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Major League Baseball came close but didn’t get Labor Day right. There should have been 15 games that were played in the day (late afternoon at worse). Teams that don’t usually sell out should have some promotion for kids. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
TAM 4, BOS 3 WP Grant Balfour (2-6) LP Burke Badenhop (0-3)
It will go down as a 10th-inning, game-winning bases-loaded single for Matt Joyce but since it was deep enough for a walk-off sacrifice fly, Yoenis Cespedes let the ball drop…maybe Cespedes had Joyce on his DFS team…Brad Boxberger continued to do what Brad Boxberger does, retiring four hitters, punching out three…Drew Smyly continued to impress his new squad with 5 2/3rd innings of two-run ball, allowing just three hits while fanning seven…Smyly was deprived of a win when Joe Maddon opted to use Steve Geltz with two outs in the eighth instead of asking Jake McGee to get four outs…Geltz was last season in the Majors in 2012 when he threw a grand total of two innings…yes, I am a bitter Smyly owner…Mike Napoli had a home run and Mookie Betts had two hits in a losing cause.
MIA 9, NYM 6 WP A.J. Ramos (6-0) LP Jeurys Familia (2-4) SV Steve Cishek (32)
You know that rant about hoping kids could catch today’s action? Hopefully not many witnessed this debacle that featured six errors, seven walks, a hit batsman and a wild pitch –all by the Mets…Henderson Alvarez aggravated his oblique and left after 2 1/3rd ineffective frames…Casey McGehee and Marcell Ozuna both had a pair of hits and RBI while Giancarlo Stanton hit his 34th…Dilson Herrera hit his first career home run, going 2-for-4 with a run and three RBI.
PHI 7, ATL 0 WP Cole Hamels (8-6) LP Julio Teheran LP (13-10)
In case you missed it, four pitchers combined to no-hit the Braves…Hamels was only able to last six stanzas after running his pitch count up with five walks and seven whiffs…the NL version of Boxberger is Ken Giles who fanned the side in the 8th, making that 52 K’s in 35 2/3rd innings, lowering his ERA to 1.26…Ben Revere entered the game with 15 RBI; he ended it with 20…Jason Heyward swiped three bags.
MIN 6, BAL 4 WP Phil Hughes (15-9) LP Kevin Gausman (7-7) SV Glen Perkins (33)
Hughes tied for the AL lead in wins with his eight-inning, two-run, three-hit effort…Hughes fanned five with no walks…with a strong September Joe Mauer could salvage a disappointing season and he’s off to a good start with a 3-for-4 performance, scoring two while knocking in four…Kennys Vargas continued to shine with two more hits and a pair of RBI…Gausman worked into the eighth for the first time in his young career…Nick Hundley hit a 3-run shot while Nelson Cruz smacked his MLB-leading 36th.
STL 5, PIT 4 WP Seth Maness (6-3) LP Gerrit Cole (7-5) SV Trevor Rosenthal (41)
Matt Holliday continued his hot-hitting with two more hits and three more RBI…Kolten Wong didn’t start but he did knock a two-run, pinch-hit homer out of the yard…Josh Harrison and Andrew McCutchen supplied the offense for the Bucs, each collecting two hits and scoring two runs with Cutch knocked himself in with a solo-shot.
CHC 4, MIL 2 WP Jacob Turner (5-8) LP Jimmy Nelson (2-6) SV Hector Rondon (23)
If this game is any indication, Jake Arrieta won’t be the only post-hype prospect to resurrect his career under Theo’s thumb as Turner tossed 6 1/3rd innings on one-run ball, scattering five hits with seven strikeouts and just one walk…Jorge Soler lowered his average to .526 with a 2-for-4 day, both doubles in his Wrigley debut…Welington Castillo did the heavy lifting with a homer and three RBI…Luis Valbuena provided some late insurance with a blast of his own…both Brewer runs came via the long ball with Khris Davis and Gerardo Parra making it close in the 7th.
DET 12, CLE 1 WP David Price (13-10) LP Corey Kluber (13-9)
Coming into the game, Kluber was 2.78/1.19 vs the Tigers with 24 K and 4 BB in 22 2/3rd innings but Monday was a different story as the Tigers clubbed Kluber to the tune of seven hits and five earned in only 2 2/3rd stanzas…despite a sore ankle, Miguel Cabrera was 4-for-5 with a pair of long balls, four runs and three RBI on the day…Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez chipped in with homers of their own as did Tyler Collins who contributed a pinch-hit, three-run bomb in the 9th…Price was solid with a typical seven inning, one-run, eight strikeout outing…Michael Bourn and Lonnie Chisenhall had a couple knocks each for the losers.
OAK 6, SEA 1 WP Jason Hammel (10-10) LP Chris Young (12-7)
It took a couple of newcomers but the Athletics offense showed come life as Adam Dunn and Geovany Soto each knocked in a pair with Dunn’s coming off a blast in his first at bat wearing the green collar…Hammel had his best game since the trade with eight innings of three-hit ball, allowing just one earned while fanning five along the way…Young failed to make it out of the first, surrendering four hits and five runs while recording just two outs…Brad Miller accounted for the sole for the Mariners as he took Hammel deep.
SD 3, ARI 1 WP Tyson Ross (13-12) LP Trevor Cahill (3-10) SV Kevin Quackenbush (2)
Ross tossed six strong, scattering six hits while allowing one earned with eight whiffs and two walks…with Joaquin Benoit nursing shoulder inflammation, Quackenbush picked up the save and could see more chances…in what will be a parade of September call-ups, former 10th overall pick Cory Spangenberg plated a pair in his MLB debut…Ender Inciarte continued his stolen base binge with his fourth in six games.
SF 4, COL 2 WP Jeremy Affeldt (1-1) LP Christian Friedrich (0-1) SV Santiago Casilla (2)
This was the conclusion of the game suspended by rain on May 22…after homering three months ago, Hunter Pence had the game-winning double…according to the official way MLB archives this game, all the stats following the resumption of play are credited to May’s ledger.
COL 10, SF 9 WP LaTroy Hawkins (3-2) LP Sergio Romo (5-4)
The teams combined for 29 hits and 19 runs in this see-saw affair…Josh Rutledge had three knocks, scoring three runs and knocking in two…Michael McKenry also had three hits for the victors…Ben Paulsen had the lone home run for the Rockies, a pinch-hit two-run blast…Hunter Pence stayed hot with his 19th, a three-run blast in the 1st to give the Giants an early lead…Buster Posey had three hits, two runs and an RBI.
KC 4, TEX 3 WP Yordano Ventura (11-9) LP Colby Lewis (9-12) SV Greg Holland (41)
Salvador Perez was the hero with a 3-for-4 effort, one run and three RBI…Eric Hosmer made his long-awaited return, chipping in with a knock and a steal…neither starter was particularly sharp, Lewis actually outpointing Ventura with Perez’s three-run shot being the difference.