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Big League Stew

The Juice: David Price sets Rays record in win over Blue Jays

Mark Townsend
Big League Stew

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Nine innings and nine items to get you going. Ladies and gentleman of the Stew, take a sip of morning Juice.

1. David sets the Price at 14K: Aided by a stiff wind to center field that was adding unprecedented movement to his two-seam fastball, Tampa Bay Rays lefty David Price fanned a franchise-record 14 Toronto Blue Jays over seven scoreless innings.

"I've never had that much movement before so it was pretty cool," Price said. "The wind kept blowing and it was making my eyes watery all game. I knew it was blowing pretty good and I just kept throwing it."

And the Jays kept missing it.

But as much as Price benefited, the wind was not a detriment to Tampa's offense. Rookie Desmond Jennings hit a pair of home runs and knocked in three, while three other Rays drove in two in what amounted to a 12-0 victory.

2. Heating up: With the game-time temperature of 103 for a 7:05 p.m. local first pitch, two struggling Texas Rangers finally got hot. Josh Hamilton broke a 3-for-21 slide with a game-tying two-run homer in the third, and a go-ahead single in the seventh. Elvis Andrus, mired in a 3-for-32 slump, collected three hits of his own, including a very fortunate bunt single, as Texas extended their division lead to three games with a 9-5 win over the Los Angeles Angels.

3. Brewers blackjack!: The Milwaukee Brewers notched their 21st win in August, defeating the Chicago Cubs by a score of 3-2. That ties Milwaukee's franchise record for victories in a month set back in June 1978. Zack Greinke picked up the win on the hill, tossing 7 2/3 innings of one-run ball. He's now a perfect 10-0 at Miller Park in 2011.

4. Splitsville: After losing Saturday's doubleheader to Hurricane Irene, the New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles wound up splitting a double-dip on Sunday. Game 1 went to Baltimore 2-0 behind Zach Britton's seven shutout innings. The Yankees then took the nightcap 8-3 on the strength of Curtis Granderson's two round-trippers and three straight home runs — Robinson Cano, Nick Swisher and Andruw Jones — in the sixth. {YSP:MORE}

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5. Votto's lousy day: When you're the reigning National League MVP, even your bad days are better than most people's good days. Or at least that's true for Joey Votto, who on a day he said he felt "pretty lousy" at the plate, homered twice, including an opposite-field walk-off blast in the 14th inning that gave the Cincinnati Reds a 5-4 victory over the Washington Nationals.

"It didn't feel like a great day with the bat for me but I end up with a couple homers and a couple walks. It's such an odd game sometimes," Votto said.

Baseball is actually a odd game all of the time, but I also have to wonder if Votto has strange self-evaluation methods.

6. Instant impact: All of those Chicago White Sox fans clamoring for Dayan Viciedo's to be recalled since April can feel justified. After singling in his very first at-bat, the 22-year-old rookie made a bigger impact in his second, delivering a three-run line-drive homer to center. That jump-started the offense. Later, fellow rookie Tyler Flowers would launch his first career grand slam — and Chicago's first of the season — helping the White Sox sweep the Seattle Mariners with a 9-3 victory.

7. How the West was lost?: For the second straight weekend, the San Francisco Giants failed to take advantage of the woeful Houston Astros, dropping a 4-3 decision in 11 innings and settling for a four-game series split. Last weekend the Giants dropped two of three in Houston.

8. Building a case: Though he's likely still a longshot, Arizona Diamondbacks ace Ian Kennedy beefed up his NL Cy Young résumé with seven innings of one-run baseball in a 6-1 home triumph over the San Diego Padres. The victory gives Arizona a six-game winning streak, a four-game lead in the NL West, and makes Kennedy the first 17-game winner in the league.

9. 100 and counting: St. Louis Cardinals starter Kyle Lohse became the 36th active pitcher to notch 100 career wins in 7-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Lohse reached the milestone in a dubious manner, lasting only five frames and allowing four runs (two earned). But the offense, sans Albert Pujols, picked him up and carried him home. And then doused him with a postgame ice-water shower.

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