The Wrap: AL
AL Quote of the Night
"You don't take a 95 mph fastball on the finger and live to tell about it - or the finger live to tell about it."
-- Rays first baseman Carlos Pena discussing his broken fingers which have ended the slugger's season and probably Tampa Bay's as well
The Rays continued their fall out of the playoff standings on Monday, dropping both ends of a doubleheader in New York. Tampa Bay has just one win in September and have now lost six straight. The Yankees, on the other hand, are surging, going 7-2 so far in September and have been enjoying a comfortable nine-game lead in the AL East. The only Yankee not clicking is Derek Jeter who went hitless in both games as he remains four hits shy of surpass Lou Gehrig for the most hits in franchise history.
For the first time since throwing a perfect game, Mark Buehrle earned a win. Buehrle had gone 0-4 with a 5.44 ERA in eight starts since his historic outing but was able to get it together against the Red Sox, outdueling Boston's Josh Beckett. Buehrle allowed one run and eight hits over seven innings to pick up the victory. He got help from Mark Kotsay and Carlos Quentin who drove in two runs apiece. The White Sox have now won five of their last six games but are still 7½ games out of first place in the AL Central and 11 back of Boston in the wild-card hunt.
A five-run first inning put Minnesota in the driver's seat early and the team coasted home from there. After the first inning, Toronto starter Scott Richmond settled down, ultimately lasting six innings while allowing all six earned runs but he still took the loss. Twins catcher Joe Mauer continues to be very good at hitting, going 3 for 5 with two RBI and a run scored as the MVP candidate lifted his major league-leading average to .369.
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