This and every weekday a.m. during baseball season, let's rise and shine together to recap the most recent diamond doings. Roll Call starts in rainy Philadelphia, where foul weather cut short Pedro Martinez's(notes) first start in front of the home crowd. That's OK; the Phillies have more old pitchers where that came from.
Game of the Day: Phillies 5, D-backs 1
A couple of kids: Just when they were about throw ol' Grandpa out to pasture, he comes to the Phillie phamily's rescue. Following a 66-minute rain delay in the third inning, manager Charlie Manuel replaced man-of-the-moment Pedro Martinez with an even grayer option: 46-year-old Jamie Moyer(notes). Recently disenfranchised by his move to the bullpen, the oldest pro took to his first big relief assignment like a duck to water.
Moyer tossed six scoreless innings for his 257th career victory — and his first as a reliever since 1996. Pedro, who allowed a leadoff homer to Stephen Drew(notes) and had three strikeouts before hitting the bench, came up with the line of the year so far:
"You never know what you'll get when you put two old goats out there," Martinez said. "It's a scary combination. You're not going to see that very often. You might as well enjoy it. I enjoyed it"
So did the sellout crowd, which cheered every move each old feller made. Even mistakes.
Martinez, who used to hear regular boos when coming in with the Mets, found the Philly crowd to be encouraging even after he failed on a sacrifice bunt.
"They were saying, 'Go get 'em Pedro,' " Martinez said. "It was nice."
Around the horns: And Moyer, who opened himself up for criticism after complaining of his treatment in the wake of Pedro's signing, got positive reinforcement from the supposedly big, bad Phillies fans.
"I went out and did what I set forth to do, got them to put the ball in play and relied on my defense," Moyer said.
So stoic. Proud. Like a goat!
* * *
Feelin' Rundown (none of these guys are about to go before made-up death panels):
Dodgers 7, Cardinals 3: L.A. improves to two games under .500 since the All-Star break, yet still manages the NL's best record overall. Eeeenteresting. ... He can be stopped: Albert Pujols(notes) went 0-for-4 with three inning-ending outs.
"It means a lot," Sabathia said. "I feel like every time I come here, this is going to be the night I pitch well. Tonight just happened to be the night. ... I can put that behind me and go forward now."
Rockies 4, Nationals 3: Let me put a gigantic cart before the horse and second-guess NL Manager of the Year-to-be Jim Tracy on his playoff rotation. If given time to order it, he probably starts with Jason Marquis(notes) and then goes with Ubaldo Jimenez(notes). BIG mistake. Jimenez has a much better chance of setting the tone of a short series. He's got no-hitter stuff every time he goes out there.
When asked if he got a boost from the crowd cheering him during his key at-bat, he said: "You can hear nothing. You focus on doing your job."
He's not just saying that. Time and again, players refer to tuning out their surroundings, positive or negative. It's one of the things that makes them pros, I think.
Padres 6, Cubs 3: After being cited for jaywalking (what is it about these Chicago scofflaws on the West Coast?) Lou announces that Carlos Marmol(notes) is the closer now. No announcement on when or if the Cubs will need a closer again.
"It shows you what I know," said manager Terry Francona, whose team moved back into a tie for the wild card lead. "I didn't even have him in there to begin with."
Giants 8, Reds 5 (10 inn.): Ryan Garko(notes) makes himself useful with the big hit in extras. ... It was not Timmy's night: Lincecum allows as many runs as he had in his previous four starts combined. Even Medal of Honor winner Homer Bailey(notes) drove in a pair with his first major league hit (not a homer) after starting his career 0-for-18.
Was the majors ERA leader not at his best because they didn't have any Choco Tacos at Great American?
Angels 5, Indians 4: A grandson of a clown and a part-time actor himself, Trevor Bell(notes) now has a major league victory. He's among five rookies the Halos have started this season; they're a combined 12-4.
"I felt we were way too uptight around here," Maddon said. "More than anything, we have not been really relishing in victory and I think we've been like too painful in defeat. We've just got to go out there and play. Understand it's a game. We got to the World Series last year by being kind of free-spirited about the whole thing. The black hair is symbolic of all those different items."
So, the Rays equal Woodstock? Dig it, man.
Mets 9, Braves 4: The Mets reeled off 10 hits in an eight-run fourth inning. Usually, that kind of outburst has to last them all week.
Twins 9, Rangers 6: The snotty elites on the East Coast are trying to hand Mark Teixeira(notes) the MVP, but I am going to use my own snot to try and hand it to rap superstar Joe Mauer(notes). Two homers. Three RBIs. .383 average. This fight ain't over, New York (shaking fist toward the northeast)!
Marlins 6, Astros 2: The Fish are on a streak that almost nobody is talking about: They've collected at least 10 hits for the 14th consecutive game. It's the longest streak of its kind since the St. Louis Browns (now the Orioles) did it in 15 straight, Elias reports.
A commenter on this here blog predicted that Billy Baroo Butler would make something of himself this season, and he has. Way to go, guy whose name I forgot.