The Detroit Lions were in perfect position to improve to 2-0 on the young season as they were matched up with a New York Giants team that is struggling to put points on the board. Matthew Stafford threw for 122 yards and two touchdowns, as Detroit won the first two games of the season for the first time since 2011 with a 24-10 win on Monday night. Rookie Jamal Agnew added insurance late with an 88-yard punt return for a touchdown, as the Lions moved in to sole possession of first place in the NFC North early on. The defense was the key factor on the night for the Lions, as they sacked Eli Manning five times and forced an interception, and they were able to spoil the season debut of Odell Beckham Jr. Beckham had four catches for 36 yards after missing Week 1 with an ankle sprain. His night ended with him dropping a fourth-down pass late to seal the win for Detroit. The Lions joined the Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers as the only unbeaten teams in the NFC, but they will host Matt Ryan's defending NFC Championship team on Sunday afternoon. Ezekiel Ansah led the defensive attack with three sacks, as they held Manning to 239 yards passing and just one touchdown. The Lions were also able to provide a rushing attack by totaling 139 yards on the ground as a team, led by Ameer Abdullah's 86 yards on 17 carries. Matt Prater also impressed with a 56-yard field goal near the end of the first half, giving them a 10-point lead. The one bright spot for the Giants is that every other NFC East team is just 1-1. The G-Men will look to figure things out on the road next week against the Philadelphia Eagles
Kershaw Gives Up Rare Slam, Dodgers Fall on the Road
Heading in to Monday's start, Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw had not allowed a grand slam in his career. You can only guess what took place at Citizens Bank Park on Monday. SPOILER, Kershaw gave up the first grand slam of his career, as Aaron Altherr connected for one in the sixth inning for a 4-3 Philadelphia Phillies win. Chris Taylor and Justin Turner led off the game with consecutive home runs, Taylor's of the inside-the-park variety, to give the Dodgers a 2-0 lead. They would not score again until Curtis Granderson went deep for a solo shot in the ninth inning. Despite the loss, the Dodgers still hold baseball's best record at 96-54, and their magic number to clinch the NL West dropped to three with the Arizona Diamondbacks' loss to the San Diego Padres. Altherr's grand slam snapped Kershaw's 32-inning scoreless streak against Philadelphia, which was his longest against any team in his career. Monday's defeat was Kershaw's fourth of the season, as he dropped to 3-5 in his career against the Phillies. Former Philadelphia second baseman Chase Utley went 0-for-2 with a couple strikeouts against his former team before getting pulled for a pinch hitter in the seventh inning. These two teams will continue their series with Game 2 on Tuesday night.
Judge, Stanton Add to Massive HR Numbers
One of the biggest headlines of the 2017 MLB season has been the amount of home runs around the majors, which will break a record for a single season by the end of this year. Leading the way in that storyline has been New York Yankees rookie Aaron Judge and Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton. Both of those outfielders added to their season numbers on Monday, including Judge hitting his 44th homer of his rookie year in the Yankees' 2-1 win over the Minnesota Twins. Judge now sits five long balls away from tying Mark McGuire for the most home runs by a rookie in MLB history. McGuire had 49 with the Oakland A's in 1987. Judge has helped his Yankee team stay in the AL East race, as they sit three games behind the Boston Red Sox for first. They also hold the top American League Wild Card spot, five games ahead of the Minnesota Twins. Now although the Miami Marlins are seemingly out of the National League postseason race, they have a big story going in Stanton. The outfielder hit his league-leading 55th home run on Monday night to lead Miami in a 13-1 rout of the New York Mets. Stanton's blast was a three-run shot, as he drove in four on the night while batting third in the lineup for the first time this season. The fourth-inning homer snapped a drought of 29 at-bats without one for the All-Star. Marcell Ozuna added four hits, including his 34th big fly of the season to support Dan Straily in his 10th win of the year. Both Judge and Stanton will be back in action on their home turf Tuesday night.