Saturday, May 19, 2007
Elias Says ...
By Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.
Special to ESPN Insider
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:
• The Red Sox beat the Braves 13-3 in the afternoon, but then lost 14-0 in the evening. In the last 60 years only one other doubleheader was split, with each team winning by at least 10 runs. On July 27, 1978 at Yankee Stadium, the Yankees beat the Indians 11-0 in the opener and Cleveland prevailed 17-5 in the second game.
• Atlanta had 12 extra-base hits in the night cap, the most for a visiting team at Fenway Park since June 20, 1980, when the Angels had 13. California won that game 20-2 and Freddie Patek hit three home runs. Patek, who had a listed height of 5'5", played 14 seasons in the majors and never hit more than six homers in any of them.
• John Smoltz pitched seven shutout innings for his 199th career win. He has not allowed an earned run in 20.2 career innings in Boston. The last pitcher that did not allow an earned run in his first 20-or-more innings at Fenway Park was Kansas City's Steve Busby (21 innings, from 1974 to 1975).
• The Cardinals' Anthony Reyes is now 0-7 after losing in Detroit on Saturday night. It's the first time in Tony LaRussa's career as a major-league manager that one of his pitchers lost his first seven decisions in a season.
• Derrek Lee's pinch-hit grand slam was the big blow in the Cubs' 11-6 win over the White Sox. Lee, batting .390 entering the game, became the third player in the last 15 years to hit a pinch-hit home run while leading his league in batting average.Larry Walker did that for Colorado in July 1999 as did Boston's Bill Mueller in June 2003.
• The Diamondbacks scored five runs in the seventh inning in their come-from-behind victory over the Pirates. It was the most runs they have scored in any inning in 2007. That leaves the White Sox as the only team in the majors that has not scored at least five runs in an inning this season.
• Tony Clark hit a pinch-hit granny for Arizona in that seventh inning. He and Derrek Lee are the first pair of players to do that on the same day since Mark Sweeney (Rockies) and Robin Ventura (Dodgers) on September 7, 2004.
• David Wright hit two home runs in the Mets' 10-7 win over the Yankees. Each was off Mike Myers, who replaced an injured Darrell Rasner in the first inning. It was the first time in Myers' 832 games in the major leagues that he allowed two home runs to the same player in one game. And it was the first time this season a relief pitcher gave up two home runs in one game to one player.
• Alex Rodriguez's eighth-inning home run ended a drought of 43 consecutive plate appearances without an RBI, his longest streak since May-June 2005. Before that line drive over the left-field fence, A-Rod had hit only one home run in a span of 82 at-bats, the third-longest single-season stretch of his career in which he hit no more than one homer. He hit one dinger over 87 at-bats in 1998 and one in 93 at-bats in 2005.
• It was quite an afternoon for Robinson Cano, ranging from the good (a second-inning home run), to the bad (grounded into a double play to end the sixth inning), to the ugly (three errors at second base). Mets fans may recall the only other major-league player in the last 10 years to nail the home run/GIDP/3-error trifecta in one game. It was their own Benny Agbayani, who did that at St. Louis on April 29, 2001.
• Greg Maddux allowed 12 hits in only 3 2/3 innings against Seattle. It was the 14th time in his major-league career that Maddux allowed at least 12 hits in a game, and it matched his shortest outing in any of those 14 starts (also 3 2/3 innings vs. the Phillies on 9/11/2003).
• Tampa Bay's Jae Seo gave up three home runs in 5 1/3 innings on Saturday night, taking the loss against the Marlins. Over the last two seasons, Seo's rate of 1.83 home runs allowed every nine innings is the worst in the major leagues (min: 200 innings).
• Minnesota's Scott Baker allowed solo home runs in the first and ninth inning in the Twins' 5-2 win at Milwaukee. The last pitcher to throw a gopher ball in the first inning and then again in the ninth inning (or later) was Mark Buehrle, on September 20, 2004, against Minnesota.
• Leadoff hitter Alex Rios was 1-for-2, with three runs scored and four walks in Toronto's 13-2 win at Philadelphia. Entering Saturday, the first slot in the Blue Jays' batting order had a .294 on-base percentage, the lowest for any team in the American League.
• The Angels beat the Dodgers, 6-2, but slumping Chone Figgins went 0-for-3 with a strikeout. He's hitless in his last 22 at-bats, the longest current drought for any non-pitcher in the majors.
• Daniel Alfredsson, who has spent his entire 783-game career with Ottawa, scored in overtime on Saturday afternoon to eliminate the Sabres. Three others who had played at least that many career games for a franchise scored an overtime goal that clinched a postseason series that sent the team to the Stanley Cup Finals: Maurice Richard for Montreal in 1957 (857 previous games for the Canadiens) Jean Beliveau for Montreal in 1969 (992 games) and Joe Sakic for Colorado in 2001 (934 games).
• Jason Spezza had one goal and one assist in the victory, the sixth consecutive road game in which he scored at least two points, the longest streak in one postseason in NHL history. Wayne Gretzky held the old record, tallying more than one point for Edmonton in five straight games away from home during the 1988 playoffs.