Thursday's action was highlighted by several solid pitching performances by young pitchers in San Francisco and St. Louis.
Here are my thoughts after reviewing Thursday's boxscores:
San Diego's Mat Latos was the star of the day as he dominated the Giants in a complete game shutout. He gave up only one hit, no walks and struck out 6 in winning his 3rd game of the season. Latos shutout the Astros last Friday for 8 innings on two hits. He lowered his ERA to 3.32. Latos will end up being the ace on the Padres staff by the end of the year.
Giants starter Jonathan Sanchez was out-dueled by Latos, but he dominated the Padres as well. He held the Padres to one run on 3 hits and a walk, while striking out 5 in 8 innings of work. He lowered his ERA to 2.66.
Seattle's reliever Brandon League ruined a pitching gem from teammate Felix Hernandez. League gave up 2 HRs in the 8th inning. one a grand slam to Luke Scott. King Felix limited the Orioles to 1 run in 7 innings, giving up 5 hits, 2 walks and striking out 7.
Seattle outfielder Michael Saunders went 2-4 with 2 runs scored and 2 RBI, including his 2nd HR of his career.. Saunders saw 22 pitches in his 4 at bats showing plate patience.
Pitching dominated Thursday's action including the Johan Santana-Josh Johnson duel in Florida. Santana gave up one unearned run in 7 innings, while striking out 5 and walking 1. Johnson gave up 1 run on 3 hits, no walks and 7 strikeouts. Why did i deal JJ in my big NL-only league again?
Mets SS Jose Reyes is struggling batting in the 3rd spot in the lineup. He went 0-4 with a strikeout and is hitting .221-.275-.298 on the season with 8 SBs. I recall some fantasy experts saying he was a first round pick before the season started.
Mets outfielder Carlos Beltran was recently permitted to start running on his injured knee and felt good after some light jogging on Thursday. Should he come back in June, where does he play? Will Carroll from Baseball Prospectus recently stated he does not see Beltran playing centerfield when he returns from the DL. Could the Mets play him in rightfield, and bench slumping Jeff Franceour? Franceour went 0-3 with a strikeout and is now 5-35, lowering his BA to .230. Franceour hit .280 last year, including a .311 BA after the trade to the Mets.
Astros starter Bud Norris held the Cardinals to one run in 8 innings on Thursday, striking out 8 and walking none. He out-dueled Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter, and the Astros swept the slumping Cardinals.
Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols went 0-4 with a run scored.In his last 10 games, Pujols has no HRs and 3 RBIs, and the Cardinals have lost 8 of those games. As Albert goes, so goes the Cardinals.