Red Sox break but don’t bend, Yanks bend but don’t break

1. Weekend Sweeps

Yeah, firing Fredi Gonzalez worked out great for the Marlins as they were by the Padres this weekend. The combined score for the entire weekend was 9-3, Padres. Florida has lost four in a row and is 1-4 since manager Gonzalez was fired.

The THI (Temperature Humidity Index) is supposed be 100-ish today in this area and that is probably because of all the heat rising from Hell since it seems to be freezing over down there. The Orioles were the sweepers this weekend and the Nationals were the sweepees. All three games were one-run affairs. The Orioles have won four straight in comeback fashion falling behind 3-0 to beat Florida on Thursday, 6-0 to beat Washington on Friday, 5-0 on Saturday, and 3-0 yesterday. It was their first sweep since taking three from Boston on April 30-May 2. Baltimore had lost 11 straight series.

Oakland is now 9-0 all-time against the Pirates after they took three from the Pirates this weekend. Oakland had lost seven of eight coming into this miserable match-up. Pittsburgh has lost its six in a row overall and 17 straight on the road. Pirate fans have lost the will to live.

2. Red Sox break, don’t bend

Had the Red Sox road trip continued they would have had to have been Med Evaced home. Friday, my boy, Dustin Pedroia headed to the DL with a broken foot in his bone after fouling a ball of his foot in response to my announced man-crush. Pedey will be out at least a month.

Saturday, Clay Buchholz pulled up lame running the bases. So far there is no move to DL him, but pitchers and hammies go as well together as corned beef on white with mayo at a kosher deli.

Then yesterday, Victor Martinez took a foul off his oft-injured big toe and as all reporters rushed back to the clubhouse after the game to find out his status, after he left the game early, the report came in that he broke a bone in his hand. V-Mart has not yet been DL-ed but a slugger who has a hand too swollen to put on a catchers mitt to catch fastballs in the 90 mph range is as about as likely as me saying anything positive about the Brockton Rox until they pay their egregiously overdue debts.

Meanwhile, Jon Lester was brilliant yesterday and Tim Lincecum had nothing as the Red Sox prevailed, 5-1 and took two-of-three in Frisco.

3. Those Oldies but Goodies

Jaime Moyer defeated the Blue Jays yesterday 11-2 as the Phils took two-of-three from the Jays who hosted the Phillies in Philadelphia. Moyer moved to 9-6 but of greater interest is that he moved to the top of the gopher ball list as Vernon Wells passed former Phillies Hall of Famer Robin Roberts for the most homers, 506, allowed in a career. Wells hit the homer in the midst of Moyer’s 4001st regular season inning on the mound.

Moyer (9-6) earned his 267th career victory by giving up two runs and six hits in seven innings. He struck out seven and walked none. Moyer has won four of his last five starts. Toronto starter Brett Cecil (7-5), who made his big league debut on June 16, 1986, 16 days before Moyer was born, took the loss.

Philadelphia won for the eighth time in 11 games.

4. You gotta be good

All-time Home Runs Allowed by a pitcher

1. Jamie Moyer 506
2. Robin Roberts 505 Hall-of-Famer
3. Fergie Jenkins 484 Hall-of-Famer
4. Phil Niekro 482 Hall-of-Famer
5. Don Sutton 472 Hall-of-Famer

You must be good to be on this list.

5. Texas Heat

Josh Hamilton remained red hot as he blasted a homer of near historic proportions as the Rangers defeated the Astros, 10-1. Somehow the Astros managed to win one of three in this weekend set but it Texas moved to 20-5 this month and won their eighth consecutive series.

Hamilton hit a shot that went 468 feet several rows into the upper deck in right-center field making it the second longest at Rangers Ballpark only short of a 480-foot blast by Jose Canseco who probably had more juice in him that Minute Maid. The homer gave Hamilton a 21-game hitting streak and was his 47th hit in June, matching the team record for hits in a month shared by Mickey Rivers (August 1980) and Frank Catalanotto (August 2001). Hamilton is batting .477 (41 of 86) during his hitting streak and has raised his season average to .346, tied for second in the majors.

Texas finished 14-4 in interleague games. Houston was 3-12.

6. White Sox streak ends

The Cubs salvaged the final game of their three-game set with their cross-town rivals and ended the White Sox winning streak at 11, one short of their longest since 12 in row in 1961. Paul Konerko hit his 20th homer for the White Sox, tying Frank Thomas for the club record of 11 seasons of 20 or more.

The Cubs are still trying to figure out what to do with Carlos Zambrano who went ballistic in the dugout Friday night because he was upset that first baseman Derrek Lee did not the for a home run ball that Big Z gave up , That is not exactly what happened, but I watched it twice and I can say that honestly it was the gist of it. I’m thinking the Cubs should send Zambrano to Seattle and reunite him with Milton Bradley.

The loss was just the second in 17 games for the White Sox

7. Yanks bend but don’t break

If the Dodgers miss the post-season by one game they should look at their 10-inning 8-6 loss to the Yankees last night as the reason. I really do not care what happens to LA in September that you might choose to blame this was the one they had in the bag.

The Dodgers led this game, 5-0, after five innings, thanks to two Andy Pettitte throwing errors, and strong pitching from Clayton Kershaw. The Dodgers still led 6-2 going into the 9th and a four runs lead with Jonathan Broxton should be sufficient. Broxton entered the game in a non-save situation and began the inning by striking out Mark Teixeira. Then Alex Rodriguez singled and went to second on defensive indifference. He then scored on a Robinson Cano double. Jorge Posada singled him to third and went to second on defensive indifference. I hate defensive indifference.

Then, Curtis Granderson walked to load the bases. Up stepped Chad Huffman, who was in the game only because Brett Gardner left with a bruised right forearm and Huffman singled two home to make it 6-5. Now another Yankee role player, Colin Curtis grounded to first and the tying run scored. By the time the inning ended, Broxton had faced nine batters and threw 48 pitches.

Meanwhile, Mariano Rivera once again entered in a tie game and retired the Dodgers, three up, three down in the 9th. In the 10th, Cano slammed a two-run homer off George Sherrill.  Cano had been 0-for-11 lifetime against Sherrill.

After allowing an infield single, Mo retired the Dodgers again and the Yankees had an 8-6 victory. According to our friends at the Elias Sports Bureau, the Yankees had not overcome a four-run deficit in the 9th inning or later since April 19, 2007, against Cleveland.

The Dodgers have lost eight of their last 10 games.

8. Interim Leaders

Tarrik Brock is the latest interim first-base coach for the Florida Marlins. Yesterday, Dave Collins surprised the organization by abruptly resigning. Brock has been a roving minor league outfield and baserunning coordinator in the Florida organization. Collins resigned three days after the Marlins fired his close friend, manager Fredi Gonzalez.

The Marlins lead the majors in interim leaders.

9. Today regular baseball resumes

The truly hideous interleague lull is over and some very interesting pitchers on the hill with the pill.


Blue Jays (Ricky Romero) at Indians (Jake Westbrook), 7:05

White Sox (Mark Buehrle) at Royals (Anthony Lerew), 8:10

Tigers (Jeremy Bonderman) at Twins (Francisco Liriano), 8:10


Nationals (Stephen Strasburg) at Braves (Tim Hudson), 7:10

Mets (R.A. Dickey) at Marlins (Ricky Nolasco), 7:10, Puerto Rico

Phillies (Kyle Kendrick) at Reds (Johnny Cueto), 7:10

Pirates (Paul Maholm) at Cubs (Randy Wells), 8:05

Astros (Bud Norris) at Brewers (Manny Parra), 8:10

Diamondbacks (Dan Haren) at Cardinals (Chris Carpenter), 8:15

Rockies (Ubaldo Jimenez) at Padres (Kevin Correia), 10:05

Dodgers (Chad Billingsley) at Giants (Barry Zito), 10:15