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And That Happened: Wednesday’s scores and highlights

May 31, 2012, 5:45 AM EDT

Seattle Mariners v Texas Rangers Getty Images

Mariners 21, Rangers 8: Look, we can point to Justin Smoak driving in a half dozen runs, Jesus Montero nearly hitting for the cycle or any number of other things as being the cause of this bloodbath. But the fact is, Derek Holland shaved his mustache the other day, and there is likely a causal link there.

Rockies 13, Astros 5: Carlos Gonzalez hit homers in the 5th, sixth and 8th innings. He’s 10 for 16 with five home runs in his past four games.

Pirates 2, Reds 1: A.J. Burnett didn’t allow any earned runs over seven innings. Aroldis Chapman didn’t pitch in this game. Based on how his last week or so has gone, I’m going to assume he was unavailable because he was either running from Interpol, involved in a long con involving a phony off-track betting parlor or was compelled to participate in some underground Russian roulette ring in Saigon by circumstance and his own mental scars.

Braves 10, Cardinals 7: Freddy Freeman got his new sports glasses yesterday. And then, in his first at bat since his eye problems got intolerable, hit hit a home run. He added a double and finished with three RBI. Ze goggles! Zay do zomething!

Marlins 5, Nationals 3: Johnson beats Wang. Wang didn’t go long in this one, but he allowed no home runs, so no one was hard on him. In other news: “That’s OK, I brought an erector set.” “Throw a towel over it!” “Do some pushups Pablo, Maybe it will go away!” If you get that — and if you’re anyone other than Old Gator — kudos.

Blue Jays 4, Orioles 1: The O’s lose their fifth straight after giving up four solo homers to the Jays. But bad news for T.O.: Brandon Morrow left the game early after getting plunked on the shin by a line drive. Just a contusion, and he should make his next start.

White Sox 4, Rays 3: The winning streak is now at eight, this despite losing starting pitcher Jose Quintana via ejection and the whole Hawk Harrelson freakout and everything. The Rays have lost 9 of 13 at home. Joe Maddon: “We’re not really playing a high level of baseball right now,” Maddon said. “Too many mistakes on the field.”  As opposed to too many mistakes at the golf course or in the Matrix or wherever.

Cubs 8, Padres 6: Darwin Barney had a two-run walkoff homer. After the game he said “That was the first walk-off home run I’ve had at any level, I didn’t even see it go out.” Maybe it didn’t happen then? Maybe … Barney doesn’t himself believe in Darwin!  In other news, my Padres tickets probably just got another buck cheaper.

Phillies 10, Mets 6: The Phillies win, but since Lee went six and since they scored nine of their ten runs in the seventh inning and beyond, he doesn’t get the win. I guess chemistry didn’t help the back end of the Mets bullpen.

Red Sox 6, Tigers 4David Ortiz and Will Middlebrooks each hit two-run homers and Kevin Youkilis had a solo shot. Miguel Cabrera went 4 for 5 with three doubles in a losing cause. The Red Sox have won 14 of 19. Tigers fans are the most dour bunch on the planet right now. And now that their division deficit is 5.5 games, ugh, maybe they should be.

Twins 4, Athletics 0: Oakland stinks on ice right now. Letting Francisco Liriano — who had been one of the worst starters in all of baseball so far this year — shut you out on three hits over six innings is damn nigh inexcusable. Josh Willingham homered and drove in three. He has to be serious trade bait at the deadline, right?

Royals 6, Indians 3: Kansas City finished May 15-13. It was their first winning May in 12 years. Cleveland has lost five of six.

Diamondbacks 4, Giants 1: Tim Lincecum pitched better than he has but Ian Kennedy pitched better than Tim Lincecum, allowing one run in seven and two-thirds. Paul Goldschmidt has had only 13 at bats against Lincecum but already has four home runs off him, the most of any player.

Brewers 6, Dodgers 3: One Matt Kemp injury was survivable for the Dodgers. But, uh oh, here’s another. Well, the same one re-aggravated. “It feels worse than the first time,” Kemp said. Not good.

Yankees 6, Angels 5: New York avoids the sweep and LAA sees its winning streak end. The Yankees blew a four run lead first, but it was all OK in the end. Robinson Cano and Curtis Granderson homered.

  1. thenoblebard93 - May 31, 2012 at 6:16 AM

    Giants v. Dbacks?

  2. drewmunny - May 31, 2012 at 6:27 AM

    21-8? How can this be? The Texas Hamiltons have Josh Hamilton, it’s just unpossible…. It’s not supposed to be this way. (disclaimer – yes, I AM aware that this score is a reflection of horrible pitching).

    • antlerclaws - May 31, 2012 at 8:08 AM

      Derek Holland’s mustache is obviously like Samson’s hair–the repository of all his strength. Need to see if his mustache was shaved by a woman named Delilah. Unsure what Yoshi Tateyama’s story was, though. He gave up 8 runs in the inning following the Dutch Oven. Just general sucking, I guess. Then all the other relievers had to jump in and give up one or two runs each, I’m guessing in a showing of solidarity to Holland and Tateyama.

      • beefytrout - May 31, 2012 at 9:45 AM

        Yep…

        http://www.facebook.com/BringBackTheDutchStache

      • anythingbutyanks - May 31, 2012 at 9:59 AM

        Better to get all the suck out in one game than to spread it over several, right?

    • cur68 - May 31, 2012 at 10:48 AM

      If I’d known he was gonna shave the weed I’da benched his ass prior to this weeks matchups in fantasy league. He assploded and not even the mighty Ranger’s offence could save him from Sweet Jesus Montero and the rest of the Ichiros. I have very strict rules about cutting off, or removing in any way, Mojo Laden Hair. For example I wont touch Jose Reyes. No Mojo.

    • IdahoMariner - May 31, 2012 at 2:16 PM

      “Dustin Ackley, Jesus Montero and Justin Smoak proved him wrong with home runs in back-to-back eight-run innings by the Mariners. I am pretty sure I will never type that again. It was the Mariners’ first consecutive seven-plus-run innings and only the seventh time that a team has put up back-to-back eight-run-or-better innings in the history of MLB, according to Elias. There have been more perfect games, more unassisted triple plays and more four-home-run nights in the history of the game than what the Mariners did Wednesday in Arlington. Crazy.” from Shannon Drayer’s blog today.

      so yeah, that was some HISTORIC horrible pitching, especially in light of it being, you know, my boys who did the hitting. I love them, but we get excited when they score 8 runs in a GAME….in an inning is crazy.

  3. proudlycanadian - May 31, 2012 at 7:02 AM

    No umpires were injured in the Jays game, but in addition to Morrow’s injury, he hit Jones on the wrist with a fastball. The count was 1 & 2 so it was not intentional. Jones stayed in the game, but it could have been serious.

    • Tim OShenko - May 31, 2012 at 10:30 AM

      Every time I read one of your recaps, I imagine a surly janitor adding a number to a billboard outside Rogers Centre that reads, “We’ve gone [X] games without umpire-related injuries!”

  4. proudlycanadian - May 31, 2012 at 7:08 AM

    All 10 teams in the AL East and NL East have winning records. In the AL East, the last place team is only 2.5 games behind the leaders. In the NL East, the last place team is only 3 games behind the leader. The East divisions are dominant, and the race for playoff positions will be exciting.

    • natstowngreg - May 31, 2012 at 8:22 AM

      A clear case of East Coast Bias(tm).

  5. Old Gator - May 31, 2012 at 7:53 AM

    The Iron Giant wraps up May .304/.376/.597 with 13 dingers and 39 ribbies, and managed to steal 3 bases in the process. He rifled a 400-foot missile off the Clevelander facade again last night for an eighth inning insurance run. Josh Johnson was on about three quarters of his game last night and was gone after six, but good enough for a win and a slight reduction in the pachydermal ERA he accumulated during his first handful of train wrecks out of the gate. Heath Bell continues to steady himself, giving up one hit for a save. And don’t look now, but here comes the Hanster (3 for 5 last night). So far, Scrooge McLoria’s accursed .342 amulet seems content to remain crushed into that derelict car in the junkyard, piled just on top of the one with Jimmy Hoffa in it.

    On the downside, Chris Coghlan took yet another ohfer and dropped his BA to .134, while John Buck went an official one for three with an RBI on what was really a blown fielder’s choice, lifting his average to .164. You don’t really want to see either of these guys’ slash lines, which look more like the packages of cut up chicken parts in the salmonella bin at Publix than a line of stats. Slightly better: Bryan Peterson, Tweeter’s favorite hot tub partner, hiked his average to the Mendoza line with a 1-for-2 performance and a couple of walks.

    Look, I know the Feesh had a hot hot month, winning a club record 21 games, and it seems ridiculous for me to continue to be pessimistic, but when a third of your regular lineup is hitting at or well below the Mendoza line you’re using up your nine lives whether anybody’s counting or not. There’s too much parity in this division and you’re one key pitching injury or hamstring pull away from slowly falling back out of contention. With Juan Leo Carlos Nunez Oviedo starting to get sharp in the minors and looking at a July return, the pitching seems more or less secure for the time being, but The Feesh still need another reliable RBI guy to make up for the Buck-Coghlan-Petersen-Tweeter offensive dead zone in their offensive profile.

    • jimmymarlinsfan - May 31, 2012 at 7:57 AM

      You mean Ruggiano won’t be enough?

      Can we exploit the cubs for a catcher? We always have luck tearing their talent away from them

      • Old Gator - May 31, 2012 at 12:37 PM

        You don’t need to tear talent away from the Cubs. They flee if left to their own devices. Unfortunately, they often vector that insidious prion-vectored Indonesian neurological affliction, Die Vloek van der Geitbok, to whatever team assimilates them. Some years back some journalist, and I can’t recall who it was, wrote a piece documenting how teams with more than a certain number of ex-Cubs on tier rosters would inevitably crap out of contention, or implode in the playoffs or World Series. He named names, too. I should have kept that article to quote from, but who knew there would ever be a Circling the Bases some day?

      • jwbiii - May 31, 2012 at 1:08 PM

        ‘Twas the late, great Mike Royko.

      • Old Gator - May 31, 2012 at 4:51 PM

        Royko – yeah, that makes perfect sense. There’ll never be another one like him, in part because there’ll never be a corrupt, fascisitc bastard of a mayor to rival Richard Daley Sr. either. They made perfect foils for each other, right down to Daley having Royko’s book effectively banned from Chicago bookstores.

    • natslady - May 31, 2012 at 8:41 AM

      The FIshies got some good luck there, not facing Gio or Stras, though EJax was excellent except for the pickoff play, and JZimm was only OK when he needed to DOMINATE. You got our 5th starter (Wang-Detwiler) and they couldn’t keep the lead. The human towel (Perry) gave up a dinger to Giancarlo (quelle surprise).

      Right now, the Fish are healthy, and the Nats–12 guys on the DL and that doesn’t count Flores (resting from a strain), HRod (slammed his finger in a door) and Maldonado (also “resting”), not to mention RZimm (recovering shoulder), LaRoche (tired?) and R. Ankiel (flu, maybe? Bernadina just recovered from it). Solano called his first ML game.

      Seems like Heath Bell is back to form, so that’s a plus for you. The Fish are hot, clearly, and familiar with playing in their park–which may have The Thing, but apparently doesn’t have grass growing in the outfield..

      • Old Gator - May 31, 2012 at 12:45 PM

        Oh, I’m not kidding myself that the Feesh are going to be a dominant team in this division. Far from it. I expect them and the Gnats to be clawing each other’s eyes out in September – in fact, I think it’s going to be a three-way catfight between them and the Feelies. It was only a few weeks ago that we were looking at the Feelies and wondering if they were going to make it. I don’t know – they looked preety seeck to me. But hey – I teenk they’re coming around! I do not think the Mutts and Braves are coming around, though. R. A. Dickey is going to have a great season but he and David Wright alone won’t be able to heft that team to September. And the Braves, being captained by Fat Fredi, or even Fat Fredi’s cat, would be better off with Joe Hazelwood up on the bridge.

        On the other hand, it would be better – and more accurate – to think of injuries as plays, like blown fielder’s choices (like the one Zim failed to execute on Buck last night).

    • natstowngreg - May 31, 2012 at 8:50 AM

      As the Nats flee the garishness (garishosity?) that is the Miami-Dade County Baseball Palace, and their continued inability to win in South Florida, they return home to host the Braves and Mets, so there is no cause for panic.

      Beautiful vignette late in last night’s game. Donovan Solano pinch-hitting for the Fish, greeting brother Jhonaton at the plate, with shots of their parents in the stands. All reveling in the fact that both made the Big Leagues.

      That Stanton kid is good, whatever he decides to call himself. He is what Jason Heyward was supposed to be — the next generation of NL East opponent you hate but respect, successor to Larry Chipper and Ryan Howard and Chase Utley (and eventually, David Wright and Hanley Ramirez). As Bryce Harper becomes that player for fans of the other division teams.

    • cur68 - May 31, 2012 at 11:01 AM

      Gator, I need some help. Can you consult with a Santería on this for me? Jonny5 has put the hex on my pitchers in fantasy ball. Yup, he did some funky dance, with a hose down his pants it seems, and amused the gods so much They caused Holland to shave his mojo-laden ‘stache off and get DESTROYED by Sweet Jesus Montero & the Ichiros. Not only that but Kershaw got a jolly good rogering too, at the hands of the MVPee’s crew, too. That last was especially cruel: while Kershaw got Rogered, the MVPee himself, whom I have too, did pretty much nothing. Has to be a curse, hex, or evil eye of some kind. I should be demolishing J5′s boys, but instead am likely to go down in flames. I tried praying to Dog, but she just rolled over and wanted her tummy rubbed. Didn’t help anything. I left Jobu some rum, but that didn’t help either (perhaps because I’m using a Halladay Bobblehead with golf-club cover over it as a Faux-Jobu? This could well mean that Faux-Bu is on the DL with a strained Hex Muscle: ask your Santería about that, can you?). Any help would be greatly appreciated as I am about to be assploded for the remainder of the week.
      Cheers, C68

      • Old Gator - May 31, 2012 at 12:29 PM

        My local Santera is on vacation in Brazil, using a government grant he found through Ask Lesko to study Macumba and broaden his horizons. If you want, I can lay out my trusty Ouija Scrabble board and ask the spirits just how royally screwed you’re going to be by the time your next report it due.

      • cur68 - May 31, 2012 at 12:41 PM

        My Dog, man don’t do that. It’ll rob J5 of whatever little he has to look forward to in life after corroding his nethers with errant lacquer thinner. I’m going to have to face facts: until I injure myself in a grotesque but amusing manner, I’m at the mercy of J5′s hex-equity with the various and sundry gods. Ask them instead if I should grow my hair out in an effort to counteract all the sheering of Mojo going on with my players.

  6. 4d3fect - May 31, 2012 at 8:02 AM

    Firesign Theatre FTW! Sorry to see Bergman go though, he will be sorely missed.

    • Old Gator - May 31, 2012 at 12:23 PM

      Amen. Craig and I trade FT moments all the time. Some day, you have to look up Bergman’s full resume – he was a true renaissance man, and the story of his early radio days and the formation of the FT is as weird in its own way as a lot of their albums. The group first got together to do a radio play based on the great Jorge Luis Borges’ La Muerte y la Brujula – a recording I would still be willing to kill for. Ah well.

      Shoes for industry, compadre!

  7. dlf9 - May 31, 2012 at 8:46 AM

    Baseball is a truly wonderful thing.

    I had to be in Philadelphia the last two days on a business trip. Returning home yesterday afternoon, I boarded the plane and took my seat. Moments later, an elderly lady sat down next to me. We proceeded to exchange pleasantries, discussing the reason why I was in Philly and why she was about to visit Georgia.

    After a few minutes of talk of family, jobs, and vacations, she started talking about baseball. She spoke of seeing games at Connie Mack Stadium (“but those were some pretty bad teams,” she said.) She talked about having season tickets to the Vet and started naming players from the late 70s division winners like Dave Cash, Larry Bowa, Mike Schmidt, and her personal favorite Bob Boone. We talked about Ray Boone and Aaron / Bret too. I brought up Greg Luzinski and she said she never forgave him for dropping that fly ball in the NLCS.

    But it wasn’t just a history lesson. She talked about going to minor league games in Trenton, Redding, and elsewhere almost every weekend. She spoke glowingly of Chase Utley but seemed saddened that he was probably through as an everyday player. She talked about Roy Halladay’s DL stint and how she had hoped that Oswalt would resigned until he went to Texas.

    For an hour and a half, this woman in her late 70s and I carried on a long, detailed conversation spanning six decades of baseball history. She complained that being widowed has left her with too few people to talk about baseball with and said that her compatriots too often just wanted to talk about Dancing with the Stars. She pulled out the old, but true cliche that ‘baseball is booring only to a simple mind.’

    I had a great flight.

    • number42is1 - May 31, 2012 at 9:16 AM

      this may be one of the best things i have ever heard

      • mcs7584 - May 31, 2012 at 10:14 AM

        Amen, number42is1! Thanks for sharing, dlf9!

    • chadjones27 - May 31, 2012 at 10:13 AM

      wonderful story. thanks for sharing (and not in a sarcastic way).

    • cur68 - May 31, 2012 at 11:04 AM

      I know exactly what you mean. I used to work with a nurse who was like that. She was 60 when I met her and we’d while away breaks, boring moments, and watch ballgames together in the break room nattering endlessly about base ball. It was great.

  8. uyf1950 - May 31, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    The Yankees escape Anaheim taking the last game of the 3 game series. From the looks of it Nova pitched his usual 6 or so innings giving up 5 or so ER’s and getting the win. Not exactly sure what magic the Yankees have when Nova pitches but they have something. He hasn’t pitched particularly well so far this season but you would never know it from his win/loss record. And I guess that’s all that really matters.

  9. jeffthomasb - May 31, 2012 at 9:18 AM

    I wake up this morning thinking that Craig is going to make some sort of easy Michael Bay reference to the gaudy nonsense that went on in Arlington last night, but he travels much farther and wider, invoking in one post ‘The Sting’, ‘The Deer Hunter’, and The Firesign Theatre. My head just might explode.

  10. dwaynehosey - May 31, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    “Wang didn’t go long in this one”….I assume he left complaining of stiffness?

  11. APBA Guy - May 31, 2012 at 12:20 PM

    The Great and Powerful Beane used to say, back when the team was a worthy subject for popular films, that the first two months of the season were used to determine what a team needs, the second 3rd was used to acquire those needs, and the last third was used to race to the playoffs.

    Well, at 8 straight losses and counting, including 3 to Minnesota (15-32 when the series began) what are the A’s needs:

    - the leadoff hitter has a .298 OBP
    - the starting CF has a .429 OPS
    - the starting 1B has .608 OPS
    - the starting catcher has a .504 OPS

    There’s more, but that should be enough to answer Craig’s question about how Liriano could shut down the A’s: just throw it anywhere but the middle of the plate. If Reddick’s not hitting (and he was cold during this series) then NOBODY on the A’s will hit.

    The pitching is better than the offense, but the use of the pitchers, especially the bullpen, is extremely questionable, with veteran relievers Balfour and Fuentes assigned to the 8th and 9th innings, each having k/9 in the mid 6′s and Fuentes ERA over 4.00. Balfour’s bb/k is 11/19 which is appalling enough, but at the end of a game which is usually close the last thing you want is a bunch of walks.

    McCarthy leads the starters with a 2.95 ERA, but has missed 2 starts (about 20%) but could be on pace for 200 IP.

    Jarrod Parker, the Real Deal, is 2.88 since he came up, has fantastic stuff, great presence, but of course has some rookie moments.

    The other starters, well, it’s been downhill since April.

    Captain of the 2012 All-Ugly Team, Mr. B. Colon is at 4.52, but heading in the wrong direction.

    So, what do the A’s need?

    New Owners.

    Unfortunately, as an Official Friend of Bud, Wolff isn’t going anywhere. Until he does, the A’s are the Orioles under Angelos in the 2000′s: Empty park, lousy team, occasionally a good player passing through, but always profitable. From the Wolff/Fisher perspective, life is good.

  12. jlovenotjlo - May 31, 2012 at 12:27 PM

    Is that goggles quote a Simpsons reference, or did the Simpsons get that from somewhere else and I’m too young and ignorant to realize it? Either way, Up and Atom!

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