The season might still be very young, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a shortage of story lines for Major League Baseball. Sunday’s action added some plot twists.
The Tampa Bay Rays (4-7) were cut down by the Boston Red Sox (7-4) 5 to 0 on Sunday at Fenway Park. Boston starting pitcher Clay Buchholz (3-0) went eight strong innings, only giving up two hits and four walks while fanning 11 on 109 pitches. Rays manager Joe Maddon says Buchholz definitely had his best stuff on the mound.
The Rays will have an opportunity to salvage the series in Beantown later today to make up the game on Friday that was postponed. Jeremy Hellickson will take the mound for the Rays and the Red Sox will counter with Ryan Dempster. First pitch is set for 11am.
The Atlanta Braves (11-1), winners of nine straight, continued their hot start to the season after completing the sweep against the Washington Nationals (7-5) 9-0 at Nationals Park. The Nats couldn’t get much going at the plate with Atlanta starting pitcher Paul Maholm dealing. Maholm went 7.2 innings, allowing four hits and a walk while striking out seven on 113 pitches.
Braves outfielder Justin Upton connected on his seventh home run of the season. Upton became the third Braves player with seven homers in the team’s first 12 games of the season joining Eddie Mathews (1959) and Dale Murphy 1985).
Next up for Atlanta is a three game series against the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday.
The Miami Marlins (2-10) fell to Roy Halladay and the Philadelphia Phillies (6-6) 2-1 at Marlins Park. Halladay (1-2) picked up his 200th career win in Miami becoming the first to hit the milestone wearing a Philadelphia uniform since Steve Carlton back in 1978. Doc went eight innings, allowing five hits and a run, walking one and fanning two on 87 pitches.
Miami became the sixth team since 1900 to lose at least 10 of their first 12 games and score 20 or fewer runs in their first 12 games. Marlins skipper Mike Redmond says his team can’t afford to make mistakes if they aren’t going to hit.
Miami will try to rebound when the Nationals come to South Beach for a three game series on Monday. Wade LeBlanc (0-2) and Jordan Zimmermann (2-0) are the probable starters.
Other story lines from around the league…
New York Yankees (6-5)blank the Orioles 3-0 Sunday night at Yankee Stadium.
The Chicago White Sox (5-7) defeated the Cleveland Indians (5-6) 3-1 thanks to Jake Peavy’s 11 strikeouts.
Kansas City (7-5) took down the Toronto Blue Jays (5-7) 3-2 to avoid the sweep.
Mike Trout and Josh Hamilton helped the Los Angeles Angels (4-8) overpower the Houston Astros (4-8) 4-1.
The Tigers, Mariners, Pirates, Brewers, Giants, Rockies, and Dodgers all came away with wins on Sunday as well.