A lot of afternoon baseball Thursday and just 10 games on the schedule. We start in Detroit where Miguel Cabrera sits one hit away from 3,000. Important to remember that once he gets that hit and another double, he will join Albert Pujols and Hank Aaron as the only players ever with 3,000 hits, 500 home runs and 600 doubles.
Tigers 3, Yankees 0
After a three-hit night Wednesday, Cabrera entered the day needing just one hit to reach that magical milestone. He had four chances Thursday, but came up empty. In his first at-bat of the day, he flew out to left and for a second it looked like he had it in very special fashion.
The story of the day came in Cabrera’s last plate appearance of the day. With the bases loaded and nobody out, Jeimer Candelario bounced into a double play right in front of Cabrera. That left a base open and with a lefty on the hill, and a lefty on deck, Yankees manager Aaron Boone issued an intentional walk to Cabrera. Boos rained down from the crowd as fans were disappointed they would not get the chance to see history.
Just to stick it to the Yankees, Austin Meadows hit a little blooper to center that scored two runs and gave the Tigers a 3-0 lead. They closed it out in the ninth and made Boone pay for his decision to take away Cabrera’s chance at history. Luckily, he gets three more chances in front of the home crowd against the Rockies this weekend.
Mets 6, Giants 2
The Mets look like a real force this year. They showed that in their series with the Giants this week, taking three-of-four from San Francisco. They won again today in convincing fashion, thanks to a tremendous pitching performance by Carlos Carrasco. Cookie struck out seven in 7 2/3 innings of two-run ball, and now has 20 strikeouts and two walks through three starts.
Francisco Lindor got the day off in the field, but the addition of the DH in the NL allowed him to still be in the lineup. It is a massive positive that great players can still be in the lineup in the NL even when they need a day off their feet. It paid dividends for the Mets right away as Lindor homered in the first inning to give them a 1-0 lead.
The Giants tied the game up in the next half inning, but Eduardo Escobar took the lead right back with a solo shot of his own. The Mets scored another in the second and two more in the third and cruised the rest of the way home.
Rangers 8, Mariners 6
The Mariners took a 5-0 lead in the first inning as they roughed around Taylor Hearn, racking up four hits and four walks against the southpaw. Ty France homered and doubled, and even though the Rangers got two in the second, all seemed to be going right for the M’s. That was until Marco Gonzales got roughed up in the fifth, allowing four more runs and surrendering the lead.
The game went quiet until the bottom of the eighth when Seattle took back the game. Eugenio Suárez tied the game with a two-out RBI single.
The M’s got the bases loaded with two outs, but Joe Barlow struck out Tom Murphy to keep the game tied for Texas. Kole Calhoun doubled to bring Adolis García around from first to give the Rangers the lead in the ninth and that was not the last we would see of García. The Texas center fielder basically sealed the game with this unbelievable diving catch to rob Julio Rodriguez—who may be the most unlucky player in baseball right now—of extra bases. This is the play of the night.
Guardians 6, White Sox 3
Surprise, surprise: 12 games in and the Guardians have a one-game lead over the White Sox in the NL Central. They finished off a sweep of the ChiSox today with another big victory. Zach Plesac threw 6 2/3 innings of two-run ball to help keep this potent offense quiet. Franmil Reyes provided him with the support that he needed early on.
After Cleveland took a 4-1 lead, the Sox got back within one on a little-league play by the Guardian defense.
However, it was Josh Naylor who would come through to secure the lead for Cleveland. He is off to a tremendous start this year, continuing it Thursday with a 2-for-4 and this RBI double to lock down the victory.
Marlins 5, Cardinals 0
The Marlins were carried by one of their star pitchers and their two young studs Thursday. Pablo López twirled an absolute gem, throwing seven shutout innings while allowing three hits and no walks with nine strikeouts. He currently leads the MLB in ERA at 0.52.
The first of their young studs came through in a 2-0 ballgame with an absolute laser beam. Jesús Sánchez is the Marlins hottest hitter and has been holding it down in center field. This 114.0 mph, 428-foot rocket is the longest homer of the day.
The second one blew the game open in the seventh inning. Jazz Chisholm Jr. is known for his electric personality and it was on full display again Thursday. After getting a strike call he did not love, Jazz exchanged words with the home plate umpire, Phil Cuzzi. The Cardinals and Cuzzi tried to hurry Jazz back into the box and he was not having it. Check out he responded.
Diamondbacks 4, Nationals 3
Arizona scored in each of the first two innings to get out to a quick 2-0 lead. Then in the fourth inning, Nelson Cruz destroyed the 451st homer of his career to tie the game. The 426-foot bomb was the second longest Thursday.
However, the Diamondbacks answered right back with a two-run bomb by Cooper Hummell. The Nats gave themselves a chance as they got one back in the eighth and got the tying run to third in the ninth, but came up short. The win salvages Arizona a split with Washington.
Athletics 6, Orioles 4
The A’s are 8-6? The Orioles…are not. Christian Pache is not off to a great start to 2022, but came through with a big moment at the plate Thursday. He gave the A’s a lead in the third inning with his second home run of the year.
Sean Murphy is showing that he is quite a good baseball player. He’s slugging .574 after a 3-for-4 with a double and a home run. Paul Blackburn allowed just one run in five four-hit innings of work while striking out four. With the win, Oakland took three-of-four from Baltimore.
Pirates 4, Cubs 3
The Cubs can simply not be losing these kinds of games. They got up 3-0 after two innings, but Mark Leiter Jr. got roughed around in the third and almost gave it all back. Daniel Vogelbach went deep for his third of the year to make it 3-2. Then in the fifth they went ahead thanks to Yoshi Tsutsugo. With the bases loaded and two outs, he came through with a two-run double to take the lead and Pittsburgh never looked back.
Blue Jays 3, Red Sox 2
There were just four extra-base hits in this one, two from each side. The Jays got out to a 3-0 lead through five innings and things went quiet for a good while. The Red Sox could not score on Kevin Gausman for eight innings, but finally got to him for a run in the ninth. The Jays’ ace struck out eight across eight one-run innings, allowing seven hits and no walks. Jordan Romano came in to get out of it and allowed another run to score, but kept it right there and sealed the deal.
Twins 1, Royals 0
Not much to report here. The Twins scored in the second inning on a sac-fly by Miguel Sanó and had zero extra-base hits. Bobby Witt doubled and Andrew Benintendi, two of three hits for the Royals on the day. Joe Ryan threw six shutout innings with five strikeouts. The only thing of note from this game really was that Byron Buxton was back on the field after suffering an injury in Boston last week. For a guy that has struggled mightily to stay healthy, this was a great sight.