Pitchers’ duels a-plenty

As I write this, it’s 1 AM, meaning I should be asleep. Of course I’m not — I’m up looking at box scores. And we had some good ones Tuesday.

20-year-old Royals phenom Zack Grienke had the best game of his young career, pitching seven 3-hit, shutout innings against Montreal to win his first MLB game. He struck out 5 and didn’t walk a single batter, and now sports a 1.73 ERA and just 4 walks in 26 innings. Bret Saberhagen II? Looks like it so far.

In other news, Pedro Martinez had his best game of 2004 (8 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 8 SO), leading the Red Sox to a 1-0 win over San Diego. Fellow legend Roger Clemens won a 1-0 affair of his own against the Mariners, pitching 6.2 shutout innings. He struck out 7, but (strangely) walked 5. No matter; his record now stands at 9-0, and his ERA is a league-best 2.08.

There were a bunch of pitchers’ duels Tuesday, actually. The Yankees and Javier Vazquez beat Colorado 2-1; Minnesota beat the Mets 2-1 despite a nice game by New York’s Tom Glavine (8 IP, 5 H, 1 R — he now has a 2.21 ERA). And as I type this, the Brewers are batting in the top of the 15th in Anaheim, and neither team has scored a run. In that game, Ben Sheets pitched 9 shutout innings (allowing just 1 hit) and was rewarded with a no-decision, while the Angels’ Kelvim Escobar threw 8 scoreless frames (with 4 hits and 11 strikeouts).

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