Special to ESPN.com
JAMES IS MIAMI'S ACROSS-THE-BOARD LEADER IN CLINCHER
From Elias: LeBron James led the Heat in points (28), rebounds (11), and assists (6) as Miami clinched the Eastern Conference Finals with an 83-80 win at Chicago. It was the 19th playoff game in which James was his team's outright leader in each of those categories, all since 2006. No other player has more than three such playoff games during that time, and all other NBA players have combined for only three more than James has recorded individually.
JAMES FINISHES STRONG AFTER 0-FOR-9 STREAK
From Elias: LeBron James shot 3-for-3 from the field, including a pair of three-pointers, over the final 2:06 of Miami's win after missing his previous nine field-goal attempts. That matched James' longest streak of misses from the field in any of his 85 previous playoff games. He missed nine straight shots only twice before: in each of the first two games of the Cavaliers' conference semifinal series against the Celtics in 2008.
MVP ROSE WILTS AS BULLS ARE ELIMINATED
From Elias: Derrick Rose made only nine of 29 field-goal attempts in the Bulls' loss. It was the first time that an MVP missed 20 or more shots from the field in the game in which his team was eliminated since Bob McAdoo went 16-for-36 as the Buffalo Braves were closed out by the Washington Bullets in 1975. The only MVPs to do so prior to McAdoo were Kareem Abdul-Jabbar with the Bucks in 1972 (16-for-37) and Wilt Chamberlain as a rookie with the Philadelphia Warriors in 1960 (22-for-42).
ZAMBRANO STARS ON THE MOUND AND AT THE PLATE
From Elias: Carlos Zambrano went 3-for-3 and allowed two runs over six innings to earn the win in the Cubs' 9-3 victory over the Mets. It was the eighth game in which Zambrano recorded three or more hits and was the winning pitcher, the highest total since Bob Gibson retired in 1975 with eight such victories.
Now we know our readers, and you're a tough crowd, difficult to impress. Maybe the Bob Gibson connection doesn't do it for you. So how about this: Zambrano has the most such wins in modern Cubs history (that is, since 1900), with two more than Grover Alexander or Mordecai Brown.
Still not impressed? Then this one's for you: Zambrano has three more such wins than Babe Ruth, who posted a 94-46 record, primarily for the Red Sox in the teens, but had three or more hits in only five of them.
LEE BLOWS BIG LEAD, ATONES AT THE PLATE
From Elias: Cliff Lee's performance on Thursday wasn't Ruthian, and it certainly wasn't Zambranon. But after squandering an early four-run lead, Lee delivered a two-run, tie-breaking double in the sixth inning that stood up as the game-winner in the Phillies' 10-4 win victory over the Reds. Over the last eight seasons, only one other pitcher provided his own game-winner with an extra-base hit that late in a game. Yovani Gallardo hit a seventh-inning game-winning home run - in a 1-0 Brewers victory no less - against the Pirates in 2009.
RED SOX MAUL TIGERS AFTER CLOBBERING CLEVELAND
From Elias: Only the Detroit weather could stop the Red Sox, who routed the Tigers, 14-1, in a rain-shortened eight-inning game one day after Boston laid a 14-2 whoopin' on the Indians at Cleveland. The Motown rain insured that the Sox would win consecutive games, both on the road, by 12 or more runs for the first time in the team's 111-year history.
In fact, over the last 75 seasons only one other team posted back-to-back 12-run wins and did it on the road: the Mets in August 2005 (14-1 and 18-4 at Arizona).
BOSTON SPOILS SCHERZER'S STELLAR HOME RECORD
From Elias: Boston scored its first seven runs off Max Scherzer, who lasted just two innings. Coming into the game, Scherzer had a 3-0 record with a 0.77 ERA in five starts at Comerica Park this season. Only one other pitcher in team history posted an ERA that low in his first five home starts of a season: Al Benton, 0.63 in 1945.
ACEVES IMPROVES TO 16-1, MAKING HISTORY IN THE PROCESS
From Elias: On a week when the Red Sox made headlines with their offense, let's not overlook the remarkable record of Alfredo Aceves, who allowed one run over six innings in Thursday's win at Detroit. That victory improved Aceves' career record to 16-1, and he joined Whitey Ford and Howie Krist as the only pitchers in major-league history to win 16 of their first 17 decisions. A gentle reminder that "MLB history" means since 1876.
SANCHEZ STYMIES GIANTS AGAIN
From Elias: Anibal Sanchez pitched a five-hitter in the Marlins' 1-0 win at San Francisco. It was Sanchez's first start against the Giants since he threw a one-hit shutout at AT&T Park last July. The last visiting pitcher to throw shutouts on consecutive visits to one stadium was John Lackey at Safeco Field in 2007.
Sanchez is the first pitcher to do so at AT&T Park under any of its various names. The last to do it on consecutive visits to San Francisco was Kevin Brown, who blanked the Giants in each of his first three appearances at Candlestick Park (known at the time as 3Com Park) - two as a member of the Marlins, the third with the Padres.
REIMOLD SHINES AT CAMDEN YARDS
From Elias: Nolan Reimold went 4-for-4 with a pair of home runs in the Orioles' 6-5, 12-inning win over the Royals. Reimold was only the fourth O's player to include two home runs in a 4-for-4 or better game at Camden Yards. The others were Rafael Palmeiro (1995), Roberto Alomar (1997) and Albert Belle (1999).
LaROCHE'S RARE RIBBIES KEY A'S WIN
From Elias: Andy LaRoche drove in three runs on his first two at-bats in the A's 4-3 win at Anaheim. That was one more RBI than LaRoche produced in his previous 86 ABs combined, dating back to last September.