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Stay For a Nightcap - Texplosionary Rangers Edition

Padres 5, Phillies 4

- Aaron Harang (9-2, somehow) did just enough to win, allowing four runs on eight hits and a couple walks over six innings of work. He struck out two and has won his last five decisions (though he has six no-decisions in that time period).
- Cliff Lee (9-7) didn't quite have it, as he allowed 10 hits and five runs in four innings. He did strike out five and walk just one, which kind of helps.
- Chris Denorfia stole third, but that wasn't enough, so he also stole home (on a lazy pickoff throw to first by Lee). He went 2-for-5 with an RBI and two runs, and now has 10 steals on the year.
- Shane Victorino was just about the only Phillies hitter who did his part, going 3-for-4 with two doubles and a triple.
- Chase Utley stole his 11th bag.
- Heath Bell worked around a walk for save No. 29.
- Ryan Ludwick left the game after colliding with Denorfia, but later said he was okay.

Yankees 10, Mariners 3

- Freddy Garcia (9-7) continued his career revival season with 7.2 fine innings. He allowed three runs on eight hits, walked one and struck out five.
- I think Jason Vargas (6-9) knows that he should have stayed at the hotel. He was touched up for eight runs (four earned) on seven hits and a walk in just four innings, and struck out two.
- Derek Jeter (4) and Mark Teixeira (27) hit homers off Vargas; each player also had two hits and three RBI.
- That makes 16 losses in a row for Seattle. But who's counting?

Indians 3, Angels 2

- Fausto Carmona worked six shutout frames, allowing only four hits, but he's still posting terrible K:BB ratios – 3:3 in this case. He hasn't struck out more than four batters in a game since May 24. Tony Sipp (5-2) won in relief.
- Dan Haren was masterful through 7.2, allowing only five baserunners (three hits, two walks) and striking out 10, but all for no decision.
- Jordan Walden (2-3) lost in relief after blowing his seventh save, and boy, this one was ugly – two hits, a walk, a hit batsman, and he couldn't even get three outs.
- Jason Kipnis was the chief beneficiary of Walden's baserunners, as his first big-league hit came off Hisanori Takahashi, who entered the game in relief of the Angels' closer, and it was a bases-loaded walk-off single.
- Michael Brantley was on base three times (single, double, walk) and stole his 13th bag.
- Welcome back, Bobby Abreu. De Bobby, mired in a long cold streak, hit his fourth homer of the year.
- Vernon Wells stole his fifth bag, so it was truly the day of the washed-up hitter for the Angels.

Pirates 3, Braves 1

- James McDonald (7-4) gave up eight hits, but struck out a season-high nine and didn't walk a batter over 5.1 innings of scoreless work – his first appearance without a walk all year long.
- Tim Hudson (9-7) pitched quite well, striking out eight and surrendering three runs on five hits and three walks over seven innings, but he got stuck with the loss anyway.
- Joel Hanrahan got it done 1-2-3 for save No. 29.
- Chipper Jones, fresh off the DL (knee), looked real ealthy, hitting a solo homer (9) and even stealing a bag (2).
- Andrew McCutchen stole his 16th base.
- Pedro Alvarez returned with a single and a walk.

Mets 4, Reds 2

- The Reds hadn't seen a knuckleballer all year, and they weren't ready for R.A. Dickey (5-8), who went 6.2 and struck out seven, allowing two runs on eight hits and a walk.
- Mike Leake (8-6) took a tough-luck loss, as he worked his way in and out of trouble for six shutout innings before tiring and giving up a pair of runs in the seventh, no thanks to his bullpen.
- Jason Isringhausen ran into ninth-inning trouble (hit, error, walk), but worked his way out of it for his third save.
- Drew Stubbs stole his 26th base and also struck out three times.
- Joey Votto was rested, with Todd Frazier making his first career start at first. Votto appeared as a pinch-hitter, but made out.

Rangers 20, Twins 6

- Nick Blackburn (7-7) served up a Blackburn special: nine runs (six earned) on 11 hits in just 2.2 innings. No walks, no strikeouts, no need to own a pitcher who's given up four-plus runs in five of his last six starts.
- Derek Holland (9-4) was the beneficiary of Texas' 20 runs on 27 hits; for his part, he limited the Twins to a lone unearned run on five hits over six efficient innings, striking out four.
- Ian Kinsler had a double and a three-run homer (16) among his four hits; he drove in four runs all together.
- Michael Young went 3-for-5 with a homer and drove in three.
- Nelson Cruz had four hits to raise his average to .260.
- Elvis Andrus had three hits, a couple RBI and a couple runs.
- Mitch Moreland had three hits and two RBI; Endy Chavez had three hits and three RBI. One-upped by the No. 9 hitter!
- Jason Kubel hit his sixth homer.

White Sox 6, Tigers 3

- Mark Buehrle (8-5) gave up 10 hits and a walk over six innings, but limited the damage to a pair of unearned runs. He struck out four.
- Duane Below (0-1), of whom I must admit I'd never heard, allowed four runs on six hits over 4.2 innings in his second MLB start. He struck out just one, walking a pair.
- Juan Pierre stole his 16th base! He was also caught stealing for the 12th time.
- Paul Konerko (23) and A.J. Pierzynski (4) hit homers for the ChiSox.
- Miguel Cabrera (21) hit one for his side.

Cardinals 10, Astros 5

- Kyle McClellan (7-6) got to do all the easy work, limiting the 'Stros to one run over seven innings. He struck out five and walked... no one. First walk-free appearance for McClellan in more than a month, and his first win since May 19 – five losses and three no-decisions in that interim.
- J.A. Happ (4-12) continued his horrendous year, spotting the Cards six runs while failing to get the last out of the fifth inning. He surrendered seven hits and three walks while fanning one.
- Mitchell Boggs collected his fourth save with 1.2 innings of scoreless relief (two hits, no walks, no strikeouts).
- Colby Rasmus (11) and Yadier Molina (8) contributed long balls for the Cards. Molina had three hits; Rasmus drove in three runs.
- Carlos Lee (9) hit a late grand slam when it didn't matter, off P.J. Walters – his second career plate appearance against Walters, and both have been grand slams.
- The recently called-up Jose Altuve went 3-for-4 with a couple doubles for Houston.
- David Freese was removed from the game in the fifth inning, likely for precautionary reasons due to continued tightness in his leg and a big lead.

Royals 3, Red Sox 1 in 14

- Kyle Davies (one run in six innings) and Jon Lester (one run in 5.1) both struck out six; both were long gone by the time this game was decided. Davies had a much better night, allowing five hits and a walk, while Lester surrendered nine baserunners (seven hits, two walks).
- Randy Williams (0-1), making just his third appearance of the season, took the loss in his second inning of work.
- Louis Coleman (1-2) collected his first career win.
- Joakim Soria waited and waited and waited for his chance, then struck out the side, pitching around a Josh Reddick double (his second of the game) for his 18th save.
- Kevin Youkilis was pulled after suffering a tight right hamstring trying to beat out a grounder.
- Eric Hosmer stole his fifth base.
- Melky Cabrera had four hits, but was caught stealing twice.
- Carl Crawford stole his 11th, but went 0-for-6 with four strikeouts.

Dodgers 8, Rockies

- Rubby De La Rosa (4-4) had some control trouble, walking four over six innings, but proved hard to hit, as he allowed just three singles and a run while striking out five.
- Juan Nicasio (4-3) labored through 5.2 innings, allowing five runs on six hits and a couple walks, as he was unable to strand many baserunners.
- Hong-Chi Kuo and Mike MacDougal did their best to give the game away in the ninth, surrendering four runs and recording one out between them, which opened the door for Javy Guerra to come in and record two outs on four pitches for his eighth save.
- Andre Ethier had the game's only homer, his 10th.
- Rafael Furcal (5) and Jamey Carroll (7) stole bases for the Dodgers.
- Troy Tulowitzki stole his seventh.

Athletics 7, Rays 5

- On the same day that Guillermo Moscoso got a semblance of job security as the A's fifth starter, following the demotion of Tyson Ross to Triple-A, he got hit hard by the Rays. Moscoso allowed five runs over five innings, giving up eight hits and four walks while not striking out a batter. Watch Ross carefully at Sacramento - he was going awfully well before his oblique strain.
- Jeremy Hellickson ran up a high pitch count early, getting pulled in the sixth at 106 pitches. The underbelly of the Rays' squad, once their strength, the bullpen, thusly spit out the game afterward. J.P. Howell gave up two hits in the sixth inning before retiring one out, then allowed three runs in the seventh after getting the first out. The latter two runs were inherited runners that scored on a Conor Jackson double off of Joel Peralta.
- What does the Rays' relief woes mean? It means that Jacob McGee not only is starting to earn roster security, but could be pitching his way into a more meaningful role, setting up Kyle Farnsworth and maybe even closing if the Rays strike a home run of a deal for Farnsworth.
- The A's trade-bait quartet of Coco Crisp, Conor Jackson, Josh Willingham and David DeJesus combined for six hits, four runs and four RBI. There's a glut of outfielder/first base types on the trade market, almost singlehandedly flooded by the A's. I'd bet one of those four gets dealt - if for no other reason than that they'd cost less than some of the other big names on the market. Couldn't you see Josh Willingham in a Pirates uniform?
- Desmond Jennings Watch: 2-for-5 with a double, RBI and his third stolen base. Hope the extra year before arbitration is worth it.
- HR: Ben Zobrist (12), Kelly Shoppach (6), Cliff Pennington (5).
- SB: Desmond Jennings (3), Ben Zobrist (12).
- SV: Andrew Bailey (12).