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Kerry Wood made his debut on Thursday and after watching his
teammates shut out
Rivalry weekend begins tonight as cross town and cross state foes square off in the first round of Interleague play. Among our favorite match-ups here at DN&N are the Yankees/Mets, Rangers/Astros, Dodgers/Angels and the Giants/A’s. But perhaps the most intriguing match-up on Friday will be the afternoon tilt between the Cubs and their South Side rivals. That game will feature future HOF’er Greg Maddux going for career win number 324 against White Sox ace Mark Buehrle.
Trivia Question – With the first round of Interleague play upon us, can you name the first National League player to serve as a DH in a regular season game?
Trivia Question II – What former major league player had the most base hits in the 90’s? (answers below)
Carlos Silva walked just 9 batters in 188.1 innings last year and had just 4 walks in his first 46 IP this year. In his first appearance out of the bullpen on Thursday afternoon Silva walked 2 in one inning of work.
Ichiro had four hits in a 6-3 loss to Oakland last night and in doing so pushed his batting average back over .300 (.311 actually) for the first time since April 6, Seattle’s fourth game of the season.
Free Swingers Update
Pt I – DN&N’s favorite free swinger was back
at it again on Thursday afternoon as the Braves clobbered the
Free Swingers Update Pt II – Meanwhile teammate and fellow free swinger Matt Diaz did not walk in four at bats (and also homered in the win) leaving him with a total of 57 at bats without a base on balls this year, the most currently in the Majors. He has in fact, a very Francoeur-like 6 walks in 176 lifetime at bats.
During his hitting streak, Jeff Francoeur is batting .351 (26 for 74) with 6 HR and 22 RBI. What is possibly even more interesting to note is that during the streak, he has not had one single game with less than four at bats and has had seven games with at least 5 or more (including a 2 for 7 night on May 5).
As noted yesterday, MLB owners on Thursday voted unanimously in favor of the sale of the Washington Nationals to the group headed by Ted Lerner and Stan Kasten, officially putting an end to the saga of the wayward Expos. The new owners have promised a Grand Re-Opening night on July 21, their first homestand after the All-Star break.
Close the Door! Pt I – Among the best so far at closing the door (when opportunity permits) are Red Sox rookie closer Jonathan Papelbon (14/14 in saves, 0.42 ERA), Blue Jays free agent pickup B.J. Ryan (9/9, 0.48 ERA) and long time Padre Trevor Hoffman (7/7, 1.20 ERA).
Close the Door! Pt II – Among those who have gotten hot recently are Cardinals closer Jason Isringhausen (7 saves in last 7 games, 7 IP, 1.28 ERA), Tigers stopper Doug Jones (6 saves in last 6 games, 6 IP, 1.50 ERA) and new Devil Rays reliever Tyler Walker (8 games, 7/7 SV, 7.1 IP 0.00 ERA)
Close the Door! Pt III – Phillies closer Flash Gordon has one loss and one blown save this year (getting a win in the latter) but in his other 17 appearances he is 1-0 with 13 saves in 13 chances and a 0.00 ERA (15.2 IP, 0 R, 5 H, 24 K, 3 BB).
The Longest Streak Pt
I – Detroit won their ML best 7th in a row on Thursday and then
saw Tampa Bay beat the White Sox to help lift the Tigers into sole possession
of first place in the AL Central. In the
win, Kenny Rogers recorded his ML best 7th win of the year to help give
The Longest Streak Pt II – Cincinnati’s win over Pittsburgh left Kansas City, losers of their last 6, as possessors of the longest losing streak in the majors. At 10-28, the Royals are the worst team in baseball.
Casey Blake, the majors’ top hitter at .370, had two more hits for Cleveland in the win over KC on Thursday and is now hitting .426 with 5 HR and 12 RBI in May.
After hitting .375 in April, Giants SS Omar Vizquel has cooled down considerably in May, batting just .183 (11 for 60). The defensive wiz has not taken it to the field where he has made just one error all year (170 chances, 10th in MLB).
Carl Pavano was shut down after he threw just one inning a minor league rehab start on Wednesday and his availability for the entire 2006 season may now be in doubt.
Trivia Answer I – Glenallen Hill
became the first NL player to serve as a designated hitter in a regular season
game when the San Francisco Giants took on the Texas Rangers on June 12, 1997 in
Baseball’s very first Interleague game at what was
then known as The Ballpark in
DN&N would like to lend its support to colleague
Trivia Answer II – Mark Grace, of course, led all Major Leaguers with 1,734 base hits in the 90’s.
Finally, the PAMF slow pitch softball team earned their first win of the year on Thursday, 21-9 in just 4 innings in a mercy rule shortened game. Contributing 3 hits and 2 RBI despite a strained quad was yours truly, pushing my average on the year to .888 (8 for 9).
Questions or comments for Richard? Richard Van Zandt is a staff writer for Baseball Evolution who lives in San Francisco, California. You can reach him at email@example.com.