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Four 1-0 games on one day for only the second time in MLB history
There were four 1-0 games on Saturday: three in the American League (Rays over the Yankees, Royals over the White Sox, Indians over the Rangers) and one in the National League (Cubs over the Giants). In major-league history the only other day on which there were four 1-0 games was Sept. 2, 2001, when the winning teams were the Yankees (vs. Boston), Mariners (vs. Baltimore), Astros (vs. Milwaukee) and Padres (vs. Arizona).
Saturday marked only the fourth time that three American League games on one day ended with a 1-0 score, and it was the first time that happened since Sept. 4, 1965, when the Red Sox beat the Yankees, the Orioles edged the Indians and the Senators vetoed the Tigers by that scoreline.
Archer is right on target
Rays rookie Chris Archer pitched his second shutout of the season with a 1-0 win at Yankee Stadium in which he held the struggling Bronx Bombers to two hits. It was only the fourth 1-0 shutout with two or fewer hits allowed by a rookie pitcher against the Yankees. The first two came five days apart in September 1914 by the Washington Senators' Jim Shaw and Jack Bentley, and the last one before Archer's was by the Orioles' Don Ferrarese on May 12, 1956. All four of those shutouts were two-hitters.
Archer did not walk a batter in either of his shutouts. (The first one was against the Astros on July 14.) Since 1989, the only other rookie to pitch two walkless shutouts in one season was Hiroki Kuroda for the Dodgers in 2008.
Chris Archer's next start is scheduled to be on August 2, so his July totals are almost certainly final: a 4-0 record and 0.73 ERA in five games with only three earned runs allowed in 37 innings. In baseball's "live-ball era" (i.e., since 1920), only three other rookies posted an earned-run average as low as Archer's July mark in a calendar month in which they pitched at least 35 innings: the Reds Junior Thompson in September 1939 (0.72), the Red Sox' Boo Ferriss in May 1945 (0.67) and the Dodgers' Fernando Valenzuela in April 1981 (0.20).
Indians get a leadoff homer and win 1-0
Michael Bourn's home run leading off the bottom of the first inning turned out to be all the offense the Indians needed as they posted a 1-0 win over the Rangers on Saturday. It was the first time in the Indians' 113-season franchise history that they won a game in which the only run came on a home run by a player leading off the first inning. The only other such game in the majors this season was on May 18, when Arizona's Gerardo Parra hit a leadoff homer at Miami.
Cubs win 1-0 with a ninth-inning homer
The Cubs won 1-0 at San Francisco and the only run of the game was driven in by a former Giants player, Nate Schierholtz, with a ninth-inning home run. It was only the second time in the last 20 years that the Cubs won a game by a 1-0 score with a home run in the ninth inning or later. Their only other such victory since 1993 was on July 2, 2003 at Philadelphia, with Sammy Sosa breaking the scoreless deadlock with a ninth-inning homer off former Cub Turk Wendell.
Royals' sixth 1-0 win over the last two seasons
Wade Davis, Louis Coleman and Greg Holland combined to pitch the Royals to a 1-0 win over the White Sox in Chicago. It was the Royals' sixth 1-0 victory over the last two seasons (three in 2012 and three in 2013), tying them with the Mariners for major-league high over that span. Kansas City recorded only six 1-0 wins over the previous seven seasons (2005 through 2011).
Scherzer wins for the 15th time in 16 decisions
Max Scherzer improved his record to 15-1 this season with a win over the Phillies on Saturday. Scherzer is only the fourth major-league pitcher since 1979 to win at least 15 of his first 16 decisions in one season. The others were Roger Clemens (2001 Yankees, 15-1), Ubaldo Jimenez (2010 Rockies, 15-1) and Jered Weaver (2012 Angels, 15-1).
Seven straight hits for Edwin Encarnacion
Edwin Encarnacion singled in all four of his at-bats in the Blue Jays' loss to the Astros on Saturday, after recording hits in each of his last three at-bats on Friday (a fifth-inning double and two home runs in the seventh inning). Encarnacion's streak of seven consecutive at-bats with hits matches the 2013 major-league high, previously accomplished by Lorenzo Cain, Ryan Raburn, Martin Prado, David Wright, Delmon Young and Omar Infante.
Andrew Cashner wins and homers
Padres pitcher Andrew Cashner hit the first home run of his major-league career in his win at Arizona on Saturday night. Cashner is the third San Diego pitcher to hit a home run this season, following Eric Stults (April 15) and Edinson Volquez (June 2). The Braves (Tim Hudson, Kris Medlen, Mike Minor) and Cubs (Scott Feldman, Jeff Samardzija, Travis Wood) are the only other major-league teams to have three different pitchers homer for them this year.
Ryu loves L.A.
Hyun-Jin Ryu earned his ninth win of the season by pitching seven innings and allowing only one run against the Reds in Los Angeles on Saturday. Ryu has made ten starts at Dodger Stadium and he pitched at least six innings and allowed no more than three runs in each of those games. He's the first pitcher to do that in his first ten home starts for the Dodgers since the team moved to Los Angeles from Brooklyn for the 1958 season.
Haren ends his 11-start winless streak
Dan Haren ended his career-worst streak of 11 consecutive winless starts with a victory over the Mets in which he pitched seven innings and allowed only one run and three hits. Haren was 0-8 with a 6.18 ERA in his last 11 starts before Saturday and the Nationals lost every one of those games. Haren is the only major-league pitcher to go winless in at least 11 straight starts this season, but a total of 13 pitchers suffered winless streaks of that length or longer last year, led by Houston's Bud Norris who did not register a win in 18 consecutive starts from late May to late September.
Two-homer game for Stephen Drew
Red Sox shortstop Stephen Drew hit two home runs in a game for the second time in his career and drove in five runs to lead Boston to a 7-3 win at Baltimore. (Drew's other two-homer game was for the Diamondbacks at San Diego on Aug. 25, 2010.) Since the Red Sox sent Nomar Garciaparra to the Cubs on trading deadline day in 2004, the only other Boston shortstops to hit two home runs in one game were Jed Lowrie (twice in 2010) and Marco Scutaro (once in 2010).
A rare two-out clutch hit for Simmons
The Braves and Cardinals were scoreless with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning when Andrelton Simmons hit a two-run double with the bases loaded and those runs provided the margin of victory in Atlanta's 2-0 win. Before that double, Simmons had only three hits in 45 at-bats with two outs and runners in scoring position this season, an .067 batting average.
Deduno wins his third straight start
Samuel Deduno and three Twins relievers combined for a 4-0 win at Seattle on Saturday. Deduno has won his last three starts, all on the road, and in each game he pitched seven innings and allowed no more than two runs. The only other road win of that kind by a Minnesota starter this season was by Scott Diamond on May 7 at Boston (seven innings, no runs).
Four-hit game for Pirates catcher
Pirates catcher Michael McKenry set a single-game career high when he recorded four hits in Pittsburgh's 7-4 win at Miami. Over the last four seasons the only other time a Pirates catcher had a four-hit game was when Ryan Doumit went 4 for 4 (including a home run) against the Cardinals at PNC Park on Aug. 15, 2011.
Pinch-hit homer propels the A's to victory
Derek Norris hit a two-run pinch-hit home run with the Athletics trailing, 1-0, in the bottom of the seventh inning and the A's went on to post a 3-1 win over the Angels. It was the first pinch-hit of Norris' major-league career; he had been hitless in 12 previous pinch-hit at-bats. Norris was the second Oakland player to hit a go-ahead pinch-hit home run this season. The first was John Jaso, and that home run was also against the Angels (April 9 in Anaheim). Jaso was pinch-hitting for Derek Norris at the time.