Notes from Sunday's games Print
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Sunday, 22 April 2007 15:40
MLB Headline News

 AMERICAN LEAGUE
White Sox-Tigers
CHICAGO: DH Jim Thome had three walks, giving him an AL-high 25. ... 3B Joe Crede's two-run homer was his 15th at Comerica Park, tying him for the most by a visitor in the ballpark that opened in 2000. ... Manager Ozzie Guillen, who has publicly shared his e-mail address ozzieguillen13hotmail.com, said he receives about 30 e-mails a day. Guillen said he rarely responds and joked that he only reads closely when the sender claims to know something about managing. ... INF Alex Cintron was put on the bereavement list and INF Andy Gonzalez was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte. Cintron is in Puerto Rico with his grandfather, who had a stroke.
reliever does not have a significant health issue. ``I'm not mad at him and I'm not criticizing him. He's a trooper,'' Leyland said. ``But for our bullpen to be good, we need Rodney to be good.'' ... C Ivan Rodriguez was supposed to have the day off, but he was used as a pinch-hitter and played his 1,951st game behind the plate. He now trails only Carlton Fisk (2,226), Bob Boone (2,225) and Gary Carter (2,056) in games caught.
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Blue Jays-Orioles
TORONTO: The Blue Jays optioned RHP Jamie Vermilyea to Triple-A Syracuse and recalled LHP Brian Tallet from the same club after their loss at Baltimore. Vermilyea made his major league debut Sunday, throwing three shutout innings in relief. Tallet had a 1.35 ERA in seven appearances for the Chiefs through Saturday. ... Since winning the first game of a 10-game stretch against AL East opponents by beating Boston, the Blue Jays have lost five straight. ... Toronto has scored only 17 runs in its last seven games. ... DH Frank Thomas was moved to fifth in the order from cleanup for the first time this season. He went 2-for-4.
BALTIMORE: 2B Brian Roberts missed his second consecutive game with the flu. He hopes to return Monday. ... Orioles relievers allowed only two runs in 9 1-3 innings during the team's first three-game home sweep of Toronto since 1994. ... 2B Chris Gomez was hitless (0-for-3) for the first time in six starts this season. ... RHP Steve Trachsel improved to 4-0 in five career appearances against Toronto after going 5 1-3 innings against his former team. ... The Orioles have come from behind in eight of their 11 victories this season. ... OF Nick Markakis extended his hitting streak to nine games. He's batting .324 (12-for-37) during that span.
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Indians-Devil Rays
CLEVELAND: How hot has DH Travis Hafner been at the plate? Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon told his pitchers before the start of the three-game series against the Indians that walking him was OK. ``I told our pitchers, even if you walk him 10 or 12 times, I don't care,'' Maddon said. ... The Indians have won eight of nine against Tampa Bay. ... Minor league RHP Jason Beverlin, who was pitching for Triple-A Buffalo, retired. He appeared in seven major league games with the Indians and Detroit in 2002.
i Matsui (hamstring), who is expected to be activated from the disabled list before the game. The contest will be broadcast live on TV and radio in Japan. ... Tampa Bay is 0-10-4 in its last 14 series dating to early September last season.
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Twins-Royals
MINNESOTA: Manager Ron Gardenhire likes to use backup C Mike Redmond as the DH with Joe Mauer behind the plate, but that leaves Gardenhire without a safety net at catcher. Gardenhire said that if Mauer got injured during a game, Redmond would catch and the Twins would lose their DH. ``The pitchers would have fun, but it's not the kind of fun I'd like,'' Gardenhire said. The Twins opened the season with Chris Heintz as their third catcher, but he has since been sent to the minors. ``I don't really want to stay with 12 pitchers,'' Gardenhire said. ``I'd like to get a third catcher back up here.'' ... Torii Hunter extended his hitting streak to nine games with a bunt single in the ninth. ... RF Michael Cuddyer doubled in the sixth, giving the Twins a two-base hit in 14 consecutive games.
KANSAS CITY: 1B Ryan Shealy, who was 1-for-18 with 10 strikeouts in his previous five games, returned to the lineup for the first time since Tuesday. He went 1-for-2 and was hit by a pitch. ... LHP Jorge De La Rosa worked a career-high eight innings, matching the longest outing by a Royals starter this season. His previous high was seven innings on April 6 against Detroit. ... DH Mike Sweeney had his first three-hit game since Sept. 30 at Detroit. ... The game time of 2:07 was the Royals' fastest since June 2 last season, a 2-hour game at Seattle.
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Athletics-Rangers
OAKLAND: Manager Bob Geren said RHP Rich Harden will not make his scheduled start Tuesday against Baltimore. Harden, who left his start last Sunday against the New York Yankees with a stiff right shoulder, threw a bullpen session Sunday. ``We're not going to put him on the disabled list,'' Geren said. ``He had a really good day throwing and we feel like he'll be ready sooner rather than later.'' ... Oakland has not given up a run in the first inning through 18 games.
TEXAS: OF Brad Wilkerson missed his fifth straight game with a sore left knee. Manager Ron Washington said he thinks Wilkerson will be fine and there are no plans to place him on the disabled list. ... After RHP Joaquin Benoit gave up six runs in one inning Friday, he bounced back with a scoreless inning Saturday night. ``I've always been a fan of his,'' Washington said. ``I never give up on him. He feeds off of it when we show confidence in him.''
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Mariners-Angels
SEATTLE: This is Seattle's fourth losing streak of six or more games during the past two seasons, including an 11-game skid last August. During Mike Hargrove's eight-plus seasons as Cleveland's manager, the Indians never lost more than six in a row. But Hargrove had five losing streaks of nine or more games with Baltimore, including a career-worst 12-game slide to end the 2002 campaign. ... Jeff Weaver, Miguel Batista and Horacio Ramirez allowed 15 runs and 24 hits over a combined 13-plus innings during the three-game sweep by the Angels. The Mariners' starting rotation has a cumulative 6.44 ERA through the team's first 14 games. ... If Ichiro Suzuki is successful on his next stolen base attempt, he will break Tim Raines' AL record of 40 consecutive steals. The major league record is 50, by Vince Coleman. ... Seattle C Kenji Johjima, who led AL rookies last season with 18 home runs and tied Dan Wilson's franchise record for homers by a catcher, has yet to hit one in his first 38 at-bats. ... SS Yuniesky Betancourt's two errors raised his season total to six in just 14 games. He played errorless ball through his first 31 games last season (127 total chances), becoming the first Seattle shortstop to go an entire month without an error since Alex Rodriguez in June 2000. ... LHP George Sherrill pitched a perfect seventh inning and has retired 14 consecutive batters.
LOS ANGELES: Angels starters Ervin Santana, Joe Saunders and Bartolo Colon combined to hold Seattle to two runs over 20 innings during the three-game sweep, while the offense staked them to leads of 3-0, 8-0 and 7-0, respectively. ... Santana is 6-0 in his last eight starts at home. ... The Angels scored 21 runs in the series after totaling 16 during their eight-game road trip. They were 14-for-33 with runners in scoring position. ... The Angels have beaten Seattle in 11 of the last 13 meetings.
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Yankees-Red Sox
NEW YORK: CF Johnny Damon (stiff back) returned to the lineup after pinch-hitting Saturday. C Jorge Posada missed his second consecutive game with a bruised left thumb sustained in Friday's series opener. ... SS Derek Jeter played in his 1,695th game. He moved into 10th place in Yankees history, passing Willie Randolph. ... RHP Chien-Ming Wang is expected to come off the disabled list and start for New York on Tuesday at Tampa Bay. On Saturday, he threw 55 pitches in the bullpen at the team's complex in Tampa, Fla.
ugh to know how he'll take this and run with it,'' manager Terry Francona said. ``We're really hoping he gets more confident.'' ... David Ortiz's homer on Saturday was his 179th with Boston, moving him past Nomar Garciaparra for 10th place in team history.
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NATIONAL LEAGUE
Nationals-Marlins
WASHINGTON: Manager Manny Acta pulled CF Ryan Church from Sunday's 12-6 loss at Florida in the second inning for not running hard on a groundout. ``I'm a very patient man when it comes down to things that you can't control, like if you can't throw strikes or physical, mental errors - those are things that sometimes you can't control,'' Acta said. ``But when it comes down to effort and playing hard, I don't have patience for that.'' Church said he understood. ``He's said from Day 1, play hard or your not going to play,'' Church said. ``I got his message - loud and clear.'' ... Washington has not scored a first-inning run all season.
ouple of innings with Jupiter before rejoining the Marlins. ... 1B Mike Jacobs (sore right thumb) was not in the lineup for a second straight game. ``There's still some swelling there,'' Gonzalez said. ``He'll take the day off and then we'll see how it progresses.'' ... LHP Dontrelle Willis, scheduled to start Monday night against Atlanta, said his pregnant wife will be induced in the morning. ``It'll be a good day - have the baby and then come here and throw eight innings,'' Gonzalez said.
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Braves-Mets
ATLANTA: John Smoltz threw a called third strike past Carlos Beltran with runners at second and third to end the fifth - his 2,799th strikeout, passing Cy Young for 18th place. The ball was thrown in the stands, but Smoltz asked for it, and the fan who had it accepted a replacement, according to the pitcher. ``I normally don't keep up with anything like that, but this name is a little bit big,'' Smoltz said. ``Cy Young is Cy Young,'' Smoltz struck out David Wright in the sixth for No. 2,800. ... Kelly Johnson also homered on the first pitch on April 8 against the Mets' Orlando Hernandez. ``I think they're both Sundays against the Mets, so maybe it's only on Sundays,'' he said. ... In his last game as a 29-year-old, Andruw Jones was 2-for-3 with a single, double, intentional walk and a hit by pitch.
NEW YORK: Tom Glavine is the first pitcher to start five times in the Mets' first 17 games since Ron Darling in 1987. He has been impressed by the Braves and their rebuilt bullpen. ``There's no question they're a good team and a better team than they were last year. We figure they're going to be around all summer long.'' ... Jose Reyes tied Bud Harrelson for second on the Mets' triples list at 45, trailing only Mookie Wilson (62). ... The Mets have drawn 390,741 for eight dates, up from 326,222 last year.
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Phillies-Reds
PHILADELPHIA: Charlie Manuel appreciates 2B Chase Utley's talent, but the Phillies manager also respects Utley's grit. ``When we lose, Utley takes it hard,'' the Phillies manager said. ``I say this not because we're in Cincinnati, but (former Red and Phillie) Pete Rose was the hardest player I've ever seen. Utley plays just as hard. He might even hit better, even though Rose got 10,000 hits.'' Rose actually finished with 4,256 hits, the major league's career record. ... 1B Ryan Howard started Sunday after missing three consecutive starts with a sprained ligament just below his left knee. He homered and drove in three runs. ... The Phillies meet Houston on Monday in Philadelphia in the makeup of one of two games postponed April 15-16 by rain.
CINCINNATI: LHP Mike Stanton needs 132 appearances to tie Jesse Orosco for the major league career appearance record. ``He's got a chance to tie him this year,'' manager Jerry Narron said with a slight smile. ``Fine with me,'' said Stanton, who made his 1,120th appearance Sunday, breaking a tie with John Franco for second place. ``Let's get it over with.'' ... Josh Hamilton made his fourth consecutive start in right field Sunday in place of Ken Griffey Jr., who remained sidelined because of illness. Griffey, who drove in a ninth-inning run with a pinch-hit double Sunday, is expected to be ready Tuesday when the Reds play the Cardinals in St. Louis. ... The Reds were scheduled to leave Monday on a 10-day, nine-game road trip, their first of five consecutive trips spanning at least 10 days.
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Astros-Brewers
HOUSTON: The Astros have lost two straight for the first time since opening the season 0-4. ... 3B Morgan Ensberg singled in the fifth inning to extend his hitting streak to 10 games, tying his career high. He is 14-for-39 (.359) during this stretch. ... 1B Lance Berkman, who entered the game hitting .204, recorded his first double of the season and second extra-base hit. His other extra-base hit is a home run.
MILWAUKEE: RHP Chris Spurling, who was recalled from Triple-A Nashville after Saturday's game, showed up 90 minutes before Sunday's first pitch wearing his 2006 Detroit Tigers AL champions ring. RHP Greg Aquino was sent down to make room for Spurling, who didn't pitch Sunday. Aquino had a 5.87 ERA in eight relief appearances. ``It's always tough to send somebody out,'' Brewers manager Ned Yost said. ``We need him to go down and get straightened out.'' ... RHP Francisco Cordero threw 61 pitches combined in the last two days while recording saves. ... 2B Rickie Weeks has reached base safely in 14 straight games.
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Cardinals-Cubs
ST. LOUIS: RHP Chris Carpenter, who was placed on the 15-day DL retroactive to April 2 with persistent swelling in his right elbow, has been building up his rehab work and has reported no problems. ``He's been working every day,'' manager Tony La Russa said. ``So far, no setbacks. He's starting to amp things up little by little.'' ... 3B Scott Rolen's previous career high for hits in a game was four, last accomplished June 13, 2006, at Pittsburgh. ... Cardinals pitchers have allowed 15 first-inning runs this season.
are ready to make a change. Manager Lou Piniella was adamant after the loss Sunday that Chicago needs another relief pitcher, expanding the pitching staff from 11 to 12. The roster will have to be adjusted. The Cubs already have a logjam in the middle infield with Ryan Theriot, Ronny Cedeno, Mark DeRosa and Cesar Izturis. And they have an even bigger one in the outfield as Soriano gets ready to move to left. If they stick with rookie Felix Pie in center, it means Matt Murton, Cliff Floyd and Jacque Jones will be vying for playing time in right. ``He (Pie) is going to need to play every day, whether it's here or in (Triple-A) Iowa. We'll talk about our outfield situation here over the next day or two,'' Piniella said.
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Padres-Rockies
``There isn't a more imposing 3-4-5 group around.''
COLORADO: INF Kaz Matsui has started to lightly throw and walk on a treadmill. Matsui was placed on the 15-day DL on April 15 with back spasms. Matsui won't make the trip back to New York to face his former Mets team this week. ... SS Troy Tulowitzki was held out for a second straight game as he continues to struggle at the plate. He's hitting .193 with four RBIs. ``It's something I've never dealt with, but I'm confident I'll get back to where I was and still be a good player,'' he said. ... RHP Byung-Hyun Kim allowed one unearned run in 3 2-3 innings in a rehab start for Triple-A Colorado Springs on Sunday. He's on the 15-day DL with a bruised right thumb.
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Diamondbacks-Giants
rt, clearing roster room for him by optioning RHP Mike Schultz to Tucson. Petit pitched well, but became the 438th different pitcher to surrender a home run to Barry Bonds. ... 1B Conor Jackson left after the third with tightness in his left hamstring and was listed as day to day. Tony Clark replaced him. ... Arizona's season-long skid reached four games with the club's sixth defeat in seven games. The Diamondbacks went 1-for-20 during the series with runners in scoring position.
ve before the game, two days before the shortstop turns 40. He received a warm standing ovation during the pregame ceremony, tipping his cap to the crowd. His Venezuelan countryman, backup C Eliezer Alfonzo, took part along with infield and bench coach Ron Wotus. ... Rich Aurilia had his career-high tying 14-game hitting streak snapped with an 0-for-3 day.
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Pirates-Dodgers
PITTSBURGH: After the game, the Pirates optioned LHP Juan Perez to Triple-A Indianapolis and activated LHP John Grabow (elbow irritation) from the disabled list. Grabow made his fourth rehab appearance at Indianapolis on Saturday, working one scoreless inning. ... The Pirates' 11 hits were their second-highest total of the season behind the 13 they had April 8 at Cincinnati. ... OF Xavier Nady got the day off after leaving Saturday night's game in the sixth because of a strained left hamstring. He's day to day. ``We might have dodged a bullet,'' manager Jim Tracy said. ``He was a little bit sore today, but he got treatment and will get more on the off day Monday.'' ... C Ronny Paulino also got the day off.
LOS ANGELES: 1B Nomar Garciaparra was supposed to get a day off after playing in the first 18 games of the season, but he pinch hit in the eighth. ... RHP Jason Schmidt, on the 15-day DL with an inflamed right shoulder, became a father for the third time Sunday. His wife, Bethany, gave birth to the couple's second son, 8-pound, 14-ounce Madden, in Phoenix. Schmidt flew there Saturday night. ... Clubhouse manager Mitch Poole had some fun at the expense of RHP Brad Penny, who was on the mound Saturday night when manager Grady Little came out to talk and plate umpire Joe West followed. Believing West was squeezing the strike zone, Little had some words for the umpire and part-time country singer, who ejected Little as Penny looked on silently. Penny arrived at his locker Sunday to see a photo copy of West's album cover ``Cowboy Blue'' taped up with the inscription, ``Brad, Sorry I missed one. Joe.'' Poole continued the joke by playing two of West's songs on the clubhouse sound system. Penny, a country music fan, liked the joke.
 

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