Thursday, April 30, 2009

Keeping Things Interesting: April 30, 2009

This one's going up a little late, so I'll try to keep it short...

Yesterday's Most Interesting
Well, Zack Greinke's streak of scoreless innings (or at least his 0.00 ERA) is officially done. A first-inning leadoff double by Marco Scutaro and a two-out grounder up the middle by Vernon Wells put it to rest for good and then, just for good measure, Scutaro crossed the plate one more time in the third. All in all, Greinke went 7 innings, with 2 runs, 5 hits, 2 walks, and 8 strikeouts in shutting down the team with the best record in the AL on his way to his 5th win of the season. The streak may be over, but Greinke is still pitching absurdly well this year.

In New York, on the other hand, Johan Santana pitched another great game, putting up a nearly identical line as Greinke: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K. The two runs that the Marlins managed off of Santana came in the first. From then on, it was all Johan. Until the bullpen came into play, at least. Premier set-up man JJ Putz pitched the 8th for the Mets, and couldn't keep the Marlins from scoring 2 more runs. The Mets lose the game 4-3. But it's definitely not Johan's fault.

More From Yesterday
I would be a terrible person if I didn't take the time here to mention one Yovani Gallardo. The young Milwaukee ace faced the Pirates yesterday, hoping to secure the sweep. He pitched brilliantly. He didn't allow a baserunner until the 5th, when Andy Laroche doubled. By the time he left the game, he had pitched 8 innings, with 2 hits, one walk, and 11 strikeouts. Oh, and the score was 1-0 thanks to the home run that he hit in the 7th inning. It was just a fantastic performance. The Brewers earned the sweep behind that 1-0 victory. (According to Dave Pinto, this was just the 7th time that a game was won by a 1-0 score with the only run being scored by the pitcher's home run).

Today's Most Interesting
There are only a few games on the schedule for today, but the most interesting game of the day has to be the Boston Red Sox at the Tampa Bay Rays. Yes, the teams have already faced each other this year, but it still looks like a very possible ALCS repeat. And with so many strong teams residing in the AL East, every intra-division matchup will be key by the time October rolls around. Today has the added bonus of a pretty good pitching matchup. Josh Beckett takes the hill for the Red Sox against Tampa Bay's (and Fresno State's!) Matt Garza. On a depleted day of baseball, this easily takes the cake as today's most interesting game.

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