LEADING OFF: Cards’ Carpenter hot, Fiers debuts for A’s
A look at what’s happening around the majors today:
Matt Carpenter has four homers in five games heading into St. Louis’ series finale against Miami. Carpenter hit his 30th home run in a 3-2 win Monday, becoming the first left-handed Cardinal to hit 30 home runs since Jim Edmonds hit 42 in 2004, according to ESPN Stats & Info. “I couldn’t imagine the stretch I’m putting together,” Carpenter said. “I would have never guessed that. It’s uncharted territory for me.”
Mike Fiers makes his first start since the Athletics acquired him Detroit earlier this week. The right-hander will pitch at the Coliseum against a tough opponent in Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Fiers is 7-6 with a 3.48 ERA this season and 2-2 with a 1.96 ERA over his last seven starts.
“I wasn’t really planning on going anywhere and just focused on what I had to do there. The time came and I was traded and now I’m here trying to do my job every fifth day,” he said.
BOSTON BAIL OUT
The Red Sox go for their sixth straight win a night after overcoming a blown save from closer Craig Kimbrel. The Blue Jays rallied in the ninth, getting a solo homer from Justin Smoak off Kimbrel to force extra innings, only to have Ken Giles allow a three-run homer to Mitch Moreland and a two-run shot to Jackie Bradley Jr. in the 10th. It was the second blown save in four appearances for Kimbrel, though he struck out the other three batters he faced Monday.
Boston, which has the best record in the majors, turns to left-hander Brian Johnson (2-3, 3.74) to keep the streak going against Toronto’s Mike Hauschild (1-0, 0.00).
SCORING FOR YO
The last-place Rangers score a lot of runs when Yovani Gallardo is on the mound. Gallardo, 6-1 since rejoining Texas in mid-June for the first time since 2015, starts the series finale against Seattle. While Gallardo has a 4.76 ERA in seven starts since a no-decision in his season debut for the Rangers, they have averaged an MLB-best 11.57 runs per nine innings with the right-hander on the mound. No AL pitcher has more wins in that span.