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aj wilbur

Can the tigers have the best record ever posted by aj wilbur

The 2001 Seattle Mariners have the most wins ever in a season with 116. This is an astonishing record and one that would be very difficult to beat, but if anybody has a chance it is the 2012 Tigers.

I am going to give 5 reasons why we will break the record for most wins ever in a major league baseball regular season.

1. The Tigers have the most feared lineup in baseball from top to bottom

2. Justin Verlander, need I say any more

3. A great bullpen. Every Tiger fan has to feel confident with our 7th, 8th, and 9th inning relievers. Dotel, Benoit, and Velverde are a deadly combination along to go with a proven lefty in phil coke.

4. Better defence then all the so called experts say. Cabrera may not be brandon inge but he will play a solid third and prince is more nimble at first then he is given credit for.

5. Jim Leyland, he will manage this lineup to the fullest making sure everybody gets playing time and stays fresh. This will be a key down the stretch or if an injury pops up.

Finally my bold prediction 117-45 and a new regular season record

Continue reading "Can the tigers have the best record ever"


New season brings new hope posted by David

Two thousand eleven was a difficult year for Major League Baseball.  There was no strike, no brawl in which a player grabbed an elderly coach and threw him to the ground, and no collision between players that proved to be career-ending for anyone.  (Buster Posey should be fine this season.)  On the field, things were good.  In the stands and outside the park, however, tragedy struck the baseball world.

Christina Taylor Green, the nine-year-old granddaughter of former Phillies GM Dallas Green and daughter of Dodgers scout John Green, was shot and killed in Tucson at the Gabrielle Giffords Congress on Your Corner event in January.

Bryan Stow, a San Francisco Giants fan, was beaten nearly to death outside Dodger Stadium on Opening Day.

Shannon Stone, a firefighter, fell 20 feet in front of his six-year-old son at Rangers Ballpark in July and was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

Greg Halman, a 24-year-old Mariners outfielder, was stabbed to death in his native Holland in November, allegedly by his own brother.

Despite the tragedies that occurred in 2011 – both during the season and before it began, inside and outside the stadium, accident or intentional – it was heartening to hear about Barry Bonds’s offer to pay for Stow’s children to go to college.  I have personally never been a Bonds fan – and I’m still not – but I give credit where credit is due.  Detractors may say that it was just a publicity stunt to improve his image, and I can’t say for sure that it wasn’t, but does it really matter?  A wealthy athlete did something he didn’t have to do in order to help someone in need.

Continue reading "New season brings new hope"


Edgar Martínez’s case for Cooperstown posted by David

One of the most talented hitters of the nineties did not receive enough votes for induction to the Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility, but I’m hoping Edgar Martínez does not have to wait too much longer.  I don’t expect him to be elected in 2011 because too many voters don’t think a Designated Hitter is a full-time player.  (Martínez came up as a third baseman, but injuries forced him to become Seattle’s regular DH in 1995.)  In my opinion, if a poor defensive player can make it to Cooperstown based on his offensive contributions, then someone who does not play a defensive position should be able to do the same.

Martínez’s career stats include a .312 batting average, .418 on-base percentage, .515 slugging percentage, 2,247 hits, 309 home runs, and 1,261 RBIs.  His best season came in 1995, when he slugged .628 while leading the AL in batting average (.356), OBP (.479), OPS (1.107), doubles (52), and runs (121).  Despite his monster year, Martínez still finished third in the MVP race.  Fifteen years later, he remains the only designated hitter ever to win a batting title.

Martínez was a seven-time All-Star, won five Silver Slugger Awards, and had one of the biggest clutch hits in postseason history – a two-run double in the bottom of the 11th inning of Game 5 of the 1995 ALDS that sent the Mariners to their first-ever Championship Series.  Seattle had been trailing the Yankees 5-4 and were three outs away from being eliminated from the playoffs; the turn of events sent the Yanks home instead after having blown a 2-0 series lead.  For the series, Martínez had a Ruthian line of .571/.667/1.000 and 10 RBIs – nine of them coming in the last two games.

Continue reading "Edgar Martínez’s case for Cooperstown"


Playoff newcomers show the baseball world what they’ve got posted by David

While the fans in Cincinnati, Atlanta, and St. Petersburg may not have appreciated it, nearly every game played so far this postseason has featured a dominant pitching performance.  Roy Halladay no-hit the Reds, Tim Lincecum shut out the Braves on just two hits while striking out 14, and C.J. Wilson and Cliff Lee combined to hold the Rays to one run in 13.1 innings.  Lee displayed his talents during last year’s World Series, earning both of the Phillies’ wins over the Yankees, but Halladay, Lincecum and Wilson were all making their postseason debuts, and not one of them showed any sign of butterflies.

How ‘bout that?

How about Félix Hernández?  Despite a 13-12 record, King Felix deserves the American League Cy Young Award for his outstanding season on the mound.  He led the majors in ERA (2.27) and finished just one strikeout behind Jered Weaver’s 233 and one inning pitched shy of Halladay’s 250.2 – both of which led all big league pitchers.  The Venezuelan workhorse threw six innings or more in 32 of 34 starts, allowing three earned runs or fewer in 30 of them.  Had he played for any team other than the Mariners, whose lack of offense cost all of their pitchers, Hernández would almost certainly have won 20 games or more.

How about Danny Valencia?  Following a promotion to the big leagues in June, the Twins’ third baseman hit .311 with seven home runs and 40 RBIs in 85 games. Valencia was most productive during the month of September, hitting five homers and driving in 17 runs in 22 games.  Had he spent the entire season in the big leagues, Valencia would be a strong candidate for the AL Rookie of the Year; as is he will probably be voted third behind Neftali Feliz and Austin Jackson.  Minnesota fans, however, should be happy to have a promising young hitter who will occupy the hot corner for years to come.

Continue reading "Playoff newcomers show the baseball ..."


Who's on first at the Midsummer Classic? posted by David

With All-Star rosters set to be announced this weekend, I’m hoping that fans made good decisions in for whom to cast their final ballots.  While voting began not long after spring training ended, the true All-Stars have revealed themselves over the entire first half of the season.

The race that I care most about is the one for American League first basemen, where the Royals’ Billy Butler deserves serious consideration but has tough competition.  There are three first basemen who have clearly earned a spot on the AL squad: Justin Morneau, Miguel Cabrera, and Kevin Youkilis.  Mark Teixeira (.232/.345/.408), however, belongs at home.  Butler (.322 batting average, .377 On-Base Percentage, 42 Runs Batted In) should be left off the roster only if Joe Girardi chooses to carry only three first basemen AND Kansas City is represented by outfielder David Dejesus (.331 average, .398 OBP, 35 RBIs).

How ‘bout that?

How about Josh Hamilton?  After hitting just .265 in April and .294 in May and combining for nine home runs and 27 RBIs in the first two months of the season, Hamilton caught fire in June.  His numbers for the month included a .454 average, nine homers, 31 Runs Batted In, and an absurd slugging percentage of .815 – not to mention the 23-game hitting streak he carried into July.  If he continues to hit this well, Hamilton has a real chance at winning the first Triple Crown since Carl Yastrzemski in 1967.

How about Adrian Beltre?  Coming off five disappointing years in Seattle, Beltre’s .349 batting average entering Friday was second in the majors only to Robinson Cano’s .353, and his 53 RBIs had him tied for seventh in the American League.  In 2009, Beltre drove in 44 runs ALL YEAR.  (He spent some time on the Disabled List but played in 111 of his team’s games.)  In roughly half a season (76 games) in 2010, he has 12 home run runs; last year he hit just eight.  Beltre’s signing is looking like the best of the offseason.

Continue reading "Who's on first at the Midsummer Classic?"


Offerman a disgrace to the game posted by David

I generally prefer beginning my blog with news that is positive or at least neutral, but I cannot think of a more worthy story than that of former Major Leaguer Jose Offerman, who was banned from the Dominican Winter League for life after attacking an umpire earlier this month.  The incident, sadly, is not the first time Offerman has embarrassed the game of baseball.  While playing in the Atlantic Independent League in August 2007, he charged the mound – bat in hand – after being hit by a pitch, and proceeded to break one of the pitcher’s fingers.  The catcher, trying to protect his pitcher, was hit in the back of the head and received a severe concussion that ended his career.  Now, two and a half years later, Offerman is still making the game look bad.  His behavior, without question, is Bad for Ball.

How ‘bout that?

How about Grant Desme?  The 23-year-old outfielder announced his retirement from baseball last week in order to pursue the priesthood.  Desme was the second-round pick of the Athletics in the 2007 draft, and last year was the only minor leaguer – at any level – to hit 30 homers and steal 30 bases.  (He swiped 40.)  After being promoted to High-A, he hit .304/.398/.656 with 20 homers in just 227 at-bats.  He was then named MVP of the 2009 Arizona Fall League.  Desme would have had to put in more time in the minors, but his numbers certainly suggest he could have made it to the Big Leagues eventually if he didn’t feel the need to answer another calling.

Continue reading "Offerman a disgrace to the game"


The Big Unit hangs ‘em up posted by David

Big news from the Big Unit: 46-year-old Randy Johnson announced his retirement, concluding his career with a record of 303-166, a 3.29 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP.  His five Cy Young Awards – one with the Mariners and four in a row with the Diamondbacks – rank him behind only Roger Clemens, and his 4,875 career strikeouts are second only to Nolan Ryan.  He was a 10-time All-Star, starting the Midsummer Classic four times – twice for each league. Johnson made history in 2004 when he became the oldest player – at 40 – to throw a perfect game.

Johnson was a crucial member of his Diamondbacks team in the 2001 playoffs: after pitching well but losing his only start in the first round, he went 2-0 with 1.12 E.R.A. in the National League Championship Series against the Braves, including a 2-0 complete game shutout against Greg Maddux.  Then in the World Series, Johnson shut down the three-time defending champions from the Bronx with absolute dominance.  He picked up three wins, including a complete game shutout in Game 1 and back-to-back victories in Games 6 and 7, to end the Yankee Dynasty.  He surrendered only nine hits and three walks in 17.1 innings for a remarkable 0.692 WHIP to go along with a 1.04 E.R.A.  For his extraordinary performance, he was named co-MVP of the Series.  A fan attraction everywhere he went, Randy Johnson will surely be missed.

How ‘bout that?

How about Matt Holliday?  Christmas came late for the biggest name on the free agent market this offseason, as Holliday was rewarded for his huge numbers (.353/.419/.604) after his arrival in St. Louis with a very big payday – $120 million over the next seven years.  Though it was painful to watch as it happened, Holliday has been forgiven for his costly error in Game 2 of the NLDS against the Dodgers.  The slugging outfielder hopes to lead his team back to the playoffs in 2010, and with Albert Pujols, Chris Carpenter, and Adam Wainwright working together, expectations will be high once again for the Cardinals.

Continue reading "The Big Unit hangs ‘em up"


Phillies take a Halladay posted by David

After the way Cliff Lee pitched against the Yankees in the World Series six weeks ago, I would have been surprised to hear that the Phillies were even listening to offers for their ace.  But when the chance to acquire Roy Halladay comes around, I suppose any team would be crazy not to listen.  Before I knew it, Halladay was a Phillie and Lee was heading to Seattle, where he’ll join his third club in the span of four and a half months.  How often does that happen to the defending Cy Young Award winner?

Mauer wins Triple Crown in my book

No major leaguer has won the Triple Crown since Carl Yastrzemski in 1967, but this year Joe Mauer did lead the American League in what should be the three Triple Crown categories: batting average (.365), on-base percentage (.444), and slugging percentage (.587).  Home runs are exciting and contribute to a higher slugging percentage, but if I were a manager, I’d much rather see my cleanup hitter go 3-4 than hit a solo shot and strike out three times trying to do it again.  Reaching 100 RBI’s in a season is a nice accomplishment, but the stat itself is overrated.  If all nine guys in the lineup are getting on base 40 percent of the time, it doesn’t matter who is driving them in; someone must be.

Granderson to patrol center in the Bronx

At the Winter Meetings in Indianapolis last week, the Yankees landed themselves a great centerfielder in Curtis Granderson.  Many of Granderson’s fans – myself included – were disappointed that he will be wearing Pinstripes next season.  Even so, I’ll keep rooting for him wherever he goes.  Of all the people I met at the World Baseball Classic, he was the happiest to be there.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Curtis Granderson is the truest friend of the game.

Continue reading "Phillies take a Halladay"

Joe Gunderson

Action starting to heat up in free agency, trade market posted by Joe Gunderson

Hello Everyone,

Sorry I've been absent for a few days.  There really wasn't that much to report or discuss.  However, that has changed in the last 24 or so hours as the annual Winter Meetings are underway.  First, the Twins offered pitcher Carl Pavano arbitration as I said earlier and as of last night he has accepted this offer which essentially means he will be in the Twins rotation in 2010.  To make room for Pavano on the 40 man roster, the Twins designated pitcher Boof Bonser for assignment or release which means he will either be released by the Twins and be with another club for this coming season or he will start the season in the minors. 

There's not much else currently cooking on the Twins front other than that they could possibly look to trade starter Glen Perkins now that Pavano is most assuredly back.  The reason they could do this is because one, there doesn't seem to currently be a spot for him, unless he earns it in Spring Training, and two, he is not on managements greatest side after last season when he did not come forth with the fact that he'd been pitching with an injured shoulder until he had a really rough outing.  Then, when he was ready to return, he was sent to the minors, which upset him, because it meant that he does not have enough service time to qualify for arbitration himself.  He filed a grievance against the club to try and obtain some or all of his service time back, which he did get some, but not enough to qualify for arbitration.

Also, look for the Twins to look into the market for third baseman to see if they can come up with anything.  Former Angel Chone Figgins is apparently off the market already as he has agreed to a four year contract with the Seattle Mariners, however, I'm not sure that this really affects the Twins because he was probably too expensive for the Twins likes.  However, be on the look out for names such as Adrian Beltre, Pedro Feliz or last year's starter Joe Crede, as well as prospect Danny Valencia as possibilities for the hot corner.

Continue reading "Action starting to heat up in free ..."

Colin Linneweber

Zack Greinke Beats Batters and Psychological Issues posted by Colin Linneweber

Kansas City Royals ace pitcher Zack Greinke was deservedly awarded the 2009 American League Cy Young Award Tuesday afternoon.


Greinke, 26, who received 25 first-place votes and three seconds for 134 points, went 16-8 and he posted a 2.16 ERA for the putrid Royals (65-97).


Greinke’s sterling earned run average was the lowest mark in the American League since Pedro Martinez recorded a miniscule 1.74 ERA in 2000.


The Seattle Mariners Felix Hernandez finished second in the balloting with 80 overall points.


The fact that Greinke won the most coveted pitching accolade in Major League Baseball is astounding when one considers the obstacles that the native of Orlando has had to overcome as a young adult.


Greinke, the Royals sixth overall pick in the 2002 amateur draft, led the AL in losses in 2005 when he went 5-17.


Furthermore, Greinke, who was named the Royals Minor League Pitcher of the Year and The Sporting News Minor League Player of the Year in 2003, was forced to take a personal leave of absence from “The Boys in Blue” in February 2006 because he was suffering from social anxiety disorder and depression.


“Depression kind of runs in my family,” said Greinke, who agreed to a four year contract worth $38 million with the Royals last winter. “The medicine I take is an antidepressant. At the baseball field, I was unhappy.”


Greinke made plenty of fans at Kauffman Stadium very happy this past baseball season and he should be ecstatic at what he achieved on the hill.

Continue reading "Zack Greinke Beats Batters and Psychological ..."

Seattle Mariners News

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Mariners-Astros Preview (The Associated Press)

The Houston Astros are entering their second-to-last homestand with the right man set to take the mound. Dallas Keuchel could have as many as four home starts remaining depending on how Houston aligns its rotation, and the first comes Monday night against a Seattle Mariners club which has chosen to rest its ace. Keuchel (15-6, 2.28 ERA) can become the first to win his first 12 home decisions since Johan Santana went 12-0 in 17 starts for Minnesota in 2006. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

Yankees explode for 20 runs in win over Braves (Big League Stew)

Take a look around the league with Big League Stew's daily wrap up. We'll hit on all of the biggest moments from the day that you may have missed, while providing highlights, photos and interesting stats. The New York Yankees offense hasn't been as strong in recent weeks, but that changed Sunday. The club seemed to take out all their frustrations during a 20-6 win over the Atlanta Braves.  New York wasted no time getting to work. After a scoreless first, the club picked up three runs in the second, and four in the third. The team really exploded in the seventh inning, however. The Yankees scored nine runs during the frame. Alex Rodriguez opened the scoring in the inning, picking up a pinch hit, two-run single. Brett Gardner, Brian McCann, Greg Bird, Chase Headley and Stephen Drew would all drive in runs in the seventh. It's the second time this season the club scored 20 runs during a road game.  Yankees have scored 20 runs in a road game twice this season. Last time they did that-- 1939, when they had 3 20-run road games — John Buccigross (@Buccigross) August 30, 2015 With the win, the club improved to 72-57 on the season. They remain 1.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays in the American League East. BLUE JAYS KEEP THE PACE The Toronto Blue Jays' offense wasn't as dominant as the Yankees' on Sunday, but it was close. Toronto erupted for nine runs during a 9-2 win over the Detroit Tigers.  After hitting three home runs during Saturday's game, Edwin Encarnacion struck again Sunday. In his first at-bat, Encarnacion blasted a solo home run to right center.  Over the past 25 games, he's put up some insane numbers. Edwin Encarnacion homers again and now is hitting .407 during his 25-game hitting streak with 11 HRs and 35 RBI. #BlueJays — Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) August 30, 2015 Encarnacion was joined by teammates Josh Donaldson, Russell Martin and Kevin Pillar during the contest. All three added home runs at various points in the game. With the win, Toronto improved to 74-56 on the season. They hold a 1.5 game lead over the Yankees in the AL East. METS RALLY FOR LATE WIN Things looked bleak for the New York Mets for a few innings Sunday, but they eventually came out on top. The club broke a tie late, beating the Boston Red Sox 5-4. At first, it looked like the team would cruise to an easy win. Noah Syndergaard seemed to have his best stuff, shutting out Boston through the first five frames.  Things changed in the sixth. With two outs, Syndergaard gave up a two-run shot to David Ortiz, falling behind 2-1. The Mets would rally in the bottom of the inning to give Syndergaard the lead again, but he couldn't hold on. After giving up another run, Syndergaard was removed with the Mets ahead 4-3. Hansel Robles replaced Syndergaard, but allowed Mookie Betts to drive in a run on a triple, tying up the game. The Mets would rally in the bottom of the inning, as Michael Cuddyer singled home the eventual game-winning run. [ Check out Big League Stew on Tumblr for even more baseball awesomeness. ] New York held on over the next two innings, picking up the win. With the victory, the club improved to 72-58. The team has a 5.5 game lead over the Washington Nationals in the National League East. WHITE SOX PICK UP THE WALK-OFF Despite being down by four runs after two innings, the Chicago White Sox managed to rally Sunday. The club eventually pulled off the feat, beating the Seattle Mariners 6-5 in extras. Pitcher Jose Quintana didn't have his best stuff early, giving up a two-run homer to Kyle Seager in the first inning. He would allow another two-run shot in the second, this time against Austin Jackson.  Chicago would rally, however. With the team down by three, the White Sox went to work in the fourth inning. The club picked up two runs in the frame, lowering their deficit to just one run. They would tie things up in the seventh, but gave up the lead almost immediately. Kyle Seager struck again, driving in a run with a single in the eighth. With the White Sox down by one, they would need to rally in the bottom of the ninth. It worked. The team tied the game again on a Brad Miller throwing error. In extras, they finally completed the comeback. Tyler Flowers singled in Alexei Ramirez from second base, picking up the walk-off hit. With the win, Chicago improved to 61-68 on the season. Want to see more from Saturday's slate of games? Check out our  scoreboard . More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: - - - - - - - Chris Cwik is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Chris_Cwik [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

Adrian Beltre sets record for most games played by a Dominican (Big League Stew)

It was a day of mixed emotions for Texas Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre. With Sunday's start, Beltre became the all-time leader in games played among Dominicans. He celebrated by getting ejected from the contest. Let's ignore that last part for a second, and focus on Beltre's accomplishment. It's quite the feat. The 36-year-old Beltre has now played in 2,528 games in the majors. He passed Julio Franco, who played in 2,527 games over his 23-year career. [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football: Sign up and join a league today! ] Beltre, obviously, should be able to put some distance between the top spot moving forward. He not only will finish out this season with the Rangers, but the club already picked up his option for 2016. While injuries sapped his production this year, there's a chance Beltre will play beyond 2016 if he can improve on his performance moving forward.  As Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News notes, Beltre, who rarely acknowledges his own accomplishments, was pretty happy to hit this milestone .  “I’m proud of it,” Beltre said earlier this week. “I’m accomplishing things I never even thought about. It means I’ve been healthy and able to compete for a long time. But the numbers, I don’t think about the numbers. I just want to a win a World Series.” Beltre's quote highlights some of the underrated aspects of his career. Beltre was promoted to the majors at age-19, and pretty much held his own at the majors the following season. He put up some pretty productive years with the Los Angeles Dodgers, but didn't really arrive in the eye of the national media until he hit .334/.388/.629, with 48 home runs in 2004. Beltre signed a five-year, $64 million deal with the Seattle Mariners that offseason, and was considered somewhat of a bust in Seattle. That wasn't necessarily the case, though. Safeco Field was hell on hitters around the time Beltre was there, making his solid power numbers even more impressive in retrospect. We can also blame the park for his poor batting averages during this time. Despite the offensive issues, he was always regarded for his stellar defense at third. In 2010, Beltre signed a one-year, make-or-break deal with the Boston Red Sox, and hit the snot out of the ball in a friendly environment. He joined the Texas Rangers a year later, and has basically been an elite performer with the club. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

Cano homers as Mariners beat White Sox 8-6 (The Associated Press)

SEATTLE (AP) -- Robinson Cano had a two-run homer and Nelson Cruz doubled in two runs to help the Seattle Mariners beat the Chicago White Sox 8-6 on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

Alex Rodriguez grand slam lifts Yankees to win, keeps them in first place (Big League Stew)

Take a look around the league with Big League Stew's daily wrap up. We'll hit on all of the biggest moments from the day that you may have missed, while providing highlights, photos and interesting stats. Alex Rodriguez could not have picked a better time to break out of his slump. Rodriguez entered Tuesday night's game hitting .132 with no home runs in August and was 0-for-3 when he stepped to the plate with the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh and the New York Yankees trailing the Minnesota Twins 4-1. With the pressure on, A-Rod delivered a grand slam off Twins reliever J.R. Graham to put the Yankees up 5-4. New York added three insurance runs in the eighth to walk away with an 8-4 win and stay a game ahead of Toronto for first place in the AL East. [ Play a Daily Fantasy contest for cash today! ] It was the 25th grand slam of A-Rod's career — a major-league record — and the 13th coming in the seventh inning or later. Alex Rodriguez's grand slam on Tuesday night was his 13th in 7th inning or later. No one else has more than 9. #ELIAS — ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 19, 2015 It was also an encouraging night for Yankees starter CC Sabathia. He was perfect through the first four innings and pitched into the seventh for the first time since June 29. His final line was 6 2/3 innings, four earned runs, five hits allowed, five strikeouts, three walks and he received a no-decision. It was also Sabathia's first start since nearly getting into a fight outside a Toronto nightclub over the weekend . DONALDSON POWERS BLUE JAYS PAST PHILLIES With their loaded lineup, the Toronto Blue Jays are able to overcome their fair share of poor pitching performances. Josh Donaldson ensured that would be the case again Tuesday against the Phillies, and in the process strenghtened his case to be AL MVP. Donaldson gave Toronto an early 1-0 lead with a monster first inning home run deep into the second deck at Citizens Bank Park, but on a night starting pitcher R.A. Dickey struggled, they would need more than that. [ Check out Big League Stew on Tumblr for even more baseball awesomeness. ] Dickey was pulled from the game with the bases loaded and no outs in the bottom of the fifth and the Phillies up 4-3. The knuckleballer was ultimately charged with five earned runs, ending a 20 game streak in which Blue Jays starters gave up three or fewer earned runs. #BlueJays starters streak of allowing 3 or fewer earned runs ends at 20 straight games — Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats) August 19, 2015 Fortunately for Toronto, Donaldson wasn't finished. On a 3-0 count with two on in the sixth, he smashed another homer, his 33rd of the season, to put the Blue Jays up 7-5. Edwin Encarnacion followed that up with a solo shot to make it 8-5 and the bullpen did the job the rest of the way. Donaldson finished the game 3-for-4 at the plate with four RBIs, three runs scored and a walk. That's how an MVP candidate gets it done. The win keeps the Jays a game back of New York for top spot in the AL East. IWAKUMA ENDS RANGERS' WINNING STREAK Pitching for the first time since hurling a no-hitter last Wednesday , Seattle Mariners right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma went seven innings and gave up just two runs to hand the Texas Rangers their first loss in five games. The Mariners scored all their runs on the night in the top of the first inning, tagging Rangers starter Chi-Chi Gonzalez for three runs. Rougned Odor's solo home run in the second and Bobby Wilson's sac fly in the seventh was all the offense the Rangers could muster as Seattle held on for a 3-2 win. [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football: Sign up and join a league today! ] Due to their recent surge, Texas has climbed back into the conversation in the AL West. However, with the Astros knocking off the Rays in extras thanks to a walk-off home run from Marwin Gonzalez and the Angels edging the White Sox, the Rangers are now four games behind first-place Houston and 1 1/2 games out of the second AL wild-card spot. NATIONALS OFFENSE COMES ALIVE AT COORS A visit to the Mile High city might be exactly what the Washington Nationals need to reboot their dormant offense. Shutout three times during their six-game losing skid, the Nationals crushed the Rockies 15-6 at Coors Field. Yunel Escobar and Ian Desmond each drove in four runs, while Bryce Harper scored four runs of his own. The game was actually tied 6-6 in the sixth, but Washington scored nine runs in the final three innings to turn it into a laugher. Getting a W any way possible was important for the Nats, but they remain 4 1/2 games back of first place in the NL East as the Mets also won Tuesday, beating the Orioles 5-3. Want to see more from Tuesday's slate of games? Check out our  scoreboard . More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: - - - - - - - Israel Fehr is a writer for Big League Stew  on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter. Follow @israelfehr [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

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