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And That Happened: Tuesday's Scores and Highlights

Sep 29, 2010, 5:59 AM EDT

What a night. Everyone got all clinchy.

Reds 3, Astros 2: If you’re gonna clinch the division, do it on a walkoff jack. Way to go Jay Bruce. Way to go Cincinnati Reds. Cincinnati was a great baseball town. Maybe still is a great baseball town. Definitely can be a great baseball town going forward. But it needed this division title to cleanse itself of the negativity that has pervaded Reds baseball for so many years. Not so much the team itself, but the fans and their relationship to it. It needed guys like Joey Votto and Jay Bruce and Brandon Phillips and, yes, Dusty Baker, to remind the town of how fun baseball really is.

Yankees 6, Blue Jays 1; Rays 5, Orioles 0: With these wins the Yankees and the Rays clinched playoff spots of their own. Both CC Sabathia (8.1 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 8K) and David Price (8 IP, 6 H, 0 ER, 8K) pitched gems. Lots of people will no doubt look at these games and decide that nice lines in clinching games = big money and put more steam behind what had been flagging Cy Young cases for each of them.

Mariners 3, Rangers 1: But anyone tempted to do so had best take heed: Felix Hernandez is still awesome: 8 IP, 5H, 1 ER, 5K). Will he start on Sunday, or was this it? Justin Smoak with a two-run homer that put the M’s up for good. Here’s hoping — for M’s fans’ sake — that this is a harbinger of thing to come, not just some weird spite thing against the Rangers.

Braves 3, Marlins 2: Eric Hinske’s pinch hit, two-run jack keeps the Braves on top in the wild card race. It was a another skin-of-their-teeth win, with Brooks Conrad (big RBI triple late in the game) and Melky Cabrera and Rick Ankiel (big defensive blunder, striking out with a runner on third with less than two outs) doing those things they do best.

Cubs 5, Padres 2: Alfonso Soriano hit two homers and the Padres bats continued to slumber. San Diego is now a game and a half back of the Braves in the wild card and are two back of the Giants with five to play.

Giants 4, Diamondbacks 2: Juan Uribe had a homer and Pablo Sandoval got a couple of hits, as the Giants moved one game closer to the playoffs. Sandoval: “Five more games. We have to play hard. Don’t get comfortable.” Nothin’ personal, but I have this feeling that Sandoval spends a large portion of his day trying to get comfortable.

Dodgers 9, Rockies 7: And so it ends for Colorado. All of these losses to the not-so-good teams in the last week — the Dbacks and Dodgers — may have put the final nail in the coffin, but their overall lack of consistency over the course of 162 games is the real cause of death. You can’t depend on a month’s worth of great play and do very well in this game.

Mets 4, Brewers 3: A two-run homer for David Wright and a two-run, game-winning double for Ruben Tejada. And Prince Fielder made a great defensive play in this one. That’s the first time I’ve ever written that. Now watch: per the Jayson Werth thing, Boras will start touting him as a centerfielder.

Nationals 2, Phillies 1: A walkoff homer for Adam Dunn against a Phillies lineup that I would have expected to have more bench players than it did a day after clinching. Howard, Utley, Rollins and Ibanez all got the start. Roy Osawalt did too, but he was yanked after 66 pitches, so this was clearly a less-than-100% outing for him, by design.

Royals 10, Twins 1: OK, I made a bit of fun of Ron Gardenhire for worrying about the Twins’ effort lately, but this is probably a legitimate concern at this point. Kila Ka’aihue hit two homers and had four RBI.

Pirates 7, Cardinals 2: The Cards were eliminated before this game was over thanks to Jay Bruce’s heroics in Cincinnati. Not that Cardinals fans knew it. According to several Cardinals writers who were tweeting during the game, the Cards out of town scoreboard wasn’t updated to show the Reds score for some time after it happened. The first sign to the crowd that the season had become a formality was the PA system blasting R.E.M.’s “It’s the End of the World As We Know It.”  Classic.

White Sox 5, Red Sox 4: Boston no doubt learned of their elimination in mid-game as well. Dayan Viciedo won it for the Chisox on a pinch-hit walkoff RBI single. Oh, and Daniel Bard blew a save in this one, so put that in your back pocket as you start gearing up for Boston’s hot stove season.

Angels 4, Athletics 2: I hope Peter Bourjos can hit in this league, because I’d sure like to see him do this sort of thing for a long time.

Tigers vs. Indians: Postponed: Let us keep our feet in wool slippers and mix hot punches–and talk about
mail carriers and messenger boys slipping along the icy sidewalks. Let
us write of olden, golden days and hunters of the Holy Grail and men
called “knights” riding horses in the rain, in the cold frozen rain for
ladies they loved.

  1. Kevin - Sep 29, 2010 at 6:27 AM

    Just wondering……. is it rare for a team to score 6 runs without any of them scoring on a hit ? The Yankees just did so on 3 sac flies, a bases loaded walk and basically two ground outs.
    Just curious. Thanks.

  2. Craig Calcaterra - Sep 29, 2010 at 6:31 AM

    Wow, I hadn’t even noticed that. Cool! No idea how often that has happened, if ever. It does seem like a lot to score in that fashion.

  3. Kevin - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:08 AM

    I would love to explore that, but will have to leave such to you gurus with all the knowledge and know-how. If you do come across that, please do be sure to share it. Thanks !

  4. Proudly Canadian - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:15 AM

    Sabathia pitched quite well against the Jays. As far as the Yankee runs were concerned, they came against inexperienced pitchers who had spent most of the season in the minors. It was a bit of a learning experience for them.

  5. isdtyrant - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:54 AM

    Attendance at the Rays’ clincher: 17891 (source: USA Today). Not-quite-as-embarassing.

  6. Md23Rewls - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:57 AM

    I’m never sure on what the protocol for celebration is. Technically, neither New York, nor Tampa actually has won their division as of yet (or, for that matter, the Wild Card). I guess celebrating the mere assurance of a playoff berth is the thing to do these days, but it’s going to feel sort of anticlimatic when one of them wins the East.

  7. Jonny5 - Sep 29, 2010 at 9:01 AM

    Phills are on cruise control now, just hope they don’t lull themselves to sleep like we saw earlier this season. Stone cold bats in the playoffs and you’re done.

  8. Kevin S. - Sep 29, 2010 at 9:02 AM

    It is when the Rays gave away 20,000 tickets.

  9. Kevin S. - Sep 29, 2010 at 9:04 AM

    Michael Kay at the end of the broadcast was going on and on about how Sabathia proved tonight how an ace just has the ability to take the ball and deliver a gem whenever his team needs it most. I guess last Thursday never happened.

  10. Craig Calcaterra - Sep 29, 2010 at 9:07 AM

    I’m pretty sure the 20,000 ticket giveaway was for tonight, not last night.

  11. Simon DelMonte - Sep 29, 2010 at 9:12 AM

    All things considered, the newbies did well, since those six runs could have easily been more. Getting those five outs is better than a lot of pitchers might have done. I really think things look brighter for Toronto than in some time.

  12. geoknows - Sep 29, 2010 at 10:03 AM

    Yeah, that’s for tonight’s game.

  13. Ari Collins - Sep 29, 2010 at 10:50 AM

    Felix Vows to Start Sunday:

    If he has one more good start, and especially if he gets a win, it’ll help his Cy case. But maybe even being all, “Coach, I wanna play,” will help. Or maybe people will see it as, “I don’t care about my team, only my Cy Young case!”?

    Storylines is weird, man.

  14. APBA Guy - Sep 29, 2010 at 11:16 AM

    I’ve mentioned to Gator that I expect the A’s and his Feesh to finish with the same, or nearly so, records. Last night both teams slipped 3 under GSA to 77-80, the A’s doing so under the nose of minority owner and managing general partner Lew Wolff, who spent 2 innings in the broadcast booth. Lew had nothing to say about the stadium process, other than it’s taking a long time, and he believes Oakland has not ever come forward with a viable plan for a new venue, whereas San Jose “loves ‘m A’s.”
    That’s nice to hear, I guess, as he had earlier admitted that the A’s had 2 potential free agents “turn away” from them after touring the Mausoleum. The Angels had 43,000 last night for no apparent reason other than Moreno’s marketing people are all geniuses and they know they can spank the A’s at home. Also, they must have known Bourgos was going to make an incredible catch and were waiting quietly for it. The kid had great demeanor after the catch also, totally all “Been there.” That’s SoCal speak, because they are our cultural masters. And our marketing masters.
    He did spend a lot of time talking about the offense, or lack of one this year. He claimed Beane and his guys had foretold that the young pitchers would mature en masse this year, but that offense would be rare (it certainly is for the A’s). This offseason, though, he expects the A’s to bring more offense to the team.
    So expect a parade of old has-beens rather than the annual individual has-been we’ve gotten used to. I don’t think the Angelos Playbook (followed by the A’s) has a chapter on “high dollar free agents”, except one word: Avoid.
    We’ll probably get a bunch of guys in the $5M range who all, surprise!, get injured and barely contribute, like, shall we say, Mike Sweeney, Coco Crisp, et al.
    And I thought we were doing that already.

  15. Utley's hair - Sep 29, 2010 at 11:31 AM

    Meh. It was their annual hangover/letdown game. Last year, they clinched (KK got the win, by the way), sprayed beer and carbonated fermented grape juice all over Harry’s outfield memorial, then proceeded to lose the next three games with their Iron Pigs lineup. No worries, but it’s good news for Craig and the Bravos.

  16. Will - Sep 29, 2010 at 12:01 PM

    I thought the Brewers and Mets were supposed to have a double-header yesterday. Did they cancel the other game?

  17. Utley's hair - Sep 29, 2010 at 1:08 PM

    That’s a twinight DH today, not yesterday…though it will only serve to expose the players of two links-headed teams to injury.

  18. Old Gator - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:43 PM

    That GSA hovering way up there is beginning to look like one of those pie plate UFOs from Plan Nine from Outer Space, isn’t it?
    Leaving Anibal Sanchez out there long enough to barf up Hinske’s meatball when the poor guy’s eyes were so sunken with fatigue that light green puddles of Gatorade were filling the space between his lids and corneas was a stroke of the kind of managerial genius the Feesh bought themselves (cheaply, of course) when their managerial search for Fat Freddi’s replacement degenerated into an internecine trainwreck. Bobby da V got off easy. Rr-r-r-reallll easy. One can imagine the world’s first Puerto Rican major league baseball manager looking up with a start from his dish of pinchos and mafongo when rattled by the sonic boom from Hinske’s moonshot and asking, “what was that?”

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