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The Grand Slam: Jacob deGrom and Jake Peavy lose no-hit bids in seventh

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In one of the most entertaining pitching battles we've seen all season, New York Mets rookie Jacob deGrom was just a little bit better for a little longer than San Francisco Giants right-hander Jake Peavy. Both pitchers carried historic bids into the seventh inning and ultimately lost them. For deGrom, it was 6 2/3 innings of no-hit ball before Pablo Sandoval spoiled it with a double. For Peavy, 19 batters came up and 19 went down until Daniel Murphy doubled over Mike Morse's head in left. 

Unfortunately for Peavy, Murphy's knock actually opened the floodgate for the Mets. Three more hits and four runs would follow in the inning. San Francisco finally got to deGrom for two in the eighth, but it was too late. New York relievers Jeurys Familia and Jenrry Mejia retired the final five batters to secure a Mets 4-2 win and give Peavy his 11th consecutive loss spanning his time with Boston and San Francisco.

''At the end of the day, you are trying to put up zeroes and their guy did an outstanding job. I did not do enough,'' Peavy said.

That's about the only thing Peavy could say after such an outing. He pitched way better than the results indicate, but when the margin is so thin, it can unravel in a hurry. 

As for the rookie deGrom's mindset, it was all about maintaining focus and sticking with the game plan.

''I knew it at the fifth inning, so it was kind of a mental battle,'' deGrom said, ''but I was sticking to the plan we had and I was going right after the guys.''

According to the Associated Press, this is second game this season in which there were no hits allowed into the seventh inning by both pitchers. On April 2, Milwaukee's Matt Garza and Atlanta's Aaron Harang both lost their bids in the seventh frame.

CARDINALS GET GAME BACK ON BREWERS: The St. Louis Cardinals knew they couldn't finish the weekend in first place after losing on Friday, but they really didn't want to fall any farther than three games back, which is where they stood entering play on Saturday. With the help of Kolten Wong, who homered and knocked in three, that won't be the case either as they topped Milwaukee 9-7

Wong had three hits overall and scored twice. His home run was a solo shot in the first. In the third, Wong and Matt Holliday each singled home a pair of runs, which provided an early 6-1 cushion for newly acquired right-hander Justin Masterson. Milwaukee quickly chipped away with three runs in the fourth and one in the fifth, but never could pull even, allowing Masterson to pick up the win despite his uneven outing.

After play on Saturday, Milwaukee owns a two-game lead over St. Louis and the Pittsburgh Pirates, who were also victorious. Matt Garza and John Lackey will pitch the series finale at Busch Stadium.

HANLEY HITS WALK-OFF HOMER IN THE RAIN: With rare heavy rains falling at Dodger Stadium, the Cubs and Dodgers played deep into the night on Saturday. After Chicago tied the game at two in the seventh, both offenses went mostly silent, putting together only mild threats over the next five innings. However, that changed with one swing of the bat in the 12th inning, as Hanley Ramirez launched a walk-off three-run homer to give Los Angeles a 5-2 win

The hit was Hanley's third of the game. He also singled, doubled and scored on Matt Kemp's two-run homer in the fourth. Speaking of Kemp, the homer was his fourth in five games, which should make him a favorite for NL Player of the Week. As for the Cubs, the top four batters in their order went a combined 10 for 24, but they were still unable to generate enough offense to steal a very winnable game. 

NATS END HOMERLESS DROUGHT AT NINE GAMES: The Washington Nationals offense has been powerless since Ryan Zimmerman was sidelined with a Grade 3 hamstring strain last week. In the nine games immediately following his injury, they were 3-6 and without a home run, their longest drought since 1991 when they were the Montreal Expos. 

That drought ended with a bang on Saturday. Second baseman Anthony Rendon muscled up for a three-run jack against Philadelphia Phillies starter A.J. Burnett, and that was just a small part of Washington's offensive break out. Though they didn't hit another homer, they ended up plating 11 runs on 14 hits, including a six-run fifth as they cruised to an 11-0 win over the Phillies.

Each starter in the lineup contributed at least one hit. Yes, even pitcher Jordan Zimmermann. Only Wilson Ramos didn't score a run, so the attack was balanced throughout the order.

On the mound Zimmernann barely broke a sweat, holding Philadelphia scoreless over seven innings on just five hits. He retired the last 11 batters he faced.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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