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The Juice: Matt Harvey strikes out 11 and gets two hits in debut, Indians overtake Verlander with big 7th

Big League Stew

The Juice is back for its fifth season of fun! Stop by each weekday for an ample serving of news from the action, plus great photos, stats and video highlights.

You look Harvelous: Right-hander Matt Harvey shouted his presence to the world Thursday night, striking out 11 and collecting two hits at the plate against Arizona in a dynamite debut for the New York Mets. No player since 1900 had struck out at least 10 and collected two hits in his first game. Harvey, the Mets' top pick in the 2010 draft, allowed three hits and three walks over 5 1/3 scoreless innings before giving way to the bullpen in a 3-1 victory. As Amazin' Avenue noted, Harvey generated 17 swinging strikes in 106 pitches — 16 percent — when the NL average per start is 8.6 percent. It's like they were swinging at invisible rabbit pitches out there! The 24-year-old also hit a double and a single, just to rub it in.

Tighten up: This kind of implosion is only supposed to happen in the All-Star game, Justin Verlander. The Indians rallied for four runs against Verlander in the seventh inning and stunned the Tigers 5-3 to bring the AL Central closer together. Cleveland's Carlos Santana and Travis Hafner hit consecutive pitches over the fence to tie the score in the seventh, and the Indians added four consecutive singles to complete the rally. The Indians knocked Detroit out of first in the process and clawed within 3 1/2 games of leading Chicago.

The Federal Way: At 59-39, the Washington Nationals have the best record in the major leagues (along with the Yankees) after beating the Brewers 8-2 in Milwaukee. Not since 1933 has a team based in D.C. been 20 games over .500. Edwin Jackson pitched seven scoreless innings and Steve Lombardozzi hit a three-run triple for the Nats.

A's streak strikes out: The Blue Jays ended Oakland's seven-game winning streak 10-4 at the former Skydome. Edwin Encarnacion hit a three-run homer to help the Jays rebound from a 16-0 loss the night before.

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Quote of the Day: ''If things don't work out as a pitcher he should become a hitter'' — D-backs catcher Miguel Montero, on Matt Harvey

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Photo of the Day: That's Rafael Furcal under there.

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(Getty)


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Three Facts for the Water Cooler:

• The St. Louis Cardinals collected a season-high 18 hits in a 7-4 victory against the Dodgers, who are now 0-2 since adding Hanley Ramirez to the lineup.

• We all know that won-loss records for pitchers can be deceiving, but A.J. Burnett of the Pirates improved to 12-3 in a 5-3 victory against the Astros. Burnett allowed two runs and four hits over 7 1/3 innings.

Matt Wieters of the Orioles finds himself in a 1-for-30 skid, though Baltimore did beat the Rays 6-2.

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