Game of the day: Detroit at Texas, 8:05 p.m. The Tigers have won six of their past seven games to close to within 2.5 games of Cleveland atop the American League Central. They open a three-game series in Texas on Monday hoping to creep even closer. The Rangers – who just helped Detroit with a four-game sweep of the Indians – enter the series on a five-game winning streak. Right-hander Max Scherzer (6-2) will start for Detroit, coming off consecutive starts in which he allowed seven earned runs. Scherzer started the season 6-0 but hasn’t earned a win since May 9. Right-hander Colby Lewis (5-5) is the scheduled starter for Texas. Lewis pitched eight scoreless innings in his last start June 1 against Tampa Bay.
Other game to watch:
Seattle at Chicago White Sox, 8:10 p.m. Both the Mariners and the White Sox started the year dismally, but have climbed back toward respectability. Seattle is 15-5 in its past 20 games, and is only 2.5 games behind Texas in the AL West. Chicago is still seven games behind Cleveland and 4.5 games behind Detroit in the AL Central, but the White Sox were as many as 11 games out of first early last month. Rookie right-hander Michael Pineda (6-2) will start for Seattle, sporting a 2.30 ERA. Pineda has allowed three runs or fewer in 10 of his 11 starts this season. Left-hander John Danks (0-8) will start for Chicago, still looking for his first win of the season in his 12th start. The White Sox are 1-10 in games he has started.
Games you should have seen:
St. Louis 3, Chicago Cubs 2, 10 innings. Albert Pujols hit a walk-off home run in extra innings for the second consecutive day to complete the Cardinals’ three-game sweep of the rival Cubs. The Cardinals had been down to their final strike in the bottom of the ninth inning before former-Cub Ryan Theriot tied the game at 2-2 with an RBI double. The late rally cost Cubs starter Carlos Zambrano the win after Zambrano allowed one run in seven strong innings. Cardinals right-hander Chris Carpenter also pitched well, allowing two runs on seven hits in nine innings pitched. The Cubs have now lost six straight, and are a season-worst 11 games under .500.
Milwaukee 6, Florida 5, 11 innings. The Marlins overcame an early 5-0 deficit only to lose in extra innings and drop their fourth consecutive game and sixth in their last seven. Josh Wilson hit a solo home run in the top of the 11th inning to put the Brewers on top. Milwaukee led 5-0 in the fourth inning before Florida scored five runs in the sixth on an RBI double by Gaby Sanchez and a grand slam by Brett Hayes. Milwaukee is now 19-6 in its last 25 games.
Stat you should know: 50. RBI this season for new Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez after he knocked in two more with his 12th home run of the year Sunday in Boston’s 6-3 win over Oakland. Gonzalez is the first major leaguer to reach 50 RBI this season, and he also leads the majors with 83 hits.
Star of the day: Rangers left-hander C.J. Wilson threw 7.2 scoreless innings Sunday in Texas’s 2-0 win over Cleveland. Wilson allowed only three hits and struck out seven while walking two. Wilson is now 6-3 with a 3.03 ERA this season.
Chatter: “We’re playing like a Triple-A team. This is embarrassing. Embarrassing for the team, for the owners. Embarrassing for the fans. – Cubs right-hander Carlos Zambrano, who went on to rip closer Carlos Marmol after Chicago’s sixth-straight loss Sunday against St. Louis. At 23-34, the Cubs have the second-worst record in the National League.