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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

May 2, 2012, 6:07 AM EDT

Texas Rangers v Toronto Blue Jays Getty Images

Blue Jays 8, Rangers 7:  We hear a lot about Bryce Harper, but Brett Lawrie is a more fully formed version of “young, confident dude who can be a difference maker.”  Toronto fought back from an early 5-0 deficit, took the lead, then blew the lead before Lawrie hit a leadoff homer that just barely cleared the wall to walk things off in the bottom of the 9th.

Phillies 4, Braves 2: It’s not often that Jonny Venters is going to give up two runs on four hits in a given outing, but when he does, you know the Braves are sunk. Venters gave up a double, a single, struck a dude out but threw strike three wild and then gave up a couple more hits in the eighth inning and that was all she wrote.

Rays 3, Mariners 1: On a day when all of the off-the-field news was miserable for Tampa Bay at least the on-the-field part went OK.  The Rays had only three hits, but Matt Joyce‘s homer and RBI triple were two of them. The Rays have won nine of ten.

Diamondbacks 5, Nationals 1: Bryce Harper’s home debut didn’t go well for him — he was 0 for 3 — or the Nationals, who have lost five straight. Trevor Cahill allowed one run over seven and a third.

Orioles 7, Yankees 1: Phil Hughes was largely ineffective again. Brian Matusz: not so much.  Matusz allowed only one run in six and a third, giving him his first win since last June and Buck Showalter his 1000th win of all time.

Tigers 9, Royals 3: Detroit scores five in the first inning, which while it took all of the drama out of this one, meant that the Tigers finally won one. Austin Jackson was four for five two batted in. He’s at .314/.398/.523 on the year, which is a bright spot indeed.

Marlins 2, Giants 1: Maybe the Marlins just needed to get out of town. They break their losing streak behind seven string innings from Ricky Nolasco and a Giancarlo Stanton homer. Matt Cain, who has pitched so brilliantly this season, is now only 1-2 on the year, putting him in the early lead for the King Felix Award, which goes to starters whose records stink because they get totally boned by their teammates all the time.

Angels 4, Twins 0: Minnesota is either doing a wonderful service in giving confidence to struggling teams this season or else they have officially become jobbers. If I were Gregg Easterbrook and gave every team putatively clever nicknames and never let go of them, I’d consider calling the Twins the Iron Mike Sharpes or the Randy Mulkeys or something like that. Jerome Williams with a three-hit shutout.

Padres 2, Brewers 0: Shaun Marcum shut out the Padres for seven innings but Edinson Volquez did the same to the Brewers and he didn’t have K-Rod giving up a two-run pinch hit homer to Mark Kotsay in the eighth. By the way, if you told me before I looked at the box score that Mark Kotsay hit the game-winning homer in this one, I would have assumed the Brewers won.  Kotsay is one of those guys who, gun to my head, I could never tell you who he played for in a given season until he did something that forced me to take notice.

White Sox 7, Indians 2: Gordon Beckham went 3 for 4 with a homer. Easily the best Beckham-related news of the day yesterday. This one had an extended rain delay and then fog. This is why they’ll never expand to Scotland.

Dodgers 7, Rockies 6: Dee Gordon hit his first homer and A.J. and Mark Ellis each had a bunch of hits. I wish those two were good. If they consistently helped the Dodgers win I’d consider some fun Ellis-related nickname for them or some clever pro wrestling reference or something. But, nah, I don’t think it’s gonna come up much.

Cardinals 10, Pirates 7, Adam Wainwright gets his first win since 2010. David Freese remains hot with another homer. Matt Holliday had a homer among his three hits and drove in two.

Astros 6, Mets 3: The difference between good teams and bad teams this year: good teams go into Houston on their way out west and take care of business against the Astros. The Mets aren’t doin’ it. Chris Snyder hit a three-run homer, Jed Lowrie had a two-run bomb.

Athletics 5, Red Sox 3: Jarrod Parker allowed only one run in six and two-thirds for his second straight strong start at the beginning of his career.

Cubs vs. Reds: POSTPONED: O Rain! that I lie listening to, You’re but a doleful sound at best: I owe you little thanks,’tis true, For breaking thus my needful rest! Yet if, as soon as it is light, O Rain! you will but take your flight, I’ll neither rail, nor malice keep,
Though sick and sore for want of sleep. But only now, for this one day, Do go, dear Rain! do go away!

  1. tackleberries - May 2, 2012 at 6:19 AM

    I believe Johan Santana should get some consideration for the King Felix award.

  2. proudlycanadian - May 2, 2012 at 7:06 AM

    A very enjoyable win by the Jays over the red hot Rangers. 21 year old rookie Drew Hutchinson struck out the first 4 hitters he faced and then the roof fell in and he gave up 5 runs in the 2nd inning. The Jays left him in the game and he only gave up 1 more run in the next 4 innings. Texas gave back 4 runs in the third on homers by Johnson and Bautista. The Jays got 3 runs in the 7th thanks to some sloppy fielding. In the 9th, Cordero was one strike away from a save, but surrendered 3 consecutive singles and the tying run. Lawrie led off the bottom of the 9th with a 2 strike home run that bounced off the top of the center field fence. The celebration at home was fun, but I wish that Lawrie would stop doing his imitation of Kendreys Morales.

    • proudlycanadian - May 2, 2012 at 9:32 AM

      I took another look at Lawrie’s home run. When he hit the ball, he took off running and was almost at second when it hit the top of the fence and bounced out. If it had stayed in the park, a triple was guaranteed and an inside the park home run was a distinct possibility. Lawrie is fast and always hustles.

      • antlerclaws - May 2, 2012 at 9:39 AM

        And Omar Vizquel was thrown out of the game for arguing balls and strikes–and he wasn’t even playing.

  3. charlutes - May 2, 2012 at 7:19 AM

    I read a headline this morning: Bryce Harper’s effect on the NL. Seriously? Hmm what will 19 year old rookie prospect’s impact be on the NL, how bout nothing. Are we this dumb? How bout Jason kubel, any stories on his impact in his first year in the NL? Wanna bet that his numbers dwarf Harper’s? Once a name catches some buzz writers turn into children fighting over a new toy.

    • natstowngreg - May 2, 2012 at 12:17 PM

      Story told by the Nats TV guys last night. Stephen Strasburg walked past the pre-game Harper media scrum and wasn’t even noticed. Which, as F.P. Santangelo suggested (correctly, I think), was fine with Strasburg.

      Obviously, Stephen is so 2011 (though he is starting to make local TV commercials). Two teammates, two immensely talented baseball players, two polar opposite personalities. In the immortal word of Mr. Spock, fascinating.

  4. tmohr - May 2, 2012 at 7:47 AM

    If the Twins are indeed jobbers, an AWA jobber would be appropriate, seeing as it’s the Twin Cities. I vote for Jake “the Milkman” Milliman,

  5. Jonny 5 - May 2, 2012 at 7:59 AM

    Well that was just the 8th straight game the Braves dropped to Philly. 2.5 games out of first isn’t too bad considering Utley and Howard are out. Lee has been out. Polanco has just started looking better following hernia surgery. Is it time for the fans to step away from the edge yet? Probably.

    • hasbeen5 - May 2, 2012 at 8:28 AM

      I swear I’m not trolling Phils fans here, just making a comment about what I saw last night.

      Those were 2 of the weakest doubles I’ve ever seen hit. Not taking anything away, obviously they count, but that was some bad luck for Beachy and Venters.

      • Jonny 5 - May 2, 2012 at 9:04 AM

        That’s baseball. I guess you forgot that the winning run was by a wild pitch on a strike out too?

      • hasbeen5 - May 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

        Like I said, I wasn’t taking anything away, simply saying it was bad luck. Of course it happens in baseball, and I’m sure the Braves will have a few bounce their way as well.

        So no, I didn’t forget. I was just making a comment.

      • Jonny 5 - May 2, 2012 at 12:30 PM

        hasbeen5, I hope you don’t think I was trashing your comment. I wasn’t. I was more or less just adding to it.

    • paperlions - May 2, 2012 at 8:37 AM

      Probably true….I guess.

      10 games ago, the Phillies had a .500 record….today, they have a .500 record.

      What has changed?

      • Jonny 5 - May 2, 2012 at 9:03 AM

        Nothing really PL, Besides the Nats coming back to earth. But listening to fans and local talking heads the wheels had come off and the bus was half way over the cliff.

      • paperlions - May 2, 2012 at 9:35 AM

        Yeah….that was just silly. I’m sure the Phillies had stretches of .500 ball over a couple of weeks last year and things turned out just fine.

      • spudchukar - May 2, 2012 at 9:47 AM

        If my memory serves me right, and at my age that seldom happens so there is that, weren’t the Pheelies reassuring their Phans that the absence of Utley and Howard in the first part of the season would be mitigated by the fact that they had a remarkably soft early season schedule? Something like 31 of the first 35 games were against teams with sub-.500 records in 2011?

      • ame123 - May 2, 2012 at 9:54 AM

        They are closer to first place AND Howard and Utley are a couple weeks closer to returning. Can’t really ask for more than that.

  6. wlschneider09 - May 2, 2012 at 8:25 AM

    SplutterSplutter HOW can you possibly say such horrible things about the TWINS that’s so unfair you always hated my team you horrible….

    Oh wait, he’s right.

    Sigh.

  7. Lukehart80 - May 2, 2012 at 8:25 AM

    The Indians’ bottom of the 3rd inning was about as bad a frame as a team can possibly play. Allow skipper Manny Acta to pain you a picture:

    ”We just didn’t play good defense, period. We didn’t catch the ball in the air, we didn’t catch the ball on the ground, we didn’t cover the bases when we had to, plain and simple. We can’t afford to play that kind of defense with the offense we have.”

    He even managed to point out that the offense has been pretty crap too. Good times!

  8. snowbirdgothic - May 2, 2012 at 8:32 AM

    To be fair, if you were Gregg Easterbrook, we wouldn’t be reading this.

    • paperlions - May 2, 2012 at 8:35 AM

      Amen.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - May 2, 2012 at 9:11 AM

      Can’t thumbs up this comment enough

  9. papalurchdxb - May 2, 2012 at 8:38 AM

    ok, I might have missed a game and be completely wrong but can anyone confirm if Dunn has broken the 28 consecutive games with a strike-out record referred to last week now?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - May 2, 2012 at 9:10 AM

      He has a strikeout in every game so far this season, so I’d assume so:

      http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/gl.cgi?id=dunnad01&t=b&year=2012

      • papalurchdxb - May 3, 2012 at 12:03 AM

        thanks for the link, with SO today too that ‘only’ puts him on 24 consecutive, so 5 more games to go to beat Saltalamacchia. For some reason I thought he was closer than that already. I’ll continue the vigil!

  10. ajcardsfan - May 2, 2012 at 8:40 AM

    Congrats to Wainwright on his first win, didn’t get a chance to catch the game last night, any of the usual cardinals guys want to fill me in? I’m looking to you paper/spud/stl/falcon(s)

    • jeffthomasb - May 2, 2012 at 8:53 AM

      Waino looked solid, except when he was giving up dingers. About as sharp as he was last week against Chicago. Big difference, though, was that the offense decided to back him up a bit this time. The hole in the Cards’ rotation may be starting to close– although, you never know when one of the other guys is going to start coming back to earth…

    • paperlions - May 2, 2012 at 9:01 AM

      He looked fine…except for a few hangers….it wasn’t clear what the pitches were supposed to be…but they just hung there over the center of the plate with no movement or velocity and were crushed each time. Otherwise, his command was fine, nice movement on his FBs and he threw some nice hard-breaking curves…if they continue to work on whatever pitch (or pitches) that he keeps hanging over the middle of the plate to eliminate that…he should be fine.

    • spudchukar - May 2, 2012 at 10:23 AM

      I actually thought Wainwright took a slight step backwards last night. Most of the time he made quality pitches, and I thought his fastball showed a little movement and he often spotted it well. More use of it might well have aided his cause.

      Some cutters looked good. Some were horrendous. His curve ball was pretty disappointing. Sure he got some K’s early, but he still isn’t throwing it with the same angle he used to, and a number got clobbered and a couple should have. Remember this was the Pirates feeble attack, so that should be taken into consideration. If it were only the looping curve ball that Tabata hit and the ugly cutter? change? that he floated up on a tee to Alvarez, then I might agree with the above analysis, but there were other pitches that were missed or so bad they missed the zone badly. All in all maybe a C+, with more work to do, but getting runs for Waino must have felt special.

      Offensively, a very good night, versus a guy who can be tough, and whose breaking ball was pretty nasty. Furcal, Jay, Holliday, and Molina all looked good. Freese’s homer was on a tough pitch and was a bomb, but his strikeout frequency is a little bothersome. Beltran K’s thrice, but faced some nasty stuff, hit a couple of loud foul balls, and did walk twice. Craig, was fooled pretty bad in his first two AB’s but then returned to form with a couple of solid singles, Schumaker did hit a couple of balls well, and his offense has been okay, but I am a little perturbed by the absence of Descalso.

      One fact that isn’t known by the rest of the league is how clutch he is. He recorded the second best number in the NL last year, i.e. (driving in runners late in games) and his defense is far superior to Skippy. So at a minimum I would like to see a little more shared time, particularly late in games. The one, well that isn’t true, there are many, criticisms I have of Schumaker is his lousy base running. It is out of character for such a knowledgeable guy, and I do not mean his barely average speed. He just does not have good instincts on the bases, and I have never understood why, but often he fails in his decision making on those less than numerous times he does reach base. (More walks would help). Plus what was up with the unnecessary throw to third in the first inning? Were it not for Freese’s heads up play, McCutchen trots home. It was dumb, particularly for the “savvy veteran”.

      Wainwright chipped in and his new stance and swing, (basically a shorter stroke) seems wise, and Carpenter had a very good AB, and had a hit taken away. Numerous other hard hit balls particularly to right all make for an all-round A grade offensively, but again it was the Pirates, and they continue kick the ball around and that sure assisted the run total.

      Salas struggled, at times making quality pitches, but then lost command, and then Motte came in and doused the fire. He is generally untouchable if he can get the final three outs with 15 pitches or less, but when the opposition pushes his pitch count up near the 20 toss mark he runs into difficulty.

      It is time we put together a streak, and with the next two at home vs Pittsburgh with Lynn and Lohse, and then on to Houston for three, and most likely the return of Berkman, anything less than four of five will be disappointing. Now healthy, time to place the foot on the gas.

  11. jeffthomasb - May 2, 2012 at 8:49 AM

    And today Craig breaks out the Coleridge to bemoan the rain in the City of Kings. A big first inning from the Tygers, Tygers, burning bright, could have called for some Blake, but the ‘Ode to the Rain’ is so much better. Thanks for making the effort to be both smart and funny, Craig.

    • bravojawja - May 2, 2012 at 10:00 AM

      That was Coleridge? Sounded more like something Bottom would say in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Alack! Alack! Alack!

      /English major

  12. Old Gator - May 2, 2012 at 9:04 AM

    The Feesh play a crisp and (relatively) clean one for a change. Props to Ricky Nolasco, who seems to be coming into his own, and to Heath Bell, who peetched as if hr knew what hr was doing for a change. Another win and they’ll be able to see the strange attractor with the naked eye again .

  13. mattintoledo - May 2, 2012 at 9:08 AM

    When did the Blue Jays pick up Liev Schreiber?

    • spudchukar - May 2, 2012 at 10:27 AM

      I hope so, that would free up more time for my trysts with Naomi.

  14. rpd118 - May 2, 2012 at 9:09 AM

    I’ll tell you…as enjoyable as that could have been for me as a Phillies fan to watch Papelbon mow down the Braves in the 9th, I just can’t get past that million dollars Amaro may have been able to save by waiting another month. Particularly with all the success Madson, Bell, and Santos are having for those non-knuckledragging GMs.

  15. Gamera the Brave - May 2, 2012 at 10:02 AM

    Matt Cain has been the King Felix Award winner for the last several seasons – getting boned by the lack of run support has practically defined his career. It’s almost spooky…

  16. Gamera the Brave - May 2, 2012 at 10:10 AM

    And Craig, if you ever get the chance, check out England’s Lake District – it’s beautiful, and you can really appreciate how Coleridge, Wordsworth and his ilk got their inspirations. Derwentwater next to Keswick is perty darn nice in the summer…
    #wasforcedtotake19thcenturybritlittograduate

  17. APBA Guy - May 2, 2012 at 11:41 AM

    Whatever Tommy Milone is not, Jarrod Parker is. Not that giving up a proven 200 IP a year guy is good, especially when the payroll of Boston’s DL players exceeds your total payroll, but the A’s trade for Cahill yielded Parker, who has shown plus stuff in his 2 starts (I know, sample size alert).

    Especially on a night when the wind chill and humidity had the in game temp at Boston around 35 F, throwing 95 and locating was destined to hold down the Boston offense, still formidable without Ellsbury, Youklis, and Crawford. So how did the weak hitting A’s manage 6 off Dubront? His stuff was up in the zone, and there were too many walks. The usual formula.

    Still, the Sawx had Pedey at the plate to win in the 9th against Jordan Norberto, he of the “homage a Brian Wilson” beard. But it was not to be as Pedroia grounded out to end the game.

  18. sportsdrenched.com - May 2, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    The Royals have sucked any motivation out of me to read ATH. But I do it anyway, because that’s what I do.

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