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And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

Jul 8, 2011, 6:03 AM EDT

Travis Hafner AP

Indians 5, Blue Jays 4: Carlos Villanueva threw six shutout innings. Too bad he couldn’t stay in to throw more, because the Indians rallied like crazy in the ninth with an Asdrubal Cabrera RBI single and then the big shot: the Travis Hafner walkoff grand slam. That’s some serious dramatics right there, babies. Almost enough to make me feel OK to call him “Pronk” again, which seemed kind of ridiculous when he was in the middle of three blah years.

Cubs 10, Nationals 9: Facepalm. actually, make that a double facepalm. The Nats had an 8-0 lead heading into the sixth inning and they couldn’t seal the deal. Livan Hernandez deserves most of the blame here. Or maybe Davey Johnson. Dude just ran out of gas. Probably shoulda been pulled when the Cubs started doing a conga line around the bases in the sixth. This is one of those games that those of you who want to say that the Nats could be frisky have to deal with, because frisky teams don’t lose like this very often.

Rays 5, Yankees 1: Bartolo Colon didn’t have nothin’ (5.2 IP, 10 H, 5 ER), so the competitive part of this game ended early, leaving everyone to focus on Derek Jeter‘s at bats. He got one hit, so he needs two more.

Red Sox 10, Orioles 4: One of the least fun thing about following games on Twitter: when fans of a team (in this case the Yankees), voice their displeasure at team in a totally different game (in this case the Orioles) for allegedly laying down against the the team (in this case the Red Sox) who is in a race against the team for which they root (back to the Yankees).  I mean, until we see money changing hands between the Red Sox and Orioles, we have to assume that this is simply a matter of Baltimore sucking every time they visit Fenway Park, not some underhanded scheme.

Braves 6, Rockies 3: Freddie Freeman continues his rampage, hitting a three-run homer in the third inning that put the Braves up for good. The Braves themselves are on a rampage, winners of nine of their last ten. Now it’s three against the Phillies — whom they trail by two and a half games — to take them into the All-Star break.

Marlins 5, Astros 0: Brad Hand — who I know damn well is gonna make me break out “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” quotes at some point this season even though that’s a totally hack thing to do — shut out the Astros for seven innings on two hits.

Twins 6, White Sox 2: Phil Humber was rocked like a hurricane. And to be clear: that’s bad when the Scorpions aren’t involved. Joe Mauer played first base and went 3 for 5 with two RBI. Hurm.

Tigers 3, Royals 1: Remember those games where Max Scherzer used to strike out, like, eleventeen guys? Well, this wasn’t one of those games — he only k’d two — but ’twas enough. “Twill serve. Homers for Ryan Raburn and Don Kelly, each of whom sound more like characters on “Mad Men” than baseball players.

Brewers 5, Reds 4: Rickie Weeks was 2 for 3 with a three-run homer. Zack Cozart was 1 for 3 with a run scored in his major league debut.

Diamondbacks 4, Cardinals 1: Arizona has won four of six. St. Louis has lost four of six. Justin Upton hit a big home run.

Rangers 6, Athletics 0: In light of what went down, I really don’t feel like riffing on this game at the moment.

Now we get to the late west coast games where, every night it seems, someone is throwing a complete game or shutting someone out for seven or eight innings or whatever. Viva la pitching.

Giants 2, Padres 1: All Barry Zito does is win baseball games.  Well, at least since he came back from the DL. Eight innings of four-hit ball.

Angels 5, Mariners 1: Jered Weaver tosses a complete game to win his 11th. Now he probably starts the All-Star Game on Tuesday. The offense he faces there will be slightly better than the bunch from Seattle.

Dodgers 6, Mets 0: Clayton Kershaw flummoxed the Mets for eight innings, shutting them out on five hits and striking out nine. The Dodgers made the most of their seven hits and two walks.

  1. dan1111 - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:15 AM

    I agree: the Orioles must have thrown their game against the Red Sox. The Sox would never be able to beat another team nearly every time they meet–like, say, eight out of nine times. Any team with that kind of record against them must have laid down the games.

    • Old Gator - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:19 AM

      Where is Ring Lardner when we really need him?

    • deathmonkey41 - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:02 AM

      The Orioles only suck at Fenway Park? Someone should tell them that.

    • FC - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:43 AM

      Meh: In 09 I think, the Braves were swept completely at Turner Field by the Phillies in all 3 series. I don’t recall anyone saying the Braves laid down in front of the Phillies. The braves were not particularly good that year and the Phillies lucky to catch them when they were not playing their best.

  2. Old Gator - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:17 AM

    Good to see Hand…er, Fin…finally get his W. Congratulations, kid. But the beeg moment was the Iron Giant’s ridiculous two-run moonshot. Go to the Feesh homepage and watch it. See the angle at which it flees the bat. Pay attention to the way the ‘Stro outfielder cranes his neck back to see the damned thing, which must have looked like a dot up there. Most guys who get under a pitch like that pop out to short left. The Iron Giant reaches midway up the blue seats. For all we know, he might have hit the strange attractor in the nuts with that one.

    • kiwicricket - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:59 AM

      Are you going to report your ‘findings’ from the conference you just attended Gator? I remember quite a while ago you published such artefacts and several found them enlightening/amusing.
      Can’t quite remember, but I think you and the resident Oakland fan debated on superior micro-breweries and coffee?

      • Old Gator - Jul 8, 2011 at 12:12 PM

        They’re scattered about the threads this AM. Len, Craig and I have a pressing matter over which to ruminate in a little more detail, arising in part out of yesterday’s conclave, before we collate all our data. In any case, Harley is a great and companionable canine, and Len’s coffee isn’t nearly as bad as he makes it out to be.

  3. halladaysbiceps - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:22 AM

    I’m very shocked this morning to see the terrible news about the fan in Texas. My thoughts and prayers go out to the man’s little boy and family. Very tragic.

    The Braves only 2.5 games back has me a little concerned, though. The vibe here in Philly is that no one is really overly concerned with the upcoming series between the Braves and Phillies. I can see a nightmare scenario where the Phillies’ bats go cold against good Braves pitching and the Braves offense can get enough runs off of the three aces to win the series.

    Biggest series of the year for the Phils. They all count, especially against division rivals. The Braves will be ready to play, as they ae 9-1 in the last 10.

    • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:28 AM

      See my wager in the post about commenters…let’s make this series even more high stakes than it already is. This is going to be quit the weekend for Braves and Phillies fans. Cheers to awesome baseball. We could certainly use some of it after yesterday…

      The terrible news is really messing with my head this morning. I can completely see how it happened and I’m not sure much can be done to prevent these freak incidents. One of the greatest things to happen at a game is to get a player to toss you a ball and then pass it on to a child (in this case his child). The excitement surrounding getting a ball tossed to you by a player, any player let alone Hamilton, would likely make a lot of us baseball fans a bit more crazy about getting that ball. I feel like if I were in that position, I would have done pretty much the same thing (I haven’t and won’t watch the video). Overreacting to get a baseball is nothing new and it’s very hard to keep your wits about when something like that happens. I hope everyone involved pulls through this okay. Just crappy news. ugh

      • foreverchipper10 - Jul 8, 2011 at 1:01 PM

        If the Braves sweep (which even as a Braves fan I do not see happening) they will enter the All-Star break in first place in the NL East and as the team with the most wins in baseball.

      • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Jul 8, 2011 at 5:44 PM

        Hold hope, my friend. It’s the best we can do against the top three in their rotation. Beachy over Halladay. Hanson over Lee. Lowe over Hamels. That would be one fine weekend, don’t you think?

  4. quintjs - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:37 AM

    Question: Who wants Jeter to get his 3,000 hit more?

    Jeter, so he gets his milestone
    Jeter/ Yankees fans so they can celebrate the milestone
    or non-Jeter/ Yankee fans so everyone will stop talking about the milestone?

    • kopy - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:01 AM

      The last one, unless his success will lead to commercials selling Sports Illustrated Commemorative Issues along with a limited edition MLB Baseball with a special panel displaying the number 3000 and Derek Jeter’s autograph next to the Yankees logo and an outline of Yankee Stadium – if you sign up for a full year’s subscription.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 8, 2011 at 11:26 AM

      Even this Yankee fan is sick of the coverage (and I can’t wait until a year or two from now when Arod is chasing 3000H. That coverage will be the complete opposite).

      • yankeesfanlen - Jul 8, 2011 at 11:43 AM

        I’ve been thinking the same thing- this distraction is screwing up our entire game by bizarre distraction. We cannot separate the game from this (minor) accomplishment.
        Thankfully this will all be over with his second at-bat tomorrow and we can salvage the Sat-Sun games.
        And yes, in a while ARod will zoom by him, but alas, no cigar because it wasn’t all as a Yankee. Bullfeathers!(new civility code utilized here). Yanks should have scouted better in the 90s!

  5. Brian Murphy - Jul 8, 2011 at 6:38 AM

    I have been to eight Dodgers games this season, three of them being Kershaw starts.
    In those starts, he has thrown a combined 25.2 innings with 12 hits, three runs, seven walks and 27 strikeouts.

    If I can’t be lucky — my last name is Murphy — I’m glad to see I can be a good-luck charm for someone.

    • dan1111 - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:01 AM

      Over the first ten Pirates games I attended (during the period 2003-2006), the Pirates went 10-0. Beat that!

      • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:27 AM

        yes, but in the rest of the games those seasons, the Pirates went 40-592…..

      • dan1111 - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:30 AM

        Imagine how bad their reecord would have been if I hadn’t gone to those games.

      • Lukehart80 - Jul 8, 2011 at 11:32 AM

        My brother and I wondered about this after going on a baseball road trip during which the home team went 0-6: how many road team victories do you think you’d have to attend (and somehow be able to prove you’d attended, while attending no other games) before you could convince a superstitious owner to pay you to travel with the team?

        I think if you could somehow prove you’d been to 20 in a row, someone would send you on a road trip with their team to see what happens.

        This also seems like the plot of a W.P. Kinsella short story.

  6. drmonkeyarmy - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:24 AM

    After posting a comment yesterday about Schilling getting a lifetime pass from me, I decided to compile a list of other Phillies who get the lifetime pass. The lifetime pass does not cover crimes, discriminatory statements, or steroid use.
    Jim Thome – Coming to Philadelphia helped change the culture of losing. Although he was only in town for a few years, he modeled the professionalism needed for the team to continue to improve. I believe that without Thome, the Phillies do not win the World Series 3 years after he leaves.
    Brad Lidge – Perfect in 2008. Enough said.
    Jimmy Rollins – 2007 MVP. Conductor of the team and team leader. Multiple Gold Gloves.
    Chase Utley – Would have been 2007 MVP if not for Lannan. If Rollins in conductor then Utley is the engine. Not sure how he doesn’t have a single Gold Glove.
    Ryan Howard – Takes a lot of abuse, but is a feared power hitter. 2006 MVP. Would be a .300 hitter if not for that damn shift.
    Cole Hamels – World Series and NLCS MVP. I want Hamels to start game 3 of a 7 game series, so he is on the mound for game 7.
    Pedro Feliz – Game winning hit in the World Series. He makes it on by default.

    • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:30 AM

      What, no lifetime pass for Uncle Cholly?

      I agree with all on your list, except for the comment about Howard being a .300 hitter. He would be a .300 hitter if he learned to hit the ball to the opposite field. You can’t blame the defense for taking advantage of the biggest weakness in his game.

      • FC - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:50 AM

        True, but Howard won’t change his approach because that pull gives him his power. Though at times I do wish he would hit opposite field. You don’t need a HR, a double down the left field line will do just nicely to bring in acouple of RBI.

        Concerning the shift, they do that to various degrees depending on the player. I noticed a subtle shift on Dominic Brown, the 3B was playing almost shortstop and the short stop was practically on top of 2B. The outfield was shifted as well. Dominic Brown then proceeded to hit one right where the 3B would normally be, instant double with his speed. Now if he could learn to do that on purpose….

    • halladaysbiceps - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:30 AM

      I like your list. Probably should add Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay to the list as well. Cliff came to Philly because he loves it here and took less money to do so. Same can be said for Roy Halladay. Roy pitches a perfect game and post season no-hitter. That’s good enough for me.

      • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:36 AM

        and Craig…I agree wholeheartedly with you on the use of “the Pronk”, and furthermore, have no issue whatsoever with the use of any Fast Times at Ridgemont High references, as long as said references are accompanied by a photo of Phoebe Cates. After all, if I’m here, and you’re here, doesn’t that make this our time? And what’s wrong with a little fiesta on our time?

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 8, 2011 at 7:42 AM

        You are right about Halladay. Consider him added. Not yet for Cliff Lee, though. Oh, and for the guy above, I don’t blame the defenses for the shift, it was more meant to say that he loses so many hits into that shift. It is weird, Howard has power the opposite way but can’t ever hit the ball on the ground the opposite way unless it is an accident.

      • aclassyguyfromaclassytown - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:09 AM

        Cholly is a top my list, and Cliff Lee is as well after turning down the Yanks to come play for us like that. After that, my feeling was that he could show up to play in shorts and a tank top, sitting on the mound in a beach chair and rolling the ball to the plate for a game, and I’d still cheer his every pitch. It drives me nuts to hear Eskin bash Cholly by the way, as I’m sure is the caxse for anyone who happens to hear him speak from time to time.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:14 AM

        I refuse to listen to Eskin. He knows nothing. Isn’t he the one who Cholly almost beat up a few years ago? He is a miserable wretch of a human being. How is has a fan base that enables him to be continued part of the media is mind boggling. Regarding Lee, another year of post season dominance and he will be on the lifetime pass list.

      • halladaysbiceps - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:28 AM

        The only reason that Eskin bashes Uncle Cholly is to be controversial and take the other side. He has the same misfits that call his station everyday that argue with him. He likes the fight. I can say many things about Eskin but the one thing I know is he’s not an idiot. He runs the show as he does knowing he will inflame people.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:31 AM

        Is that the way to go through life though; being contrary with the sole purpose of agitating people as a means to get ratings? I am all for the minority viewpoint and healthy discussion, but does it have to turn into rantings and bashings?

      • halladaysbiceps - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:49 AM

        Good Doctor,

        Basically, that’s Eskin’s motive. He bashes the Phillies and Charlie Manuel knowing that Phils fans will call him and complain.

        I agree with you that it’s painfull to listen to. I try not to listen to him anymore. But, apparently gets good ratings, or he would be let go.

    • missthemexpos - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:05 AM

      Matt Stairs needs to be on the lifetime pass list for that one incredible home run, plus the fact that he is Canadian, eh.

    • deathmonkey41 - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:04 AM

      Pedro Feliz of the Camden Riversharks?

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:25 AM

        Yes deathmonkey, that Pedro Feliz. World Series winning hit. Granted I wouldn’t want the Phillies to pick him up as infield insurance, but I won’t bash him.

      • deathmonkey41 - Jul 8, 2011 at 2:48 PM

        I feel kind of sad when I see a former major leaguer playing on a team like the Riversharks, but at the same time- they must really love playing the game because they can’t be doing it for the money.

  7. kiwicricket - Jul 8, 2011 at 8:16 AM

    Just to lighten the mood a bit…..everyone’s favourite commentator has a website ‘dedicated’ to him.

    The ‘hawkisms’ (complete with audio!) are tremendous.

    • halladaysbiceps - Jul 8, 2011 at 8:24 AM

      I will check it out later. Speaking of lightening the mood, I’m sure you are referring to the fan in Texas last night. Earlier, I saw the fall on another website. I can’t get the picture out of my mind. Watching it and his little boy next to him was heart breaking. I will not be watching that again.

      For me, it takes my enthusiasm away from the Braves/Phils series this weekend.

    • kopy - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:03 AM

      I am so glad the Twins are 5-0 with a no-hitter against the White Sox this year. He’s the perfect commentator for your rival to have.

  8. tellyspop - Jul 8, 2011 at 8:28 AM

    Lost in the Jeter’s slouching towards nirvana quest for 3000 hits, was the humiliating pounding of the the captain’s team by the Mighty but attendance poor Rays. It was a great start to the next 10 games against the Empire and the da Nation.

  9. seanmk - Jul 8, 2011 at 8:33 AM

    no mention of mike trout? come on

    • Craig Calcaterra - Jul 8, 2011 at 8:34 AM

      Dude, do we just do one post a day here? Don’t you think there may be a Trout-specific post in the pipeline?

      • kopy - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:07 AM

        Especially when the calling-up of Trout is something that I’m pretty sure happened this morning, not last night, and is therefore ineligible for “And That Happened:”

    • Steve A - Jul 8, 2011 at 8:52 AM

      Mike Trout is so awesome that he made it into the box score after getting called up after the game.

    • ngearhart1981 - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:25 AM

      Yeah or Danny Duffy? Or Craig Biggio? We want more mentioning of random baseball players!

  10. yankeesfanlen - Jul 8, 2011 at 9:12 AM

    If I could finds my tin foil hat (did you take it, Gator?) I’d make some comment on the “coincidences” that have befallen the Universe this week.
    But there is no excuse for bad pitching and I wondered if Bart was going to make it out of the third at the rate he was going.
    Final indignity: Farnsworthless struck out two in the ninth.

    • deathmonkey41 - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:05 AM

      Is it me or is it physically impossible for Mark Texeria and Robinson Cano to TAKE two pitches in a row without swinging?

      • FC - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:58 AM

        Their contract specifies that they can’t.

  11. Ari Collins - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:15 AM

    My cultural references are way off. Never seen The Breakfast Club, and the first thing Brad Hand reminded me of was this Pixies song:

    • deathmonkey41 - Jul 8, 2011 at 10:58 AM

      You’ve never seen the Breakfast Club? Are you the devil or something?

  12. pkers - Jul 8, 2011 at 11:14 AM

    I’m surprised that no one has mentioned that, in the gaggle of homers that the Red Sox hit last night, they went back-to-back-to-back in the seventh. Laser shows all around.

    • Ari Collins - Jul 8, 2011 at 12:13 PM

      J.D. Drew was the only starter without a hit and one of only three starters without a home run. Please bring on the Carlos Beltran or Hunter Pence Era.

  13. marinersnate - Jul 8, 2011 at 12:11 PM

    “Angels 5, Mariners 1: Jered Weaver tosses a complete game to win his 11th. Now he probably starts the All-Star Game on Tuesday. The offense he faces there will be slightly better than the bunch from Seattle.”

    What? How could the NL all-star team possibly have a better offense than the M’s? Why we even have guys with big money contracts who can not crack this powerful line-up (see: Figgins, Chone – Wilson, Jack – Cust, Jack). When guy’s like this can not even make it onto the field, you know you must have a top of heap roster.

    Therefore, I think it is pretty obvious that Craig wrote the above as thought provoking satire about the overall lack of offense in the NL. In my humble opinion, of course….

  14. natstowngreg - Jul 8, 2011 at 12:43 PM

    I had a few pithy comments about last night’s Nats-Cubs debacle, but it doesn’t seem appropriate today. I can’t shake this image of a guy literally dying to get a free baseball for his son.

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