Dugout Digest – missed chances

The A's and Rays both had chances to improve their playoff odds on Thursday in California, and both failed. The A's fell to the Astros 3-2 to slip to half a game back of the Rangers in the AL West, while the Rays fell to the Angels 6-2 to lose ground in the wild card standings. You need to destroy these struggling teams, and while Oakland has pummeled Houston this year, the Rays have split their season series with the Angels. At the end of the year, that might not give the team good vibes, especially when looking at the playoff picture if they don't get in.


When Pablo Sandoval triples, we all win. (Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)

Game of the Night: Red Sox 9, Yankees 8 (10 innings), Hey look, a Red Sox-Yankees game that lived up to the hype! Boston had a 7-2 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh, but New York's offense erupted that inning. Jake Peavy started the frame, but was pulled after walking Ichiro and allowing a single to Vernon Wells. Matt Thornton relieved him, allowed an RBi single to Brett Gardner to make it 7-3, and after walking Derek Jeter, allowed an RBI groundout to Robinson Cano to make it 7-4. Junichi Tazawa replaced Thornton, and promptly gave up the lead after an RBI single by Alex Rodriguez, an RBI double by Curtis Granderson, and an RBI single by Lyle Overbay. That lead held until the ninth, and Mariano Rivera came in to shut things down. Rivera got the first two outs without breaking a sweat before allowing a single to Mike Napoli. Pinch runner Quintin Berry stole second, moved to third on an error, and scored on a single by Stephen Drew to send the game to extras. In the tenth, Jacoby Ellsbury singled with one out off of Joba Chamberlain, stole second, and scored the go-ahead run on a single by Shane Victorino to give Boston the lead. Koji Uehara set the Bronx Bombers down in order in the bottom of the inning to seal off the lead and extend the Red Sox's lead in the AL East.

Pitching Lines of the Night: Only three outings qualify tonight, folks. Miguel Gonzalez led the Orioles to a 3-1 win over the White Sox, allowing one run on four hits in seven innings, striking out six and walking one. Brad Peacock and Sonny Gray both pitched well in Oakland's loss to Houston, as Peacock gave up two runs on five hits in seven innings, striking out nine and walking one, while Gray gave up three runs (two earned) on seven hits in eight innings, walking one and punching out seven.

Hitting Lines of the Night: Todd Frazier helped the Reds to a 6-2 win over the Cardinals, going 3/4 with a pair of solo homers, while teammate Shin-Soo Choo went 2/3 with a solo homer, two runs scored, and two walks. Billy Butler helped the Royals to a 7-6, 12 inning win over the Mariners by going 5/5 with a run and an RBI. Emilio Bonifacio also spurred Kansas City's win by going 4/6 with two runs and a stolen base. In Boston's win over the Yankees, Shane Victorino went 2/6 with a homer, three RBI, and a stolen base.

Other Games: The Diamondbacks doubled up the Giants 4-2, moving into a tie with the Nationals in the NL Wild Card standings.

What You Missed: Why you should watch every team in September. Are the Red Sox the AL's best team? Hakuna Machado!

Today's Games: Kyle Lohse starts for the Brewers in Chicago. Mike Minor and Cliff Lee face off in Philly. Felix Doubront takes on Andy Pettitte in the Bronx. Scott Feldman and the Orioles host the White Sox. Zack Wheeler starts for the Mets in Cleveland. Mike Leake and the Reds host the Dodgers. Jose Fernandez and the Marlins host the Nationals. Anibal Sanchez and James Shields square off in Kansas City. RA Dickey starts for the Blue Jays in Minnesota. AJ Burnett gets the nod for the Pirates in St Louis. Matt Garza and CJ Wilson battle in Anaheim. Pat Corbin starts for the Diamondbacks in San Francisco. Alex Cobb and Hisashi Iwakuma duel in Seattle.

National TV: Red Sox-Yankees (7 PM, MLB Network), Dodgers-Reds (7 PM, MLB Network)

MLB.tv Free Game: Rangers-Angels (10 PM)

Pitching Matchup of the Day: Anibal Sanchez vs James Shields (Tigers at Royals, 8 PM)

Enjoy your day of baseball, everyone.

About Joe Lucia

I hate your favorite team. I also sort of hate most of my favorite teams.