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The Juice: Cry havoc, R.A. Dickey, and let slip the dancin' knuckler

Big League Stew

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Gather 'round, because it's time to recap the most recent diamond doings. Roll Call starts at Citi Field in Queensbridge, where the Mets might have fallen and can't get up, but R.A. Dickey(notes) is the man.

Game of the Day: Mets 4, Cardinals 0

Righteous Authority: Who's the best pitcher in the National League right now? Well, it's probably Josh Johnson(notes). Come October, it's probably Roy Halladay(notes). But somewhere down the list, perhaps 29th, is the man with the last name that makes you giggle.

Rollicking Action: The 35-year-old Dickey (giggle) came in with a 2.82 ERA over his past six starts, but also an 0-4 record because the Mets have been free-fallin'. But there's no chance you can lose when your starter allows no runs over 8 1/3 and K-Rod closes it out, as happened against Team Fredbird.

Ridiculed Awesomeness: America's Knuckleballing Sensation senses that others think the secret to his success late in career is luck. Specifically, a horseshoe lodged in his giggy. They don't know. They don't know!

"There's a lot of guys probably saying, 'When is the horseshoe going to drop?' And that's OK with me," Dickey said. "I feel like I'm good enough to be here and good enough to stay here."

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They Also Played...

Rays 4, Tigers 2: At 14-5, left-hander David Price(notes) is one victory shy of tying the Rays' single-season record. Just a reminder: It's still July.

Nationals 5, Braves 3: He didn't have no-hitter stuff again (Tim Hudson(notes) just sighed) but Scott Olsen(notes) did fine in his return from the disabled list to help send the Braves on to Cincinnati without supper winning again.

"Get us back to Atlanta. Please. At some point soon," Chipper Jones(notes) said. "The road has been our nemesis all year. We haven't swung the bat or we haven't pitched. That trend continues."

Yankees 11, Indians 4: They put special baseballs into play — 40 were used in the series — every time Alex Rodriguez(notes) came up, in case he hit No. 600. Thanks for wasting everyone's time and resources, Rod Regis. Can't hit a lousy home run, sheesh.

Rockies 9, Pirates 3: They broke an eight-game losing streak, avoiding a sweep at the hooks of the Pirates. Ubaldo Jimenez(notes) awoke from his mini coma and Huston Street(notes) even returned to duty after an injury scare. It's all good for the Rockies! Except for being nine games out of first place.

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Rangers 7, Athletics 4: Home run for rookie Mitch Moreland(notes) (pictured), who as his reward got to Nolan Ryan while wearing whiteface. Mitch Moreland... wasn't he the kid from "Dazed and Confused" who looks like Tim Lincecum(notes)?

Marlins 5, Giants 0: A one-hitter for Anibal Sanchez(notes) a good-bye for Jorge Cantu(notes), who is heading to the Rangers.

"It's hard to let go sometimes," Cantu said after saying many of his goodbyes. "I bonded with these guys."

They're human beings! They're not animals!

Orioles 6, Royals 5 (11 inn.): Jeez, did anyone think to apologize to the fans for making this one go two extra innings? Do they want them to come back another time? Buck Showalter would have made the players apologize, but he's creepily sitting in the dugout at Camden Yards, waiting for the road trip to end so he can take over as manager.

White Sox 9, Mariners 5: Must the Mariners leave Chicago? M's pitcher David Pauley(notes) explained his approach to hitters such as Paul Konerko(notes) and Ramon Castro(notes): "I fell behind every hitter 2-0, sometimes 3-0 or 3-1," Pauley said. Great job, Dave.

Phillies 3, D-backs 2: Roy Oswalt(notes): Free tractor rides for everybody! One, two, three — hit it! Royz II Men. ... And now, keeping with the MotownPhilly theme, a Fightins essay about Domonic Brown(notes).

Padres 3, Dodgers 2: Luis Salazar got the game-winning hit for the Padres in the ninth? Man, the Padres are pulling out all of the stops to stay in first place. They're seven up on the Dodgers, who are trying to get Ted Lilly(notes) and Ryan Theriot(notes) from the Dodgers, says Foxy Ken Rosenthal. ... The Padres made a move already: You said Tejeda, but they said Tejada, Miguel.

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