Hillary-Obama may be the only race hotter than the one in the NL West. The Diamondbacks moved back into a virtual tie with the Padres with a 9-1 win on Tuesday night. The Snakes beat up on Chris Young to get the win. It's the second time in a week that they've pounded the tall righty in less than a week and the latest in a string of poor performances by Young since he came off the disabled list in early August. Young has a 7.32 ERA and three losses against the D-Backs this year, compared to a 9-3 record and 1.88 ERA against the rest of baseball. You could probably pick a better team to struggle against than your closest competitors. Eric Byrnes hit a three-run homer to break open a 2-0 game and Doug Davis picked up his eighth win in nine decisions with a seven-inning stint. The only good news for the Friars came when they caught catcher Chris Snyder stealing. It snapped a streak of 32 straight successful steals against them.
- John Edwards could still make that Democratic race a three-horse affair and if he does he will be following in the footsteps of the Dodgers. After stumbling through most of the last month and falling into fourth place, Grady Little's bunch finds themselves just three games out after topping the Cubs 6-2. Since the Brewers actually found a way to win a game the Cubs lead has dwindled to a half-game after Brad Penny stifled their bats.
- Until last night the only headlines Paul Lo Duca made this season were because of his big mouth. He finally made some with his play, though, by driving in seven runs to help the Mets outlast the Reds 11-7 in Cincinnati. The catcher hadn't homered in more than two months but connected for two longballs on a night that the Mets needed their offense to pick up a dismal start by Oliver Perez.
- The Yankees wouldn't be anywhere near the playoff race without the contributions of Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes and Shelley Duncan. The Red Sox would probably be just where they are even if Clay Bucholz didn't throw a no-hitter or if Jacoby Ellsbury wasn't batting .452 since being recalled from Pawtucket. He had three hits, including a homer, and two RBI to support Josh Beckett's 17th win, a 5-3 victory against the Blue Jays. Those five names should probably make the rest of the American League quake with fear for the rich just keep getting richer.
- The Red Sox would probably make the Joel Piniero for Clay Bucholz trade every day of the week and twice on Sunday but the jettisoned righty is making all the difference for the Cardinals. He won for the fourth time in six starts, beating the Bucs 6-2, and brought the Redbirds within a game of the division lead. It's not quite so hot as the race in the West. What with the teams trying to suck less than their opposition it's more like the Republican primaries.
(AP Photo/Paul Connors)