The Closer: National presence

July, 10, 2010
7/10/10
4:05
AM ET
WHY THEY WON

How Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg was Able to beat Cain (and the Giants):
- Threw 31 curveballs (most in any start). Had the most swing and misses (7) and most chases (8) with the curveball in any start as well.
- Hitters swung at 6 of his 13 changeups: 5 were missed and 1 was fouled off.
- Held Freddy Sanchez to 0-2: Has not allowed a hit to a second basemen in 7 starts (0-12).
- With RISP: Giants were 0-for-4 with 2 strikeouts.
- Held Giants to 0-for-7 on pitches inside (1st time allowing 0 hits inside).

How Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright shut down the lowly Astros:
- The number 3: Astros hitters were 0-for-3 in 3-ball counts. Opponents are now 0-for-8 against Wainwright in 3-ball counts in his last 3 starts.
- Consequently, the Astros were 1-for-8 while AHEAD in the count against Wainwright.
- Batters were 3-for-17 (.176 BA) against his fastball (.262 entering Friday).


HITTER OF THE NIGHT
Adam Dunn, WAS: 3-4, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 3 R

Dunn has all contending teams salivating at the thought of inserting him in the middle of their lineup. Since the beginning of July, Dunn has improved upon his already gaudy power numbers.



LOOKING AHEAD TO SATURDAY

ATHLETICS
Ben Sheets’ fastball has not been effective. When throwing the fastball this year he makes batters miss only 11% of the time and has walked more (29) than he’s struck out (26).

CUBS
Tom Gorzelanny: Left-handed batters hitting .310 (18-58) and slugging .517 (5 XBH) as a starting pitcher. Left-handed batters hitting and slugging .083 (1-12, 0 XBH) as a relief pitcher.

DODGERS
John Ely: Opponents hitting .333 (30-90) and slugging .544 (4 HR) against fastball over last 7 starts (5.17 ERA); Opponents hit .267 (27-101) and slugged .317 (0 HR) against fastball in first 6 starts (3.00 ERA).

RANGERS
Josh Hamilton during 29-game hit streak in Arlington:
- vs fastballs: .540, OPS 1.686
- vs high pitches: .474, OPS 1.629
- With runners on base: .455, only 4 K's in 59 PA
- 27 of 51 hits to the right side; 10 of 13 homers have been to right or right-center

WHITE SOX
The 4th inning is the only inning in his career that Brian Bannister has allowed an opponent’s batting average above .300 (.312), and the inning has also historically produced the worst ERA (6.62) for any inning over Bannister’s career.

YANKEES
Nick Swisher: Batting .406 (13-32) on 1st pitches of AB this season after hitting only .265 (13-49) on 1st pitches in 2009.

Javier Vazquez: opponents batting only .221 (25-113) early in the count this season after hitting .305 (91-298) early in the count in 2009

SPONSORED HEADLINES

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