Sunday’s Diamond Notes
Sabathia First 15 Game Winner
C.C. Sabathia (15-7) became the first 15 game winner of the 2009 season as the Yankees defeated the Red Sox 8-4. Alex Rodriguez hit his 22nd homer and 575th of his career. It was only his third homer in 70 August at bats.
The Red Sox who are now seven-and-a-half games behind the Yankees only have three games remaining against the Yankees. That series will start on September 25 in Yankee Stadium.
Scott Feldman Has Third Best Record In AL
Scott Feldman (13-4) is tied with Jered Weaver also 13-4 for third best record in the AL after defeating the Rangers 4-0. Only C.C. Sabathia (15-7) and Josh Beckett (14-5) have better records.
Feldman didn’t even make the season opening starting rotation for the Rangers and didn’t start his first game till April 25. He has only lost twice since June 19. Only concern for Feldman is that he is not an innings eater as he has only pitched past the sixth inning three times in 23 starts.
Buehrle Winless Since Perfect Game
Mark Buehrle (11-7) failed to win for the sixth time since his perfect game against the Rays on July 23. He took the loss yesterday in the 5-4 win by the Orioles over the White Sox.
Since the perfect game he has been 0-4 with two no decisions and his ERA has risen from 3.28 to 3.92.
Pavano Wins Eleventh Game
Carl Pavano (11-9) pitched the Twins to a 10-3 defeat of the Royals. He has posted a 4-0 record against the Tigers and a 2-0 record against the White Sox this season.
Bruntlett Pulls Off Unassisted Triple Play
The Phillies took an early 8-2 lead over the Mets but had to hang on to win 9-7. The game ended with Jeff Francoeur hitting into a game ending triple play by hitting a line drive to Eric Bruntlett with two runners on base and nobody out.
The triple play may have prevented Brad Lidge from blowing his ninth save of the season. The loss probably ended any hopes of the Mets getting back into the NL East race.
Jiminez Outpitches Lincecum
Ubaldo Jiminez (12-9) outpitched Tim Lincecum (12-4) as the Rockies defeated the Giants 4-2.
The win moved the Rockies to within three-and-a-half games of the first place Dodgers in the NL West. The Rockies also stretched their lead in the NL wild card race to three games over the Giants.
The win was the sixth in a row by Jiminez and he hasn’t lost since before the All Star game.
Smoltz Strikes Out Nine In Cardinals Debut
John Smoltz (3-5) showed why the Cardinals signed him after his disappointing stint with the Red Sox by striking out nine enroute to a 5-2 defeat of the Padres.
Even though he was pitching to the NL West cellar dwelling Padres the game should be a boost to his confidence. He will face the Nationals in his next start this weekend.
Albert Pujols became the first major leaguer this season to hit 40 home runs. His 359th career homer leaves him 41 homers short of 400 homers. He should hit his 400th at the age of 30 next season.
Dempster Pitches Gem Against Dodgers
For the second time this season Rick Dempster pitched a three hit gem against the Dodgers allowing no earned runs in either game. The previous gem against the Dodgers was on May 30.
Dempster came back from consecutive losses to the Phillies and Padres to record the win yesterday.
Jake Fox led the offense with a 4-4 game driving in two runs and hitting his ninth homer of the season. Fox moved three runs batted in ahead of Milton Bradley despite having 165 less at bats.
Fox leads the Cubs in slugging with a .550 mark and is eight points ahead of Aramis Ramirez at .542. He is second in batting average with a .305 with Ramirez leading at .316.
The Cubs are still eight games behind in the NL Central with the Cardinals also winning. The Nationals will be coming to Wrigley on Tuesday while the Cardinals will be hosting the Astros starting Tuesday.