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And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

May 18, 2012, 5:58 AM EDT

Miami Marlins v Atlanta Braves Getty Images

Braves 7, Marlins 0: Brandon Beachy: the best pitcher you haven’t heard of. He shuts out the Marlins on five hits and ups his record to 5-1 with a 1.33 ERA.

Giants 7, Cardinals 5: Bad Cardinal defense and a little more offense than usual gave the Giants some runs on a day when Matt Cain wasn’t at his best. But let’s not totally blame the D. Adam Wainwright continues to be shaky, walking four and allowing six hits in five and two-thirds.

Pirates 5, Nationals 3: Two solo shots for Andrew McCutchen and a two-run job for Rod Barajas. James McDonald struck out 11 in five and two-thirds. The Nats struck out 14 times overall, adding a nice breeze to what was already a beautiful evening in our nation’s capital.

Blue Jays 4, Yankees 1: AP headline said this win gave the Blue Jays the “sweep” over the Yankees. Bull. I don’t recognize anything as a sweep in a series that is less than three games. Just one of my rules. Maybe I’ll call it a “dusting,” but we have to be conservative when it comes to broom metaphors. Anyway: Jose Bautista hit a homer. Yan Gomes went 2 for 3 in his major league debut, making him the all-time Brazilian hits leader. Congratulations, Yan.

Twins 4, Tigers 3: I told people last night that I’d allow one exception to the “no sweeps in a two-game series” rule, and that’s for the Twins, who can claim it. Really, it’s all they have.

Red Sox 5, Rays 3: My friend Jason of DRaysBay posted the cutest little picture of his little daughter on Facebook last night with the caption “getting ready to watch the Rays beat the Red Sox.” Poor girl will now never trust her father. This is why I always tell my children to prepare for inevitable, crippling disappointment and despair. In other news, Bobby Valentine used five relievers to pitch three and a third innings.

Diamondbacks 9, Rockies 7:  Justin Upton hit a two-run homer in the ninth that proved to be the game winner. But the best part of this game was when a bunch of bees swarmed the stadium, taking over a camera bay next to the Rockies’ dugout in the fifth inning necessitating the calling of a beekeeper to vacuum them up.  Which is better than dogs, I guess. And much better than the  dogs with bees in their mouths and when they bark they shoot bees at you.

White Sox 6, Angels 1: Wait, I thought Chris Sale (5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER 7K) was supposed to be closing now or something? Gosh, I’m so confused. In my defense, outside of Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko, the White Sox sort of bore me, so I don’t play too close attention. I bet if you go back, Gleeman has done 75% of the White Sox posts on this blog. Sorry, don’t mean to seem mean or biased or anything, just being honest.

Mets 9, Reds 4: Saw this described as “the Mets score nine unanswered runs.”  I’ve never liked that phrase. Such run binges are always answered. Just with lots of expletives and groans as opposed to opposing team runs. Also, saw yesterday a New York writer saying that Bobby Parnell doesn’t have the closer’s mentality. But he does, apparently, know how to win, getting the decision in this one. I wonder if that’s a related skill.

Orioles 5, Royals 3: Just gonna say how much I love that the Orioles are 4.5 up on the fourth place Yankees and 6.5 up on the last place Red Sox. Viva chaos.

Athletics 5, Rangers 4: The A’s won it in extra innings. But they should have had it in regulation. They didn’t thanks to a blown call in the sixth where the ump said that Brandon McCarthy trapped a popup rather than caught it which turned a would-be double play with McCarthy doubling off Craig Gentry at third into Gentry scoring. The AP wrote this in its game story:

Melvin ran from the dugout to argue, gesturing repeatedly at Diaz before he was finally thrown out. Replays were inconclusive.

Every single beat writer who was there and people I knew watching the game live — Texas fans included — thought McCarthy caught the ball. So chalk up Brian Fuentes Ryan Cook‘s win and everything else that happened in the 10th to the Human Element.

Indians 6, Mariners 5: The M’s lost a 4-0 lead in the seventh and a 5-4 lead in the 11th. Carlos Santana had the walk-off single.

Phillies 8, Cubs 7: Closer than it should have been. When Roy Halladay left, it was a 5-run lead. The Cubs scored four in the ninth of Jacob Diekman, though, to make it at least moderately interesting and to force Jonathan Papelbon to come in for the save. Carlos Ruiz continues to be a beast, going 4 for 5 with three RBI.

Astros 4, Brewers 0: J.A. Happ and the pen combine for a shutout. Jed Lowrie homered and Jose Altuve rapped out three hits.

Dodgers 8, Padres 1: Aaron Harang shut out the Padres for seven innings. A rejuvenated-looking Bobby Abreu had an RBI triple and a double last night. He’s now 11-for-35 (.314) with six extra-base hits in 12 games since signing with the Dodgers.

  1. proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 6:50 AM

    No Lind. No Lawrie. A 21 year old rookie on the mound. No problem as the Jays beat the Yankees, despite a fine pitching performance by Hughes. I was impressed by both Hutchinson and Hughes. A year ago, Hutchinson was pitching for the Lansing Lugnuts. Yesterday he beat the team with the most experienced hitters in baseball. The former 15th round pick does not get rattled. Hughes made a mistake on a pitch to Bautista and paid for it. Otherwise, he used his fastball very effectively to get out of trouble.

  2. proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 6:55 AM

    The Red Sox appear to be rising from the dead. The AL East could soon have 5 teams with winning records.

    • drmonkeyarmy - May 18, 2012 at 7:35 AM

      You mean just like the NL East?

      • proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 8:38 AM

        Could be! Your Phillies have won 5 in a row. Interleague games between the two divisions should be fun. The Phillies take on the Red Sox and the Metropolitans take on the Jays this weekend.

      • proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 8:42 AM

        I did not mean to slight the Nationals vs Orioles and Braves vs Rays series. Divisional supremacy is at stake.

      • Francisco (FC) - May 18, 2012 at 9:34 AM

        You know, if MLB figured to give us a 4-team divisional matchup, why not go all the way. Marlins-Yankees would have been more interesting considering the personalities involved. And Reds-Indians would be in the same state, the I-71 series… with Craig in the middle.

      • Francisco (FC) - May 18, 2012 at 9:40 AM

        In fact they could have done a serious 1900 throwback game, those two teams are OLD.

      • natstowngreg - May 18, 2012 at 10:55 AM

        Do y’all realize the significance of “Divisional supremacy is at stake…” and “Nationals vs Orioles” in the same comment? The teams (and MASN, which televises both teams’ games) hype this as the Battle of the Beltawys. Not to much effect, as long as both teams were lousy. Now, both teams are not lousy.

      • proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 11:13 AM

        You are right Greg. Unfortunately, the Expos fell off my personal radar screen once they moved.

  3. cktai - May 18, 2012 at 7:13 AM

    The closer mentality is the complete opposite of the winners mentality. Where was a starter you need to allow your batters to score runs and help you win the game, as a closer you have to not want your batters to come in the game at all. This is why you should never try to turn a good closer in to a starter, and of course why you should never ever ever put a closer in during a tied game.

    The only thing that the closer mentality and winner mentality have in common is that they are both utter non-sense, which distract from that fact that a good pitcher is almost always a good pitcher in any situation.

  4. Old Gator - May 18, 2012 at 7:25 AM

    Everybody knows this: if you come home and find something that looks like an enormous, partially corrugated snow pea pod under your bed, don’t fall asleep. Inexplicably, nobody told Ricky Nolasco that, and about six days or so ago he decided he’d throw it back in the crisper drawer in his fridge after his nap. As a result, after the “good” Ricky opened the season as the Feesh’s most intense and reliable hurler, the other Ricky – also known as Ricky’s Evil Twin – showed up again last night and threw its second round of batting practice in two starts, this one worth four runs and seven hits in four innings and change. In addition to affect-loss, pod larvae cannot absorb a peetcher’s mental “book” on opposing heeters, which gets left on the pillow in the morning as a dandruff-like deposit.

    In other Feesh news, Slobbering Ozzie has suddenly managed, in a recent video, not to drop any F-daisycutters when questioned on his decision to stop wasting his time, and everyone else’s, on Twitter. This is very strange…..

    • Old Gator - May 18, 2012 at 8:05 AM

      PS – I speculated a week or so ago that at three games out the Feesh begin to experience a field of turbulence generated by the Strange Attractor that creates a lot of inertia counteracting the team’s efforts to achieve some sort of escape velocity in the standings. I questioned whether the Feesh had sufficient RBI left in their dilithium crystals to generate the additional warp factors needed to get past this field – “that demon that lives out in the thin air,” as Ridley so succinctly put it, the one commonly called Pazuzu who lives in the pot of luchre at the foot of Gravity’s Rainbow. Falling back to a measley couple of games beyond the Strange Attractor, which glitters just beneath them in anticipation of yet another impact (at the standard 32 feet per sec, per sec), the Feesh just haven’t found their Glamorous Glennis yet.

      • APBA Guy - May 18, 2012 at 12:00 PM

        That’s a lot of movie references, but it does seem that the Marlins and the Strange Attractor are made for each other this year.

      • Old Gator - May 18, 2012 at 12:57 PM

        Wait’ll you see what happens when I get finished watching all seven hours of Hans-Jürgen Syberberg’s Hitler – ein Film aus Deutschland. That’s seven – count ‘em – seven hours of obscure high art references. I can’t wait for that idiot frankvzappa to come back on here with some cockamamie rant about “fascist apologists.”

  5. offseasonblues - May 18, 2012 at 7:48 AM

    “Just gonna say how much I love that the Orioles are 4.5 up on the fourth place Yankees and 6.5 up on the last place Red Sox. Viva chaos.”

    Just gonna say that if my team can’t be on top, I’m glad it’s the O’s up there.

  6. Joe - May 18, 2012 at 7:58 AM

    That Lowrie-for-Melancon trade looks worse every day from the Red Sox standpoint.

    • Old Gator - May 18, 2012 at 8:05 AM

      That’s because Lawrie’s batting helmet didn’t hit you in the nose.

      • proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 9:13 AM

        Wait until you see Vlad Guerrero’s batting helmet. By the end of the season, it is gross. You do not want to be impaled on that.

      • paperlions - May 18, 2012 at 9:42 AM

        Lowrie, former Red Sox shortstop who is having a great year in Houston….not Lawrie, former Brewers prospect and inventor of Batting Helmet Cricket

      • phillyphreak - May 18, 2012 at 10:11 AM

        Will there be a home version of “Batting Helmet Cricket” that fans can purchase? Maybe Wii or PS3 style…

      • paperlions - May 18, 2012 at 10:17 AM

        Oh, I hope so….though a Wii version will probably lead to more broken TV screens than you can imagine.

      • Old Gator - May 18, 2012 at 11:51 AM

        Lowrie. Lawry. What’s a stem vowel among friends?

        Batting Helmet Cricket. I like that. When they come out with a Strat-O-Matic version, it’s going right up on my shelf next to my Ouija Scrabble board.

  7. Jonny 5 - May 18, 2012 at 8:57 AM

    CHOOCH!

    And how about Freddy Galvis? Batting .288 with 7 Doubles in May. This kid is starting to prove he may deserve a shot playing full time.

    • Francisco (FC) - May 18, 2012 at 9:42 AM

      Too early to say anything for certain but I always thought Galvis would replace Rollins not Utely (I mean replace as in, play the position the regular player usually plays, Utley could never EVER truly be replaced).

    • phillyphreak - May 18, 2012 at 10:13 AM

      Chooch indeed.

      I’m holding off on the Galvis train. SSS and all that jazz. Let’s see if he can keep it going but I doubt he’s going to hit near .300 every month…..

      • phillyphreak - May 18, 2012 at 10:14 AM

        “near”

    • Old Gator - May 18, 2012 at 11:53 AM

      CHONGGGGG!

  8. nyetjones - May 18, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    Taking a bee story and making a Simpsons reference about those dogs is like selling depression to teenagers is like shooting fish in a barrel.

    Well done nonetheless, Craig.

    NyetJones, smiling politely.

  9. sdelmonte - May 18, 2012 at 9:11 AM

    I am sure this won’t last. But…the Mets have a better record than the Yankees. I don’t think even the most overconfident Mets fan thought that this would happen any later than April 15. I don’t know how a team with two good starters (not counting Jason Bay) on the DL, with no fifth starter, with a first basemen batting in negative numbers, and with a messed up bullpen is doing it. Yes, David Wright is batting .411. But that doesn’t explain it.

    No matter. I continue to enjoy it while it lasts, even as I can see that the Phils and Marlins are waking up, even as the Braves have very quietly started to become really consistent. It’s going to be a fun division to watch, and I think that while the Mets probably fade, they will be a tough team to play down the stretch.

    • proudlycanadian - May 18, 2012 at 9:29 AM

      The pitching match ups look good for the Jays this weekend. I wish the Mets good luck against the Yankees, but I can’t cheer for them this weekend. I hope that Bay gets healthy and performs well for you.

      • sdelmonte - May 18, 2012 at 9:49 AM

        I’m looking forward to seeing how the NL fares overall this year. And optimistic this weekend about the Mets only because they’ve done well in interleague games the past few seasons.

  10. thephilsabide - May 18, 2012 at 9:20 AM

    Sdelmonte: What you just explained is also the Phillies. (obviously they don’t have a regular 1B but their platoon there has been less than stellar thus far.) Add in a banged up 3B and semi-banged up bench and what do you get???? Over .500 for the first time since opening day. Baseball’s a strange game.

  11. uyf1950 - May 18, 2012 at 9:42 AM

    Not a bad performance by Hughes 5 1/3 innings 2 ER only comes out to a 3.38 ERA. But the offense right now is scary bad. Not going to win very many games when the offense only scores 1 run a game. They are making some of these pitchers look like top 5 Cy Young nominee’s. Well as I like to say there is always tomorrow. And in the Yankees case tomorrow is against the Reds. Just telling it like I see it.

  12. antlerclaws - May 18, 2012 at 9:55 AM

    Brandon McCarthy was absolutely right to argue that call. He knew he’d caught it, I as a Rangers fan knew he’d caught it, and even the Rangers TV announcers admitted he caught it while looking at the replay. Pretty much the only one who didn’t know was the ump, and it admittedly happened quick with the runner moving between the umpire and the ball. But, I have to ask, as I’ve been asking for years, what good does it do to argue? Any time an ump makes a call, it’s etched in stone and irreversible, for all practical purposes. I realize that managers have to jump in there and defend their players and sometimes get ejected, even if it’s just for show, but no calls are ever reversed and they are all wasting their time and breath arguing/getting ejected. So I guess the solution is either instant replay or everyone just shut up and play.

  13. azvikefan - May 18, 2012 at 10:12 AM

    Maybe it happens at other ball parks, but I’ve never seen it. A D-Backs fan caught a Rockies home run ball, threw it back and was escorted out of the park. The D-backs TV crew are making it up to him with tix to a future home game.

  14. metalhead65 - May 18, 2012 at 10:55 AM

    in other news for those people who are tired of me blaming dusty baker and his stupid moves or lack there of costing the reds this year I leave you this quote from the man himself. if this does not prove what a idiot he is there is no hope for you.“I know everybody wants to play the guy who is hot,” Baker said. “But what happens when the guys who’s hot gets cold and the guy who’s cold never gets lukewarm because he ain’t playing?”
    this was his explanation on why he sat Chris Heisey who for the first time under dusty started 4 games in a row and was as hot you can be against the braves,in order to play ryan ludwick currently batting .188 and who has not been hot at the plate since he played for the cards.

  15. mungman69 - May 18, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    CARLOS RUIZ: Great defensive catcher with a cannon arm. Handles pitchers very well. World Series winner. Bulked up some this winter. And so far he is a hitting machine and MVP of the Phillies.

    CARLOS RUIZ

  16. stex52 - May 18, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    The Astros still try to orbit around the Strange Attractor. If Happ can keep a little control, then they can probably put together at least a MLB-average staff. Still very little power, a lot of LOB’s. But, as I have been saying, visions of .500 dance in our heads. Of course, Rangers coming to town will put the serious test on that one.

  17. APBA Guy - May 18, 2012 at 12:08 PM

    Speaking of Evil Twins, what is up with Matt Harrison? For the first 3 games of 2012, he had a near 1.50 ERA. Over the last 4 it’s been nearer to 5.00. Yesterday he was in full Evil Twin mode allowing the first 5 A’s to reach base in the top of the first, 3 of whom would score. Then nothing for the next 5 innings. Had not the McCarthy catch been missed, this game was effectively over. That the A’s were able to win in an extra (and take their extra inning record to 4-1) was again a tribute to the A’s bullpen who collectively went 4.2 allowing only 2 hits. The Rangers bullpen surrendered 2 runs in the same 4.2 innings. The A’s are 11-9 on the road, 20-19 overall.

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