And That Happened: Tuesday's Scores and Highlights

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Marlins 6, Astros 2: Two teams that, one day, we’ll all sit
around and say “yeah, I totally forgot that Pudge played for those
guys.” Stellar game for Ricky Nolasco (CG, 3 H, 2 ER, 10K). Three more
hits for Hanley.

Mets 9, Braves 4: Derek Lowe’s worst outing of the season (3.2
IP, 11 H, 8 ER) negates the Braves’ early four-run lead. Martin Prado
removed for a severe headache and will now go back to Georgia for
tests. When the Braves break bad, they really break bad.

Rays 5, Orioles 4: Every time I see Gabe Gross’ name I
immediately think of Greg Gross, but before the conscious part of my
brain concludes “different people,” the part of my brain that forms
impressions and snap-judgments thinks “man, that guy has to be 100
years old.” I’m guessing this will only get worse as I get older. Hell,
I picked Ivan DeJesus, Jr. in my Scoresheet League’s supplemental draft
yesterday and I’d by lying if I didn’t think of the late-70s Cubs as I
did it. Anyway, Gross hit a two-run homer, which ain’t too shabby for a
57 year-old guy who has hit only seven dingers over the course of his
17-year career.

Red Sox 10, Blue Jays 9: A couple of ugly starting pitching
performances from Ricky Romero and Josh Beckett, but the Red Sox
weathered the ugly storm a bit better. Kevin Youkilis returned from
suspension. Dustin Pedroia left the team to be with his wife who gave
birth. The little fellow was 5’9″ and 180 pounds. No word on the size
of the baby.

Giants 8, Reds 5: A day after Jonah pimps Lincecum’s MVP case,
Timmy drops a relative stinker (6 IP, 6 H, 5 R). The Giants pull it
out, however, because they’re facing the Reds, who hath been baptized
with a curse, and for whom a spirit of the air hath begirt them with a
snare and for whom in the wind there is a voice which shall forbid them
to rejoice. Or they just suck, I can’t decide which.

Tigers 5, Mariners 3: Porcello vs. Hernandez, the combined age
of whom is 0.93 Moyers. Hernandez pitches better (7 IP. 5 H. 1 ER, 9K),
but the Tigers beat up reliever Mark Lowe for the come from behind win.
Bad day to be a Lowe in baseball.

Pirates 5, Brewers 2: Ross Ohlendorf is putting together a nice second half, and gave up one run over seven innings at PNC last night.

Angels 5, Indians 4: I ripped this observation off of someone on
Facebook, but it’s worth repeating to those of you who, unlike me, have
real live friends: The batting averages of the Angels nine starters
after last night’s game: .308, .310, .310, .313, .303, .307, .300,
.300, 313. For those of you who care, two teams — The 1927
Philadelphia Athletics and 1930 St. Louis Cardinals — each had ten players who hit over .300 during the same season.

Rockies 4, Nationals 3: Carlos Gonzalez homers for the third
straight game. From the game story “Washington’s first game since
signing No. 1 draft pick Stephen Strasburg to a record $15.1 million
contract drew a crowd of only 18,192 — about 5,000 lower than the
team’s average attendance this season.” Well, it’s not like he was
gonna pitch or anything. What, people are supposed to show up at the
ballpark due to their euphoria that Boras got a couple million dollar
commission? It’s still the 2009 Nats we’re talking about here and it
was still a horrible hot and humid Swampland night.



Twins 9, Rangers 6: Joe Mauer went 3-5 with two homers and three
RBI. I know we have more than a month of baseball left to play, but
Teixeira-for-MVP people are going to have to start making their case in
terms of “why Joe Mauer isn’t the MVP” as opposed to making Teixeira’s
case on the power of some vague “run producer” noises. Seriously, tell
me how a plus-defense catcher hitting .380+ with power is not worthy.
My boy falls for the “I got your nose” trick, and even he wouldn’t buy
anyone’s anti-Mauer argument at this point.

Royals 5, White Sox 4: Unless the question is “who can make one
of baseball’s worst offenses look potent?” Freddy Garcia is not the
answer (4.1 IP, 7 H, 5 ER). Bonus: “He worked very slowly, repeatedly
fell behind batters and topped out at 90 mph.” Tasty! If Kenny Williams thinks the Sox were underperforming when they beat the Royals on Monday, I can’t imagine what he thought last night.

Phillies 5, Diamondbacks 1: Pedro started, the rains came, and
Moyer finished with six scoreless innings. Pedro after the game: “You
never know what you’re going to get when you put two old goats out
there.” The life expectancy of a goat is actually only 16 years, max,
so Martinez and Moyer were the combined equivalent of 5.188 goats. I
promise that is the last time I use Moyer-to-English conversions this
morning.

Dodgers 7, Cardinals 3: Chad Billingsley returns after missing a
start and throws six decent innings, and Albert Pujols and Matt
Holliday combine to go 0-for-8.

Padres 6, Cubs 3: A day after hitting a walkoff homer, Kyle
Blanks hits an inside the park homer. Blanks is 6’6″ and 285 pounds. I
am now going to find some video of that bad boy, because I can’t even
picture a guy that big rumbling around the bases.

Yankees 7, Athletics 2: Sabathia wins his 14th and Derek Jeter
goes 3-5. Jeter is 20 for his last 36. Game story: “Girardi spent the
morning watching a joint practice between the Oakland Raiders and San
Francisco 49ers as a guest of Niners coach Mike Singletary. Girardi met
former Raiders coach John Madden and owner Al Davis. “Mr. Davis told me
to tell Mr. Steinbrenner, ‘Hi,” Girardi said.” Huh. You’d think Davis
would simply say hello to Steinbrenner himself at the next Big Conclave
of the Supremely Evil.

The White Sox will retire Mark Buehrle’s number this June

CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 27:  Starting pitcher Mark Buehrle #56 of the Chicago White Sox waves to the crowd after being tasken out of a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at U.S. Cellular Field on September 27, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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Mark Buehrle last pitched in 2015, for the Toronto Blue Jays. He was still pretty effective and toyed with the idea of pitching last season, but he never signed anywhere and is, for all intents and purposes, retired.

Now at least his number will be retired officially. It will be done by the club for which he had the most success and with which he is, obviously, most associated:

Buehrle pitched for the White Sox for 12 years. He was the model of consistency and durability in Chicago, logging over 200 innings a season in every single season but his rookie year, when he was primarily a reliever. He was a solid defender, a multi-time All-Star, tossed a perfect game in 2009 and helped the Chisox to their first World Series title in 88 years in 2005.

He was also one of baseball’s fastest workers, so I’m going to assume that, in his honor, the number retirement ceremony will last, like, a minute 20, after which everyone can get on with their dang day.

Terry Francona isn’t sure how long his health will allow him to manage

BOSTON, MA - AUGUST 19:  Terry Francona #17 of the Cleveland Indians reacts during batting practice before a game with the Boston Red Sox on August 19, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
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Terry Francona just won the American League pennant, the Manager of the Year Award and his Cleveland Indians will likely be among the favorites to win it all in 2017. Between that and his 17-year track record as one of the best managers in the business, he will have a job, somewhere, for as long as he wants one.

He said yesterday, however, that his body will likely limit how long he manages:

“It gets harder and harder physically. It really does. It takes me longer to recharge every year . . . I’ve had a lot of surgeries, a lot of health problems. It just takes a toll on you. I love [the game of baseball]. I really do, but I can’t see myself doing something else. But there is going to come a day when I feel like I’m shortchanging the team or the organization. That’s not fair.

“Even now, during batting practice, I’ll come in and get off my feet a little bit. I think everybody understands. But when there comes a day when it gets in the way, I’m going to have to pull back, and it’s not because I don’t love managing. You have to have a certain amount of energy to do this job right.”

Francona experienced some chest pains and had an elevated heart rate that caused him to leave a game early last season. In 2005 a similar episode caused him to miss three games while managing the Red Sox. He also has a history of embolisms and blood clots, some of which have hospitalized him.

With multiple World Series rings there isn’t much more in baseball that Francona can accomplish, but here’s hoping he sticks around and accomplishes a lot more before he trades in his baseball spikes for golf spikes and calls it a career.