As usual, Sunday brought us a full 15-game slate of MLB action, including plenty of day baseball., and here's everything you need to know about Sunday's action.
Select games can be streamed regionally via fuboTV (Try for free). For more on what channel each game is on, .
Baseball schedule/scores for Sunday, April 21
- FINAL - Twins 4, Orioles 3 (box score)
- FINAL - Yankees 7, Royals 6 in 10 innings (box score)
- FINAL - Nationals 5, Marlins 0 (box score)
- FINAL - Tigers 4, White Sox 3 (box score)
- FINAL - Giants 3, Pirates 2 (box score)
- FINAL - Dodgers 6, Brewers 5 (box score)
- FINAL - Red Sox 4, Rays 3 in 11 innings (box score)
- FINAL - Cardinals 6, Mets 4 (box score)
- FINAL - Cubs 2, Diamondbacks 1 (box score)
- FINAL - Rangers 11, Astros 10 (box score)
- FINAL - Rockies 4, Phillies 1 (box score)
- FINAL - Blue Jays 5, Athletics 4 (box score)
- FINAL - Angels 8, Mariners 6 (box score)
- FINAL - Padres 4, Reds 3 (box score)
- FINAL - Braves 11, Indians 5 (box score)
Bellinger robs Yelich, takes Hader deep
Cody Bellinger had himself a heck of a ballgame Sunday. His afternoon started with RBI singles in the first and second innings. Do that and you're pretty much guaranteed to have a good day no matter what else happens.
Bellinger did not stop there though.. Check it out:
That is Bellinger's 11th home run of the season and also his third against a lefty. He had six homers against lefties all last season. Also, that's only the second home run Hader has given up to a lefty in his career. (Anthony Rizzo got him last year.)
As good as Yelich has been this season -- and he's been out of this world great -- Bellinger has a considerably higher batting average (.424 to .353), on-base percentage (.500 to .456), and slugging percentage (.882 to .859).
Cubs pitching has flipped a switch
Last things first: Here's the Wrigley walk-off against the Diamondbacks ...
With that, the Cubs are back .500 at 10-10. That's significant for a team that not so long ago was 3-8. Key to the Cubs finding their level has been pitching. Said pitching was awful to start the season, but it's been perhaps the best in baseball in recent days:
Part of those numbers is Tyler Chatwood's Sunday effort, in which he worked six scoreless innings against Arizona. Chatwood is of course filling in for ace Jon Lester, who's on the IL with a hamstring injury. Lester's return is in sight, which raises the prospect of continued good pitching for Chicago.
Overreactions weren't hard to find when the Cubs started slow this season, but 20 games in nothing's really changed -- i.e., it's probably going to be a hotly fought race in the NL Central, and the Cubs will be a part of it.
Red Sox sweep Rays in Tampa
What, you didn't count the defending World Series champs out already, did you? I hope not. The Red Sox completed a three-game sweep of the first place Rays at Tropicana Field on Sunday afternoon. David Price pitched well against his former squad ...
... before the pitch count monster got him. Christian Vazquez provided the go-ahead 11th inning sacrifice fly after Tommy Pham tied the game with an eighth inning home run against Matt Barnes. All told, five Red Sox relievers allowed just one run on two hits and one walk in six innings. They struck out seven.
The key to the three-game sweep? The top of Boston's lineup as much as anything. Andrew Benintendi and especially Mookie Betts did not have particularly strong starts to the season, but they gave the Rays headaches over the weekend:
- Benintendi: 3 for 13 with one walk and a grand slam Saturday
- Betts: 6 for 12 with a double, a home run, and two walks
Benintendi is up to .282/.346/.451 on the season and Betts is up to .244/.344/.439. Mookie in particular still has a ways to go to get to where we're used to seeing him, but he's well on his way now. Betts is rounding into form and the BoSox are starting to rack up some wins.
Mets' Alonso gets what he wanted
Mets slugging rookie Pete Alonso got hit on the hand on Saturday. Even though X-rays were negative, Alonso seemed to be concerned that he wouldn't be in Sunday's lineup against the Cardinals. How concerned? Well, dig this:
Callaway on Alonso: "I was on the way to eat with my parents and he’s calling and texting me. And then I saw him and then he was like, ‘Hey, I want to play tomorrow. I hate this guy. I played against him in college.’ I don’t know what he was saying. Going nuts."— Tim Healey (@timbhealey) April 21, 2019
Alonso played his college ball at Florida, and Dakota Hudson -- whom Alonso apparently hates -- is a Mississippi State product. SEC baseball gets pretty intense, and the feeling seems to last, at least for Alonso. Of note:
Florida Gator Pete Alonso hit .316 with a .924 OPS in college.— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) April 21, 2019
But he was 0-4 against Miss State's Dakota Hudson, who's pitching for STL today.
Their most recent matchup was 4/8/16.
Hudson: 5 IP, 6 R (5 ER)
Alonso: 0-4 (0-3 vs Hudson)
Callaway obliged by putting Alonso in the Sunday lineup, and here's what happened when he stepped in against Hudson in the top of the first:
Seen above? A dish best served cold. That blast left Alonso's bat at 114.5 mph and went 444 feet. With that blast, the 24-year-old rookie is batting .324/.412/.743 with eight homers and seven doubles. Presumably the home run you saw above if Alonso's favorite to date.
Of course, Hudson and the Cardinals got the last laugh. Hudson picked up the win, and the Cardinals took the rubber match.
Paxton dominates again for Yanks
As you see above, the Yankees edged the Royals in extras on Sunday and in doing so moved above the .500 mark for the first since April 7. Central to those efforts was lefty James Paxton, who twirled a gem before the bullpen suffered a core reactor meltdown in the eighth:
Paxton was similarly dominant in his prior start against the Red Sox, and that means he made a bit of franchise history on Sunday..
Following that bullpen collapse, it fell to Austin Romine to walk it off for the hosts:
The Yankees, despite having 13 players on the injured list, have won five of their last six games.
Highlight of the day: A's turn absurd double play
In the early innings of Sunday's game against Toronto, Oakland fly-catcher Ramon Laureano -- one of the most exciting fielders in the game today -- started a double play that ... well, just take a look:
All right, sure. Laureano made a miracle snare (we'd still be calling attention to this highlight if things stopped there), and then his absurdly strong throwing arm abetted the rest of what happened. That wound up being your, oh, garden-variety 8-2-4 double play. Yeah, Laureano's throw was off the mark and then some, but let's once again admire that cannon he's got holstered.
Assist: Justin Smoak's footspeed.
- The Yankees have placed OF Aaron Judge on the injured list with an oblique strain. MGR Aaron Boone termed it a significant injury and said there's not yet a timetable for Judge's return. .
- Speaking of injured Yankees, C Gary Sanchez (calf) will play a minor-league rehab game on Monday and could be activated by Tuesday or Wednesday (via Mark Feinsand).
- The Rays have placed OF Austin Meadows on the IL with a sprained thumb.
- The Padres have optioned struggling 2B Luis Urias back to Triple-A.
- The Blue Jays have placed RHP Matt Shoemaker on the IL with a left knee sprain.
- 1B Ryan Zimmerman homered twice, and the Nats got a vintage performance from Stephen Strasburg in their win over the Marlins:
- Tigers SS Gordon Beckham homered in the win over the White Sox and is now slugging .625 for the season.
- Twins RHP Kyle Gibson notched his first quality start of the season in the win over the Orioles.
- C Buster Posey homered for the first time since last June 19 as the Giants ended the Pirates' win streak at five games.