Verlander dominates in Bronx, taunts fans in best way
The biggest matchup in the first part of this week comes in Yankee Stadium, with two of the best teams in baseball facing off in an ALCS rematch. The Astros took this one, thanks in large part to the continued dominance of 35-year-old Justin Verlander.
Verlander allowed just one run (a solo Greg Bird home run) in 6 2/3 innings while striking out five and not walking any. He's now 7-2 with a 1.11 ERA and 0.71 WHIP.
Since joining the Astros last season, here is what Verlander has done: 12-2, 1.09 ERA, 0.69 WHIP, 141 K, 20 BB, 115 1/3 IP.
Also, when Yankees fans booed Verlander as he was leaving the field, he came through with a mocking hat-tip:
Have a day.
Suter extends Brewers lead
The Brewers entered Monday up four games in the NL Central over the Cardinals. Thanks to Brent Suter, that lead is now five games.
Suter did it all against the Cardinals. He threw five innings, allowing five hits and three runs while striking out six and walking none. He also hit his second double of the season, driving in a pair of baserunners in the process.
Of course, Suter had some help along the way. The Brewers bullpen threw four one-hit innings, striking out five and keeping the Cards off the board. Additionally, the Brewers offense plated six runs beyond Suter's two -- including three late in the game against Brett Cecil.
The Brewers have now won four in a row, giving them the largest division lead in baseball.
Gio dominates in Beltway
The Nationals visited the Orioles to kick off the latest incarnation of the Battle of the Beltway and this one was about as one-sided as their records suggested it would be. Nationals starter Gio Gonzalez went 7 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing only six hits and two walks. His ERA is down to 2.10 and it seems like a pretty sneaky figure, no? How many people are talking about his performance so far this season?
The Red Sox had some fun with the Blue Jays in matinee action, notably with Andrew Benintendi's day (3 for 4 with a triple, home runs and four RBI) and J.D. Martinez's 17th homer. How about this catch from Jackie Bradley Jr., though?
Montgomery, Rizzo lead Cubs over struggling Pirates
Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo had a terrible April, but he's been good in May and put together one of his better games at the plate of the season on Monday. He started the scoring off with a solo shot:
He would end up going 3 for 4 with three RBI.
On the mound, Mike Montgomery was brilliant in his first start of the year. Yu Darvishwas placed on the disabled list, so the Cubs brought Montgomery up from the bullpen and he was perfect through four innings. He would end up working 5 2/3 innings (he still isn't totally stretched out, but did get to 76 pitches). He only allowed two hits -- one of the infield variety -- while striking out five without a walk. Fifty-four of his 76 pitches were strikes and he commanded the zone, too.
On the Pirates' end, they have now lost eight of their last 10 games. They were in first place before this stretch started and now sit in fourth, only three games above .500.
Braves walk it off in Game 1
The Mets and Braves have a doubleheader Monday and the first game looked to be going the Mets' way when Devin Mesoraco hit a go-ahead home run in the top of the ninth inning. Instead, Braves utility man Charlie Culberson hit a two-run, walk-off homer to end it in the Braves' favor:
For the first time since starting 11-1, the Mets have fallen back to .500. They'll have a shot to get back above water in the nightcap, though.