Velasquez stays in his comfort zone
Vince Velasquez attributes his recent resurgence to something in his head, not his arm.
The Philadelphia right-hander pitched shutout ball into the seventh inning, and Carlos Santana and Pedro Florimon each hit home runs in the Phillies’ 6-2 victory over the Cardinals on Thursday in St. Louis.
Velasquez (4- 4) gave up five hits in 6 1/3 innings, struck out five and walked two in recording his third straight win.
“I’m just having a different mentality going into the game,” Velasquez said. “I feel like I’m going into a comfort zone of my own. That’s something you’ve got to have and cherish. And build on.”
Velasquez is 3- 0 with a 2.08 ERA over his last three starts. He has struck out 21 over 17 1/3 innings.
The three strong outings are in stark contrast to two rough efforts on April 24 and 29 when he gave up a total of 10 earned runs over 8 1/3 innings.
“It’s just starting to come together for him,” Philadelphia manager Gabe Kapler said. “We’re trying to figure out what we see in Vinnie that leads to this kind of success. I guess it doesn’t really matter. As long as he’s having it.”
Velasquez began the season by dropping four of his first five decisions.
“A lot of obstacles are thrown at you and you’ve just got to learn to adjust,” Velasquez said. “That’s the whole part of this game is making adjustments. And it seems like things are turning around.”
The Phillies won for the seventh time in eight games.
Odubel Herrera reached base three times to extend his on-base streak to 43 games, fifth-longest in franchise history. It is also the longest streak in the majors since Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman reached in 46 successive games in 2016.
RED SOX 6, ORIOLES 2 » David Price took a shutout into the ninth inning and held Baltimore to five hits in his first complete game this season, leading host Boston past Baltimore. J.D. Martinez hit a two-run homer in the first, and Xander Bo--
gaerts homered with two on during a four-run fifth. Price (4- 4) struck out eight and didn’t walk a batter while winning consecutive starts for the first time this season. Andrew Susac led off the ninth with a double, the first Baltimore player to reach second base in the game. Manny Machado spoiled the shutout bid with a two- out homer, but Price finished off Baltimore on Jonathan Schoop’s pop-up.
DODGERS 7, MARLINS 0 » In Miami, Justin Turner tied a career high with five RBIs and Kenta Maeda pitched eight sharp innings to help Los Angeles snap a six-game losing streak. Turner, who broke his left wrist in spring training and made his season debut Tuesday, hit a three-run double for the Dodgers’ first hit in the third inning. He added a two-run double in the fourth and also singled in finishing 6 for 13 in the series (.462). Maeda (3-3) retired the final 17 batters he faced while throwing 96 pitches.
RAYS 7, ANGELS 1 » C. J. Cron homered and scored two runs against his former teammates, and Chris Archer pitched two-hit ball into the seventh inning of Tampa Bay’s victory over Los Angeles in Anaheim.
TIGERS 3, MARINERS 2 » Jose Iglesias’ two- out, two-run single in the eighth inning gave Detroit the lead, and Tigers pitchers allowed just two hits over the final six innings in a victory in Seattle. Detroit rallied against Seattle’s bullpen and specifically eighth-inning regular Nick Vincent (1-1) to win. With two outs in the eighth, Vincent allowed a single to Mikie Mahtook and walked James McCann to load the bases. Seattle stayed with Vincent, and Iglesias sent a grounder up the middle and off the glove of diving shortstop Jean Segura.
WHITE SOX 4, RANGERS 2 » Welington Castillo hit a tiebreaking tworun single in host Chicago’s fourrun eighth, helping the White Sox beat Texas in the opener of a fourgame series between two of the worst teams in the AL.
PIRATES 5, PADRES 4 » Gregory Polanco led off the seventh inning with a double and scored the goahead run on an error, leading host Pittsburgh over San Diego.
Phillies center fielder Odubel Herrera reaches out and catches a fly ball by the Cardinals’ Paul DeJong during the sixth inning Thursday in St. Louis.