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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

Jul 6, 2011, 5:58 AM EDT

Westley

Cardinals 8, Reds 1: Albert Pujols was activated, but did not play. Makes me think this was a whole “Westley bluffing his way to victory over Humperdink even though he was still partly paralyzed from the ‘mostly dead’ thing” from “The Princess Bride.”  His mere presence and threat carried the day, at least psychologically speaking. Meanwhile, Matt Holliday and his two home runs fill the role of Inigo Montoya, kicking everyone’s butt to very little fanfare.

Reds Sox 3, Blue Jays 2: One of the more harrowing 3-2 games you’ll see. Partially because the Sox lost Jon Lester to strain of the old latissimus dorsi. Partially because Jonathan Papelbon has apparently been bored lately and decided to make a 3-0 game interesting. And then of course, the home plate umpire blew the call at home, calling Edwin Encarnacion out when he really was safe. An assist on that to Jason Varitek, who blocked the plate in a way that we all sorta decided catchers shouldn’t do back when Buster Posey got injured, but which I’m guessing most folks will call a heads up play today.  But really, if you’re looking for intellectual consistency in sports, don’t come to baseball. We’re all about nuance and duality here.

Pirates 5, Astros 1: Jeff Karstens allowed one run in seven innings. Is it just me or does it seem like Karstens starts every other day for the Buccos?  OK, I’ll admit that’s improbable and is likely a function of me not paying as close attention to the box scores as a I should. But really, I’m pretty sure he’s had 42 starts so far this year (no, I’m not checking; no time).

Nationals 3, Cubs 2: Jeff Baker thew what should have been an easy out way clear of the second base bag, leading to two Nats’ runs and more or less deciding the ballgame, even though it happened in the first inning. Five Nats pitchers took it the rest of the way.

Phillies 14, Marlins 2: Amazing but true fact: when you give Cole Hamels 14 runs, he never loses.

Braves 5, Rockies 3: Freddie Freeman hit another homer. And as I was looking at his player bio page, I notice that he looks a lot like my high school friend Eric used to look circa 1989 or so. Eric and I saw “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” together at the theater and then went to Myrtle Beach together after we graduated, but you probably don’t care about that, though. How about this, then: Derek Lowe helped his own cause with a bases-loaded double. Wait, you think Eric is more interesting than my cliche phrases? Man, tough crowd.

Rangers 4, Orioles 2: Matt Harrison gave up 11 hits in six innings and only two runs scored. Without having seen any of this game, that seems like a failure to capitalize issue from the O’s part, no? Mostly, though, it was a failure of Orioles’ reliever Jim Johnson to shut the damn door when he came in with a 2-1 lead in the seventh inning.

Diamondbacks 7, Brewers 3: Hey, look on the bright side Brewers’ fans: starting down 7-1 early, at least your boys didn’t blow a big lead this time!

Yankees 9, Indians 2: Jeter had two hits. I was hoping he’d get four or five simply so that the Yankees could worry that even a moderately decent day tomorrow would have him reach 3,000 on the road. But hey, we can’t get everything we want. More significantly, Curtis Granderson had two homers and CC Sabathia continued to make the people who left him off the All-Star team look like fools (7 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 11K).

Twins 3, Rays 2: The Twins — who used six pitchers, thanks in part to starter Scott Baker‘s strained elbow– beat James Shields, who looked mortal for his second straight start. One gets the sense that he needs the All-Star break to be here about as bad as anyone.

Royals 5, White Sox 3: After Kansas City frittered away a 3-0 lead, a two-run Matt Treanor single in the sixth broke the 3-3 tie and pushed the Royals over.

Padres 5, Giants 3:  San Diego beats San Francisco 5-3 for the second straight day. Cameron Maybin drove in three and Anthony Rizzo two.

Mets 6, Dodgers 0: Jason Bay … is … alive. Two homers for him and a two-run shot for Carlos Beltran go nicely with six shutout innings from Mike Pelfrey. The Dodgers, they reel.

Mariners 4, Athletics 2: Felix Hernandez deserved better than a no-decision after allowing one run in eight innings and striking out ten. But Brandon League blew the save in the ninth and Andrew Bailey and the A’s defense couldn’t get it done in the tenth, with the go-ahead run scoring on a throwing error and some insurance on an Adam Kennedy double.

Angels 1, Tigers 0: Dan Haren beat Justin Verlander at his own game (gettin’ lots of dudes out and not allowing many hits). A two-hit shutout for Haren. Oh, and you’ll be shocked to learn that Joe West’s crew ejected three people in this one.

  1. Matthew Flint - Jul 6, 2011 at 6:04 AM

    The Princess Bride is awesome! Goog show, Craig. Also, by far the least stressful Phils game in a few years. The shame is that they always blow their load in one game and don’t score for a few days.

    - “Inconceivable!!!!!!”

    - “I don’t think that means what you think it means.”

    • umrguy42 - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:19 AM

      Please, please, sit down before you hurt yourself ;p

      “He didn’t fall?! Inconceivable!”
      “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

      • Matthew Flint - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:01 AM

        Sorry, next time I won’t rely on my memory of a movie that I haven’t seen in 15 years and I’ll just go to IMDB like yourself. Douche.

      • umrguy42 - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:05 AM

        Dude, take a chill pill. I didn’t have to go to IMDB for that. I like the movie so much, I used to use that sound clip as one of my Windows sounds.

      • Phillies Homer - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:32 PM

        It’s not like Flint was completely wrong. I would have called you a douche as well.

  2. quintjs - Jul 6, 2011 at 6:34 AM

    Craig – got a task for you – write a serious article calling for expanded rosters for games crewed by Joe West and his team and see if it gets picked up by othe writers. Would love to see what happens next.

  3. drmonkeyarmy - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:05 AM

    Was what the old man in Florida doing last night? The intentional walk to Howard in the third was odd. I know Howard crushes Volstad but so does Ibanez. Crazy move. Even crazier was playing the infield in when down 11-2 in the 9th. Never seen that before either.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:14 AM

      So you thumbs down folks, think it was a good move to intentionally walk Howard in the 3rd inning to with runners on 1st and 3rd? Or do you think it was a good move to play the infield in down 9 runs in the ninth?

      • FC - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:45 AM

        I ignore thumbs down, you have no idea if people thumb down because they disagree with you or because they agree that was a dumb-a$$ move by the Manager and so thumbs down on the manager.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:51 AM

        I generally ignore the thumbs down as well. I do, however, like when the thumbs down people post a reply disputing the statement. That way a healthy debate can ensue. I think some people just thumbs down everything I say after I made fun of sabermetrics and said that Bautista’s numbers appear fishy.

      • Paul Zummo - Jul 6, 2011 at 11:14 AM

        Personally I just automatically thumbs down anybody who complains about being thumbed-down.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:11 PM

        That’s fine. I wasn’t complaining. I would just like some feedback to whatever was disagreed upon so there can be healthy dialogue. I don’t see the point in giving somebody a thumbs down then not posting a comment with the contrary viewpoint. Personally, I don’t use that feature.

      • Old Gator - Jul 6, 2011 at 4:47 PM

        I think the thumbs tend downward because of gravity in the northern hemisphere, upward in the southern. And that’s not all that’s affected by gravity and tends downward. Though when you get to my age, you can’t really tell if it’s due to gravity or lack of interest.

  4. kiwicricket - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:27 AM

    I have kept absolutely silent about this replay business, believing that in the end, something will get sorted. But 2-years later….nothing.
    The following are a series of clips, showing quite clearly just how far baseball is behind the rest of the world in both technology and broadcasting.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CTfREipYxc

    That ball was bowled at around 85mph, and the umpire has to make a decision on up to 5 different factors. Obviously sometimes human element will get things wrong….so technology was introduced(to aid such decisions).
    Each team has one ‘referral’ per game. That clip checked 3 things. Foot behind the line, pitched in-line and if there was any contact with the bat.
    Please note the total time taken was 40 seconds.

    Next up is a standard run-of-the-mill broadcasting tool, which is also used by the umpiring officials. One actually sits in the media box, next to a little television, and makes decisions using technology provided. Simple. Not costly. NO LENGTHY DELAYS. Ultimately correct decisions at pivotal times.
    The ball was bowled at 90mph and is accurate to with-in a few millimetres.(is the term fractions of inches??)

    And the final clip is ultra-slow motion. This was a series between England and Australia in 2005.
    Some people might think it’s boring, but I find it truly magnificent.
    At 2.25minutes and 4.45, imagine instead of a cricket bat, seeing Pujol’s bat compact a baseball by 20% during a HR. Wakefield’s actual fingertips releasing the ball. Basically anything instead of Buck and MCarver talking.

    Baseball is a 6-billion dollar form of entertainment. The cost of viewing this entertainment has increased….is it too much to ask that the quality of the product do the same?

    Kind regards

    Global sports enthusiast

    • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:35 AM

      You should have just posted links to the youtube videos. The post is entirely too long. However, thanks for the links. Very informative.

      • kiwicricket - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:50 AM

        I tried to. They just popped up for some reason!? I want the links not some picture of a man on my post. I’m going into hiding.

    • kiwicricket - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:39 AM

      Sorry folks, foreign correspondence finished for today. Cricket and Rugby implemented the use of technology for ‘play at the plate’ type decisions 25yrs ago. It should take less than a minute for a correct call. I’m through commenting on replay. And All Star snubs.

  5. Jonny 5 - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:07 AM

    “Freddie Freeman hit another homer. And as I was looking at his player bio page, I notice that he looks a lot like my high school friend Eric used to look circa 1989 or so.”

    Wait, so you were friends with Buzz? Holy sh——-!

    http://mobilwi.typepad.com/.a/6a0120a6dde087970b0154324d717f970c-800wi

    • kiwicricket - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:11 AM

      That Sir, is pretty dam funny for 8.07 in the morning.

  6. proudlycanadian - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:07 AM

    He was safe! Varitek never tagged him.

    • missthemexpos - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:31 AM

      One of those calls you have to live with, and in other news, Casey Anthony found not guilty.

    • paperlions - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:47 AM

      Yes, but as pointed out in another thread, Patterson took strike 3 (and it wasn’t at all close, an easy strike call) and it was called a ball. Patterson went on to single and score. In the end, the same ump screwed up twice, but the team that should have won did so….it just took a couple more batters than it should have.

      • proudlycanadian - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:29 AM

        You are telling a Blue Jay fan about missed third strike calls! It was 2 consecutive missed strike 3 calls that upset Rauch. The Blue Jays are still owed another blown strike 3 call.

      • missthemexpos - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:51 AM

        Bottom line, if there is a blown call against your team, you hope that before the game is over there is another blown call in favor of your team. What makes it interesting is when you get a poor umpiring crew (Is this actually possible?) and blown calls are happening all over the place.

  7. uyf1950 - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:23 AM

    Craig, I couldn’t agree with you more about the Yankees/Cleveland game. I would like to add somethings though that you neglected to mention about CC Sabathia. He now has his seasons ERA down to 2.90. He’s 3rd in the ML’s in innings pitched (only 1/3 of an inning behind King Felix), 5th in the AL in strikeouts and as best I can tell is tied for the fewest HR’s given up by any starter with at least 15 starts. I won’t mention leads the ML’s in wins with 12 since many fans on this site don’t put much stock in that stat. Not bad for someone who was overlooked by Washington for the All Star Game.

    • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:33 AM

      Perhaps because of the large number of Yankees voted in by fans, and the whole every team has to have at least 1 All Star rule… I agree CC should be there, but then again, Yankee fans, be happy he is not. He is, more than anyone else on the team, the one indispensable player on the Yankees, aside from maybe Mo. if CC were to get hurt in this exhibition game, the Yankees are done…
      Sadly, no mention from Craig here about the other AL all star shortstop, who sprained his ankle and had to leave the game last night..

      My name is Inejo Montoya, you kill my father, prepare to die!!

      • uyf1950 - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:52 AM

        My friend it’s one thing not to play because say you pitched on the Sunday before the All Star Break which is what would be the case with CC. He’s scheduled to pitch this coming Sunday on his usual 4 days rest. Which as in the past and like so many other pitchers it would have precluded him from actually playing in the game. It’s something else completely different to be completely overlooked/bypassed if you will. As for the comment every team have at least 1 All Star representative. The Rangers have Beltre on the team does anyone really believe that CJ Wilson deserves to be on it versus CC Sabathia. That’s just my opinion.

      • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:14 AM

        Yes, the same people who think Jeter deserves to be there starting over A-Cab or Peralta, or even JJ Hardy…..The only people on the planet that are concerned with this perceived slight of CC are Yankee fans. You already have 5 players there so STFU and enjoy the game. Not even CC gives 2 craps about not going. I have the pleasure of knowing him personally from his many years here in Cleveland, and he will be the first to tell you that, while he would be honored to have been chosen, he knows what is really important (staying healthy for the postseason) and will enjoy the rest during the break.

      • uyf1950 - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:29 AM

        To take – you are missing the whole point and to be honest you reply is completely off base. As to the Jeter reference. Everyone I think knows many of the starters picked while some may be deserving and other not is purely a popularity contest. Set up by MLB to get the “fans” involved. Where as the selection of the pitchers in done solely at the discretion on the manager of the team. And if the team that wins the All Star game secures the home field advantage for their respective league then they have an obligation, yes an obligation to pick the best pitchers available. Also, btw the manager can correct any injustices due to the fans selection by picking the reserves. That same luxury is not afforded deserving yet purposely overlooked pitchers.

      • marinersnate - Jul 6, 2011 at 2:35 PM

        @uyf

        “Where as the selection of the pitchers in done solely at the discretion on the manager of the team.”

        Umm no. Of the 13 pitchers on the AL staff, 8 were voted in by the players and only 5 were chosen by Wash. The players cold have voted Sabathia in if they felt he deserved it.

        Voted in by players:
        Verlander (Det.)
        Shields (TB)
        Beckett (Bos.)
        Weaver (LAA)
        Hernandez (Sea.)
        Rivera (NYY)
        Perez (Cle.)
        League (Sea.)

        Selected by manager Ron Washington:
        Gonzalez (Oak.)
        Price (TB)
        Wilson (Tex.)
        Crow (KC)
        Valverde (Det.)

        Also, as has been pointed out, several of the starting pitchers on the staff are scheduled to make starts on Sunday (Verlander, King Felix, etc.) and will not be allowed to pitch in the All Star game. More replacements will be named.

        I personally beleave that both Sabathia and C.J. Wilson deserve to be on the team. If I had to leave one off of the list above to get Sabathia on the team, I would probably choose to leave League off. But then you have starter vs. releiver issues.

        I will agree a bit with one of the other commenters above. With Jeter starting at SS for the AL, only a Yankees’ fan would claim that they had been snubbed….

  8. girardisbraces - Jul 6, 2011 at 8:59 AM

    As was astutely observed in the Yankees/Indians broadcast on YES last night, it would have cost Ron Washington NOTHING to name CC to the All Star Game. CC is scheduled to pitch the final game before the ASB so he would have politely declined his spot and Washington could have named another worthy candidate in his stead.

    • kiwicricket - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:12 AM

      The good people at YES network astutely observed that a Yankee be chosen before someone else?

      • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:18 AM

        Maybe we should just have a “Yankees versus the rest of MLB” game??

        Unbelievable….

      • drunkenhooliganism - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:28 AM

        I’m not a Yankees fan, I’m a baseball fan. I’d like to see CC honored as an all-star. He deserves it based on this year and his entire career.

    • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:20 AM

      Except to send a message to his own player that he was not his first choice. Look, All Star Managers have been giving their own players the nod since day one. It is one of the perks of getting to coach the game. if Yankee fans have a problem, I suggest getting to the World Series, then next year Girardi can have 9 or 10 Yankees on the team.

    • kopy - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:27 AM

      We don’t know that for sure. Even if CC actually came out and said as much, he could be just saving face.

  9. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:31 AM

    So I spent the entire July 4th weekend telling my wife, my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law that the State did not present enough evidence to convict Casey Anthony. And they told me I was nuts and there was no way she would be found not guilty. Then she was. My mother-in-law looked at me with this evil stare and said “You will be wrong someday and I hope I am there to see it.”

    Fast forward to last night…we are all watching the Phillies. Ibanez hits into a weak double play in the 8th. I say that he is really struggling right now and even though he was having a good game, he seems to revert back to his old self rolling over pitches with men on and grounding into DP. “He stinks” are my exact words. 15 minutes later he hits a bomb over the right field wall and my mother-in-law says “What do you know…I guess you were wrong about Ibanez.”

    Moral of the story…Phillies are awesome, never argue with a woman or especially multiple women, and Casey Anthony will walk out a free woman tomorrow mostly because of shoddy prosecution. And the lynch mob will continue to want her blood because of people like Nancy Grace and the rest of the hoard leaders. What a disgrace.

    • deathmonkey41 - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:23 PM

      And the lynch mob will continue to want her blood because of people like Nancy Grace and the rest of the hoard leaders. What a disgrace.

      And for the fact that she murdered a little girl and got away with it for whatever reason…maybe not so much Nancy Grace.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:35 PM

        “for whatever reason”

        How about “lack of evidence”? That’s a pretty big reason.

      • deathmonkey41 - Jul 6, 2011 at 3:19 PM

        Reasonable doubt doesn’t mean any doubt, but I concur- it’s all Nancy Grace’s fault. And Mark Furhman- I think he killed the little girl too- just a theory.

    • Glenn - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:31 PM

      “My mother-in-law looked at me with this evil stare and said “You will be wrong someday and I hope I am there to see it.”

      Obviously, your mother-in-law does not read your posted baseball opinions ;-)

      • Chris Fiorentino - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:41 PM

        She’s not much of a stat geek :)

  10. umrguy42 - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:31 AM

    Why does ESPN claim to have a play-by-play guy on last night’s crew? I mean, I realize it isn’t radio, but seriously – I was doing dishes in the kitchen, with the game on in the living room, and if it weren’t for the crowd noises, you’d assume it was Baseball Tonight, based on how busy they all were discussing midseason “awards”… not a BIT of play by play description. Hell, they even made a JOKE about how they weren’t actually doing any!

  11. Matt - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:38 AM

    Craig: Minor error in your Tigers recap…4 people were ejected, however it is easy to understand how 1 was missed because it was Rick Porcello, who never actually entered the field of play but still managed to come within the firing lines of Cowboy Joe and his crew…

    http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-0706-angels-tigers-20110706,0,347142.story

    • kopy - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:48 AM

      The article lists Abreu, Leyland, and Porcello, is there someone else?

      • Matt - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:03 AM

        Verlander in the paragraph above that list.

    • kiwicricket - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:04 AM

      Should a 24yr old pitcher, with 2 1/2 years under his belt and a 5.00ERA be mouthing off at an umpire while he’s in the dug-out? I can see how having a word to those particular umpires might be tempting, but Porcello is certainly not doing himself any favours career-wise.

  12. Phillies Homer - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    “You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders – The most famous of which is “never get involved in a land war in Asia” – but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never go against a Sicilian when death is on the line”! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!”

    • snowbirdgothic - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:06 PM

      Spent years developing an immunity to iocane, have you?

  13. yankeesfanlen - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:08 AM

    A week from tomorrow and baseball will resume after nearly a five week absence. No more attendance boosting, chance to see another team for the only time in your life spectacles that log more miles than Ringling Bros. with teams with funny rules. No more All Star voting, then All Star kvetching, then All Stars parlor acts like the Home Run Derby.
    There are 7 games in normal competition right now, instead we’re preparing for the class trip to a simulated Cooperstown c. 1953. Pennant races two or three deep in most divisions, but what to wear at the prom, and Ronny didn’;t ask me.
    And, if you miss the center ring, a little sideshow about the number 3000.
    Games this week count even though nobody ever won a pennant the first week in July.

  14. dwishinsky - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:42 AM

    Whoa Craig! Major mischaracterization with your A’s-M’s wrap up. The “throwing error” was Ichiro sliding so far out of the baseline it looked like he was aiming for 2nd base at Raley Field in Sacramento. While sadly, I am sure the A’s still would’ve found a new and exciting way to lose, they didn’t lose the way you described.

    • dwishinsky - Jul 6, 2011 at 10:43 AM

      Here look at a screenshot and tell me that isn’t interference: http://tvprookiecardretirementplan.wordpress.com/2011/07/05/live-blogging-mariners-as-game-87/

      • easports82 - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:05 PM

        Runner only needs to be able to reach the base and it isn’t interference. It’s the fielder’s responsibility to get out of the way.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:26 PM

        And from that pic, it looks like the runner couldn’t reach the base with 8 foot arms.

      • dwishinsky - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:32 PM

        easports2 which is exactly my point

  15. dink53 - Jul 6, 2011 at 11:48 AM

    So if the Tigers “management” is being logically consistent, they have to fire Lloyd McClendon now that they can’t score any runs. Oh, wait, he’s a Leyland guy. Never mind.

  16. philly56 - Jul 6, 2011 at 11:55 AM

    I decided that I dislike Jack McKeon lastnight. I mean at the SLIGHTEST thing he storms onto the field like the German army into Poland. Plus, with that whiny face of his he’s like an 80 year old spoiled child, pouting with his stubby t-rex arms and his enormous girth that makes him waddle around like an obese penguin.
     
    He’s really just not a very likeable person.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:25 PM

      Funny, because my mother-in-law said the same thing when he came waddling out after Morrison clearly trapped that ball last night…”He is waddling like a Penguin or maybe he has a stick up his ass”…yeah she’s feisty and funny as hell too.

  17. spudchukar - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:18 PM

    Stanley Morgenstern would be proud, however, authentic members of the William Goldman fan club, were readers not viewers. Hey, the movie is great, but no match for the book. Too many missed passages, including the Life isn’t Fair soliloquy. So to those still bemoaning calls, snubs, and various miseries of existence here is part of it: “…life isn’t fair Bill, we tell our children that it is, but that is a terrible thing to do. It’s not only a lie, but a cruel lie. Life is not fair, it never has been and it never will be…”

  18. APBA Guy - Jul 6, 2011 at 12:39 PM

    I have my own take on the A’s loss, namely, the game should never have been tied in the first place:

    The King goes 8 strong and the Mariners have a 2-1 lead into the 9th. League comes in to close, and Weeks greets him with a double, then moves to third on a Sizemore bunt. So 1 out, very fast man on third. Wedge brings in the infield and the outfield plays shallow. At that moment I notice that Wedge, nursing a 2-1 lead, has not replaced Peguero in left. I tell my girlfriend: “If Crisp hits it anywhere to left the A’s score”. Sure enough, Crisp pops to left. Peguero breaks late, lumbers in like the reincarnation of Paul Bunyan, gets the ball in his glove, drops it, and watches as Weeks scores to tie. Scored as a hit, of course, since it’s the A’s park.

    It’s the little things that separate LaRussa from the Wedge’s of the managerial world. Even Art Howe would take Ben Grieve out of left in the old days, late in game, if the A’s closer was on the hill.

    Naturally the A’s unraveled in the 10th so justice was served. Shinsky, very nice blog, but I think that Ichiro slide is too close to call interference on and anyway Penny should make that throw regardless.

    So the A’s have dropped 2 to Prince Pineda and King Felix. I know the King didn’t show that well against the East teams in his last swing, but against the A’s in 3 starts this year he has been regal, 19.2 IP and 4 ER, or 1.83 ERA. And he gets better in the second half. Look out!

    • dwishinsky - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:36 PM

      APBA Guy – As I said, the A’s lost this one and deserved to. I don’t necessarily agree on the reasons you gave – because I think the A’s poor baserunning ran themselves out of innings prior. Weeks’ overslide because he decides to slide one inch away from the base and then the ball four that Sweeney flailed at which left Suzuki a sitting duck on the failed h&r. But frankly if you’re facing King Felix your chances going in aren’t so hot as a normal team and as a team that generates zero offense even less so.

      But I think if you watch that play over again, Ichiro was WAY out of the baseline. I don’t think it was borderline. Pennington should’ve made the throw or held onto the ball, and I get it that he was in the heat of the play so didn’t recognize how far out Ichiro was. But at that point Melvin or Weeks should’ve been like whoa, you need to argue that.

      Oh well… chalk it up to another A’s loss.

      • APBA Guy - Jul 6, 2011 at 2:02 PM

        You’ve got really valid points about the Weeks slide and Sweeney’s swing and miss. I didn’t note those but I remember them clearly as examples of what losing teams do and winning teams don’t do. We know Weeks has been oversliding since he came up and with the quality of advanced scouting in the American League you can bank on infielders around the AL holding the tag on him from now on.

        I’ve looked at the slide from Ichiro on DVR several times. He is wide, but from different angles, and especially from where the ump was, at game speed it looks like if he’d rolled towards second while sliding he might have gotten close enough to touch. Certainly worth an argument from the home manager, but I guess Beane didn’t call in from the exercise bike and tell Bob2 to do that.

        Yet one more example of the difference between a winning manager, and team, and a losing one.

      • marinersnate - Jul 6, 2011 at 5:17 PM

        I think the M’s actually caught a break on the call. From my point of view, I don’t think Ichiro has a chance of touching second. I was a little shocked that he wasn’t called for interference. I know if things had been reversed (Oakland base runner, M’s attempting to turn the DP) and the exact same call had been made, I would have screamed bloody murder. I thought it was that obvious.

        The other point is that it was a little unusual to see Ichiro being that aggressive trying to break up the DP. Not something that he is generally known for.

    • APBA Guy - Jul 6, 2011 at 2:09 PM

      I need better fact checkers (memo to self). against the A’s, King Felix is in fact 3 ER in 24 2/3 IP for a 1.09 ERA in 2011.

  19. foreverchipper10 - Jul 6, 2011 at 1:55 PM

    Drop…..your…..sword.

  20. spudchukar - Jul 6, 2011 at 2:12 PM

    The Reds look like a deflated team right now. After Holliday’s second blast giving the Cards a 5-1 lead the Reds looked beat. With the amount of young talent Cincinnati enjoys a few rough outings shouldn’t garner such pathos, but I always questioned how much grit this team has. For their fans I hope they rebound and start playing the kind of ball they are capable of. I am starting to lose the joy in watching the Red Birds triumph over our supposed rivals.

    Holliday is making a concerted effort to hit more long balls, and yesterday was an example. Not to be overshadowed, Berkman, that is NL leading home run Lance, connected for the longest homer ever hit in Busch Stadium III. For those doubters, he is the real deal, and with the return of Phat Albert tonight, our big three finally get to compliment one another. Right now the Cards enjoy the best offense in the NL. Will their success continue? Who knows, but day by day, they impress.

    Garcia was excellent early, pitched his way out of jams in the middle innings and left with a very respectable outing. Westbrook, coming off a great performance vs. the Rays hopes to duplicate that tonight as the Red Birds go for the sweep against the recently dizzy Arroyo. Sitting atop the NL Central alone is a vantage point the Cards haven’t enjoyed recently, but seeing the Pirates as their nearest competitors is a vision that hasn’t been seen for a long, long, time. Good on you Pittsburgh.

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