Mets Make It Three Out Of Four In L.A.
Following their victory in Thursday's series opener, the New York Mets picked up two more wins Friday and Saturday before falling to the Dodgers on Sunday.
Coming off one of his few shaky starts of the season, knuckleball specialist R.A. Dickey bounced back to the tune of 10 strikeouts in eight shutout innings. Dickey allowed just three hits and one walk on the night.
Meanwhile, the Mets' bats came through with nine runs against Dodgers starter Aaron Harang and reliever Shawn Tolleson. Leading the way for New York was second baseman Daniel Murphy, who drove in five runs on a night that featured his third home run of the season.
Thanks to his incredible run in early June and his excellent start on Friday, Dickey was named the National League's Pitcher of the Month.
On Saturday, left-hander Johan Santana matched Dickey's performance with eight shutout innings of his own. The Mets scored single runs in the second and fifth innings, then broke it wide open in the sixth thanks to Ike Davis' three-run home run.
After being held to just one run in the first three games of the series, the Dodgers exploded for eight runs thanks in large part to three defensive miscues from the Mets. Starter Dillon Gee took the loss after allowing four runs, only two of which were earned.
Meanwhile, the Mets ran into an All-Star performance from Clayton Kershaw, who pitched seven innings and allowed just one earned run. Kershaw racked up nine strikeouts against three walks.
There was good news for the Mets on Sunday, however. Dickey was named to his first career All-Star roster and is in the running for the honor of starting the game for the National League. Third baseman David Wright finished second in the voting for the NL's starting spot but still made the team as a reserve.
The Mets (43-37) will return to Citi Field on Tuesday to finish out the first half with a six-game home stand. They will host three games against the Philadelphia Phillies and three more against the Chicago Cubs.
Yankees Split Chicago Series, Dominate All-Star Voting
Following their loss in the first game against the Chicago White Sox on Thursday, the New York Yankees took another loss Friday before bouncing back to win the final two contests.
Making his Major League debut, New York starter Adam Warren struggled mightily against the Chicago offense. The right-hander gave up six runs in just 2.1 innings, including home runs by A.J. Pierzynski and Paul Konerko.
The Yankees scored seven runs of their own to keep the score reasonably close through most of the game, but Chicago plated four in the top of the ninth to take a commanding 14-7 advantage.
After allowing a combined 18 runs in the first two games of the series, the Yankees held Chicago to just two in the final two games. On Saturday, right-hander Hiroki Kuroda mowed down the White Sox to the tune of 11 strikeouts in seven shutout innings.
Meanwhile, the Yankees blasted three home runs off Chicago starter Jake Peavy en route to a 4-0 victory.
After running into some trouble in the first inning, Sunday starter Phil Hughes came through with a dominant outing of his own. The right-hander struck out eight White Sox and allowed just two earned runs in eight innings.
Eric Chavez tied the game at two with a home run in the second inning, and Robinson Cano broke that tie one inning later with a two-run shot of his own. Rafael Soriano worked the ninth for his 18th save of the year.
The Yankees also learned on Sunday that they would be well-represented on this year's American League All-Star Team. Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson and Cano were all voted in as starters. Though he will be unavailable to actually play in the game due to a left groin strain, ace left-hander CC Sabathia was named to the pitching staff.
Cano was also chosen to captain the AL team at this year's State Farm Home Run Derby.
The Yankees traveled to Tampa one day later to take on the Rays and, despite getting off to a good start, lost Monday's series opener 4-3.
New York took the lead with a two-run first inning, but the Rays tied the game at two thanks to solo home runs from B.J. Upton and Carlos Pena. The Yankees broke that tie in the top of the seventh, but after the Rays tied it again in the bottom of the inning, first baseman Mark Teixeira's first error of the season allowed Tampa Bay to score the game-winning run.
The Yankees (48-31) will play two more games in Tampa, then travel to Boston for a four-game set against the Red Sox.