Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Elias Says ...
By Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.
Special to ESPN Insider
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:
• In the Mets-Cardinals game, Albert Pujols hit his 37th and 38th home runs, Carlos Beltran hit his 36th and Carlos Delgado hit his 30th and 31st. It's the first time in major league history that a game before Sept. 1 featured as many as five home runs that were at least the 30th of the season for the batter.
• Beltran's game-ending home run was the second walkoff homer that Jason Isringhausen has allowed in the last two weeks -- he also gave up one to David Ross on Aug. 9. Prior to that, Izzy had allowed only two game-ending dingers in his career, to David Justice in 2000 and Jose Cruz Jr. in 2001.
• The Cardinals' loss to the Mets on Tuesday night marked the 1,966th loss of Tony La Russa's big-league managerial career -- but only the 10th in which his team blew a lead of six or more runs.
It was the second time he had lost such a game to the Mets in New York; the other came in his debut as the Cardinals' manager on April 1, 1996. In that season opener, St. Louis jumped to a 6-0 lead against Bobby Jones, but the Mets came back to win 7-6.
The Cardinals' last loss after holding a lead of at least six runs came on Sept. 3, 2003, an 8-7 loss to the Cubs in Chicago.
• Nick Markakis hit three home runs Tuesday and he has six home runs over the Orioles' last six games. Only seven other rookies in major league history have hit six homers over six team games, most recently David Justice in 1990 and Mark McGwire in 1987.
Carlos Silva allowed all three home runs to Markakis. He's only the second pitcher in major league history to allow three home runs to a rookie in one game. On Sept. 17, 1938, a pitcher named Jim Reninger, making his major league debut, allowed three home runs to another rookie, Merv Connors. Reninger appeared in only seven more games in his career; Connors hit only two more home runs and was out of the major leagues after 1938.
• Hanley Ramirez hit his 12th home run of the season Tuesday, giving the Marlins four rookies with at least a dozen home runs. Dan Uggla has 19, Josh Willingham has 18 and Mike Jacobs hit his 16th Tuesday. The only other teams in major league history that had as many as four rookies with at least a dozen home runs were the 1958 Giants (Orlando Cepeda, 25; Willie Kirkland, 14; Bob Schmidt, 14; Leon Wagner, 13; and Jim Davenport, 12) and the 1999 Marlins (Preston Wilson, 26; Alex Gonzalez, 14; Bruce Aven, 12; and Mike Lowell, 12).
• Houston's Jason Hirsh allowed 10 runs to the Reds in his third major league start. The only other active pitcher who allowed at least 10 runs in one of the first three starts of his career is Bronson Arroyo, who did it for the Pirates against the Mets in his third career start on June 23, 2000.
• Jamie Moyer made his first start for a National League team since May 21, 1991, when he made his last start for the Cardinals. At that point he was 34-54 with a 4.56 ERA. Since then, Moyer is 178-110 with a 4.06 ERA. His span of 15 years between starts in a league was the third-longest in major league history. Jack Quinn went nearly 18 years between starts in the National League (October 1913 to April 1931) and Boom-Boom Beck went 16+ years between starts in the American League (June 1928 to July 1944).
• For the 12th time this season, B.J. Ryan recorded a save of at least four outs. That's five more than any other pitcher this season, and it's the most for a left-handed pitcher since 1992, when former "Nasty Boys" Norm Charlton had 12 for the Reds and Randy Myers had 13 for the Padres.
• Mike Piazza's sixth-inning single drove in Josh Barfield with the only run of the Padres' 1-0 win over the Dodgers. That's broke a 26 at-bat hitless streak for Piazza, the longest drought of his career. His previous long was 19 at-bats, in 1996.
It also snapped Piazza's 18 at-bat hitless streak with runners on base, the second-longest drought of his career, behind a 22 at-bat span from July 29 to Sept. 12, 2004.
• Steve Kline relieved Armando Benitez in the ninth inning and got the last out of the Giants' 7-6 win over the Diamondbacks. It's the second time this month that Benitez has been taken out in the ninth; it also happened on Aug. 2 against the Nationals. Before that, the last time Benitez was taken out in a save situation in the ninth inning on Sept. 29, 2001 in Atlanta. With a 5-1 lead, Benitez allowed five runs, the last two of which scored on Brian Jordan's game-ending grand slam on a 0-2 pitch from John Franco.
• Mark Buehrle lost again Tuesday, dropping him to 1-7 with an 8.10 ERA over his last 10 starts. That's the most losses and the second-highest ERA (minimum: 40 innings) for any pitcher since the start of July. (Making things worse for the White Sox: Jose Contreras is one of three players with six losses during that span.) The only pitcher with a higher ERA since July 1 is Joel Pineiro (8.50).