Diamond Rundown â€“ Edition Twenty Two
Facts, figures and other tidbits from the twenty second week of the â€™08 major league baseball season.
Notable Quotable I:Â â€œHeâ€™s one of the best pitchers in the league.Â That guy is nasty.â€Â Manny Ramirez of the Dodgers on Philadelphiaâ€™s Brett Myers who pitched seven scoreless innings in Philadelphiaâ€™s 5-0 win on Monday.Â Myers also got the win on Saturday over the Cubs and Myers is 5-1 with a 1.78 ERA in eight starts since returning from his short stint in the Philliesâ€™ Minor League system.
Club 30-30:Â Clevelandâ€™s Grady Sizemore hit his 30th home run on Monday and added a 31st homer in their 4-3 win over the Tigers.Â Sizemore became the 14th American League player and second Indian to hit 30 homers and steal 30 bases in the same season.Â The other Indian to accomplish the feat was Joe Carter in 1987.Â His 30th homer was his seventh leadoff homer of â€˜08 — a club record — and 18th of his career tying him with Kenny Lofton for the clubâ€™s All-Time mark.
Revolving Door:Â The Rangers used Nelson Cruz for the first time this season on Monday.Â The Minor League slugger went 3-for-5 with a three-run homer and also became the 53rd player used by Texas this season, a club record.Â The Rangers beat the Royals 9-4.
According to Elias I:Â The Mets blew a 7-0 lead on Tuesday and the Phillies rallied to beat the Mets 8-7 in 13 innings on a Chris Coste walk-off single.Â According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Mets blew a lead of seven or more runs for the first time since May 13, 2003.
Lucky Sevens:Â Geovany Soto of the Cubs went 3-for-5 with two doubles, a home run and seven RBI in Tuesdayâ€™s 14-9 win over the Pirates.Â Soto became the seventh Major League player to notch seven or more RBI in a game this season and the first Cub since Aramis Ramirez on September 18, 2006.
Career Year:Â Clevelandâ€™s Cliff Lee won his 19th game on Tuesday in their 10-4 win over the Tigers.Â Lee is now 19-2 and set a new career high in wins passing his previous high of 18 wins in 2005.Â Lee is 5-0 with a 1.86 ERA in August.
Notable Quotable II:Â â€œHeâ€™s a beauty.Â Heâ€™s kind of, I think, the Energizer Bunny for this team.Â You know, heâ€™s the one that stirs stuff up.Â Every team has got to have that guy.â€Â Bostonâ€™s Jason Bay on teammate Dustin Pedroia after he hit a grand slam in Bostonâ€™s 11-3 win over the Yankees on Wednesday.Â Pedroia went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and four RBI.
Cycle:Â Washingtonâ€™s Cristian Guzman became the second player since the franchise moved to D.C. to hit for a cycle in the Nationals 11-2 win over the Dodgers on Thursday to complete a sweep of Los Angeles.Â Guzman joined Brad Wilkerson in Washington Nationalsâ€™ history.Â Wilkerson also hit a cycle as an Expo and Guzman became the seventh player in franchise history to hit for a cycle.
According to Elias II:Â Atlantaâ€™s Mike Gonzalez notched his 37th consecutive save in their 4-2 win over the Marlins on Thursday.Â According to the Elias Sports Bureau, his streak is the longest in the Majors.Â The last time Gonzalez blew a save was on June 25, 2004 when he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates against the Cincinnati Reds.
Extra, Extra!:Â Cincinnatiâ€™s Chris Dickerson went 3-for-5 with a double and a home run in their 11-7 win over the Giants on Friday.Â It was the third time since his call-up on August 12 that Dickerson had two extra-base hits in the same game.Â Through Friday, Dickerson was hitting .328 with four home runs and 10 RBI in 15 games.
In Name Only:Â Minnesotaâ€™s Craig Breslow registered his first career save in three perfect innings of relief of Kevin Slowey in their 12-2 win over the Oakland Athletics on Friday.Â The score was 11-2 when Breslow took the mound to start the bottom of the 7th.
Perfect Run:Â Coloradoâ€™s Matt Holliday stole two bases in their 9-4 win over the Padres on Friday.Â This season, Holliday is 9-for-9 in stolen base attempts against San Diego and 17-for-17 in career stolen base attempts against the Padres.
Work Horse:Â Milwaukeeâ€™s Jason Kendall started his 122nd game at catcher this season for the Brewers on Saturday which set a new club record previously held by Darrell Porter.
Notable Quotable III:Â â€œIâ€™m always proud of a walk.Â I love walks.Â Thatâ€™s my motto: Â A walkâ€™s as good as a hit.Â And I showed them today.Â You donâ€™t always have to get a hit.Â Sometimes a walk will beat a team, too.â€ Â Washingtonâ€™s Elijah Dukes who walked with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 10th to force in the winning run and hand the Nationals a 9-8 win over the Braves on Saturday.
Oneâ€¦ Not Won:Â The Atlanta Braves lost their 28th consecutive one-run road decision to the Nationals on Saturday.Â The streak dates back to last year and is a Major League record.
Dazzling Debut I:Â San Diegoâ€™s Josh Geer won his Major League debut on Saturday pitching five innings and giving up two runs on five hits and three walks as the Padres downed the Rockies 9-4.
First Time for Everything:Â Cincinnatiâ€™s Bronson Arroyo picked up his 13th win and his first career stolen base in the Reds 9-3 win over the Giants on Sunday.Â When Arroyo arrived at his locker, the base he stole was propped up in his locker.
A â€œNo-Noâ€:Â The Brewers beat the Pirates 7-0 on Sunday behind a complete game one-hitter by CC Sabathia which raised his National League record to 9-0 and lowered his ERA to 1.43.Â However, the one hit is under dispute because the Milwaukee Brewers disagreed with the official scorer and sent a DVD to the league of the play.
Still Perfect:Â Philadelphiaâ€™s Brad Lidge saved his 33rd game in 33 tries on Sunday as the Phillies beat the Cubs 5-3.Â Lidge has never blown a save in a Philliesâ€™ uniform.
Dazzling Debut II:Â Oaklandâ€™s Aaron Cunningham went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI in his Major League debut on Sunday.Â Cunningham was the 10th player to make his debut with the Athletics this season.
20:Â Atlantaâ€™s Chipper Jones hit his 20th home run on Saturday in their 9-8 loss to the Nationals.Â It was his 14th consecutive season with 20 homers.Â Only Hall of Famer Eddie Mathews started off their careers with 14 consecutive seasons of 20 home runs.
82:Â The Tampa Bay Rays won their 82nd game on Friday when they beat the Orioles 14-3.Â The blow-out win guaranteed the Rays their first winning season in franchise history.
286:Â Houstonâ€™s Lance Berkman finally ended a game with a walk-off homer on Friday.Â Before his 286th career home run gave the Astros a 3-2 win over the Cardinals, Berkman owned the distinction of having the most home runs of any active player without a walk-off home run.
535:Â Jim Thome of the White Sox slammed his 535th career home run on Monday in their 4-3 win over the Orioles.Â The home run vaulted him past Jimmie Foxx for 15th on the All-Time Home Run list.
536:Â On Sunday, Thome added to his career home run total and moved into a tie for 14th place with Hall of Famer Mickey Mantle.Â
1500:Â St. Louisâ€™ Albert Pujols doubled in the third inning of their 8-5 loss to the Astros on Saturday for his 1,500th career hit.Â Pujols went 4-for-4 with a double, a home run, two RBI and two runs scored.
Dustin Pedroia, Boston vs. NY Yankees (8/27)
Aramis Ramirez, Chicago Cubs vs. Philadelphia (8/28)
Edwin Encarnacion, Cincinnati vs. San Francisco (8/29)
Carlos Beltran, NY Mets vs. Florida (8/29)
Ben Zobrist, Tampa Bay vs. Baltimore (8/29)
Single:Â Chris Coste, Philadelphia vs. NY Mets (8/26); Yunel Escobar, Atlanta vs. Florida (8/26); Jason Giambi, NY Yankees vs. Boston (8/28); Luis Rodriguez, San Diego vs. Colorado (8/31)
Double:Â Kurt Suzuki, Oakland vs. Minnesota (8/28); Rocco Baldelli, Tampa Bay vs. Baltimore (8/30)
Home Run:Â Jody Gerut, San Diego vs. Arizona (8/25); Adrian Beltre, Seattle vs. Minnesota (8/25); Lance Berkman, Houston vs. St. Louis (8/29)
Walk:Â Josh Willingham, Florida vs. NY Mets (8/30); Elijah Dukes, Washington vs. Atlanta (8/30)
Error:Â Ryan Sweeney, Oakland vs. Minnesota (8/30)