May day: A new month means the Miami Marlins can turn the page on a distasteful 8-14 start to their season. Giancarlo Stanton (I always want to say "Giancarlo Esposito") hit a home run for the second time in three games and Ricky Nolasco kept the San Francisco Giants off the scoreboard (mostly) over 7 1/3 innings in a 2-1 victory at AT&T Park. Closer Heath Bell, who had been pitching more like Beef Hell, even had a 1-2-3 ninth inning to close out the Giants, who did not support Matt Cain very well. Ah, well, Miami can't pause for a pity party for another team — not after the month the Marlins just endured.
''I think a lot of people took it as April's gone,'' Nolasco said. ''Hopefully we can keep it going.''
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Going to the Matts while longing for Longo: The Tampa Bay Rays went 19-12 with Evan Longoria missing from the starting lineup in 2011, and they'll have to go through another period with him sidelined this season after learning he'll miss 6-8 weeks because of a partially torn left hamstring. The Rays got on with life Tuesday night behind left-hander Matt Joyce and Matt Moore in a 3-1 victory against the Mariners. Joyce, batting third in place of Longoria, hit a home run and an RBI triple. Moore allowed a run and seven hits with seven strikeouts over five innings.
Send it in, Jerome!: Jerome Williams tossed his second career shutout and the Los Angeles Angels got an RBI grounder from Albert Pujols (oooooh) in a 4-0 victory against the filling-less Minnesota Twinkies. This passage from the AP story put Williams' night this way:
Williams threw 109 pitches, striking out six and retiring 18 of his last 19 batters to finish in an economical 2 hours, 10 minutes. It was the third complete game in 81 career starts for the 30-year-old right-hander from Honolulu.
Well Mele Kalikimaka, Jerome! (that's "Merry Christmas" in his native Hawaiian). Meanwhile, Pujols has gone 31 games and 125 at-bats without a home run.
Have a victory sandwich, Jarrod: In his second start since being called up from Triple-A, Oakland right-hander Jarrod Parker shut down the Red Sox at Fenway Park in a 5-3 victory, his first in the majors. Parker, who came over to the A's in the Trevor Cahill deal, did not make the club out of camp after some struggles. But he's here now, having allowed a run and four hits over 6 2/3 against what had been a surging offense.
Quote of the Day: "We just have to keep battling. Things aren't going to come easy. Sometimes we have months in the past where things just seemed like they were easy because it seemed like we could just steamroll through a team. It's not going to be that case anymore.'' — Pitcher Cole Hamels, who allowed two runs and six hits to go with six strikeouts in Philadelphia's 4-2 victory against Atlanta that got the Phillies back to .500.
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Photo of the Day: Smoke monster — run!
That's not San Francisco on a foggy night, it's the South Side of Chicago, after Gordon Beckham hit a home run to ignite the smoke-producing fireworks in the White Sox scoreboard at U.S. Cellular Field. Chicago beat Ubaldo Jimenez and the Indians 7-2.
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Three Facts for the Water Cooler:
• Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano has a 5.28 ERA in 23 starts since throwing a no-hitter against the White Sox on May 3, 2011 at Chicago. Happy anniversary, kid!
• A crowd of 22,675 turned out at Nationals Park for Bryce Harper's first home game, a 5-1 loss to Arizona. In 2010, teammate Stephen Strasburg pitched his first major-eague game in front of 40,315 fans in D.C.
• With the help of a strong outing by left-hander Brian Matusz, Orioles manager Buck Showalter picked up career victory 1,000 in Baltimore's 7-1 thrashing of the Yankees. He is 1,000-958 in 14 seasons with the Yankees, D-backs, Rangers and O's.
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- Sports & Recreation
- San Francisco Giants
- Miami Marlins
- Jerome Williams
- Ricky Nolasco
- Giancarlo Stanton