Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers is congratulated by Elvis Andrus for his home hit in the third inning to tie the game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Rick Yeatts/Getty Images)
Well, we're here to bring you up to speed on all the major baseball stories you missed over the weekend. And why did you miss them? Because you were off doing something fun, even though next weekend's a holiday weekend. A fun-filled weekend, followed by a fun-filled three-day weekend. The balls on you. Sometimes I don't even want to bring you up to speed. It's your own fault you missed all this baseball, and your weekends make me jealous.
On we go!
Between August 17 and August 25, the Angels turned a seven-game division deficit into a two-game division deficit, and in so doing turned a dull race into an exciting one. They were then given the opportunity to continue their run in Texas with a three-game weekend series against the Rangers. The series didn't go as the Angels intended, though, as the Rangers took two of three despite Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver starting on short rest. The division gap is back to three games, but one can't help but look ahead to the season's final week, when the two rivals finish with three in Anaheim.
Coming into the weekend, the Diamondbacks were three games up on the Giants. The Diamondbacks proceeded to sweep the Padres, while the Giants lost to the Astros on Sunday. Arizona's division lead is now up to a season-high four, and one can't help but notice that the Giants have a worse run differential than the Mets. Opportunities remain for the Giants to close things up in a hurry - they play the D'backs another six times - but they aren't trending in the right direction. Maybe you've noticed.
assumed the Major League lead in home runs
In the second game of a Sunday doubleheader against the Orioles, Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson knocked a pair of dingers, which were his 37th and 38th of the season. That's the highest total in baseball - one ahead of Jose Bautista, three ahead of Mark Teixeira, seven ahead of Albert Pujols, and 38 ahead of Omar Vizquel. Interestingly, 18 of Granderson's homers have come on the road, so stuff your jokes.
Vin Scully will announce the
For Scully, it'll be season number 63. Ordinarily this wouldn't really count as news, but last week word got out that Dodgers fans were being surveyed on their opinions of Scully. This made a lot of people upset - people who didn't understand that the Dodgers were surveying their fans on just about everything. You gotta take any opportunity to jab at the Dodgers. These days there just aren't that many openings.
won his 20th game
Verlander wasn't particularly good against the Twins on Saturday, but he was good enough, and his record improved to 20-5. The next-highest win total in baseball is 17, belonging to CC Sabathia, Ian Kennedy, and the Astros. (whoooaaaaaaa) This is the first time that Verlander has reached 20 in his career, and while wins are obviously not a statistic to which we pay a lot of attention, they're only going to help Verlander's MVP case. There's going to be a case.
Hurricane Irene postponed everything
All of the words you've read to this point have been lies. There was no baseball this weekend, because Hurricane Irene canceled all of it.
...so that isn't exactly true, but there were a number of games that weren't played, and now we get to watch the Yankees bitch about their assigned make-up date with the Orioles. You'd think teams would be falling all over themselves to get make-up dates with the Orioles. Tons of them, as many as possible!