Devil Rays-Tigers
TAMPA BAY: OF Carl Crawford extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a fifth-inning homer Thursday at Detroit and stole his AL-leading 37th base in the first. He also went 3-for-4 to maintain his hold on the majors' best daytime batting average (.417). ... LHP Scott Kazmir had seven strikeouts Thursday and is 14 away from breaking his club record (174) set in 2005. ... Thursday's 8-1 win at Detroit gave the Devil Rays their first season-series win over a defending AL champion in club history. ... OF B.J. Upton is hitting .340 with seven homers and 23 RBIs since returning from the disabled list (quadriceps strain) July 13.
DETROIT: 3B Brandon Inge left the team Thursday to return to his South Carolina home, where his wife was due to give birth to the couple's second child. ... OF Marcus Thames, recalled from a rehab assignment at Triple-A Toledo early Thursday, went 2-for-4 against Tampa Bay in his first game since July 19. ... Thursday's paid attendance (38,789) pushed the Tigers past the 2-million mark for a record third straight season and the 10th time in club history.
MINNESOTA: Although he's held the Royals to three earned runs in 14 1-3 innings, Matt Garza is 0-2 lifetime in two starts against them. ... Michael Cuddyer's four strikeouts tied a career high. He also fanned four times against Baltimore on June 11, 2006. ... INF Brian Buscher had an MRI in Minneapolis which showed a localized abcess in his right leg, apparently caused when he fouled off a ball several days ago. Replacing him on the 25-man roster Thursday was INF Tommy Watkins, who batted .272 with eight home runs and 49 games for Triple-A Rochester this year.
KANSAS CITY: 1B Ryan Shealy has returned from his rehab assignment at Triple-A Omaha and will be examined on Friday by team physician Dr. Steve Joyce. ... Thursday's 1-0 victory was Kansas City's fourth shutout this season and the third in the last 13 games. They've thrown four shutouts at home and catcher Jason LaRue, who rotates with John Buck, has caught every one of them. ... Joey Gathright was 0-for-2 and lost his seven-game hitting streak while Mark Teahen's single extended his to five in a row. ... Joakim Soria has held the Twins to two hits over six innings in five appearances against them.
SEATTLE: The Mariners acquired LHP John Parrish from Baltimore on Thursday for minor league OF Sebastian Boucher and a player to be named or cash. Parrish, a situational reliever, was 2-2 with a 5.40 ERA in 45 games. ... 1B Ben Broussard started at 1B Thursday, his first appearance since leaving the team Tuesday after his wife gave birth to a girl. ... Raul Ibanez started at DH for only the fifth time this season.
BALTIMORE: The Orioles sent utility infielder Chris Gomez to Cleveland and traded LHP John Parrish, moves that president of baseball operations said make the team younger. Gomez was claimed by waivers, and Parrish was obtained for minor league OF Sebastien Boucher and a player to named or cash. ... Baltimore recalled pitcher Jim Hoey from Triple-A Norfolk and selected the contract of outfielder Tike Redman from the same club. ... Manager Dave Trembley said Jay Gibbons' sore shoulder prevents him from playing the outfield. Gibbons hasn't started in the OF since July 29.
Indians-White Sox
al Aug. 7. He went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts for Triple-A Buffalo Wednesday night and will not report to the Phillies big league team. ... The Indians outrighted infielder Mike Rouse to Triple-A Buffalo, released right-hander Fernando Cabrera, who'd been designated for assignment earlier, and assigned outfielder Shin-Soo Choo to the Gulf Coast League roster in Winter Haven, Fla.
CHICAGO: Closer Bobby Jenks pitched a perfect inning Wednesday and has now retired 35 consecutive batters, three off the AL record held by David Wells when he was with the Yankees in 1998. The major league record is 41 set by San Francisco's Jim Barr in 1972. ... Thanks to his two innings of relief - his first stint out of the bullpen in a a regular season game since 2003 - Jose Contreras won't get a start Sunday. John Danks, who was going to miss a turn to get some rest, will now go on that day against the Mariners. Contreras will get another shot to start in Seattle next week. He'd been bumped out of the rotation because of a poor run that saw the ace of the 2005 World Series winner lose seven straight starts. His victory Wednesday night was his first since June 18. ``I think Jose should be a starter,'' manager Ozzie Guillen said, adding that Contreras was OK with having his return to a starter's role delayed.
ATLANTA: Consecutive homers in the fifth inning by Chipper Jones and Mark Teixeira marked the fourth time the Braves have hit back-to-back homers this season. The last time was July 13 when Andruw Jones and Brian McCann connected against Pittsburgh. ... Teixeira's home run gave him RBIs in six of the eight games he's played for Atlanta. ... Kelly Johnson had a triple and a single and has hit safely in nine of his last 10 games.
NEW YORK: David Wright reached 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases for the second straight season. It's the 16th time a player has had a 20-20 season for the Mets. Batting coach Howard Johnson and Darryl Strawberry each did it five times. ... Shawn Green went 0-for-3 and had his nine-game hitting streak snapped. ... The attendance of 52,425 was the 21st crowd over 50,000 at Shea Stadium this year, extending the franchise record.
it game of the season.
CINCINNATI: OF Jason Ellison said he was glad to be back in the National League after being claimed off waivers from Seattle on Wednesday. ``It was pretty limited in Seattle,'' said Ellison, traded by San Francisco to the Mariners on April 1. ``It was a situation in Seattle where there just were guys playing ahead of me.'' ... RHP Todd Coffey was optioned to Triple-A Louisville to make room for Ellison. Coffey had a 10.61 ERA in 10 appearances since the All-Star break. ``He needs to go down there and build up his confidence and improve his command,'' manager Pete Mackanin said. ... Jeff Keppinger made his first career start in left field, giving Adam Dunn a rest.
WASHINGTON: RHP Shawn Hill, on the DL since May because of left shoulder and right elbow problems, was scheduled to make a rehab start at Triple-A Columbus on Thursday night and could be ready to join the Nationals' rotation next week. ... 1B Dmitri Young had a scheduled day off but was unavailable to pinch hit because of tightness in his hamstring. He was expected to be able to play Friday in Arizona.
SAN FRANCISCO: OF Dave Roberts left in the first inning with a bruised right knee after sliding into the shin guard of catcher Jesus Flores. Roberts was scheduled to undergo an MRI later Thursday, and manager Bruce Bochy said he would have to wait for the results before deciding if the team needed to make a move. ... After the game, the Giants traded Mark Sweeney to the Dodgers for a player to be named in the first deal between the rivals since 1985. ... Bochy said it won't be odd going up against RHP Matt Morris on Friday for the first time since the Giants traded him to Pittsburgh on July 31. ``It happens so much. To be honest, I haven't even thought about it,'' Bochy said. ``It's just part of baseball.''
FLORIDA: LF Josh Willingham returned to the lineup for the first time since Saturday after his second episode with kidney stones. ``He seems to think he's OK,'' manager Fredi Gonzalez said. ``If he calls time and runs out of the batter's box, we'll know something's wrong.'' ... CF Alejandro De Aza batted second in only his second game since missing four months with an ankle injury. ``It gives us good speed at the top, and makes us a little more dangerous in the middle,'' Gonzalez said.
espite several key injuries, Manuel said: ``I don't want to talk about it. We have 49 games to go. It's not about me. It's about us winning. That's how I look at it.''
SAN DIEGO: LHP Wilfredo Ledezma will make his first start since Sept. 29, 2006, on Friday, taking David Wells' spot in the rotation. Wells, designated for assignment Thursday, had been scheduled to pitch on Saturday. That spot will be filled by RHP Justin Germano, bumped back a day to allow a minor thumb injury more time to heal. ... OF Milton Bradley (right hamstring) missed his sixth straight start. Bradley walked as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning of a 2-1 loss to St. Louis on Wednesday. ... RF Brian Giles, still bothered by a tender right ankle sprained on Aug. 1, was not in the lineup.
ST. LOUIS: Manager Tony La Russa said former pitcher Rick Ankiel, recalled on Thursday, got a warm reception when he entered the clubhouse as a major league outfielder. ``He paid a lot of dues, so he's got a nice, tough exterior that's going to carry him a long ways,'' La Russa said. ... The Cardinals had outscored opponents 82-33 in their 12 wins since the All-Star break and 119-31 in their 14 losses. ... Albert Pujols needed one homer for No. 275.
CHICAGO: Manager Lou Piniella was waiting for the results of tests done on the right wrist of 3B Aramis Ramirez. ``I don't know anything except that it isn't serious,'' Pinella said about Ramirez, who flew back to Chicago to see a hand specialist. ``We could have him back for the weekend.'' ... OF Matt Murton made his 21st start of the season. ``Matt hit the ball well in Houston,'' Pinella said. Murton was 4-for-9 in that series. ... Pinella expressed disappointment in his team's offense that produced only five runs in the three games in Houston. ``That's not going to get it done,'' Pinella said. ``We have to have five or six runs a game.''
COLORADO: One day after leaving a game with back spasms, 1B Todd Helton was out of the starting lineup. ``Todd needed a day off,'' manager Clint Hurdle said. ... 1B Jeff Baker, a .218 hitter with only 119 at-bats, got the start for Helton. ``In all fairness to Jeff, we haven't gotten him enough at-bats,'' Hurdle said. ... Hurdle wouldn't reveal his choice to replace injured RHP Jason Hirsh as Sunday's starter. Hirsh was placed on the 15-day DL with a broken right leg. ... Colorado will play the July 27 game rained out against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sept. 18 as part of a split doubleheader.
PITTSBURGH: The Pirates entered with at least one extra-base hit in 66 consecutive games, their longest such streak since a 71-game run in 2005. ... Pittsburgh had homered in eight of nine games. ... 1B Adam LaRoche had his seventh career four-hit game Wednesday night. His previous four-hit game was nearly a year ago, on Aug. 30, 2006, with Atlanta. ... 3B Cesar Izturis batted leadoff for the third time in seven games.
ARIZONA: The Diamondbacks were a National League-best 17-8 since the All-Star break and had won six of their past seven series. ... CF Chris Young entered hitting .318 (41-for-129) with eight runs, 10 walks, seven doubles, a triple and eight homers when leading off an inning. ... 1B Tony Clark got a rare start in place of Conor Jackson against right-hander Ian Snell. ... C Chris Snyder had driven in a run in five straight games, including his career-high 10th home run Wednesday.

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