Friday, October 5, 2012

Heroes of Game 162

Here's a list of some players who were at the top of their game on the season's final day:
  • Gavin Floyd blanked the Indians for seven innings, allowing just three singles and two walks while striking out six in Chicago's 9-0 rout
  • Dan Johnson, (yes Red Sox fans, that Dan Johnson) belted three long balls and drove in five runs to back Floyd.  Clearly Johnson knows how to save his best for last
  • Speaking of the Red Sox, Robinson Cano went to town at their expense yesterday by going 4-for-4 with two dingers, six RBI, three runs scored and a walk in New York's 14-2 pasting of the Sox (who lost eight in a row to close out the year). Curtis Granderson chipped in with two circuit drives of his own, giving him 43 on the season to tie Josh Hamilton for second place behind Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera
  • 23 year-old Blake Beavan fired eight innings of shutout ball in Seattle's 12-0 drubbing of the Angels.  Incredibly, not one of the 24 outs he recorded came via the K. I don't care if he has a pathetic 4.0 K/9; Mike Trout, Kendrys Morales, Mark Trumbo, Howard Kendrick, and Torii Hunter all piled up triple digit strikeout totals this year and all five of them were in the lineup yesterday
  • Evan Longoria crushed three solo home runs in support of Jeremy Hellickson, who gave up only one single to the Orioles over 5.1 frames. Last year, he cleared the fences twice during Game 162
  • Brandon Morrow dominated the Minnesota Twins, holding Joe Mauer and co. to just three singles and one run while punching out eleven in eight innings of work. He spent most of the summer on the Disabled List, but in his 21 starts the budding ace compiled a 2.96 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and trimmed his walk rate for the third year in a row. If he stays healthy next year, he could wind up in the Cy Young discussion
  • 21 year-old Shelby Miller looked great in his first major league start, one-hitting the Cincinatti Reds for six innings while fanning seven. My favorite for 2013 NL Rookie of the Year had no problems stifling a lineup featuring Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, Jay Bruce, Ryan Ludwick, Drew Stubbs, and Scott Rolen
  • Clayton Kershaw bolstered his Cy Young case by limiting the Giants to one run and three hits over eight innings while striking out eight. Like Justin Verlander, his numbers this year are almost identical to last season's figures except for one; wins. Verlander won 24 games in 2011 while Kershaw won 21, but this season both hurlers won seven fewer games despite pitching just as well.  And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why won-lost record has gone the way of batting average and RBI
  • Edwin Jackson helped Washington secure the best record in baseball with 6.2 innings of one run ball. E-Jax struck out six Phillies and issued only one free pass as the Nats took their 98th win of the season

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