Red Sox-Blue Jays
BOSTON: OF Manny Ramirez hit his first homer of the season on Thursday, the 471st of his career. That's the eighth-highest total among active players. ... Jonathan Papelbon's save Thursday was his fourth of the year and his seventh career save against Toronto, the most he's recorded against any major league team. RHP Mike Timlin got the win, his seventh against the team that drafted him.
TORONTO: Frank Thomas hit his 489th homer, his second of the season and his first since a grand slam off Tampa Bay's Casey Fossum on April 7. ... Alex Rios snapped an 0-for-15 slide with a double in the third and hit a solo homer in the sixth. He popped out to end the game - Boston manager Terry Francona said he almost considered walking Rios. ``We're still trying to figure him out,'' Francona said. ``He's just turned into a superstar. Some of those pitches that Pap threw to him he shouldn't be able to get to and he was getting to everything.''
CLEVELAND: INF Josh Barfield got the day off and OF Trot Nixon was out of the lineup because he wasn't feeling well. INF Andy Marte entered the game in the ninth. Indians manager Eric Wedge said Nixon felt so bad Wednesday that he wasn't able to come to the ballpark. Nixon was available Thursday but didn't play. Marte also sat out of the Indians' 9-2 loss to the Yankees on Wednesday. ``(I) wanted to give him just two clean days, mentally, physically,'' Wedge said, ``get him back on the field in Tampa.'' Marte is hitting .194 with one home run and seven RBIs in 10 games this season. ... Barfield also has struggled so far, batting .154 with one home run and five RBIs in 10 games. Barfield was acquired from the San Diego Padres in the offseason. ``We knew he was going to have some trials early on,'' Wedge said. ``But he's going to be fine. He's been working hard day to day and his swing is going to come. His feel for the American League and his feel for this division is going to come.'' ... The Indians stranded 10 runners in Thursday's loss and have left 48 on in their past six games.
NEW YORK: Yankees bench coach Don Mattingly turns 46 on Friday. ... RHP Carl Pavano has a mild strain in his right elbow and is expected to begin throwing off flat ground within the week. Pavano had an MRI exam Thursday that revealed the strain. ``He's getting treatment,'' general manager Brian Cashman said. ``He's feeling better every day.'' Another injured Yankees pitcher, right-hander Humberto Sanchez, had elbow ligament-replacement surgery Wednesday and will miss the rest of the season. ... SS Derek Jeter's ninth-inning single extended his hitting streak to 10 games. C Jorge Posada also singled in the ninth to stretch his streak to nine.
Rangers-White Sox
CHICAGO: One night after pitching a no-hitter, LHP Mark Buehrle was flooded with interview requests, phone calls and text messages. ``I got 54 text messages and 12 voice mails from family members, ex-teammates, e-mails from college coaches, high school coaches, pretty much everybody that has my number gave me a call,'' said Buehrle, who also got an emotional phone call from his father, John. ``My dad called crying. He is up on my property (St. Charles, Mo.) and watches every game up there and he called ... He was crying the whole time, he was so excited,'' said Buehrle.
PITTSBURGH: It was a terrible 24th birthday Thursday for LHP Zach Duke (1-2). He gave up seven runs in four innings in a 7-5 loss to Milwaukee. ``It was location,'' he said of his pitching problems. He said all three hits J.J. Hardy got off him, including a home run, were out of the strike zone. ... Xavier Nady was 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs, and Jose Bautista had two hits to extend his hitting streak to seven games.
MILWAUKEE: Thursday's 7-5 victory over Pittsburgh was Ned Yost's 300th as Brewers manager. Other Brewer managers with 300 are George Bamberger (377), Tom Trebelhorn (422) and Phil Garner (563). Yost said when pitching coach Mike Maddux congratulated him, he told Maddux: ``It's 300 wins for you, too. He goes, 'Yeah, I guess it is.''' ... J.J. Hardy snapped an 0-for-11 streak with a first inning two-run home run that put the Brewers ahead for good in their 7-5 victory. He also had a double and single.
PHILADELPHIA: 1B Ryan Howard sat out Thursday with a left leg injury that's expected to sideline him Friday, too. ... C Carlos Ruiz had two of Philadelphia's five doubles Thursday. ... Phillies hitters were walked five times, raising the team's total to a majors-leading 85 free passes. ... GM Pat Gillick said X-rays done Wednesday showed nothing was torn and that Howard wouldn't need to have an MRI exam. Gillick also said he didn't think Howard would have to go on the disabled list. ``Hopefully he'll be back in a couple days,'' manager Charlie Manuel said. Greg Dobbs started at 1B on Thursday. ... RHP Jon Lieber is slated to make his first start of the season Friday at Cincinnati. ``He should be able to give us about 85-90 pitches,'' Manuel said.
rding to the Elias Sports Bureau. ... 2B Ronnie Belliard's 12 assists in Wednesday night's 13-inning game were the most for a 2B since San Diego's Mark Loretta had 13 in 10 innings on May 7, 2003. ... Washington has lost three series and split three others this season. ... Nationals pitchers have issued a majors-high 76 walks.
LOS ANGELES: OF Matt Kemp (right shoulder) was given the day off, but is to resume his rehab assignment and play a full game for Triple A Las Vegas. ... Jeff Kent moved ahead of Babe Ruth for 39th place on the doubles list with No. 507. Kent ranks fourth among active players. ... Juan Pierre has hit safely in 12 straight games against his former team. ... SS Rafael Furcal was 3-for-18 on the trip. ...
COLORADO: RHP Rodrigo Lopez was placed on the 15-day DL, a day after being forced out of the game with tightness in his right elbow. The Rockies purchased the contract of RHP Matt Herges from Triple-A Colorado Springs. ... 1B Todd Helton got his second day off of the season. ... Colorado is 1-4 when facing a left-handed starter. ... OF Brad Hawpe is 2-for-10 against left-handed pitchers. He hit .232 against lefties last year. ... C Chris Iannetta has at least one strikeout in each of his nine games this season.
ARIZONA: The Diamondbacks is to face former teammate Russ Ortiz on Friday night in the opener of a three-game series at San Francisco. The Diamondbacks released Ortiz in June, deciding they would rather eat the remaining $22 million of his contract than keep him on their roster. Ortiz is believed to be the most expensive player to be cut loose in baseball history.
SAN DIEGO: Leadoff hitter Marcus Giles hit an RBI single in the second inning of Thursday's 11-6 win over the Diamondbacks to extend his hitting streak to nine games, longest by a San Diego player this year. ... Giles' older brother, Brian, walked in the first inning to tie Gene Richards for sixth on the Padres' list with 338. Tony Gwynn holds the club record with 790.
ou pay attention to our club, you know what our concerns are,'' manager Tony La Russa said. ``It's not necessary to spell it out. We got beat, we're not doing enough and we're going to fix it.'' ... The Cardinals lost only their second day game in six afternoon contests this season and fell to 41-21 in such games since the start of '06.
idn't get any highlights until Thursday. ``We think a lot of him,'' manager Bruce Bochy said. ``He's going to end up being a starter. Efforts like that are contagious. It fires up players to see a young kid out there pitching his heart out. They feed off that.'' ... The Giants' Triple-A affiliate in Fresno will hold ``Second Chance Night'' on Saturday. Those fans who bring in a traffic violation will be able to purchase two tickets for the price of one. The team is advertising the promotion as a way to ``pay tribute to some memorable mistakes and allow fans the opportunity to rectify minor lapses in judgment.''
uld be rocking.'' ... Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez on how to deal with Mets SS Jose Reyes: ``I hope he misses the bus and Willie benches him.''
FLORIDA: RHP Sergio Mitre (torn finger callous) threw a bullpen session Thursday, then said his availability for his next scheduled start Sunday will be a game-time decision. Mitre threw with the callous covered and said he may not know until Sunday whether he can pitch. Manager Fredi Gonzalez said the Marlins will have another pitcher ready if needed. ... LHP Scott Olsen, scheduled to start Friday against Washington, has walked 12 in 13 innings.
HOUSTON: RHP Matt Albers will make his first appearance of the season and the third start of his career on Friday in Milwaukee. Albers was called up from Triple-A on Monday when RHP Jason Jennings went on the DL with a sore elbow. ... Albers went 1-1 with a 6.23 ERA in three starts for Round Rock. ... Former Astros pitcher Vern Ruhle was honored before the game. Ruhle was the Reds' pitching coach when he died of complications from cancer treatment in January. A replica Reds jersey was unveiled above the Reds' bullpen.
CINCINNATI: RF Ken Griffey Jr. was out of the lineup because he was sick. Griffey slept on a couch in the clubhouse before the game, his head covered by a Reds blanket. ``He doesn't feel very good,'' manager Jerry Narron said. ``The last couple of days he hasn't felt very good.'' ... Griffey broke his left hand while wrestling with his children last December and missed most of spring training. The hand was still sore when the season began, and he has yet to hit a home run. Overall, Griffey was batting .260 with six RBIs and 10 walks. ``He's been getting on base,'' Narron said. ``He's been very selective in his at-bats. The only thing he really has not done is hit the ball out of the park.''
you need that. You need it.''
ATLANTA: LHP Mike Gonzalez received encouraging news from an MRI exam taken Thursday. Test results were negative, and Gonzalez will rest for a couple of days before he resumes throwing. ... CF Andruw Jones grounded out and struck out to begin the game, dropping him to 0-for-5 in his career against Rich Hill and .173 (9-for-52) overall this season.

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