The Wrap: NL
NL Quote of the Night:
"Hopefully, there will come a point where we will pick him up. I think it's just coincidence, I really do. He's the type of guy that gets everybody up before his game. He might be getting 'em too geeked - that might be it. I think it'll turn around."
-- Mets Manager Jerry Manuel, on his team's lack of run support for ace Johan Santana.
Giants 11, Nationals 7
When does the story stop becoming about a team and start becoming about a single, transcendent star? Well, it seems safe to say that's currently the case with the Nationals, who have alternated between offering glimmers of hope and reassuringly, maddening sloppiness on their current West coast road trip. Throughout it all, third baseman Ryan Zimmerman keeps hitting, his current streak reaching a franchise second-best 29 games last night with his two homers last night against the Giants, who pushed pitcher Randy Johnson one win closer to 300 for his career, with newly installed lead off man -- and D.C. native -- Emmanuel Burriss finishing without a hit, but still notching an RBI.
Braves 8, Mets 3
The matchup of aces went as advertised, though the result doesn't reflect it. Instead, the one run allowed by Johan Santana was only a fraction of of the overall production cranked out against the Mets, who watched another complete bullpen meltdown cost them a game. It hasn't really been a case of deja vu -- Mets relievers have been far more reliable this year than last -- but it is telling that the Braves would crank out a significant rally again in New York ... with Derek Lowe on the mound, after the Mets passed on signing because they wouldn't add a fourth year to his $12 million per deal, signing the now bullpen-demoted Oliver Perez instead. Ouch.
Reds 13, Diamondbacks 5
Anyone figured out what's going on with Bronson Arroyo? One game, he struggles, the next he's amazing. The end results have been a 5-2 record for the man who does spring training on a boat, with a big serving of help from new Cincinnati center fielder Wily Taveras, who had four singles and a double. Yes, four singles and a double. Speed really does kill sometimes. As for Arizona, pitcher Jon Garland struggled worse than he has all season, allowing seven runs and 10 hits in fewer than four innings, showing shades of the man who struggled to regain the form of his breakthrough season with Chicago back in 2005. The question is whether he'll ever get that back again.
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