Cliff Lee made a good first impression
Cliff Lee (1-0) pitched a four-hitter, carrying a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and even adding two hits with the bat, and the Phillies felt an immediate impact two days after acquiring the left-hander from Cleveland, beating the San Francisco Giants 5-1 on Friday night. He dazzled from the start for the World Series champions, tossing his 11th career complete game, fourth this season and third in four starts. Leeâ€™s line: one run, six strikeouts, two walks, 109 pitches and 78 strikes. He was done in 2 hours, 39 minutes. Lee doubled in the eighth for his first career extra-base hit and that gave him his first multihit gameâ€”and doubled his previous career hit total. Giants rookie Ryan Sadowski (2-4) lost his fourth straight start after beginning his career 2-0 with 16 scoreless innings. He was done after four innings and 82 pitches after feeling some tightness in his shoulder and arm. He hasnâ€™t gone longer than five during his losing streak.
Chris keeps the cubbies at bay
Three Florida relievers shut out the Chicago Cubs over the final 2 1-3 innings Friday night, while the Marlins scored three runs in the eighth against Carlos Marmol for a 5-2 victory. Brendan Donnelly (1-0), who has yet to allow a run in 10 innings with Florida, retired two batters in the eighth for his first NL victory. Leo Nunez pitched a hitless ninth for his ninth save in 12 chances. The relievers combined with starter Chris Volstad on a seven-hitter against the Cubs, who had scored 12 runs in each of the past two games. Floridaâ€™s relievers will get a reinforcement Saturday with the return of closer Matt Lindstrom, sidelined since June 23 by an elbow injury. The Marlins have won eight of their last 10 games to surge into wild-card contention, and they were buoyed by the addition of Washington first baseman Nick Johnson minutes before Fridayâ€™s trade deadline. Heâ€™s expected to be in the lineup Saturday. The score was 2-all when Marmol (2-2) came into the game in the eighth with a scoreless streak of 8 1-3 innings, but he walked the first two batters. Dan Uggla scored from second on Bakerâ€™s hit, and Helms doubled to hike his average as a pinch-hitter to .387.
Brian is not a happy camper
Schmidt (2-1) walked five and struck out three in six innings, his longest start since going six innings for the Dodgers at San Diego on June 5, 2007. Six scoreless innings, his longest start in more than two years, lifted Schmidtâ€™s spirits and Andre Ethier hit a homer and drove in four runs to lift the Los Angeles Dodgers past the Atlanta Braves 5-0 on Friday night. Ethier hit a three-run homer in the fifth off Tommy Hanson (5-2) and added a run-scoring double in the ninth.â€œItâ€™s the first time Iâ€™ve ever faced him that heâ€™s not thrown me a changeup,â€ Jones said. â€œThereâ€™s just not that much difference between his changeup and his fastball right now. â€¦ But his curveball is much improved.â€ Hanson gave up eight hits and four runs in six innings to lose his second straight start.
So close...yet so far
Sean Green and the New York Mets were on their way to escaping a mess in the eighth inning Friday night when the relieverâ€™s control failed him again. Arizona loaded the bases with no outs in the eighth. Green (1-3) hit Upton with a pitch and walked Reynolds after Pedro Feliciano gave up a leadoff single to Gerardo Parra. The Mets looked as if they might escape after Daniel Murphy turned a nifty 3-2-3 double play but Greenâ€™s next pitch bounced away from catcher Omir Santos and Upton scampered home to give the Diamondbacks a 3-2 lead. Esmerling Vasquez (2-2) pitched a scoreless seventh, Jon Rauch worked the eighth and Chad Qualls finished for his 19th save. David Wright and Daniel Murphy homered for New York, which has lost its last two after winning five straight. Livan Hernandez gave up two runs and four hits in six innings. Reynolds hit a 415-foot drive to center in the second for his 29th homer and Montero connected in the fourth, reaching the upper deck in right for his 10th of the season. Reynolds had two hits and is batting .396 (21 for 53) since the All-Star break. â€œWe never put a lot of guys on base,â€ Mets right fielder Jeff Francoeur said. â€œWe never had the chance for a big inning. Doug Davis, he has us all off balance.â€
The last of the pirates do battle
Ross Ohlendorf (9-8) allowed two runs and six hits in 6 1-3 innings, Matt Capps earned his 21st save and Andrew McCutchen went 2 for 3 for the Pirates. Ryan Zimmerman homered and Cristian Guzman went 2 for 4 with an RBI for the Nationals, who have lost three straight. The last-place teams met on a trade deadline day that included the first game for their respective watered-down rosters. In front of his rebuilt former team, Lastings Milledge made a good first impression on the new-look Pittsburgh Pirates. Milledgeâ€™s hits came in the third and seventh off Nationals starter John Lannan (7-8), but the left fielder misplayed Guzmanâ€™s sinking liner into an RBI double with Hanrahan on the mound in the eighth. Lannan entered the game having allowed a total of two runs in his past two starts but was charged with more than three earned runs in a game for only the third time in his past 20 outings. He allowed five runs and nine hits in seven innings. â€œI had it bad out there today, but I took some positives out of it,â€ Lannan said. â€œYou knew that something was going to happen today. Nickâ€™s a great ballplayer and Joe helps any staff. On deadline day, you know a lot of things are going to go down, so it really didnâ€™t affect my mentality.â€