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And That Happened: Sunday's Scores and Highlights

May 31, 2010, 5:00 AM EDT

Albert Pujols running.jpgCardinals 9, Cubs 1: Things people were doing for about ten seconds and then suddenly pretending that they never did: (1) listening to swing music; (2) playing poker; and (3) wondering if it was possible that Albert Pujols was no longer the best player in baseball. Pujols: 3 for 3 3 HR, 4 RBI; Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, awful, your story about that miracle draw on the river of that hand you shouldn’t have even been in anymore, still boring as hell.

Tigers 10, Athletics 2: I once got stuck in Toledo for a two-week trial, and when I came back I appreciated my non-Toledo existence as the precious gift from The Maker that it truly is. Life felt fresh again and, for a little while at least, I approached my responsibilities with a renewed sense of purpose and gusto. I think Max Scherzer feels the same way (5.2 IP, 2 H, 14K).  Oh, and becoming father for the second time agrees with Miguel Cabrera: 4 for 5 with a double a homer and 4 RB. Cabrera is 8 for 13 with four homers in the three games since the birth of his daughter.

Marlins 1, Phillies 0: The Phillies’ offensive woes were forgotten for a minute thanks to Roy Halladay’s perfect game, but the fact is that they still only scored four runs in three games on their trip to Florida. Sure, the Marlins only scored three, but they’re not the ones who were supposed to pummel the opposition all year.

Braves 5, Pirates 2: I wrote a proto-epitaph for Chipper Jones on Thursday, and in the four games since then he’s gone 6 for 12 with 5 RBI, including yesterday’s pinch hit job, which proved to be the game-winner. All but one of those hits were singles so I suppose we could still ask where Jones’ power is, but let’s not bury the guy just yet.

Giants 6, Diamondbacks 5: Stop me if you’ve heard this one: the opposing team rallied off the Dbacks’ bullpen and went on to win the game.  That makes seven straight losses for Arizona, who was outscored 23-6 in the series.  Oh, and Buster Posey starts out his 2010 major league season by going 6 for 10 with two doubles and four RBI for the Giants.

Angels 9, Mariners 7: Three-run walkoff homer for Howie Kendrick in the bottom of the ninth. No Los Angels of Anaheim were injured in the celebration of this event.

Padres 3, Nationals 2: Two homers for Ryan Zimmerman, but the pinch hit RBI single from the Padres’ Nick Hundley in the 11th was the bigger blow. By the way, it’s fun to look at box scores with names like Gwynn and Hundley and Stairs in it. Gives me a retro-90s vibe. Oh wait, I forgot: Matt Stairs is the same dude from the 90s. Nothin’ retro about that.

White Sox, 8, Rays 5: Jayson Nix came off the bench to hit a grand slam and help the Sox earn a split with the Rays. Tampa Bay went 2-5 in the past week. Why they need to go and screw up my power rankings like that I have no idea, but it’s pretty darn inconsiderate.

Dodgers 4, Rockies 3: I like the nine strikeouts in five innings from Clayton Kershaw, but I don’t like the 97 pitches in five innings. It’s a win and wins are nice, but having to use five pitchers when your ace takes the hill is the kind of thing that has to make managers tear their hair out. Oh, and it was Manny Ramirez’s birthday yesterday. Joe Torre didn’t give him the start, though, because he correctly presumed that Ramirez would be distracted all afternoon thinking about all the places he’d go after the game to get free stuff.

Blue Jays 6, Orioles 1: See, that’s how you pitch efficiently: Ricky Romero: CG, 6 H, 1 ER, 7K, 102 pitches.

Red Sox 8, Royals 1: David Ortiz hit a homer, Jon Lester was solid for seven and Mike Cameron doubled twice and drove in two, capping an 18-11 month for the Bosox.

Mets 10, Brewers 4: Apart from not fooling Rickie Weeks — who hit two homers — R.A. Dickey had himself yet another nice game (7 IP, 9 H, 4 ER). Helps when you don’t walk anybody.  The Mets’ ten runs on 16 hits was their biggest offensive game of the season.

Yankees 7, Indians 3: The Bombers were down 3-0 entering their half of the seventh and then they were all, like, Derek Jeter two-run single and Mark Teixeira three-run homer. The Yankees fans were all “cool” and the Tribe fans were all like “dude . . .”

Astros 2, Reds 0: It was ugly hot and humid here in Columbus yesterday, and a good rule of thumb is to add approximately 4.7 misery points to the Columbus, Ohio icky and muggy scale in order to find out what it’s like in Cincinnati. Based on that formula — and based on the fact that the game was scoreless for the first nine innings, but not scoreless in a “wow these pitchers are awesome” kind of way — I am quite pleased that I passed on the tickets I was offered to this game.

Twins 6, Rangers 3: Tough game. Derek Holland left in the second inning with shoulder soreness and the ninth inning closed with Denard Span slamming into Orlando Hudson as Span made the game-ending catch.

  1. Levi Stahl - May 31, 2010 at 7:33 AM

    Pujols’s first homer made one of the most satisfying “that ball was crushed” sounds off the bat that I’ve ever heard. And of the five homers hit yesterday–three by Pujols, one by Freese, and one by Soto–four left the ballpark entirely, despite the wind not blowing out. The only one not to get out was Pujols’s center-field basket job in the 8th.

  2. Old Gator - May 31, 2010 at 8:18 AM

    I spent most of last week in Freesco and had to watch my Feesh floundering back home in bits and pieces on ESPN recaps and blog sites, but I can’t really carp about it because being in Freesco for a week makes up for so many forms of deprivation, and then some. Anyway, the big questions have been: (1) did the Feesh bats go dead in the Feelies series because of great pitching (this question does not apply to Halladay’s perfect game, except maybe in modified form), or are they just finding their incipient level of mediocrity in May instead of late August, which is when they’ve usually found it the past few years, and (2) have the Feesh gotten great pitching against the Feelies or did the Feelies bring their slump down with them?
    .
    The Feesh went 3-7 over their last ten games and have managed, with yesterday’s eked-out win, to climb back even with Those Pesky Gnats in the AL East basement. Despite that, key elements Cameron Maybin and Chris Coghlan remain erratic and neither has really hit their stride yet – although there’s always the possibility that this is their stride, which would both surprise and greatly disappoint yours truly, who expected at least a little more out of both of them. Their streak a little this way, slide a little that way progress mirrors their team’s longstanding pattern of win some, loose some, with only the Mermaids being genuinely winsome, and even that apparently without having learned how to synchronize their dancing yet.
    .
    After three years of this sort of thing, you would think that chief tightwad Scrooge McLoria would review his policy of choke-the-payroll while demanding outsized results, a policy in which, if you want to believe him, he actually has faith that it will produce a “competitor” sooner or later. Well, tomorrow Scrooge can have the Stanton Child if he wants him, at an aborted Super Two discount that’ll serve him well for an extra year. I’m looking immensely forward to seeing this kid take his first look at the show, but I don’t expect him to light any fires under Loria’s heap of dead wood and green wood.
    .
    Speaking of former sparks, Dontrelle Willis was designated for assignment day ‘fore yesterday. If Scrooge can get the Tiggers to pick up 99% of his contract it might be worth bringing him back to the NL to see if he can turn it around and pull a Carlos Silva in middle relief. He certainly can’t make the Feesh boolpen any worse. I would go so far as to say that it might be a nice gesture towards the Feesh fans, who still harbor a warm corner of our hearts for the guy. But then, I’d have to pretend that Scrooge McLoria gives a flying crap about the fans, and I’m not that good an actor.

  3. Andy H - May 31, 2010 at 10:21 AM

    Pujols is now hitting .310/.422/.572. All three are below his career averages.

  4. Fast Eddy - May 31, 2010 at 12:03 PM

    It looks like he came to life just in time for the Reds, Damn it. At least I don’t think Harang won’t be in the rotation this series. Albert owns him. To all who are disbelievers of Sir Albert, let me remind you of the only one sure way to get him out. Just like “The Man”, you should throw him four wide ones and try to pick him off first base. You have a shot then, otherwise you are fooling around with dynamite. Take it from a Reds fan.

  5. Shely - May 31, 2010 at 12:07 PM

    That just gives him more room to get up to his averages. The league will pay, trust me.

  6. APBA Guy - May 31, 2010 at 12:28 PM

    The Tigers have a chance to earn the split against the Beloved A’s today, with A’s killer Justin Verlander on the hill against Trevor Cahill. Guess who has the lower ERA? That’s right, Cahill, 3.31 v. 3.71 for Verlander. Cahill has been very good lately with a bite to his sinker that isn’t always there, and surprising mound presence. The A’s released a hilarious promo with A’s great Dave Stewart trying to teach Cahill his patented “Death Stare”. Stewart looks increasingly ferocious, like a San Quentin grad embarking on a murder spree, while Cahill looks like a 22 year old about to choose a shirt for a frat party. Reason # 27 why Miguel Cabrera won’t be scared today.

  7. Alex K - May 31, 2010 at 2:22 PM

    I wouldn’t call the sound satisfying….more like heartbreaking. Not only did he ensure my father’s first Wrigley experience was a losing effort, he also took a win away from my fantasy team.

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