MLB scores: Brewers waste Lorenzo Cain's five hits in loss; Astros win sixth straight game
Here is everything you need to know about the day in baseball
Thanks to rain on the East Coast and an especially light schedule, Monday brought us only six MLB games. Here is everything you need to know about Monday's big league action.
Select games can be streamed regionally via fuboTV (Try for free). For more on what channel each game is on, .
Baseball scores for Monday
- POSTPONED - Orioles vs. Yankees
- FINAL - Phillies 7, Brewers 4 (box score)
- FINAL - Astros 8, Tigers 1 (box score)
- FINAL - Angels 5, Twins 4 (box score)
- FINAL - White Sox 5, Indians 2 (box score)
- FINAL - Diamondbacks 9, Pirates 3 (box score)
- FINAL - Mariners 6, Athletics 5 in 10 innings (box score)
Phillies beat Brewers despite Cain's five hits
Was Monday night's Phillies vs. Brewers game at Citizens Bank Park the best bad game of the year or the worst good game of the year? I can't tell. It was a back and forth game and that equals excitement. There was also a 45-minute rain delay, 10 walks, and four mid-inning pitching changes. It was a slog, for sure.
In the end, the Fightin' Phils won their third straight game and for the 11th time in their last 15 games. The Brewers dropped their third straight game and they did that despite getting five hits from Lorenzo Cain. It was the eighth five-hit game this season and only the third in a loss. Cain had three singles and two doubles after going 8 for 46 (.172) in his previous 13 games.
Monday's game swung in the seventh inning. The Brewers loaded with the bases with two outs in the top half of the inning, and Mike Moustakas sent a screamer to right field. Bryce Harper made the inning-ending catch on the dive. With the speedy Christian Yelich at first base, this is almost certainly a bases-clearing extra-base hit if Harper misses the dive.
After the catch, the Phillies immediately rallied for three runs in the bottom of the seventh. Jean Segura struck out but reached on a wild pitch to start the inning and the rally. J.T. Realmuto and Odubel Herrera both had run-scoring doubles over utility man Hernan Perez's head in left field. The Brewers went from what looked like a go-ahead hit in the top of the seventh to giving up three in the bottom half.
The rest of the NL East was idle Monday, so the Phillies picked up a half-game on their four division rivals. The Brewers and idle Cubs have the same number of wins (24) but Milwaukee has played five more games. Five more games played and five more losses. That's rough.
Red hot Astros win again
The longest active winning streak in baseball belongs to the Astros. They won their sixth consecutive game Monday night -- they've won nine of their last 10 games as well -- thanks to a barrage of homers. No. 6 hitter Aledmys Diaz, No. 8 hitter Robinson Chirinos, and No. 9 hitter Jake Marisnick all went deep. The bottom of the order did serious damage against the Tigers. (No. 2 hitter Alex Bregman went deep as well.)
Monday's win combined with the Twins losing to the Angels gives the Astros the best record in baseball at 27-15. Houston's pitching has been pretty steady all season. The offense has really picked up of late though. Let's split their season into three equal segments:
- First 14 games: 4.36 runs scored per game
- Middle 14 games: 5.07 runs scored per game
- Last 14 games: 6.93 runs scored per game
AL Player of the Week George Springer has been tearing the cover off the ball for a while now. Offseason pickup Michael Brantley has fit in to the lineup seamlessly. Chirinos has been a pleasant surprise. And stalwarts like Bregman and Carlos Correa continue to be excellent. From top to bottom, Houston's lineup is a real handful for opposing pitchers, and that has been especially true of late.
Ohtani hits first homer of 2019
Since returning from Tommy John surgery five games ago, Shohei Ohtani has largely struggled at the plate, and that's understandable. He's coming back from a major injury and there was bound to be some rust following the long layoff. Ohtani went 4 for 21 (.190) with seven strikeouts in those five games.
Despite the lack of production, the underlying numbers indicate Ohtani is on the cusp of a breakout. He went into Monday's game with an 96.2 mph average exit velocity and three of his last five balls in play were clocked at over 105 mph. Sure enough, Ohtani swatted his first home run of the season Monday night. To the action footage:
Opposite field! Off the facing of the second deck! That's not a cheapie, especially not a Target Field. Statcast recorded the home run at 111.7 mph exit velocity. Clearly, the strength and power are there. The exit velocity numbers say it and the homer confirms it. The only question is timing and Ohtani's timing was on point there.
Because he still has not been cleared to throw, Ohtani will spend the entire 2019 season as a DH. He can't pitch and the Angels can't even put him in the outfield. Still, Ohtani limited to DH is better than no Ohtani. He is one of the most fun -- and one of the best -- players in the game.
La Stella continues breakout season
Ohtani was not the only Angels player to hit a home run Monday night. Second baseman Tommy La Stella swatted his team-leading -- and career-high -- 10th home run Monday. He took Twins ace Jose Berrios deep. To the action footage:
La Stella hit his tenth homer in his 121st plate appearance this season. He hit 10 homers in 947 plate appearances from 2014-18. La Stella, a six-year veteran, has doubled his career home run total in 36 games this season. Not coincidentally, he has increased his launch angle quite a bit this year:
- 2015-18: 12.3 degrees
- 2019: 15.6 degrees
La Stella would not be the first left-handed hitting second baseman to turn into a power threat a few years into his career. The currently injured Scooter Gennett did the same thing with the Reds a few years ago. He hit 35 homers with the Brewers from 2013-16 before hitting 27 homers with the Reds in 2017 (and 23 in 2018).
Gennett is a year younger than La Stella, so he figured it out earlier in his career, plus he showed more power before his big breakout. Still, their situations are similar. They were light-hitting platoon types who blossomed as offensive threats after changing teams. Sometimes a change of scenery (and coaching staffs) can work wonders.
Moncada has another multi-homer game
For the second time this season and the second time in his career, Yoan Moncada had a two-homer game Monday night. He mashed a pair of taters against Indians righty Shane Bieber, pulling one to right field and shooting the other to left field. Here are Moncada's two homers:
Those are Moncada's eighth and ninth home runs of the season, and, as noted, this was his second career multi-homer game. He had one back on April 16 as well. Moncada hit his ninth homer on May 11 this season. Last year he hit his ninth homer on June 12. (Moncada hit eight homers in 54 games after being a midseason call-up in 2017.)
So far this season the (still only) 23-year-old Moncada is hitting .289/.349/.528. That's a heck of a lot better than the .234/.319/.399 batting line he authored from 2016-18. Also, Moncada struck out in 33.6 percent of his plate appearances from 2016-18. He's knocked it down to 26.9 percent this year. That is significant improvement.
No back-to-back no-hitters for Fiers
Johnny Vander Meer still stands alone as the only man in baseball history to throw a no-hitter in back-to-back starts. Mike Fiers, in his first start since no-hitting the Reds last week, did not throw another no-hitter Monday night. In fact, he lost the no-hitter and the shutout one batter in to the game. Mitch Haniger took him deep for a leadoff homer.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Fiers is the first pitcher to allow a leadoff homer in the game after throwing a no-hitter since another Athletics hurler: Hall of Famer Catfish Hunter in 1968. Hunter no-hit the Twins on May 8, then allowed a leadoff homer to fellow Hall of Famer Rod Carew in his next start on May 14.
The Haniger home run was the only run Fiers allowed Monday. Fiers is a 33-year-old veteran, not a young developing kid, but the A's don't want to overwork him, so he was held to a strict pitch limit after throwing 131 pitches in the no-hitter. He was pulled after five innings and 85 pitches Monday.
Fiers has allowed two hits to last 52 batters he's faced, spanning 14 innings. Not too shabby.
- Today is Monday, so you know what that means. Our own are out, and there are more than a handful of teams worthy of a legitimate claim for the No. 1 spot.
- Sunday's Giants-Reds game showed us that Yasiel Puig's beef with Madison Bumgarner is alive and well, and
- Chicago Cubs starter Jon Lester is MLB's ERA leader, and
- The Tampa Bay Rays are hanging on to first-place in the American League East, but
- The Yankees welcomed Aaron Hicks back from the injured list, .
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