Gather 'round, because it's time to recap the most recent diamond doings. Roll Call starts in Toronto, where the Blue Jays said so long to Cito Gaston, who can apparently repel Gatorade. Cito Splashton!
Game of the Day: Blue Jays 8, Yankees 4
Seeya, Cito: Gaston managed the Blue Jays in their golden era (World Series champs in '92 and '93). His second go-round wasn't as successful, but the body of his work is certainly worth a long good-bye. Plus the mustache, the sunglasses. The guy was a bad-ass.
Via the A.P.:
Gaston was honored in a 30-minute pregame celebration featuring former players George Bell, Joe Carter, Pat Hentgen and Devon White. Tears rolled down his cheeks as he thanked the fans for their support, and the crowd of 33,143 gave him several standing ovations.
"I was certainly trying to hold it back but I think all the different things that were said out there, you just can't hold that back after a while," Gaston said. "I was just feeling that you try to do the best job you can at all times, but when you find out that you touched that many people’s lives, and it's all for the good, how can you hold it back?"
To the people: Gaston also wrote a very touching letter to fans that was published in the Toronto Star.
Cito Stacheton: They say imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. So why not don fake mustaches to show your appreciation for the old man?
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They Also Played...
Braves 5, Marlins 1: I received an email saying the Braves can clinch a playoff spot with one more victory. But the reasoning was so complex that my head exploded. It had to do with the Giants and Padres beating up on each other, plus the relativity theory. So, just trust this third-party email, along with my detail-lacking assurance. OK? It's called faith, people.
White Sox 5, Red Sox 2: White Sox clinch! Second. It's sexist to say "The trophy for second place is down in the ladies room." But how else can I make a "Top Gun" reference here? Say, "The Red Sox are losing that Lowell'n feelin'"? And if you comment about how Ice Man actually says, "The plaque for the alternates is down in the ladies room," then you are a bad person.
Twins 4, Royals 2: It seems like the Twins clinched in July. Is it time for the playoffs yet? Crimeny.
"We swung the bat terrible today," Pittsburgh manager John Russell said.
What a curmudgeon!
Rangers 6, Mariners 5: Baseball's got some funny rules, the dropped third strike among them.
Indians 4, Tigers 0 (Game 1); Indians 4, Tigers 3 (Game 2): Jim Leyland, referring to one performance, encapsulates Justin Verlander's(notes) career: "There were signs of brilliance and there were a couple of mistakes made."
Dodgers 7, Rockies 6: I'm all for the integrity of the 162-game season, but making the Rockies finish is sort of cruel.
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- Cito Gaston