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.
D-Backs' double disaster: Sunday's afternoon affair at Miller Park was definitely well-pitched, and for the most part well-played. Well, right up until the final sequence at least. With the game tied 1-1 in the bottom of ninth, Carlos Gomez entered as a pinch runner for Milwaukee, but was immediately anchored down by an extreme number of pickoff throws.
''I don't like how many times they threw over. I get tired,'' Gomez said. ''There was nobody out and you're the fast guy on the team, they expect that you're going to run. You want to watch the move every time and then when you've got it you've got to go.''
Once Gomez caught his breath and timed Patrick Corbin's move, he was off to the races. And he never stopped running until he touched home after Arizona Diamondbacks catcher Miguel Montero skipped his throw into center field, and Gerardo Parra's throw back in towards third struck Gomez and deflected into the crowd. Well, I take that back, Gomez kind of stopped running and more or less skipped the final 90 feet. Regardless of that, the run counted and the Brewers were 2-1 winners.
Mike Trout, no doubts: On the same day he was named to his first All-Star game, Los Angeles Angels rookie Mike Trout left no doubt that he belongs. Leading off the eighth inning, Trout drove a Francisco Cordero pitch over the fence in straightaway center field to break a 3-3 tie. Moments later, fellow first-time All-Star and teammate Mark Trumbo connected for a two-run shot, helping the Angels breakout for a 10-6 victory.
Hammer and Plouffe: If Josh Willingham was angry about his exclusion from the American League All-Star team, he took the anger and frustration out in the proper way. The man known around Minnesota as "The Hammer" dropped it on the Kansas City Royals, hitting a three-run homer in the sixth inning to even the score at 5. Two batters later, Trevor Plouffe gave Minnesota the lead with his second solo home run of the afternoon. The Twins would never trail again, holding on for a 10-8 win.
Return of the Laser Show: Dustin Pedroia picked an absolutely perfect time to end his 39- game homerless streak. Pedroia's solo shot in the eighth inning broke up the shutout for Seattle Mariners starter Jason Vargas and evened the score at 1. Two innings later, the Red Sox's lone All-Star representaive, David Ortiz, played hero, driving home Ryan Kalish with a sacrifice fly to give Boston a 2-1 victory.
Quote of the Day:
''It's really, really embarrassing. I missed it. It should be an error. It's not, but it definitely should be. I pride myself on my defense and that was just embarrassing.''
- Cincinnati Reds right fielder (and 2012 All-Star) Jay Bruce describes the final play of their gut-wrenching 4-3 loss to the San Francisco Giants on Sunday. It appeared Bruce was the victim of a tricky San Francisco wind gust as he settled in under Angel Pagan's ninth inning fly ball, and then suddenly lunged backwards to make a stab at the ball. He missed it. Buster Posey jogged home with the game-winner.
Photo of the Day: It's like deja vu all over again.
Three Facts for the Water Cooler:
• Making his Baltimore Orioles debut at designated hitter, Jim Thome went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts and two groundouts in their 6-2 loss to his original club, the Cleveland Indians.
• Kip Wells was a winner for the first time since Sept. 20, 2009. He did it by tossing seven scoreless innings at Coors Field as the Padres topped the Rockies, 2-0.
• Yu Darvish matched All-Star R.A. Dickey with his fifth 10-strikeout game. His final total was 11, matching his season high. Unfortunately, though, that wasn't enough as the Rangers dropped a 3-1 decision to the Oakland A's.