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Big League Stew

The Juice: Another Albert Pujols home run sighted, Orioles beat Royals in 15

David Brown
Big League Stew

The Juice is back for its fifth season of fun! Stop by each weekday for an ample serving of news from the action, plus great photos, stats and video highlights.

Was that Bigfoot or Sasquatch?: Oh, neither. Just the second home run of the season for Albert Pujols, who went deep for the Los Angeles Angels in a 7-2 victory against the White Sox on Wednesday night. Some were beginning to wonder how many homers he had left in his bat after a drought of 33 games and 139 at-bats to start the season. Now he's got two deeps, giving him 447 for his career so far, on his way to 500-plus. You know, Albert.

"It's been awhile,'' Pujols said. ''There are some times I feel good at the plate and hit the ball hard but don't catch any breaks. But you can't lose your focus. Every at-bat, no matter how I feel, I try to take it as the last at-bat of my career. Hey, listen - this game is not easy. I've been saying that all year long. There are things that are out of your control.''

Jim Eppard fixes everything: The Angels have knocked out 24 hits in their past two games with the memory of fired coach Mickey Hatcher still on their minds. New hitting coach Jim Eppard tutored many of the Angels in the minor leagues, so at least he's coming in with an idea of how to help.

''What's great about it is that a lot of the guys here I've had come through Salt Lake, so I have a mental tape of those guys."

O's so good: The Baltimore Orioles are 24-14 after Adam Jones hit a tie-breaking home run in the 15th inning to carry them to a 4-3 victory at Kansas City. Jones' 12th homer of the season came after he started the game 0 for 6.

''Some people were behind me, yelling at me, 'Hey, come on Jones.' I showed them. After I hit that, they shut up the heck up.''

Said.

Up goes Frazier: Todd Frazier attended Rutgers in New Jersey, so hitting two home runs to help the Cincinnati Reds beat the Mets 6-3 at Citi Field must have felt pretty special. It was a lot better feeling than when he struck out in his first two at-bats, for sure.

''A lot of friends and family, you know, they've been following ever since I was playing when I was 12 in that Little League World Series, so it doesn't bother me as much,'' Frazier said. ''It's actually fun, you know. Striking out those first two at-bats didn't really help, but this game's about adjustments and that's what you got to do from pitch to pitch and at-bat to at-bat. It was a special time tonight for sure.''

Not sure about him wearing Paul O'Neill's number, though.

Quote of the Day: "He has been as advertised." — Rangers manager Ron Washington on Yu Darvish, after Texas beat the A's 4-1. Darvish struck out seven, allowing a run and four hits over 7 2/3 innings.

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Photo of the Day: And the deal is sealed.

View photo

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(AP)

Mr. Met (center) congratulates the mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, with a high-five to celebrate the announcement of Citi Field hosting the All-Star game next season. New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon looks like Ed McMahon here. Yessir.

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Three Facts for the Water Cooler:

• Mike Leake of the Reds had two hits, giving him 31 since the start of the 2010 season. STATS, LLC reports that only Yovani Gallardo of Milwaukee, with 32, has more among pitchers in that span.

• The Detroit Tigers made four errors in falling 11-7 at Minnesota, and have gone 9-16 since starting the season 9-3.

• The New York Yankees lost 8-1 to Kyle Drabek and the Blue Jays at Toronto. New York fell to 0-8 when not hitting a home run, and are the only team remaining to not win a game in which they did not homer.

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