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Stay For a Nightcap - Rockin' The Mendoza Line Edition

The Mariners ran out a lineup with four sub-.200 hitters today. Somehow, they lost. The Dodgers started three of 'em, but won. Four guys with Mendoza-or-worse batting averages hit leadoff today. Awesome.

Red Sox 9, Blue Jays 1

- Daisuke Matsuzaka actually looked like a major league pitcher today, one-hitting the Jays over seven beautiful innings for his first win of the year. He had just three strikeouts, but only one walk. He said it best: "(Blue Jays manager John) Farrell is on the other side, so I wanted to show solid pitching in front of him." Indeed.
- The other big story: Jed Lowrie. Boston's "backup shortstop" went 4-for-5 with his second homer of the year and four RBI. Let me throw this out there now: By the end of the year, Lowrie will be considered the best shortstop (offensively) in the American League. Not that the competition's so thick.
- Ricky Romero had a rough one on the other end, walking five guys and giving up eight hits and five runs. He lasted just 4.1 innings, recapturing that inconsistent form that made him so frustrating at times last year.
- Kevin Youkilis, he of the .190 batting average and .424 OBP entering today's game (they don't call him the Greek God of Walks for nothing), pushed himself over the Mendoza line with his first two-hit game of the year, one of them a two-run homer.
- Jacoby Ellsbury homered, too; he's got four homers, three steals and a .200 batting average. Hm.

Rays 5, White Sox 0

- David Price dominated the ChiSox for eight innings, fanning nine and allowing just four hits and two walks. He's in midseason form.
- Edwin Jackson was eminently hittable on the other side, but he did recover and last seven innings after giving up three runs in the first. He was charged with 11 hits and four runs overall, and struck out just three.
- Matt Thornton pitched the eighth with the White Sox down four and gave up a solo homer to Felipe Lopez, who inexplicably batted cleanup for the Rays today and even more inexplicably went 3-for-4 with the homer, a double and three RBI. I'm convinced enough that Sergio Santos is gonna get the call that I put a 10 spot of FAAB down for him.
- Ben Zobrist hit his third homer in that first inning. He's still hitting .179.
- Matt Joyce had two hits and his second steal of the year. No homers and two steals for Joyce so far – doesn't compute.
- Sam Fuld went 4-for-4 with a double and a run, but was caught stealing. He's hitting a cool .396.
- Gordon Beckham went 0-for-4 with a couple strikeouts and is down to .231.

Brewers 6, Phillies 3 in 12

- Shawn Marcum was terrific over six innings, allowing just an unearned run on five hits. He walked no one and struck out five, but...
- John Axford blew his second save of the year, walking a couple and giving up a game-tying single to pinch-hitter Pete Orr, of all people.
- Big Joe Blanton was solid on the other end, putting up seven innings of two-run ball.
- Bringing in Kyle Kendrick turned out to be the magic formula for the Phillies losing, as he gave up three walks and a hit en route to allowing three runs in the top of the 12th. He also didn't help himself by making a throwing error on Carlos Gomez's sacrifice bunt.
- Jonathan Lucroy had three hits for the Brewers, and so did Ryan Braun. Carlos Gomez had two and stole his fourth base. He's still hitting .214.
- Brandon Kintzler collected his first career win with two scoreless innings of relief.

Twins 5, Orioles 3

- Francisco Liriano had a somewhat positive outing. The bright side: two runs over 6.2 innings and his first win of the year after losing his first three starts. The downside: five hits, five walks, just two strikeouts.
- Newly minted closer Matt Capps gave up a two-out homer to Luke Scott (2), but that was it, as he collected save No. 2 on the year.
- Adam Jones (3) and Matt Wieters (2) hit solo homers off Liriano.
- Chris Tillman fell to 0-2 despite arguably outpitching Liriano. He allowed three runs over 6.2 on six hits, but didn't walk anyone and struck out five.
- Drew Butera did his best Joe Mauer impression, picking up a couple hits and driving in three runs.
-Justin Morneau was out with the flu.

Pirates 9, Reds 3

- Kevin Correia threw just the second complete game of his career, his record marred only by an unearned run in the second and a two-run homer by Chris Heisey (2) in the ninth. He's now 3-1 with a 2.48 ERA and 0.97 WHIP, albeit just 12 Ks in 29 innings. I'm still not buying; are you?
- Travis Wood was horrible on the other end, allowing six runs on eight hits in just 3.1 innings. Do you get mulligans for implosions against the Pirates?
- Andrew McCutchen, Matt Diaz and Steve Pearce each collected two RBI.
- Aroldis Chapman returned to action after missing a few games with arm inflammation and threw a 103 mph fastball during his scoreless inning. Yeah, he's fine.

Cubs 1, Padres 0 in 10

- Carlos Zambrano must love Petco, 'cause he struck out 10 batters over eight innings of three-hit shutout ball. The last time he struck out 10 batters was Sept. 14, 2008 – his no-hitter. But alas, no offensive support, thanks to...
- Tim Stauffer, who held the Padres to four hits and no runs over seven innings. He hadn't made it out of the fifth in his last two starts, so quite an improvement.
- Carlos Marmol earned his first win (and a couple more strikeouts) in relief.
- Tyler Colvin provided all the offense with a pinch-hit walk-off RBI double off Chad Qualls, driving in Geovany Soto.
- Will Venable went 0-for-3 and is now hitting .149. Jorge Cantu struck out all three times against Zambrano and was hit by Marmol. He's hitting .162. Those are the Padres' No. 1 and No. 4 hitters.

Rangers 7, Angels 1

- C.J. Wilson continued to be hittable, but effective, allowing nine hits over seven innings of one-run ball. He also struck out nine, his best total of the young season. Wilson has allowed 28 hits in 26.1 innings so far, but is 2-0 with a 3.08 ERA.
- We all benched Ervin Santana for his start in Texas, right? Right? No? Oh, boy. He got tagged for six runs on 10 hits in four-plus, as he was unable to get an out in the fifth.
- Adrian Beltre (5) hit a three-run homer off Santana and Ian Kinsler doubled and tripled off him. Kinsler also walked twice and improved his average all the way to .196 – with a 12:7 BB:K for the season.
- Mitch Moreland hit his first homer of the year and drove in three.
- Red-hot Maicer Izturis had his fourth consecutive multi-hit game; he's at .391.

Indians 7, Royals 3 in 10

- So, Grady sizemore seems quite healthy. He went 3-for-5 with a double and a walk (and two strikeouts) in his second game back, and he's still hitting leadoff, which presumably means he's going to be green-lit to steal bases.
- Kyle Davies was quite effective for the Royals, striking out seven and walking none over six innings of two-run ball. He allowed seven hits, but was let down by his bullpen, with Jeremy Jeffress blowing the lead in the seventh and Tim Collins imploding in the 10th.
- Carlos Carraso had a decent outing for the Indians, allowing three runs on seven hits over 6.1 innings. He's got three straight quality starts.
- Michael Brantley and Shin-Soo Choo each picked up steal No. 3 on the year.
- Choo went 1-for-5 and is hitting just .213. Carlos Santana went 1-for-4 and is at .200 even.
- Kila Ka'aihue continues to struggle for the Royals, stranding four men over the course of an 0-for-4 day. The Kila Monster's at a miserable .160 after hitting .319/.463/.598 in Triple-A last year.
- Joe Smith earned the win in relief for Cleveland.
- Royals leadoff hitter Mike Aviles entered the game hitting .200 and went 1-for-5 to stay at .200.

Giants 8, Rockies 1

- Tim Lincecum took a no-hitter into the seventh and ended up with 7.2 innings of three-hit, one-run ball. He struck out 10, walked three and improved to 2-1.
- Lincecum had a nice cushion to work with thanks to an Esmil Rogers implosion – nothing much, just eight runs over three innings. Freddy Sanchez (2), Pat Burrell (5) and Nate Schierholtz (1) homered off him. He's not a great start in mixed leagues despite having won his first two outings.
- Todd Helton doubled twice and walked, and is now hitting .366. We could be looking at a flashback to '09 (.325 average, 38 doubles, 15 homers).
- Clayton Mortensen made his first appearance for Colorado in relief of Rogers and threw six shutout innings. Way to pick up the 'pen, Clay.

Tigers 8, Mariners 3

- Max Scherzer picked up his third win with six innings of two-run ball. He did allow 10 baserunners (6 H, 4 BB), but struck out seven.
- Jason Vargas kept pace with Scherzer, going six innings and allowing two runs on six hits and two walks.
- Horrendous reliever Josh Lueke imploded in the seventh, allowing four runs while recording one out, and a similarly horrendous Chris Ray helped by allowing another two runs in the inning.
- Milton Bradley (2) and Justin Smoak (2) homered for Seattle. Smoak is hitting .291 and has as many walks as strikeouts. Interesting.
- Chone Figgins went 1-for-4 with a walk and was caught stealing. He's hitting a buck fifty.
= Austin Jackson went 0-for-4 with a strikeout (natch) and is hitting .164.

Dodgers 4, Braves 2

- Ted Lilly earned his first win of the year with seven shutout innings. He allowed four hits and two walks, striking out six in what can reasonably be considered his first good start of the year.
- Tim Hudson was the loser, surrendering four runs over six innings of work. He's allowed nine runs over his last two starts.
- Jonathan Broxton came in for the dreaded non-save situation and made the game interesting by allowing a couple runs.
- Very noteworthy call-up Jerry Sands doubled and drove in a run with a sac fly in his major league debut. He also struck out twice. Sands hit 35 homers and stole 18 bags in the minors last year, and was off to a .400/.422/.875 start with five homers in 10 Triple-A games before getting the call. Buy him now in NL-only leagues and start thinking about it in mixers.
- Dan Uggla had two hits and stole his first base of the year. He's hitting .197.
- Juan Uribe and James Loney each had two hits; they're now hitting .179 and .172, respectively.