Sometimes anticipated pitcher’s duels simply fizzle out. Not this one; as the San Francisco Giants used an excellent performance from Matt Cain to top an equally amazing Cliff Lee and the Philadelphia Phillies in eleven innings by the score of 1-0 on Melky Cabrera‘s walk-off hit.
Matt Cain ran his scoreless streak to 18 in a pitcher’s duel with Cliff Lee (Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE)
The pitchers each put on a clinic. Lee was exceptionally economical and showed spot on control throwing 101 pitches, 82 for strikes in TEN innings. Yes, that’s right ten innings. Lee scattered seven hits in all but was never really in trouble in this one.
Where Lee was magnificent, Cain was downright stingy. He ran his scoreless streak to eighteen innings, allowed only two singles, walked a batter and struck out four. Cain was at 91 pitches after his nine innings of work, so theoretically he could have pitched some if not all of the tenth himself.
The Phillies finally made some noise in the top half of the eleventh when Carlos Ruiz led off the frame with a double. A sac bunt moved Ruiz to third base with one out. Javier Lopez struck out pinch-hitter Jim Thome (hitting for Lee) for the second out. Clay Hensley got John Mayberry to ground out to end the threat.
In the home half of the eleventh, Brandon Belt laced a one-out single. He moved to second on a fielding error by Ty Wigginton. As he has done several times before, Cabrera finished off the game with a walk-off single scoring Belt.
Pirates – 2
Diamondbacks – 1
Neil Walker drove in Clint Barmes with a go-ahead single in the eighth and inning after Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez tied the score with a home run in the seventh. Jason Kubel drove in the D’backs only run. Brad Lincoln got the win in relief with Daniel Hudson taking the loss.
New York Mets – 6
Atlanta Braves – 14
The Braves knocked Mets starter R.A.Dickey around for eight runs in four innings. Freddie Freeman broke out of his early season slump with a double and a home run, adding three RBI. Michael Bourn had three hits among the Braves sixteen total. Kirk Nieuwenhuis paced the Mets with three hits and three runs scored.
Cincinnati Reds – 1
St. Louis Cardinals – 11
The Cardinals laid a beat down on the Reds and Mat Latos at Busch Stadium. Jaime Garcia bounced back from his last effort and finished with a seven inning one-run performance. The Cards rapped out 14 more hits in this one with Rafael Furcal leading the way with four. Carlos Beltran and Tyler Greene homered for the Redbirds.
Houston Astros – 2
Washington Nationals – 3
The Nationals continued their strong start with a come from behind win over the Astros. Jordan Zimmermann three seven strong innings and Henry Rodriguez notched his third save of the season after the Nationals scored once in the seventh and twice in the eighth to take the lead. The Nationals are tied with the Texas Rangers with the most wins in the league, 10.
Chicago Cubs – 1
Miami Marlins – 9
The Marlins are enjoying having their manager back winning their second game in a row (third straight overall) since Ozzie Guillen returned from his suspension. Mark Buehrle won his first game with the Marlins, going eight innings and allowing only one run on six hits. Gaby Sanchez had three hits and Hanley Ramirez hit his fourth homer of the season.
Los Angeles Dodgers – 2
Milwaukee Brewers – 3
In ten innings the Brewers handed the Dodgers their second loss in a row. Chris Capuano and Zack Greinke kept the game close and eventually the teams battled it out into extra frames. Ryan Braun drove in the winning run with a sacrifice fly scoring Nyjer Morgan.
San Diego Padres – 4
Colorado Rockies – 8
The Rockies used a five-run second inning to double up the Friars. Jonathan Herrera homered in the inning and Michael Cuddyer also hit one in the fifth off losing pitcher Clayton Richard. Chase Headley went 3-for-4 with a home run to lead the Padres’ attack.
Minnesota Twins – 6
New York Yankees – 5
The Twins jumped on Hiroki Kuroda for four first inning runs and the Yankees couldn’t bring themselves all the way back. Justin Morneau homered among three hits, drove in three and scored three runs. Robinson Cano hit his first homer of the year and Derek Jeter tallied his fourth in the ninth inning off closer Matt Capps leaving the Yanks one short.
Tampa Bay Rays – 12
Toronto Blue Jays – 2
David Price won his second game and was backed by three homers as the Rays reached .500 in a blowout over the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. Price was not exactly overpowering in this one, but he didn’t need to be after being staked to a 4-2 lead after four innings. Brandon Morrow was the loser in this one giving up six earned in six innings including three long balls.
Texas Rangers – 6
Boston Red Sox – 3
The Rangers kept the Red Sox reeling as Derek Holland bested Josh Beckett at Fenway Park. It was the tenth win for the Rangers against two losses and the Red Sox fell to 4-8. Josh Hamilton collected three more hits raising his average to .440. Mike Napoli homered for the second straight game.
Baltimore Orioles – 1
Chicago White Sox – 8
Jake Peavy moved to 2-0 with seven innings of one run ball. The White Sox were led by catcher A.J. Pierzynski who hit a home run and raised his average to .400. Tommy Hunter took the loss for the O’s getting burned for eight earned runs in 5.2 innings.
Detroit Tigers – 4
Kansas City Royals – 3
Max Scherzer won his first game of the season pitching six innings and allowing three runs. Jose Valverde pitched a scoreless ninth for his third save. Jonathan Sanchez allowed two runs in five innings. Miguel Cabrera had two hits and two runs scored for the Tigers.
Cleveland Indians – 1
Seattle Mariners – 4
Two of the major leagues best power hitters…wait best speedsters…hold on aging speedsters busted out the whipping stick early to power the Mariners past the Indians. Chone Figgins started the bottom half of the first with a homer and two batters later Ichiro Suzuki hit one to provide the necessary support for Jason Vargas. Vargas had seven strikeouts in seven innings in which he allowed just one run. The loss snapped a seven game win streak for the Tribe.
Oakland A’s – 6
Los Angeles Angels – 0
Bartolo Colon wasn’t wanted by many teams this offseason. It is safe to say for now the A’s are happy they got him. Colon was a strike throwing machine (38 straight at one point) in dominatin the Angels for eight shutout innings. Colon ended up throwing 82 of 108 pitches for strikes. Yoenis Cespedes hit his fourth home run and drove in three. Ervin Santana (7 IP, 4 ER) took the loss and is now 0-3 on the season.