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The Juice: Dustin Ackley launches first career grand slam as Mariners overpower Blue Jays

Mark Townsend
Big League Stew

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The signs did not get any more encouraging for R.A. Dickey and the Toronto Blue Jays during their 8-1 loss to the Mariners on Saturday. The 38-year-old knuckleballer made his scheduled start after an MRI on his ailing back and neck came back clean, which has to be considered good news. However, the results on the field told a story far too similar to the what Dickey experienced throughout April.

In six innings of work, Dickey allowed seven runs (all earned) on six hits and two walks. He was tagged for three home runs, including two by Michael Saunders and a Dustin Ackley grand slam in the fourth. That raises his season ERA to 5.36, but more importantly raises concerns that Toronto may not soon see the ace they paid so heavily for during the offseason.

But he's certainly not alone when it comes to Blue Jays not living up to the hype.

''We've got a group of great guys,'' the knuckleballer said. ''And the chemistry in here, nobody is blaming other people. We're all trying to own what ours is to own in this. But we're not very good right now and everybody knows it. That's no secret.''

The secret they must learn is the one the Miami Marlins never figured out last season (with many of the same key players) and the one the Los Angeles Angels are still struggling with right now. What does it take to win when everyone expects you to win? It's much easier said than done.

Filthy Phil: The Oakland A’s entered play on Saturday with an MLB leading 164 runs scored this season. Apparently Phil Hughes doesn't care because he held those A's scoreless on four hits over eight very solid innings to defeat former teammate Bartolo Colon. The outing probably came as a shock to Colon, as he's been used to getting plenty of support in his starts. In fact, Oakland had scored 29 runs in his three previous outings. This time, it was only two runs, and those two came too late as New York held on 4-2.

O's start new win streak in extras: Early on the story was Freddy Garcia's sparkling and equally stunning season debut. The 36-year-old right-hander actually held the Los Angeles Angels hitless through six innings, but ended up not factoring in the decision after LA rallied from a 4-0 deficit to tie.

No problem for the Orioles. Despite their 17-game extra inning win streak ending last week, they pushed across a run in the tenth on Steve Pearce's RBI single and held on for the 5-4 win.

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(AP)

Lather. Rinse. Walkoff.: For the second straight night, a San Francisco Giants catcher hit a walkoff home run to defeat the Dodgers. On Friday, it was reigning National League MVP Buster Posey. On Saturday, it was none other than... Guillermo Quiroz? Really? Really! His a rocket to the left field seats off Brandon League gave San Francisco the 10-9 win in the 10 innings.

MORE SCORES

Indians 6, Twins 3: Scott Kazmir earns his first win since Sept. 19, 2010.

Reds 6, Cubs 4: Cincinnati didn’t draw blood against Jeff Samardzija, but they did pummel Chicago’s bullpen for four runs in the eighth.

Nationals 5, Pirates 4: Stephen Strasburg looked healthy working through seven innings. Nats use three sacrifice flies to get the curly W.

Cardinals 7, Brewers 6: The words "relentless" and "resilient" always apply to the Redbirds.

Marlins 2, Phillies 0: Jose Fernandez may be staying for awhile. Seven innings of one-hit baseball here to pick up his long overdue first major league win.

Mets vs. Braves (ppd, rain): Scheduled starters Jonathan Niese and Julio Teheran will go on Sunday.

Tigers 17, Astros 2: Detroit scored in every inning but the third. Torii Hunter and Miguel Cabrera combined to go 8 for 9 with two homers, eight RBIs and six runs scored.

Rangers 5, Red Sox 1: Craig Gentry knocks in three in support of Alexi Ogando.

Rockies 9, Rays 3: Nolan Arenado has arrived. Seventh inning grand slam off David Price helps Colorado pull away.

Diamondback 8, Padres 1: Remember the name Patrick Corbin. He's already 4-0 and is posting a strong 1.80 through six starts.

quoteBLS

''It was three long months there (in Colorado). I'd hate to bottle up seven years in the major leagues to three months, but certainly it wasn't going well. In baseball, you can never take anything for granted. Someone can be on top of the game one month and in three or four months you can be out of the game."

Jeremy Guthrie puts the last 13 months of his career into perspective. In 2012, Guthrie started the season with a 3-9 record and a hideous 6.35 ERA for the Colorado Rockies. He was then traded to Kansas City Royals where he went on to lose his first three decisions, but has since gone 17 straight starts without a loss.

That includes his four-hit shutout of the Chicago White Sox on Saturday night as the Royals cruised to a 2-0 win.

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(USA Today)

Hey! Leave Teddy alone, Mr. Cheese Chester!

• Josh Reddick is 1 for his last 22 overall and 0 for 33 in 11 career games at the new Yankee Stadium.

• Colorado's win snapped an 11-game home losing streak in interleague play.

• Jeremy Guthrie went 188 career starts before throwing a shutout. That's the third longest wait for a pitcher in MLB history.

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