By Sam McPherson
As the Major League Baseball trade deadline nears on Sunday, the action on the field is getting more exciting, too. Just look at these amazing moments from last week’s games!READ MORE: Volunteers Sought To Help Calm Shelter Pets During Fourth Of July Fireworks In Sacramento
Walk-off Week for the White Sox
It started on Monday for Chicago when the Sox lost a 3-0 lead in the ninth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field. Adam Lind hit a three-run home run to sink the Pale Hose and give the Ms a 4-3 victory. But then it happened to the ChiSox again on Wednesday: Leonys Martin hit an 11th-inning HR for Seattle to hand Chicago another painful loss. However, things turned around for the White Sox by the end of the week.
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Not only did Chicago beat the Detroit Tigers on Saturday at U.S. Cellular Field with a walk-off single, but the White Sox also did it again on Sunday despite the controversy surrounding ace pitcher Chris Sale’s clubhouse meltdown before the game. The Pale Hose had an up-and-down week with these walk-off emotions, but it’s a lot better to end the week on a high note than on a low one. Mission accomplished, Chicago!
Stephen Strasburg finally loses a game
The Washington Nationals starting pitcher had a shiny 13-0 record coming into his Thursday start last week against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Nationals Park. However, the Dodgers weren’t intimidated. They did strike out 10 times in six innings against Strasburg, but the L.A. lineup also put six runs on the board in the process on the way to a 6-3 victory. Strasburg still sports a 13-1 record and a 2.83 ERA, so his season is hardly lost with the single defeat, but it was fun to see how far he could go in pushing an undefeated record in 2016.
St. Louis wins back-to-back games with walk-off magic
Two straight nights at home against two different National League opponents, the Cardinals dug deep to win in their final plate appearance. On Thursday night, St. Louis overcame a 5-1 eighth-inning deficit against the San Diego Padres, winning in the ninth inning on Aledmys Diaz’ RBI single off Carlos Villanueva. The next night, against the aforementioned Dodgers, the Cardinals did it again.READ MORE: Atwater Man, 31, Dies After Crashing Into Tree Near Auburn
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In the 16th inning against L.A., Matt Adams took Bud Norris deep for a 4-3 St. Louis victory. The Dodgers pitcher normally is used as a starter, but in a long, extra-innings game, L.A. Manager Dave Roberts didn’t have a lot of options. Either way, the Cardinals gave the loyal, late-staying home fans two straight evenings of walk-off magic.
Hanley Ramirez puts on a show against the San Francisco Giants
Wednesday night in Fenway Park, the Boston Red Sox pounded the visiting Giants by an 11-7 score. Ramirez, playing first base for the host team, ripped three HRs off San Francisco pitchers Matt Cain (twice) and Albert Suarez. Overall, he had six RBI in the Boston victory, as the Red Sox jumped out to an 8-0 lead. Ramirez’ third blast came after the Giants had narrowed the lead to just one run, and it put the nail in the S.F. comeback coffin. The Giants didn’t recover, really, going on to lose two of three games in New York against the Yankees.
Nothing better than pie at the Coliseum in Oakland
The Oakland Athletics have beaten both the Houston Astros and Toronto Blue Jays in three-game series since the All-Star break, and the A’s just took three of four from the Tampa Bay Rays, too, to push their second-half record to 7-3 through Sunday. However, Oakland had a lot of fun in two straight wins over the Rays, claiming victory in walk-off fashion on consecutive evenings.
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After winning on Friday night in the 13th inning with a walk-off single from veteran Coco Crisp, the A’s overcame a 3-1 deficit in the ninth inning on Saturday night behind two HRs—the tying shot from Jake Smolinksi and the winning blast from Ryon Healy. Oakland now has six walk-off wins this season, to counter the same number of walk-off losses (including last night’s defeat against Texas).MORE NEWS: Anti-Black, Gay, Asian Bias Fuel California Hate Crime Surge
Sam McPherson is a freelance writer covering baseball, football, basketball, golf and fantasy sports for CBS Local. He also is an Ironman triathlete and certified triathlon coach. Follow him on Twitter @sxmcp, because he’s quite prolific despite also being a college English professor and a certified copy editor.