Return of the Closers

Return of the Closers
With the All-Star Game and the first closer trade in the rearview, it's time to do some good old fashioned closer talk.
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Freddie Freeman walked and blasted a three-run home run as the Braves gained ground in the NL East with a win on Wednesday.

Freeman took Nathan Eovaldi out to the opposite field in the second inning to give the Braves a 5-0 lead. It was more than enough run support for Ervin Santana, and Freeman earned a 21-game homerless drought. Despite the cool-down, Freeman still sports a respectable .284/.375/.479 with 14 home runs and 56 RBI.
Jul 23 - 10:11 PM

Nathan Eovaldi's struggles continued on Wednesday, taking a loss after allowing five runs in seven innings to the Braves.

Eovaldi is now 0-3 with a 6.39 ERA in his last five starts. He got off to a great start, posting fantastic numbers into the middle of June, but has slumped terribly since. On Wednesday, he gave up six hits, walked two, and struck out only two. His ERA climbs up to 4.20 along with a 1.25 WHIP and 90/26 K/BB ratio. Eovaldi will try to turn things around when he helps the Marlins open up a homestand against the Nationals on Monday.
Jul 23 - 10:08 PM

Ervin Santana posted his second double-digit strikeout game of the season, allowing one run in 7 1/3 innings en route to a win against the Marlins on Wednesday.

Santana struck out 10, including the one out he recorded in the eighth. His last double-digit strikeout game occurred in his second start on April 14. The Marlins had runners on base but couldn't convert, as Santana allowed six hits (all singles) and three walks. The right-hander improves his ERA to 3.87 and has a 1.27 WHIP and 107/37 K/BB ratio to go along with it. Santana will wrap up a homestand on Monday against the Padres next.
Jul 23 - 10:04 PM

Travis Snider singled, homered, drew a walk, and scored three runs as the Pirates emerged victorious against the Dodgers by a 6-1 margin on Wednesday.

Snider's second-inning solo home run off of Dan Haren was his first easy trot around the bases since June 22. He has played sparingly and carries a mediocre .252/.333/.374 slash line along with five home runs and 17 RBI in 184 plate appearances.
Jul 23 - 9:59 PM

Dan Haren earned his fourth consecutive loss in Wednesday's start against the Pirates, yielding five runs in five innings.

July has not been kind to Haren, as he's now 0-4 on the month with a 9.47 ERA in 19 innings. The right-hander gave up four hits -- including a home run to Travis Snider -- while walking three and striking out six. Haren has not exactly been the bargain the Dodgers hoped they were getting when they signed him back in November. He carries a 4.49 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, and 92/26 K/BB ratio. He'll make his final start of the month at home against the Braves next week.
Jul 23 - 9:56 PM

Josh Harrison finished 2-for-4 with a two-run double in Wednesday's win against the Dodgers.

The National League All-Star has slumped since returning from the break. In fact, Wednesday's performance was his first multi-RBI game since July 10. He doubled in a pair of runs in the first inning to cap off a four-run outburst. The talented 27-year-old is slashing .291/.329/.437 with five home runs, 31 RBI, and 11 stolen bases.
Jul 23 - 9:53 PM

Francisco Liriano pitched well against the Dodgers on Wednesday, holding them to one run over seven innings en route to his second win of the season.

Liriano didn't have the strikeout stuff working the way he did in his last start against the Rockies, but he limited the Dodgers to four hits and a pair of walks while fanning four. The lefty finished the seventh inning for the first time since April 21. Now with a 4.18 ERA, 1.43 WHIP, and 93/47 K/BB ratio, Liriano will look to keep it going against the Giants on the road next week.
Jul 23 - 9:50 PM

Yunel Escobar was ejected from Wednesday's game against the Cardinals for arguing balls and strikes.

Escobar took a called strike three in the fourth inning and took exception to the call. Home plate umpire Dan Bellino took exception to his exception and threw Escobar out of the game. It was the Rays' second ejection in two nights after manager Joe Maddon was tossed from Tuesday's game in what turned out to be a miscommunication of sorts.
Jul 23 - 8:32 PM
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