The Juice: Chris Archer throws two-hitter against Yankees as Rays keep rolling (Big League Stew)

The Juice returns for season No. 6! It’s almost eligible for free-agency! Stop by daily for news from the action, along with great photos, stats, video highlights and more.

The Tampa Bay Rays improved to an MLB best 21-3 since June 28th thanks to Chris Archer’s two-hit shutout of the New York Yankees. Who’s Chris Archer you ask? He’s the next in a long line of fantastic pitchers that have been developed by the Rays since 2006.
Since ’06, Rays have drafted/developed Shields, Kazmir, Price, Moore, Hellickson, Cobb and now Archer. Simply unparalleled.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 27, 2013
That’s pretty remarkable. And the 24-year-old rookie is also on the verge of making history after recording his second shutout in his past three starts.
Via @eliassports Chris Archer should finish July with an 0.73 ERA, the lowest ERA by a rookie for that calendar month in MLB history!
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) July 27, 2013
Wait, there’s more.
Tampa Bay starters’ WHIP over the last calendar month: 0.89. Only two starters have a better WHIP in ’13: Kershaw (0.87) and Harvey (0.88).
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 27, 2013
When the pitching is going that well, you can afford a rough day offensively. The Rays certainly benefited on Saturday, winning 1-0 on Kelly Johnson’s RBI single .

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Mets’ Harvey, Tigers’ Scherzer named All-Star Game starters (Reuters)

By Larry Fine NEW YORK (Reuters) – Matt Harvey will be in familiar surroundings but in a rare spot as the New York Mets hurler was named the National League’s starting pitcher against the American League’s Max Scherzer for Tuesday’s All-Star game. Both pitchers will be making their All-Star debuts with the spotlight directly on them as starters at Citi Field, home of the Mets, in a Midsummer Classic that gives the winning league home field advantage in the World Series. Harvey has compiled a 7-2 record with a sterling 2.35 earned run average (ERA) for the offensively challenged Mets. …

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Baseball-Mets’ Harvey, Tigers’ Scherzer named All-Star Game starters (Reuters)

By Larry Fine NEW YORK, July 15 (Reuters) – Matt Harvey will be in familiar surroundings but in a rare spot as the New York Mets hurler was named the National League’s starting pitcher against the American League’s Max Scherzer for Tuesday’s All-Star game. Both pitchers will be making their All-Star debuts with the spotlight directly on them as starters at Citi Field, home of the Mets, in a Midsummer Classic that gives the winning league home field advantage in the World Series. Harvey has compiled a 7-2 record with a sterling 2.35 earned run average (ERA) for the offensively challenged Mets. …

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Baseball-Mets’ Harvey, Tigers’ Scherzer named All-Star Game starters (Reuters)

By Larry Fine NEW YORK, July 15 (Reuters) – Matt Harvey will be in familiar surroundings but in a rare spot as the New York Mets hurler was named the National League’s starting pitcher against the American League’s Max Scherzer for Tuesday’s All-Star game. Both pitchers will be making their All-Star debuts with the spotlight directly on them as starters at Citi Field, home of the Mets, in a Midsummer Classic that gives the winning league home field advantage in the World Series. Harvey has compiled a 7-2 record with a sterling 2.35 earned run average (ERA) for the offensively challenged Mets. …

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Puig still has last chance to become MLB All-Star (Reuters)

(Reuters) – The Orioles, Cardinals and Tigers led Major League Baseball’s All-Star selections announced on Saturday, while Cuban rookie sensation Yasiel Puig has a chance to join the big names despite having played just 30 games. Baltimore, locked in a tight American League (AL) East race, boast three starters, including slugger Chris Davis, while AL Central leading Detroit have six players on the team. …

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Baseball-Puig still has last chance to become MLB All-Star (Reuters)

July 6 (Reuters) – The Orioles, Cardinals and Tigers led Major League Baseball’s All-Star selections announced on Saturday, while Cuban rookie sensation Yasiel Puig has a chance to join the big names despite having played just 30 games. Baltimore, locked in a tight American League (AL) East race, boast three starters, including slugger Chris Davis, while AL Central leading Detroit have six players on the team. …

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Baseball-Rosters for Major League Baseball All-Star game (Reuters)

July 6 (Reuters) – Following are the rosters for Major League Baseball’s All-Star game to be played on July 16 at Citi Field, home of the New York Mets, as announced on Saturday. American League Starters Catcher: Joe Mauer, Twins; first base: Chris Davis, Orioles; second base: Robinson Cano, Yankees; shortstop: J.J. Hardy, Orioles; third base: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers; outfield: Mike Trout, Angels; Adam Jones, Orioles; Jose Bautista, Blue Jays; designated hitter: David Ortiz, Red Sox. …

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Closing Time: Julio Teheran, almost famous; Johnny Cueto dinged up again; Matt Harvey’s likely cap (Roto Arcade)

Go back and re-read all those glowing and glorious Julio Teheran scouting reports from 2010 and 2011. The scouts and prospect hounds knew what they were doing . It’s all happening for the 22-year-old righty in 2013. Welcome to the cover of Closing Time.
Teheran’s six innings against Arizona on Friday were a thing of beauty: six scoreless innings, four hits, one walk, 10 strikeouts. Here’s some video to keep you company. It’s the 11th time he’s allowed three runs or less in his last 12 turns; if you grade all starting pitchers over the last two months, he ranks as a Top 12 option. Teheran’s ERA is down to 3.12, his WHIP trimmed to 1.19.
To watch Teheran is to observe an artist at work. According to Pitch f/x data , he’s currently throwing four pitches regularly (two and four-seam fastballs, a slider and curve) and he mixes in a change when he’s bored. He hardly ever walks anyone (just 16 unintentional passes all year) and he knows how to induce swings on bad pitches . I don’t know what the Braves plan to do if their six best starters become healthy at the same time in 2013, but I can’t see Teheran losing his gig. Incendiary stuff like this cannot be ignored.

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The Juice: D-Backs top Reds after blown saves by Heath Bell and Aroldis Chapman (Big League Stew)

The Juice returns for season No. 6! It’s almost eligible for free-agency! Stop by daily for news from the action, along with great photos, stats, video highlights and more.

A fun day of baseball was highlighted by a wild game out west.
For 5 2/3 innings, Cincinnati Reds starter Mike Leake was absolutely perfect. 17 Arizona Diamondbacks up, 17 down, right up until the opposing pitcher, Patrick Corbin, brought him back to reality with a double. That was Leake’s first mistake of the day. His second and final mistake immediately followed as Gerardo Parra put Arizona ahead 2-1 with a two-run homer. The action would settle down again as both starters worked through the eighth. Then it went to the bullpens and the real fun began.
In the top of the ninth, D-Backs closer Heath Bell did something that no Arizona reliever had done before. For the fifth consecutive appearance, he allowed a home run . Ouch. It was a two-run shot by Jay Bruce (his second of the game) which put Cincinnati up 3-2. It also cost Corbin a chance to go 10-0. Double ouch. After walking the third batter, Bell was removed and his status as closer was immediately called into question.
Moving on to the bottom of the ninth, Reds closer Aroldis Chapman was somehow less effective than Bell. He faced only four batters, retiring none. Single, walk, walk, two-run walk-off single from Jason Kubel wins it for Arizona, 4-3 .

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Mets-Braves Preview (The Associated Press)

Atlanta Braves starters haven’t had much trouble against the New York Mets this year, and there’s little reason to think that will change Thursday night.

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