Burch Smith lasted just one-plus innings Wednesday and gave up four runs in a loss to the Cardinals.
We were surprised Smith wasn't pulled from the rotation last week with his ERA sitting at 15.63. Now it's up to 18.41. He has to be a goner this time, and Tim Stauffer, who replaced him tonight and allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings, is the obvious choice to replace him.
Yadier Molina had four of the Cardinals' 14 hits in Wednesday's win over the Padres.
Molina's sitting on just two homers after hitting 22 last year, but he's batting .333. Unfortunately, it's not leading too many RBI; most of his 21 came in April and he hasn't had a two-RBI game in four weeks.
Jedd Gyorko went 2-for-4 and hit his fifth homer Wednesday versus the Cardinals.
With two homers and three doubles among his 13 hits in his last eight games, Gyorko is really coming along now; his average is up to .283 and all five of his homers have come in May. We don't expect him to keep his average up this high -- he strikes out a bit too much right now -- but he's a solid play in mixed leagues.
Brayan Pena went 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored in the Tigers' 11-7 victory over the Indians on Wednesday.
Pena doesn't play much -- Wednesday was just his 14th game of the year -- but when he does, he usually hits. His three-hit game raised his average to .304, and with starting catcher Alex Avila struggling it may mean more at-bats for Pena in the near future.
Carlos Santana went 2-for-4 with a home run in the loss to the Tigers on Wednesday.
After a red hot April, Santana was hitting just .182/.316/.333 heading into Wednesday's game. Backup catcher Yan Gomes has been playing more frequently lately, but Santana's bat plays at first base and he even gets an occasional game at DH, too. No matter how they arrange it, Santana will be in the middle of the Indians lineup more often than not.
Michael Brantley went 3-for-5 with three RBI in the Indians' loss to the Tigers on Wednesday.
Brantley did all his damage with three singles, bringing his RBI count to 24 and his batting average to .309 in the process. And the left fielder is 7-for-16 (.438) in his last four games with nine RBI in those 16 at-bats. The 26-year-old is well on his way to an encore of a 2012 season in which he hit .288 with 37 doubles.
Justin Verlander allowed five runs over five innings but earned the win Wednesday as the Tigers beat the Indians.
Verlander had to work for his fifth win, needing 110 pitches to get through five. He gave up 10 hits, including a home run, but was aided by his team putting up nine runs in the same span. It marks the third-straight start in which Verlander has been less-than-great, seeing his ERA rise from 1.55 to 3.66 since May 5. There's still little reason to worry, though, and he'll take the mound again Monday against the Pirates.
Ubaldo Jimenez allowed six runs over four innings in the Indians' loss to the Tigers on Wednesday.
Jimenez had been on a bit of a roll before Wednesday, having not allowed more than two runs in any of his previous four starts. But the Tigers got to Jimenez for seven hits and three walks in his shortest outing since April 16. His next start will come Monday against the Reds.