May 29, 2014, 3:31 PM EDT
In the past week, one former Irish ball player hit a walk-off home run, one had three scoreless relief appearances and one even picked up a win (I’m not kidding, “The Shark” was saddled with a loss).
Let’s begin with the red hot A.J. Pollock. Pollock has gone nuts at the “dish” ever since beginning the season in an 0-13 hole. Since then, he has batted .327, with 12 doubles, three triples and six home runs. Additionally, he has been streaky at the plate, tallying three games of three hits in his last 10 games and was recently named “co-NL player of the week” a few weeks backs.
With the series-opening game against the San Diego Padres tied, 5-5, Pollock stepped to the plate in the bottom of the ninth on May 26th and sent the fans in Arizona home happy with one swing of the bat.
Pollock After The Walk Off
After being moved out of the closer role for the Cleveland Indians after one bad outing, John Axford kept his composure and has flourished as a set-up man for Cleveland. Over the last week, Axford has had three appearances, pitching 3.1 innings and allowed zero runs.
Jeff Samardzija and his minuscule 1.68 ERA have finally been rewarded with a win. You may say that Samardzija’s last performance was one of his weakest of the season (7.0 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 10 K’s), but the Cubs held on for the victory. By the way, I’m guessing most starters would take Samardzija’s line any day of the week …
Since being moved from the bullpen in late April, David Phelps of the New York Yankees has put together four (of five) starts of three runs or less on the hill. Phelps and his 3.38 ERA is one of the bright spots for the Yankees this year as they continue their chase of an American League playoff spot. In Phelps’s last start, a May 27th meeting with his hometown St. Louis Cardinals, he allowed three runs in 6.0 innings in a loss.
Lastly, Jeff Manship continues to do the dirty work in the Philadelphia Phillies bullpen this season, pitching both short and extended appearances in relief. Manship has pitched well in a majority of his outings, but he needs to work on his consistency to not allow the big inning, something he has struggled with of late. In two of his last three outings, he has allowed two runs or more in an inning or less. In his previous eight outings, he didn’t allow more than one run in any appearance.
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