Getty Images

And That Happened: Wednesday’s Scores and Highlights

23 Comments

Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Astros 17, Twins 6: Houston hit six homers — two from George Springer, one of which went a mile — to complete a sweep in which they outscored the Twins 40-16 in three games. Overall the Astros have won nine in a row, scoring 62 runs in those games. This sort of thing tends not to last but boy howdy is Houston scary right now.

Brewers 7, Mets 1Junior Guerra shut out the Mets for six innings while Eric Thames hit his first homer in three weeks and Jacob deGrom failed to get into the fifth inning after giving up seven runs. Not everyone’s spirit was broken, however:

One is not defeated as long as one is still firing off freedom rockets. The Mets apologized for that, but dang it, they shouldn’t have had to. Mr. Met is the only guy on that club still fighting.

Athletics 3, Indians 1: Battle of the Shortstops! The A’s got all three of their runs via two homers from Chad Pinder. The Indians got their one run via a homer from Francisco Lindor. This game, which was on in a bar I went to, started at 6pm and lasted a quick two hours and thirty minutes. Having a ballgame start and end while you’re sitting in a bar usually makes you feel like kind of a lush, but in this case it was OK.

Marlins 10, Phillies 2: Justin Bour hit two homers, giving him 15 on the season. and giving the Marlins their fourth straight win. The other day I said that the Padres were arguably the worst team in baseball. The Phillies are making a very loud argument to the contrary.

Padres 2, Cubs 1: The Padres release of their claim on the title of worst in baseball is not just due to the Phillies Phutility, of course. Their beating the Cubs for the third straight time helps that quite a bit. Here Luis Perdomo and two relievers combined to hold the Cubs to three hits. In other news, the Cubs are 25-27 with a 0 run differential. The Chicago White Sox: 24-28 with a +19 run differential.

Orioles 10, Yankees 4: Adam Jones homered, doubled, singled and drove in five runs while the O’s lit up Masahiro Tanaka for seven runs on nine hits in five and two-thirds. Tanaka’s ERA is sitting at a hefty 6.34 on the year. That sucks. If I had told Yankees fans before the season that he’d pitch like that and yet the Yankees would still be in first place playing .600 ball come June, y’all would think I’m crazy.

Diamondbacks 6, Pirates 5: The Dbacks had leads in the ninth inning and the 11th inning and lost them both times, but Chris Owings singled home the go-ahead run in the 14th inning for the win. The whole affair took six hours: four and a half hours of game time and an hour and a half rain delay.

Blue Jays 5, Reds 4: The sweep. Devon Travis hit a tiebreaking two-run home run in the seventh inning as the Jays win for the eighth time in nine games. They were 18-10 overall in May. They’re still in last place in the East, but only 5.5 games out and now they get a chance to play the first place Yankees while they’re hot.

Rays 7, Rangers 5: The Rays were down to their last out in the ninth inning when Keven Kiermaier pounced on a Matt Bush pitch to tie it up and force extras. Logan Morrison and Derek Norris homered in a three-run 10th inning to give the Rays the win. Tampa Bay leads all of baseball with 83 homers, though the Astros are only one behind despite having played two fewer games.

Red Sox 4, White Sox 1: Sox win! Drew Pomeranz struck out eight over seven one-run innings. Pablo Sandoval went 3-for-4, including a tiebreaking single in Boston’s four-run sixth inning, in his first game since he was activated from the disabled list. It’s worth noting that Mike Pelfrey struck out five while pitching five scoreless innings of two-hit ball. He has a 1.13 ERA over his last three games. Mike Pelfrey. Who friggin’ knew?

Cardinals 2, Dodgers 1: Carlos Martinez was sharp, allowing one run on four hits and striking out nine over eight innings. He was nearly matched by Hyun-Jin Ryu, who allowed one run over six, but Dexter Fowler‘s eighth inning homer off of Ross Stripling put the Cards ahead for good.

Tigers 6, Royals 5: The Royals scored three in the first inning but the Tigers came back with six runs over the second, third and fourth and never relinquished the lead after that. Victor Martinez and Alex Avila went deep for Detroit.

Angels 2, Braves 1: Eric Young Jr. hit his first major league homer since 2014, breaking a 1-1 tie in the eighth. Matt Kemp hit his 250th career homer in a losing cause.

Mariners 5, Rockies 0: James Paxton and three relievers combined on a four-hit shutout. It was Paxton’s first start since May 2. He didn’t look like he missed a beat. He has not allowed an earned run in five of his seven starts and has a 1.26 ERA.

Nationals 3, Giants 1: Max Scherzer tossed a complete game, striking out 11, allowing only one run on five hits and needing only 100 pitches to get ‘er done.

It’s the tenth anniversary of the biggest rout in baseball history

Associated Press
Leave a comment

Ten years ago today the Rangers and the Orioles squared off at Camden Yards. The Orioles built a 3-0 lead after three innings and then all hell broke loose.

The Rangers scored thirty (30!) unanswered runs via a five-spot in the fourth, a nine-spot in the sixth, a ten-spot in the eighth and a six-spot in the ninth. That was . . . a lot of spots.

Two Rangers players — Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Ramon Vazquez — hit two homers and drove in seven runs a piece. The best part: they were the eighth and ninth hitters in the lineup. There was plenty of offense to go around, however as David Murphy went 5-for-7 and scored five times. Travis Metcalf hit a pinch-hit grand slam. Marlon Byrd drove in four. It was a bloodbath, with Texas rattling out 29 hits and walking eight times.

On the Orioles side of things, Daniel Cabrera took the loss, giving up six runs on nine hits in five innings. That’s not a terribly unusual line for a bad day at the office for a pitcher — someone will probably get beat up like that in the next week or so — but the Orioles’ relievers really added to the party. Brian Burres was the first victim, allowing eight runs on eight hits in only two-thirds of an inning. Rob Bell gave up seven in an inning and a third. Paul Shuey wore the rest of it, allowing nine runs on seven hits over the final two.

The best part of the insanely busy box score, however, was not from any of the Orioles pitchers or any of the Rangers hitters. Nope, it was from a Rangers relief pitcher named Wes Littleton. You probably don’t remember him, as he only pitched in 80 games and never appeared in the big leagues after 2008. But on this day — the day of the biggest blowout in baseball history — Wes Littleton notched a save. From Baseball-Reference.com:

Three innings and 43 pitches is a lot of work for a reliever and, per the rules, it’s a save, regardless of the margin when he entered the game. Still, this was not exactly a game that was ever in jeopardy.

When it went down, way back on August 22, 2007, it inspired me to write a post at my old, defunct independent baseball blog, Shysterball, arguing about how to change the save rule. Read it if you want, but know that (1) no one has ever paid attention to such proposals in baseball, even if such proposals are frequently offered; and (2) the hypothetical examples I use to illustrate the point involve an effective Joba Chamberlain and Joe Torre’s said use of him, which tells you just how long ago this really was.

Oh, one final bit: this massacre — the kind of game that the Orioles likely wanted to leave, go back home and go to sleep afterward — was only the first game of a doubleheader. Yep, they had to strap it on and play again, with the game starting at 9PM Eastern time. Baltimore lost that one too, 9-7, concluding what must have been one of the longest days any of the players involved had ever had at the office, both figuratively and literally.

Hall of Fame baseball announcer Rafael ‘Felo’ Ramirez dies

Associated Press
2 Comments

MIAMI (AP) Rafael “Felo” Ramirez, a Hall of Fame baseball radio broadcaster who was the signature voice for millions of Spanish-speaking sports fans over three decades, has died. He was 94.

The Miami Marlins announced Ramirez’ death Tuesday.

Ramirez, who died Monday night, began his broadcasting career in Cuba in 1945 before calling 31 All-Star games and World Series in Spanish. He was the Marlins Spanish-language announcer since their inaugural season in 1993 and was inducted into baseball’s Hall of Fame in 2001.

He was known for an expressive, yet low-key style and his signature strike call of “Essstrike.”

Several Spanish-language broadcasters, including Amury Pi-Gonzanez of the Seattle Mariners and San Francisco Giants, have admitted to emulating his style.