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And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

Jun 17, 2011, 5:48 AM EDT

Justin Upton

Diamondbacks 3, Giants 2: Justin Upton with the walkoff homer, served up by Santiago Casilla in the 10th. It was Upton’s first game-ending homer ever. He also had a single and a double on the day, but remember, don’t you dare say that he was a triple short of the cycle, because that’s just dumb, man.

Nationals 7, Cardinals 4: Upton wasn’t the only one walking off in the 10th inning:  Danny Espinosa with the three-run walkoff jack. Anyone think St. Louis is gonna look back at this series in September and say “man, how did the Nats give us so much crap?”

Phillies 3, Marlins 0: A three-hitter for Cliff Lee. He also drove in the only run that the Phillies would end up needing. So yeah, I guess he’ll stick at this level.

Braves 9, Mets 8: Atlanta wins on a walkoff balk in the 10th. Sad: the Braves still have a celebration at the plate as if it were a bases loaded double. Sadder still: that, given how crappy their offense has been, the celebration was sorta justified.

Cubs 12, Brewers 7: Fukodome had a huge day and Alfonso Soriano and Carlos Pena also went deep. Which is sort of like what most Cubs games would have been like if all of the huge money gambles on veterans Jim Hendry has made over the years had always paid off on the upside. A train wreck of a day for Zack Greinke (5.1 IP, 8 H, 8 R, 6 ER, 10K).

Athletics 8, Royals 4: This has nothing to do with this game, but APBA Guy will be along in the comments soon to recap it better than me anyway:  a shallow entertainment gossip website I like to go to sometimes summed up the “Moneyball” trailer that has been floating around thusly: “So this movie tells the story of how the worlds most boring sport added math to create a system that doesn’t work. Holy sh*t, can I go stand in line now?”  I ain’t gonna lie: I lol’d.

Pirates 5, Astros 4: Everyone gets well in Houston. That’s four straight wins for Pittsburgh. A three-run homer for Garrett Jones. Andrew McCutchen‘s hitting streak ended in this one despite the fact that he had a single. Weird, I know.

Twins 1, White Sox 0: Combine Mark Buehrle on his game with the White Sox not hitting themselves, and you’re going to get a short game. This one: 2:09, and the Twins on top thanks to eight shutout innings by Nick Blackburn. A Michael Cuddyer homer was the only offensive noise here.

Yankees 3, Rangers 2: The Rangers get swept for the first time all year. The hero of the day for New York: Brian Gordon, a 32-year-old who, until a couple of days ago, was in the Phillies organization and who was making just his fourth ever major league appearance. The previous three were for Texas back in 2008, but in this one he gave the Yankees a solid spot start, allowing two runs in five and a third. Nice story. Too bad it will be beat into the ground today by the overzealous New York press like it’s their very own Jim Morris thing, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is a nice story.

Tigers 6, Indians 2: Detroit takes two of three from the Indians, have won 13 of 18 total, and now have first place to themselves. Jim Leyland: “We’ve got a little something going, but it’s such a long grind. I don’t get carried away.”  Actually, he gets carried away a lot, but he’s just deciding not to in this instance, which is kind of cute.

Orioles 4, Blue Jays 3: Jeremy Guthrie pitched well but strained his back, left early and got a no-decision, so that’s kind of a bummer.

Red Sox 4, Rays 2: Eleven wins in twelve games. A road trip on which they go 8-1.  The Red Sox are in juggernaut territory.

And now a brief programming note: Beyond the recaps I won’t be blogging today (my HBT companions will be, of course).  Why am I out?  Because the missus and I are taking a three-day romantic getaway. Where? Bourbon country. And yes, the bourbon is the object of the romance and the entire point of the trip. Take that, wine country fancy pantses.

Do what you love in life, people. It’s the key to happiness.

See you Monday.

  1. uyf1950 - Jun 17, 2011 at 5:57 AM

    Brian Cashman, deserves a lot of credit this year. He obviously has been able to turn over every rock and find some pretty decent players at virtually no cost (relatively speaking) to hold the team together, when no one including this poster thought he could. Gordon even it does wind up being just for this one start has been another nice story in a year full of nice stories for the Yankees “reclamation” projects. Hopefully their success and the Yankees continues. That’s just my opinion.
    BTW, Girardi, needs to play Gardner full time and sit Jones he’s terrible. Gardner has earnded the right by his play to be given a shot at full time play and not be platooned. That’s my opinion as well.

    • yankeesfanlen - Jun 17, 2011 at 7:08 AM

      uyf- This is what I don’t get about Girardi- Gardner gets hot and he is platooned with Jones, the Lance Berkman of 2011. (I mean Jones plays like Berkman did last year).
      And I must have missed something pre-game. How did Martin come back and ARod sit?
      Anyway, a matinee in Wrigley, an edifice that would probably fit in the clubhouse of Yankee Stadium. Should be fun.
      BTW, Gordon is getting a start vs. Reds.

      • uyf1950 - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:57 AM

        My friend, I can understand A-Rod getting the day off after 2 night games even though he did just DH on Wednesday. Girardi often gives A-Rod time to “recharge his batteries” after night games when a day game follows. Martin played because he hasn’t played the past few days and his back was probably feeling better. That coupled with the very poor performances of Cervelli made that an easy decision.
        As for Jones, I have no clue as to why Girardi continues to insert him in the order when Gardner has clearly done a good job. I think that is just one of the mysteries of life so to speak.

      • hep3 - Jun 17, 2011 at 11:56 AM

        You know, I think that cagey McCourt still owes some deferred money to Andruw. That Frankie, what smart businessman he must be. Andruw has sucked for years now; ever since 2006.

        Andruw thought Frankie was a little unfair releasing him and negotiating deferred compensation. Gee, Andruw your OBP (.256) was less than your weight.

        They deserved each other.

    • deathmonkey41 - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:25 PM

      I think Jones is in there because Girardi enjoys writing backwards K’s on his scorecard.

  2. Jonny 5 - Jun 17, 2011 at 7:59 AM

    “Sad: the Braves still have a celebration at the plate as if it were a bases loaded double. Sadder still: that, given how crappy their offense has been, the celebration was sorta justified.”

    Awwww, c’mon, they’re 9-5 this month, don’t be so harsh on them there. I know it’s tough to swallow that most of those losses have come at the hands of the Mets and all, but overall it’s not all THAT bad.

  3. Jonny 5 - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:07 AM

    Clifton Phifer Lee, You dirty dog you. (I think he allowed 2 singles there Craig, I’m not sure you got it right up top.) A shut out. Then you go and get a single and a double with an RBI. How do you even look at yourself in the mirror?

    • FC - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:07 AM

      When the starting pitcher has as many hits as the entire opposing team you know you had a good day. DH? Who needs those, pitchers can hit.

      • Jonny 5 - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:54 AM

        This is why “some people” love the NL. I’m one of “them”. ;)

    • Utley's Hair - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:11 PM

      After the game:

      Doc: “Wow, Cliffy. A two-hitter? Isn’t that nice?”
      Lee: “Thanks, Roy. It feels pretty good.”
      Doc: “I had as many no-hitters last season as you gave up hits today. And I scored a run in one of them. So take that, slacker.”

  4. mcsnide - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:11 AM

    But just so we’re clear, Upton finished a triple short of a cycle.

    • bigxrob - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:19 AM

      Crystal.

  5. proudlycanadian - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:20 AM

    Bourbon Craig? Baseball fans drink BEER!

    • sportsdrenched - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:58 AM

      ummmm Beer.

  6. cooptroop08 - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:28 AM

    two hitter for Cliff Lee actually. he is really swinging the bat well too. phils are lookin tough right now. I hope they can stay healthy and keep it goin!

  7. halladaysbicepts - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:40 AM

    What a glorious day for the Phillies yesterday. Cliff Lee was like Billy the Kid with his arm, thowing his pitches with pinpoint control and having lethal results. His use of the bat at the plate would have made Tony Gwynn shiver. Then, the glorious news after the game when they released the walk machine known as JC Romero.

    7 wins in a row, baby. Now, it’s Seattle’s turn to face the wrath of the Phillies.

    “Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to Seattle the Phillies go…..”.

    • halladaysbicepts - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:28 AM

      When the Phillies come into a MLB stadium near you, they strike a fear into the opposing players. They hear this call of the wild, and run away….

      • Old Gator - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:44 AM

        This was also the guy who, when asked if he was curious about his real parents, famously replied: “Jane, my mother was an ape. I never knew my father.”

      • halladaysbicepts - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:50 AM

        Yeah, Tarzan was not the sharpest tool in the shed, but he didn’t need to be. His manliness more than made up for his lack of the social skills.

      • spudchukar - Jun 17, 2011 at 11:41 AM

        Sort of a soul mate then, huh cepts?

      • halladaysbicepts - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:28 PM

        spuds,

        If you suggesting being a soul mate with Tarzan is an insult to me, then insult away. Tarzan has been always an idol of the Bicepts.

        He probably could have played baseball as well. Tarzan was an all around athlete.

      • Jonny 5 - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:37 PM

        LMFAO!!!!!!

      • halladaysbicepts - Jun 17, 2011 at 1:16 PM

        For all of you that have speakers on your computers at work, turn them up and play the Tarzan call above. You will be an instant sensation with your co-workers. I guarantee it!

  8. Ari Collins - Jun 17, 2011 at 8:45 AM

    It’s not a walk-off balk; it’s a balk-off. It’s too ridiculous a term not to use.

    Fix Lee’s two-hitter first.

    But maybe just forget it and enjoy your bourbon and your wife. Err… that wasn’t the right way to put that.

    • Utley's Hair - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:29 PM

      Craig’s gone? Now the minions have control of the asylum. MWAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!

      First order of business: Raid Craig’s liquor cabinet—it’s five o’clock somewhere, right?

      Second order of business: A comment edit button—’cause, ya know, we raided Craig’s liquor cabinet.

      • natstowngreg - Jun 17, 2011 at 2:57 PM

        hmmm, why did the phrase “inmates running the asylum” just pop into my head?

        Comment edit button, definitely. A simple recognition that we are imperfect, as human beings, spellers, and typists.

  9. ppaccione - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:15 AM

    WWTDD…nice

  10. simon94022 - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:17 AM

    As a Giants fan I’m okay with winning 2 of 3 in Arizona. For all their well known offensive and injury problems, SF currently has a better record than any team in the National League except the Phillies, despite playing 38 of their first 69 games on the road. Not a bad place to be.

    Great things are happening around the NL:

    — The Pirates are two games OVER .500 and only 3 games out of first place in the Central. Go Bucs!

    — The Nationals have moved ahead of Florida and are creeping close to .500, despite playing nearly the whole season without Ryan Zimmerman, who is back this week. That team has a lot more young talent than most people suppose. I expect they’ll pass the Mets and finish third. And when Straburg and Harper are added to the mix over the next couple years, the Phillies and Braves better watch out.

  11. Alex K - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:20 AM

    Even better – Fukudome was a double short of a cycle.

  12. wonkypenguin - Jun 17, 2011 at 9:55 AM

    Twins are 9 games back. Mauer returns tonight. The rest of their month includes the Padres at home, at San Fran, at Milwaukee, and home versus the Dodgers. Sure, they have to leap frog all four teams in their division. But it’s June.

    That and that alone is why Leyland is keeping it under control. He remembers 2008. And 2006. They weren’t that long ago.

    I’ve had hope this week. That says something…probably more about me than the Twins chances, but still.

    Also – I hear the Yankees and Cubs have a series this weekend and that at least one ESPN exec had to be stopped from jumping due to the lack of Jeter/Castro comparisons available since Derek’s untimely death. Still – that series could be fun.

    • kopy - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:57 AM

      As Phil Mackey would say, #itshappening

      I’m not THAT excited, but I’m definitely watching all these games with interest. The Twins generally do very well against the NL and the Brewers, but they were swept by the D’backs (which doesn’t look so bad now that we know Arizona is for real), and the Brewers and Giants are very good this year.

      With the Twins pitching on fire, and the offense holding up while the injured return, who knows. Despite the terrible record, the Twins actually have winning records against the AL West and Central, the latter of which is obviously important. Their downfall this year is the AL East and that D’backs sweep.

    • minnesconsin - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:33 PM

      I’m with you. Let’s get back to .500 and take it from there. I’ve Zero confidence in Cleveland. Detroit is Detroit. And the Twins have owned the White Sox the past few seasons.

  13. sportsdrenched - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:01 AM

    This parity thing in MLB certainly sucks. Right NFL haters?

    • halladaysbicepts - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:08 AM

      Actually, parity in any sport sucks. When you have the majority of teams playing at the same lowly level, it dilutes the product on the field.

      Parity in the NFL created a 7-9 team that won it’s division last year because of mediocrity.

    • deathmonkey41 - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:38 PM

      The NFL doesn’t have parity, it has a bunch of mediocre teams…well, I guess that is parity in a way, but I don’t think that’s what they set out to acheive.

  14. The Rabbit - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:17 AM

    Romantic trip with the missus….very nice, Craig.
    When you have finished sampling the bourbon, Bardstown had some very good restaurants on my last visit. The Jim Beam marinated ribs were incredible. Enjoy!

    • Old Gator - Jun 17, 2011 at 10:47 AM

      Great thing about Craig is, you can see his hangover right through his head.

      Meanwhile, you can marinate Feesh in bourbon too. Or anything else, for that matter. I doubt if they’re particularly sober tonight, at any rate.

      • The Rabbit - Jun 17, 2011 at 1:44 PM

        Great thing about Craig is, you can see his hangover right through his head.
        I’ll keep my voice down.
        I have marinated Feesh in bourbon. Non-oily Feesh are too delicate, though. Shrimp marinated in bourbon and grilled with lime are great.

  15. spudchukar - Jun 17, 2011 at 11:05 AM

    Now that the Nats have Zimmerman back and are firing on all cylinders don’t be surprised if they begin to compete in the east. They made their first error in 14 games last night. With Morse, Nix, and Bernadina making significant contributions, their offense is jellin’. Couple that with a 6th best team ERA, at 3.56 and a dominant bullpen, the Nats are no longer pushovers. Their schedule has been tough so far, having played the most away games(tied with the Cardinals at 40), and are beginning to flex their muscles in a park that is conducive to the home run. With the O’s, Mariners, White Sox, Angels, Pirates, Cubs and Rockies as competitors before the all-star break, don’t be surprised if they win all those series, and stand 6 games over .500 at 49-43 readying themselves to be second half players.

    • cur68 - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:14 PM

      As you know Spuddy, a little interleague coming up, featuring my Beaverboys (hired guns to a man) vs. you Cards in a week. I don’t know if you saw any of their tilt v. the Orioles but Bautista is in his annual home run slump (just a tweak away from breaking out of it, IMO) so Adam Lind has decided to be The Man for homers. If both are hitting then your Cards will have a scrap on their hands come next week. If not, well Beaver pitchers get to look uncomfortable at the plate for your amusement. Take the wins and move along; nothing to see here.

      Our newest pitching prospect, Stewart, is pretty good, Lots of poise and real good at changing speeds with excellent location. Easily good enough to baffle Orioles hitting. Will he hold up against Braves hitting? I do believe Braves hitting = Orioles hitting, so I like the kid’s chances. As for the rest; Reds & Cards are tough tests and the Jays have so far been uncompetitive against tough teams. I predict, at best, 5 – 5 record for the next 10, 9 of which are interleague.

      No joy in Mudville tonight.

    • Ari Collins - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:25 PM

      You should be surprised if any team wins 7 serieses in a row. Let alone the Nats.

      But the road-heavy schedule so far and Zimmerman’s return are good to note.

    • Old Gator - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:27 PM

      The Gnats have benefited mightily by the implosion of the Feesh, of course. It’s like suddenly having someone provide you with a footstool so you can reach that can of corn on the top shelf.

      • natstowngreg - Jun 17, 2011 at 3:12 PM

        Much bitterness in Old Gator’s comment, but some truth as well. Not that we Nats fans should spare much sympathy for Marlins fans; we’ve had more than enough misery of our own.

        The Nats’ play of late is encouraging, the improvement over last season is obvious, and the near-future schedule is encouraging. Let’s see if they can sustain the momentum. As always, I’m hopeful, but realistic.

      • Old Gator - Jun 17, 2011 at 6:01 PM

        No bitterness at all – but disgust is often mistaken for it. Not at the Gnats or their fans, of course – I predicted at then end of spring training, right here on CBT, that the Gnats would finish ahead of the Mutts this season. I still think they will. I picked the Feesh for third or at least a second sufficiently distant to be unqualified for the wild card when a lot of folks picked them to contend, at least for the card.

        I said on several occasions that the Feesh wouldn’t contend but barring key injuries, I never expected them to be this bad. The injury to Josh Johnson isn’t key enough under the current circumstances, since he would have been consistently matched against other aces who would have strangled his offense behind him without a lot of trouble. I see him sustaining a string of NDs when he left on 1-1 or 2-2 scores or the boolpen blew his one run leads for him. I don’t even think Hanley’s injury made that much of a difference because they were winning with minimal contributions from him before they went into their current swandive into the deep end of the empty pool of the NL East. The injury to Logan Morrison hurt, and the injury to Coghlan, imported from last season, seems still to be making a difference. The minor injury to Nunez hurt even though they haven’t had much use for him, being behind so much of the time – and he was so rusty when he came back that he immediately blew the first save situation he entered.

        But the bottom line is that the whole team has been playing like shit, even Morrison with RISP.

      • natstowngreg - Jun 18, 2011 at 7:31 PM

        Fair enough. Clearly, the Marlins have failed to fulfill expectations, while the Nationals are just starting to fulfill theirs.

        The Nats had been so bad, it didn’t really matter what the rest of the division did. The important thing was having the worst record, so we could get two of the biggest prospects of the past couple of decades, in consecutive years (and other high picks). Though there was that spoiler role the Nats played in the NL East race not that long ago.

        Now that the Washingtion Nationals are doing a decent impersonation of a winning Major League Baseball team, we can start paying more attention to where we are vis-a-vis the Marlins and Mets. Then later, the Phillies and Braves. It’s nice to be contending for 3rd place (in part, due to the Marlins’ and Mets’ struggles), but 3rd place is a step on the way to something better.

  16. ditto65 - Jun 17, 2011 at 11:08 AM

    Positive Jorge news of the day: 9 game hitting streak.

    Carry on.

    • uyf1950 - Jun 17, 2011 at 11:19 AM

      As much as Yankees fans, myself included welcome the news. I think it’s safe to say Joltin Joe’s 56 games hitting streak is safe at least as far as Jorge breaking it.

      • ditto65 - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:08 PM

        No doubt. I am just pointing out that Jorge is turning things around. I am as unhappy about bloated contracts carrying aging veterans well past their prime. We hear about rants and sitting out games. What we don’t hear – especially with Jorge – is when he contributes. And right now he is contributing.

  17. APBA Guy - Jun 17, 2011 at 12:00 PM

    The A’s have found a team they can beat, taking 2-3 from the Royals in front of a massive nap-time crowd of 11,000 yesterday. The game was not televised in deference to those in the crowd who were actually awake. Cameras have a tendency to cause people to rise to a level of animation they might not otherwise achieve, despite the warm, pollen filled air, thus disturbing their more somnambulant neighbors.
    How else to explain the absolute quiet that filled the radio broadcast’s background of the A’s rocking ex-Rockie Jeff Francis for 6 runs in the first 3 innings, then throwing Devine (2.63), Wuertz (2.95) and Balfour (2.76) over the last 3 to cover the “good” Gio (2.69) who showed up yesterday. No triple from Weeks today, just 2-4 with a double and 3 RBI’s out of the 9th spot. “I’ll show you, big brother!”. My little brother was like that, anyway.

    Now, the mighty A’s, flexing their 26th overall runs scoring muscle, face Los Gigantes in the Mausoleum, which should draw sell-outs for 3 days.

    Lincecum vs. “My Man” Godfrey
    Sanchez vs. Moscoso
    Cain vs. The White Rabbit

    SF is lined up for their second sweep of the A’s this year, but I’m wildly optimistic and predict the A’s will win one because the Giants will be afraid to touch their pregame meal, citing “rodent infestation” in the clubhouse, not realizing that’s a charming artifact of their antique surroundings. Hopefully Matsui won’t hurt himself trying to play right field.

  18. natstowngreg - Jun 17, 2011 at 3:14 PM

    Criag still has a little trouble giving the Nats credit. Could it be that, by the end of the season, the Cards look back and say, “those Nationals were better than we thought?”

  19. mgflolox - Jun 18, 2011 at 4:07 AM

    The Nationals are starting to remind me of the Expos circa 1991 (ironic, I know). They are collecting a very impressive array of young talent. With good management and a little luck, they are soon going to be a force in the National League. One of my favorite things is seeing a young collection of homegrown talent become a contending team. It’s one of the reasons I root for the Rays even though I am mostly an A’s fan. It would be great to see the Nats join the Rays as a contending team.

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