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Monday, 01 October 2007 00:27
MLB Headline News

 SCOREBOARD
Monday, Oct. 1
San Diego at Colorado (7:37 p.m. EDT). The Rockies face the Padres in a one-game tiebreaker for the NL wild-card spot.

STARS
Sunday
-Ryan Howard, Phillies, hit his 47th homer in Philadelphia's 6-1 win over Washington that clinched their first playoff spot since 1993.
-Joey Votto, Reds, drove in a career-high five runs with a three-run homer and a double, helping Cincinnati beat the Cubs 8-4.
-Skip Schumaker, Cardinals, went 5-for-5 and drove in two runs in St. Louis' 6-5 victory over Pittsburgh.
-Kurt Suzuki, Athletics, hit a game-winning single in the ninth inning to lift Oakland over the Los Angeles Angels 3-2.
-Travis Hafner, Indians, drove in two runs to reach 100 RBIs for the fourth straight year and Cleveland defeat Kansas City 4-2.
-Carlos Pena, Devil Rays, hit his 46th homer to power Tampa Bay over Toronto 8-5.

COMPLETE COLLAPSE
After blowing a big September lead in the NL East, the New York Mets missed the playoffs Sunday when Tom Glavine was tagged for seven runs during the first inning of a season-ending 8-1 loss to Florida. No major league team had owned a lead of seven games or more with 17 to play and failed to finish in first place. New York, which had that margin on Sept. 12, matched the largest lead blown in September. The 1938 Pittsburgh Pirates (Sept. 1) and 1934 New York Giants (Sept. 6) also led by seven games in the final month only to tailspin. New York's loss coupled with Philadelphia's 6-1 win over Washington gave the division title to the Phillies.

HOT ROCKS
The Colorado Rockies late-season surge set up one wild finish. The Rockies will face San Diego in a one-game tiebreaker for the NL wild-card spot, forcing the playoff with a 4-3 win Sunday over the NL West champion Arizona Diamondbacks. It was the Rockies' 13th win in 14 games. San Diego and Colorado will play Monday at Coors Field for the final playoff spot in the majors.

FAREWELL FOR BIGGIO
Craig Biggio got one more hit, one more run and a few more standing ovations before calling it a career on Sunday. The retiring Biggio doubled in his first at-bat and scored in the first inning of his final game as Houston beat Atlanta 3-0 before a record crowd at Minute Maid Park. Biggio played his entire 20-season career in Houston, becoming the 27th player to reach 3,000 hits, and will leave as the franchise's all-time leader in games, at-bats, hits, doubles and total bases.

ONE FOR THE ROAD
Alex Rodriguez raised his major league-leading RBI total to 156, going 2-for-2 with a run-scoring single in the Yankees' 10-4 win over Baltimore on Sunday. Rodriguez, heading toward a third AL MVP award, finished with a .314 batting average and 54 home runs, tying Babe Ruth and Mickey Mantle for the fourth-highest season total in franchise history. He was lifted in the fourth inning, along with Derek Jeter and Johnny Damon, in preparation for the playoffs.

SWING KING
Magglio Ordonez won his first AL batting title, getting three more hits Sunday and leading Detroit over the White Sox 13-3. Ordonez, who drove in two to finish with 139 RBIs, raised his average three points to .363 and easily beat out Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki. He is the first Tiger to win the batting crown since Norm Cash batted .361 in 1961.

LEADERS IN LOSSES
Tampa Bay beat Toronto 8-5 Sunday, finishing with a 66-96 record to lead the majors in losses for the second straight year and take last place in the AL East for the ninth time in 10 seasons. The Devil Rays won just three of their last 12 games. ... Kansas City lost 4-2 to Cleveland, going 9-19 in September and finishing last in the AL Central for the fourth straight year. At 69-93, the Royals did avoid 100 losses for the first time since 2003.

FOR THE RECORD
Alfonso Soriano set a Cubs record with his 14th homer in September in an 8-4 loss to Cincinnati on Sunday. Soriano's seventh leadoff homer in September was also the most by any major league player in any month. He finished 3-for-3 with three RBIs.

PITCHER PARTY
St. Louis tied a major league record held by two other clubs by using 10 pitchers in a nine-inning game, a 6-5 win over Pittsburgh on Sunday. The combined 18 pitchers was also a record, breaking the mark of 16 set on multiple occasions. The Cardinals were the second NL team in a month to use 10 pitchers - Colorado also did so Sept. 7 against San Diego. Baltimore used that many against the Yankees on Sept. 12, 2004.

SPEAKING
``With everything that's going on this year, the people that have doubted us and counted us out, now we're here. We're going to celebrate right now and get ready for Wednesday. There's only one more celebration to try and go for now and that's the whole thing.'' - Phillies slugger Ryan Howard, after the Mets' loss to Florida coupled with Philadelphia's victory over Washington gave the Phillies their first NL East title since 1993.

SEASONS
Oct. 1
1903 - The Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Boston Red Sox, 7-3, in the first World Series game. Jimmy Sebring hit the first series home run. Deacon Phillippe was the winning pitcher and Cy Young the loser.
1932 - Babe Ruth, as legend has it, called his home run against Chicago's Charlie Root in the fifth inning of Game 3 of the World Series, won by the New York Yankees 7-5 at Wrigley Field. Ruth and Lou Gehrig each hit two homers for the Yankees.
1946 - For the first time in major league history, a playoff series to determine a league's championship was played between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Brooklyn Dodgers. The Cardinals took the first game 4-2 as Howie Pollet held the Dodgers to two hits, a homer and an RBI single by Howie Schultz.
1950 - The Philadelphia Phillies clinched the NL pennant on Dick Sisler's three-run homer against Don Newcombe in a 4-1 victory over the Brooklyn Dodgers on the season's last day.
1961 - Roger Maris hit his 61st home run against Tracy Stallard of the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. The homer eclipsed Babe Ruth's 34-year-old single-season home run record. The Yankees won, 1-0.
1978 - The Cleveland Indians beat the New York Yankees 9-2 on the last day of the season to force a one-game playoff between the Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox won their eighth straight game with a 5-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.
1988 - Tony Gwynn went 2-for-3 to raise his NL-leading batting average to .313, but hurt his hand in a 6-3 victory over the Houston Astros. Gwynn is the first NL batting champion to win the title with an average below .320. Larry Doyle's .320 average was the lowest.
2000 - Detroit's Shane Halter became the fourth major leaguer to play all nine positions in a game, and capped his adventure by scoring the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Tigers over Minnesota 12-11.
2004 - Ichiro Suzuki set the major league record for hits in a season, breaking George Sisler's 84-year-old mark with a pair of early singles as the Seattle Mariners beat the Texas Rangers 8-3. Sisler set the hits record of 257 in 1920 with the St. Louis Browns over a 154-game schedule. Suzuki broke it in the Mariners' 160th game of the year.
2006 - Joe Mauer finished 2-for-4 to become the first catcher to win an AL batting title as Minnesota beat the Chicago White Sox 5-1. Mauer finished at .347, four points ahead of New York shortstop Derek Jeter.
Today's birthdays: Matt Cain 23; John Thomson 34; Mark McGwire 44.
 

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