Posts Tagged Texas Rangers

Nobody’s Perfect, But Detroit’s Still Winless (April 4 Roundup)

It didn’t take all that long for the final undefeated team to take a loss in the 2008 Major League Baseball season. The Kansas City Royals had their hopes of a 173-0 season dashed on Friday night when they were edged out by the Minnesota Twins, 4-3. Lefty John Bale, making his first Major League start since September 18, 2003, kept his then-unblemished team in the game by allowing four runs in 6 1/3 innings. Unfortunately for Bale and the Royals, Minnesota’s Scott Baker was a little bit better. The Twins righthander threw 6 2/3 innings of 3-run ball, allowing seven hits and walking none while striking out two.

When Baker departed, he turned the game over to the capable back end of the Minnesota bullpen. Pat Neshek and Joe Nathan joined forces to record the final seven outs of the game while only allowing one hit, enabling the Twins to hang on for the win.

The Royals fall to 3-1 following the loss, and are now tied with the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers for the best record in baseball.

The Detroit Tigers find themselves on the other end of the spectrum after losing their fourth consecutive game to begin the season. A.J. Pierzynski led the charge against the Tigers today, delivering a three-run home run and driving in a total of five runs to lead the Chicago White Sox to an 8-5 win. The White Sox improved their record to 2-2, while the Tigers fell to 0-4.

A quick look at the remainder of Friday’s games after the jump.

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My Bad On Garza-Cabrera (April 2 MLB Roundup)

A day ago, I pointed out what I thought was an interesting pitching matchup in Wednesday’s Tampa Bay-Baltimore meeting. The game was to involve two pitchers who had previously dominated the opposing team — Matt Garza for Tampa Bay (3-0, 2.16 ERA in three starts vs. Baltimore) and Daniel Cabrera for the O’s (6-0, 3.04 ERA in 11 starts against the Rays). I speculated that pitching would likely be the key to the game, even calling it a “sleeper” matchup.

Well, I was wrong. Neither pitcher made it past the sixth inning — Cabrera was gone after four — and neither factored into the decision. Cabrera was particularly awful, relinquishing six runs on six hits in the four innings. As he often does, Cabrera also struggled with his control, walking five batters while only striking out a pair.

Garza’s line wasn’t much prettier. He got the hook after tossing 5 1/3 innings of 5-run ball. He allowed six hits and walked two batters while striking out three. Despite his poor outing, the former Twin left the game in a position to pick up his fourth win in as many starts against the Orioles.

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You Can’t Box In Larry Bowa (and Other Stories from April 1 in Major League Baseball)

It wasn’t the day’s biggest story — the derailment of Pedro Martinez’s return due to a leg injury earns that distinction — but on April Fools’ Day, it seems appropriate to focus on the day’s wackiest story.

Enter Larry Bowa.

The high-strung former Phillies manager, now a third base coach for Joe Torre’s Los Angeles Dodgers, was thrown out of Tuesday night’s Giants-Dodgers game for arguing with third base umpire Ed Montague.

“What was he arguing?” you may ask. And then you might venture guesses such as balls and strikes, a close play at third, or whether a ball hit down the line was fair or foul. All are fairly common arguments, after all.

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Me Against The NL Central, Day Four — Now With Deceptive Standings!

The first full day of the 2008 Major League Baseball season has passed, with 12 of today’s 15 scheduled games having been played to their completion. As it usually does, Opening Day provided us with several wild games, a number of star pitchers getting lit up, and a couple of statistical anomalies.

Two of the more interesting anomalies are directly related to each other. The Washington Nationals are currently the best team in Major League Baseball, having won both of their games. They followed up Sunday night’s Ryan Zimmerman walk-off home run with some more late-game heroics, as the Nats, for lack of a more delicate way of putting it, beat the shit out of interim Phillies closer Tom Gordon. Gordon retired only one batter while being charged with five earned runs, which impressively puts his ERA at 135.00.

Two other closers imploded Monday in what was likely the game of the day between the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs. Ben Sheets and Carlos Zambrano were both dominant, with both starters taking shutouts into the seventh inning before turning the games over to their respective bullpens. Until the ninth inning, both ‘pens were similarly magnificent, and the game remained tied.

Then came the guys that are paid to slam the door shut.

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Me Against the NL Central, Day Four

Well, I’m down to 1-2 following Washington’s dramatic 3-2 win over the Braves on Sunday night. With Monday’s slate of games fast approaching, I decided to err on the side of caution and just throw out my quick and dirty picks for Opening Day. In the future, I’ll probably briefly feature at least one of the day’s scheduled games before making my picks. But, in the interest of saving time, I’m just going to bust out the picks and then take about a seven hour nap. If you’re looking for MLB-related content, though, I’ve recently written preview pieces of each of the six divisions, and will probably culminate that series with my playoff/World Series picks on either Monday or Tuesday.

Here it goes.

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MLB Preview: American League West

I’m racing against time here as I try to post this chunk of the season preview prior to the first pitch of the Major League Baseball season. Luckily, the Oakland A’s play in the four-team American League West rather than the six-team National League Central. (More on the NL Central in my next post. Not much more, though.)

The way I see it, this is going to be a two team race, and I believe that both of those teams will end up playing in October.

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