In the last installment of our "fill-in" Roundups, I take a look at the action from Saturday and point out a few things that stood out to me while going through box scores. Lucky for all of you, Ray is back from vacation this week!
Pitchers' duel in Tampa Bay
Cy Young winners, Tim Lincecum and David Price, matched each other run for run, pitch for pitch and strikeout for strikeout. Each pitcher allowed a run in the third inning which would end up being all that the opposing offenses could muster against them (Wil Myers hit a walkoff single in the 10th inning). Lincecum threw seven innings while allowing six hits and punching out seven. Most importantly, Lincecum only walked one batter. Price went nine innings for the fourth time in his last six starts giving up five hits with five strikeouts and without walking anyone. Price has been nothing short of dominant since his return from the DL - he has a 40:1 K:BB ratio with a 1.56 ERA in 57.1 innings pitched.
Peavy wins his first start for Boston
Jake Peavy turned in one of his best outings of the season in terms of ESPN's Game Score in his first start wearing a Boston jersey. Peavy tossed seven innings of two-run ball against the Diamondbacks on Saturday night. He gave up four hits, struck out seven and walked two. Andrew and I discussed Peavy's value in our podcast on Thursday night and believe that Peavy will see a slight boost in his production moving to a winning team with a good offense and defense despite the moce to the AL East.
Michael Saunders has himself a day
Saunders hit two home runs on Saturday night as the Mariners put it to the Orioles 8-4. It was his second straight game with a home run and he now has ten on the year to go with eleven steals. Saunders will never hit for a high average because he's likely always going to strikeout too much but he walks a lot and I believe he could have add some nice value down the stretch for teams in need of an outfielder. I think he can hit another six to eight home runs and steal ten more bases. Seattle didn't make any moves at the deadline so they still have Kendry Morales, Raul Ibanez and Kyle Seager - not murder's row but a lineup that should produce some runs.
Round ‘Em Up
Yoenis Cespedes hits his seventeenth home run of the year. He's batting .321 with two home runs and nine RBIs in his last six games.
Yasiel Puig left his game in the eighth inning after injuring his hand on a diving catch the inning before. Puig had been wearing a protective brace on his wrist since injuring it diving head first into first base on June 8th. The injury was diagnosed as a thumb contusion and is believed not to be serious.
Wilson Ramos and Adam LaRoche homered in the Nationals' 3-0 win over the Brewers. In twenty games since the beginning of July, Ramos is hitting .309 with five home runs and eighteen RBIs. LaRoche is a notorious second half performer as he's hit fifty points higher in the second half than in the first half. He also has only three fewer home runs in the second half than he does in the first half for his career despite having roughly nine hundred fewer plate appearances. He could be a nice buy low candidate if you have the chance to acquire him.
Max Scherzer wins his sixteenth game going two outs into the eighth against the White Sox with six strikeouts and three walks. Joaquin Benoit saves his ninth game in as many chances and has a .50 ERA with a 23:4 K:BB since being named the closer.
Devin Mesoraco hit two home runs and is hitting .333 since winning the full time gig.
Jacoby Ellsbury became the first player to steal forty bases this season.
Matt Wieters hit his fifteenth home run of the year and added a rare stolen base as well.
Francisco Liriano pitched seven scoreless innings and struck out five batters against the Rockies en route to his twelfth win. He also walked five batters and, while he's kept the free passes under control this year, we all know too well his struggles in the past and some have been waiting for Liriano to falter. I'm not too worried.
Brandon Beachy's second start since returning from Tommy John surgery went much better than his first outing. Beachy allowed three earned runs (although one of the runs scored after he left the game) and struck out four batters while walking two in six and a third.
Justin Maxwell hit a game-winning pinch hit home run in the twelfth inning to break his new team's tie with the Mets on Saturday afternoon. Maxwell has always intrigued me because of his power/speed potential and, if he can find a way to get into the lineup every day, he's a guy I like to help out late in the year.
Shelby Miller and Jose Fernandez are getting most of the attention this year and it is deservedly so. Fernandez' teammate, Jacob Turner is having an excellent year as well. He turned in his ninth quality start in eleven outings this season.