We're about a month in, and finally some of the freak, early-season stats are starting to succumb to more significant sample sizes. The wheat is starting to separate itself from the chaff. Order is starting to be restored. The Rays and Orioles are battling for first place in the AL East. You know, the usual stuff.
Yankees 1, Indians 0: The good news? Sabathia makes a second straight dominant start (8 IP, 4H, 1ER, 8K). The bad news: he wasn't even the best starter in the game, as Wang posts 7IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 9K and wins what was, to date, the pitchers' duel of the year. Wang is off to his best start as a Major Leaguer. As Jason at IIATMS notes, however, he's doing it very differently than he has before.
Rays 3, Red Sox 0: James Shields dominates the Sawx. Two hits, one walk, and to the showers in less than 2:30. Definitely not Red Sox baseball. Then again, neither is getting swept by the Rays.
Mets 6, Braves 3: Mets fans may cheer Carlos Delgado's two dinger effort, but their joy should be tempered somewhat by the fact that he hit them off a guy who may soon be missing a lot of time due to a bum shoulder. Braves fans, on the other hand, should simply panic.
Nationals 2, Cubs 0: The Nats' John Lannan -- a guy I had never heard of before he blanked my team last Tuesday -- is sitting on a 19 inning scoreless streak.
Pirates 5, Phillies 1: What on Earth is wrong with Ryan Howard (.174/.300/.359)?
Marlins 3, Brewers 2: Really only one team ever thought highly enough of Wes Helms to make him a starter for any extended period of time, and that's Milwaukee. Helms, ever the ingrate, decides to bury his old team with two RBI, including the game winning homer in extra innings. In other news, pretty soon we're going to start getting a lot of those articles we see around this time each year. You know the ones -- about how the Marlins are winning despite zero payroll, and aren't they good and refreshing and wonderful, etc. etc. I, for one, will be happy when they get printed, because that means the inevitable swoon will start soon after.
Cardinals 5, Astros 1: Kyle Lohse goes six strong and is now 3-0 with a 2.36 ERA. When your team is struggling sometime this summer because they can't seem to get any starting pitching, remember that Lohse was (a) available until mid-March; and (b) signed a deal for just north of $4M.
Diamondbacks 2, Padres 1: Webb, by the way, is now 6-0 and is pitching for a team that is much better on offense this year than it was last year. I'm not one for wild speculation, especially this early in the year, but if you wanted to put money on someone winning 30 games, Webb would be your man.
Reds 10, Giants 1: Zito, by the way, is now 0-6 and is pitching for a team that is much worse on offense this year than it was last year. I'm not one for wild speculation, especially this early in the year, but if you wanted to put money on someone losing 30 games, Zito would be your man.
Rangers 10, Twins 0: When the worst pitching staff in the AL meets the second worst offense in the league, something's got to give! Well, it was the offense that gave, as the Rangers shut out the Twins. Josh Hamilton (.333/.385/.581) continues to make me wonder how much money he'd be making right now if he hadn't snorted, smoked, and shot-up his way out of his expected development curve.
A's 4, Mariners 2: Ichiro is a historically-bad April hitter, with his career April average (.294) standing a full thirty points below his next lowest month. His April 2008, however, is way worse than that (.257/.319/.376).
Angels 6, Tigers 2: Justin Verlander was looking sharp until around the time Mrs. Shyster commandeered the TV to watch Desperate Housewives. You can therefore imagine my surprise when I checked back later to see that he had laid another stink bomb (5.2, 7 H, 6 ER, 4 BB). Sure, it wasn't as surprising as finding out that it was Lynette's kids who burnt down Rick's restaurant (I totally thought Tom had done it) and that Bree actually kicked Orson out of the house when she discovered that it was him who ran down Mike with his car two seasons ago, but surprising all the same.
Wait. Did I say that in my out-loud voice?