Orioles downward spiral running out of control
ESPN The Magazine
Tim Kurkjian is a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine and is an analyst for "Baseball Tonight."
Baseball Tonight Live
"Baseball Tonight" analysts, ESPN.com writers and SweetSpot Network bloggers chatted and gave their in-game opinions throughout the day's games -- all in Baseball Tonight Live.
Touch 'Em All
Who went deep? Keep track of all the home runs hit each day on "Baseball Tonight" and the Baseball Tonight Clubhouse page. For more, check out the Home Run Tracker page.
|Jose Reyes, NYM||6||DET||Bot 5: 2-1, 2 Outs. None on.||Bonderman|
|Jayson Werth, PHI||13||CLE||Bot 2: 3-1, 0 Outs. None on.||Westbrook|
|Matt Holliday, STL||11||TOR||Top 3: 2-1, 2 Outs. None on.||Cecil|
|Adam Jones, BAL||10||FLA||Bot 2: 0-0, 1 Out. None on.||Nolasco|
|Michael Young, TEX||10||PIT||Bot 1: 1-2, 0 Outs. 1 on.||Maholm|
Thursday's Best Matchups
Padres at Rays, 12:10 p.m. ET
Padres starter Wade LeBlanc has been stellar his past three times out, allowing only two runs over 19 2/3 innings while going 2-0 to even his season record at 4-4. His ERA stands at 2.88, but opponents are hitting him, with his batting average against resting at .283. Matt Garza is coming off his worst outing of the year, a dreadful 1 1/3-inning, seven-run disaster against the Marlins.
Braves at White Sox, 2:05 ET
Gavin Floyd has just one win since April 29, going 1-5 with three no-decisions. That can be deceiving, though, since he is 0-1 over his past three starts but allowed only one run in each of those outings. The White Sox were shut out in one of those games, lost 2-1 in another and had a bullpen implosion in the third.
Red Sox at Rockies, 8:40 p.m.
Daisuke Matsuzaka pitches for the first time since June 7. He has been on the disabled list with a strained forearm. That last start before heading to the DL was solid; Dice-K pitched eight shutout innings in a 4-1 win at Cleveland. Rockies starter Jason Hammel, meanwhile, is 4-0 over his past five starts.
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Chase it down
WEB GEMS LEADERBOARD
WEDNESDAY'S BEST AND WORST
BESTR.A. Dickey, RHP, Mets
On a day filled with big-name pitchers -- Ubaldo Jimenez, Stephen Strasburg and Chris Carpenter, to name a few -- it was perhaps Dickey who shined brightest. By tossing eight shutout innings in a 5-0 Mets win, Dickey improved to 6-0 on the season and lowered his ERA to 2.33.
WORSTPaul Maholm, RHP, Pirates
A hot Rangers team did not take it easy on Maholm, who lasted only one inning. Maholm had an interesting line, though. He gave up seven runs, seven hits and five walks. In one inning of work, he threw 55 pitches for his second consecutive loss.
You know when you recommend a movie to a friend, but your buddy hated the movie? It not only feels like you let your friend down; it feels like his opinion of you has lessened, too.Well, that's kind of how it was when we, baseball analysts, recommended Ricky Nolasco to fantasy fans. If you're one of the people who listened to our advice on this hurler, I'm sorry. I hope we can still be friends. Through his first 14 starts this season (before Wednesday's win against the Orioles) Nolasco has made my research look silly. His ERA rests at 4.90, slightly down from last year, but by no means enough to matter. His K/BB ratio is still impressive at 3.53, but the drop is caused by a rather severe downturn in strikeouts. After punching out around 8.5 batters per nine in 2008-09, Nolasco's rate has dropped to a meager 6.5 per nine.