Arizona Diamondbacks 5, Cincinnati Reds 3
The Cincinnati Reds didn’t lose a game in the standings to the Pirates, but they did fall to the Arizona Diamondbacks and lose star first baseman Joey Votto for a month in the process. Every run in the game was scored within the first three innings. Miguel Montero had a big night, going 3-4 with four RBI and hitting his ninth home run of the season. Wade Miley didn’t get a quality start, but he was good enough to pick up his 10th win of the season in his rookie campaign. Drew Stubbs had a pair of hits and drove in two runs for the Reds in the loss.
Hanley Ramirez crushed his 13th home run of the season, while Carlos Zambrano managed the very definition of a quality start (6 IP, 3 ER) in a win against the division leading Nationals. Ryan Zimmerman continued to look more like his usual self, hitting his 10th home run of the season. A healthy and effective Zimmerman could go a long way in helping the Nationals secure the NL East.
The Cardinals trailed 2-0 entering the final inning before Matt Holliday and Allen Craig helped the team plate three runs to hold on for the win and cut a game off their NL Central deficit. Both starters performed well. Michael Fiers went seven scoreless, while Lance Lynn allowed one run and struck out 10 in seven innings. Corey Hart hit a solo home run in the loss.
Dexter Fowler knocked in the game’s winning run with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth after a Pirates comeback tied the game in the top half of the inning. Pedro Alvarez homered for the 18th time this season, while Andrew McCutchen had two more hits to raise his batting average to an obscene .372.
J.A. Happ hasn’t had much success since his rookie season, but he shut down the Padres for 6 1/3 innings while allowing only five baserunners. Houston first baseman Scott Moore drove in both runs of the game with sacrifice flies. Judging from the score, you don’t need me to tell you that no one on the Padres did anything worth mentioning.
With another loss (that’s three straight), the Dodgers find themselves two games back in the NL West. Joe Blanton shut down the Los Angeles offense, pitching eight innings of two-run ball and striking out seven. Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins each homered to help the Phillies to victory. Juan Rivera had a pair of hits and scored a run for the Dodgers.
The Tigers have closed the gap in the AL Central to 2 1/2 games and have now won eight out of their last 10. Prince Fielder, Quintin Berry, and Delmon Young all had multi-hit games and drove in runs. Torii Hunter had four hits and three RBI, while Mark Trumbo hit his 25th home run of the season.
With the game tied at two in the eighth inning, Raul Ibanez hit a grand slam to give the Yankees a lead the held on to for the win. The Yankees are now 21 games over .500. Phil Hughes and Henderson Alvarez each had quality starts, while Adam Lind homered for the Jays.
Aaron Cook managed to keep the White Sox to one run (and zero earned) without even striking out a batter in seven innings. Adrian Gonzalez, who has been off to the slowest start of his career, homered and drove in four runs to help the Sox win Monday. The White Sox got a one-run, eight strikeout performance from Dylan Axelrod and three hits from Kevin Youkilis.
Zach McAllister pitched six innings, allowed one earned run, and picked up the win for Cleveland. He got help from the always underrated Shin-Soo Choo, who went 2-4 with two runs scored, one RBI, and a stolen base. Desmond Jennings clubbed his sixth home run of the season for the Rays, but it wasn’t enough.
The Mariners jumped on Jonathan Sanchez early and never looked back. Casper Wells and Justin Smoak took the Kansas City lefty deep, while Dustin Ackley added another bomb in the sixth. Wells wound up with a career-best five RBI in the game. Salvador Perez and Billy Butler each left the yard for the Royals, while the KC bullpen only surrendered two earned runs across 7 2/3 innings.
The Minnesota offense exploded on the Orioles, scoring in six of the eight innings they stepped up to the plate. Justin Morneau and Ben Revere each had four hits, Denard Span drove in five runs, and Joe Mauer hit his sixth home run of 2012. Even the normally weak-hitting Jamey Carroll got into the act by reaching base four times and driving in a pair of runs. Mark Reynolds went 3-4 with a homer to assist Baltimore in losing by 12 instead of like 16.