfortunately, they've all been solo shots and he's still hitting .222.
-Brandon Belt went 0-for-4 with a couple strikeouts and is now hitting .143. Meanwhile, Cody Ross is getting healthy. Can you smell the coming demotion?
-Matt Kemp got on base three more times (single, two walks) and stole his MLB-leading seventh base. Yes, a cleanup hitter leads the majors in steals. Welcome to Dodgers baseball.
-Jamey Carroll had three hits. He should take a picture of that .393 average he's sitting on and frame it.
-Glass man and .192 hitter Rafael Furcal stole his first base of the season and, unsurprisingly, got hurt doing it. He stayed in for two more innings before being lifted for a pinch-hitter.
-Casey Blake sat again with a thigh injury.
-Andres Torres' fate (DL or no DL) will be decided Tuesday.