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David Brown

Morning Juice: Rangers-Mariners play nice this time around

Big League Stew

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This and every weekday a.m., let's rise and shine together with the most recent and decent major league happenings. Today's Major League Roll Call starts in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, where a match up between usually stingy aces, Seattle's Erik Bedard and Texas' Vicente Padilla, produced a knock-down, drag-out offensive brawl of the figurative sense. No buzzing the Richie Sexson tower, no throwing the Richie Sexson helmet, no milling around the field looking for someone to punch, as happened the last time these foes (who don't like each other) met. This time, it's just a good, old-fashioned AL slugfest, baby ...

AL Game of the Day: Rangers 13, Mariners 12 (10 inn.)

Lefty loosey: Inheriting a 5-0 lead before even taking the mound, Bedard blew it all by the third, like he went to Vegas and kept hitting on 19.

Sit, Richie, sit: The Sexsonator continues to be glued to the bench as he sits out a five-game suspension that means he'll miss the entire series. Too bad, with Kason Gabbard toeing the rubber against Felix Hernandez later today in a rematch of pitchers from the brawl game five days ago. This game did have some jawing — Seattle's Ryan Rowland-Smith and Ramon Vazquez barked at each other after Rowland-Smith pumped his fist after striking out Vazquez, who gets by with one last name.

Like a lot of Egyptians: Starting with Bedard, but not ending there, M's pitchers walked 13 — 13! — and allowed 14 hits. "We don't like to make excuses. We had bad control," said Kenji Johjima, Seattle's catcher. Team guy, team guy! Somehow, it took a game-winning home run by Vazquez to decide the outcome against Brandon Morrow — the one M's hurler who did not walk anyone.

Just back away slowly: Rangers skipper Ron Washington, on the hot seat a couple of weeks ago but now a winner in seven of 10, was downright giddy after pulling out this one. "What a game!" Washington said. "I guess y'all didn't think we had a chance when we fell behind 5-0 to Bedard. We fooled y'all and Bedard. ... What a game!"


NL Game of the Day: Pirates 5, Braves 0

Only a mother could love it: Five runs, five hits, four errors — and a win — for the Bucs. That's the ugliest line of the year until further notice.

Get 'em, Flash!: That Zach Duke boy wriggled his way through six scoreless innings — he walked five and needed 102 pitches — to pick up a win in Game 1 of a twinbill and beat Sheriff Roscoe to Uncle Jesse's farm, again.

Hudson rock: In Game 2, Tim Hudson's just splendid in 8-1 Braves win. The Pirates added two more errors for good measure and John Bad Stinkschoten was asked to leave the majors after revving his career ERA to 8.84 in 21 career appearances. Van Armschoten's WHIP this season is 2.48. How hard must that have been to do? Two and a half men reach base every inning? When does a guy have the time to get anyone out?

Chipper: 4-for-8, .408


Feelin' rundown (Monday's other AL games):

Cleveland 3, Toronto 0; Toronto 3, Cleveland 0 (10 inn.)Cliff Lee pitches nine scoreless innings but gets no decision in Game 2. Lee's ERA is 0.67. He has allowed four earned runs. His strikeout-walk ratio is 44-4. He, more or less, is off to the best start of any pitcher since World War II, and it would be an upset if he doesn't win the Cy Young. Oh, yes, and Asdrubal Cabrera turned an unassisted triple play — and flipped the ball into the stands. No, Druby, no!

Twins 7, Red Sox 3 — Outside of Minneapolis, the Twins should be everyone's second-favorite team. I envision life at Prince's house like that of Howard Hughes, just with more babes and the Twins game on.

Reds 8, Marlins 7 — What was Jeff Keppinger unnecessarily doing in the minors all of those years?

Rays 7, Yankees 1 — Half a game out of first. Longoria.

Angels 10, White Sox 7Mark Buehrle talks fast and sounds a lot like Elvis. Right now he's pitching like fat Elvis.


Photo of the Day: "May I see it?"

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"So this dude standing behind me is responsible for keeping me out of the Hall for all these years? Excuse me just a moment."


Feelin' Rundown (Monday's other NL games)

Nationals 10, Mets 4 — The Nats show pep with some rhythmic clapping in the dugout on the way to a rare win, and Nelson Figueroa shakes a fist at 'em, saying, "They were cheering in the dugout like a bunch of softball girls. I am a professional, I take great offense to that. ... They won tonight, but in the long run, look who they are, a last-place team." Butt-head put it best when he said, "Shut up. Huh-huh, huh-huh, huh-huh."

Brewers 8, Cardinals 3Ryan Braun hitting like Ryan Braun and not doppelganger Adrien Brody. Have the Cardinals, who lost to Dave Bush, seen first place for the last time this season? Methinks possibly.

Cubs 12, Padres 3 — The Padres. They use bats, right?

Astros 7, Giants 3Barry Zito did a little better. At this rate of progress, he will be 74 years old by the time he is worth $126 million. Lance Berkman (.393) is batting .509 since April 26. A maniac! No steals last night, though (Boo!).


Fantasy Freaks:

Tim Hudson (Braves) 7 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 5 K, Win

Mark Kotsay (Braves) 3-5, 3 RBI

Fausto Carmona (Indians) 9 IP, 5 H, 4 BB, 3 K, Win

Shawn Marcum (Blue Jays) 8 IP, 2 H, 5 K

Cliff Lee (Indians) 9 IP, 7 H, 2 BB, 5 K, 0.67 ERA

Corey Patterson (Reds) 4-5, 2 R, RBI

Dioner Navarro (Rays) 3-3, 2 RBI

Matt Garza (Rays) 7 IP, 5 H, ER, BB, 3 K

Ryan Braun (Brewers) 2-3, 3 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI

Kenji Johjima (Mariners) 3-4, HR, 3 R, 4 RBI

Raul Ibanez (Mariners) 2-5, 2 R, HR, 3 RBI

Josh Hamilton (Rangers) 2-5, HR, 4 RBI

Jermaine Dye (White Sox) 4-5, 2 R

Vladimir Guerrero (Angels) 2-4, 2 R, HR, 4 RBI

Lance Berkman (Astros) 3-4, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI


Fantasy Flakes

John Van Benchwarmer (Pirates) 4 IP, 9 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, Loss, 9.39 ERA

Erik Bedard (Mariners) 2 IP, 7 H, 6 ER, 4 BB, 2 K

Mark Buehrle (White Sox) 5 2/3 IP, 10 H, 6 ER, BB, 6 K


Big Talker

“If he’s worried about the dugout, he should be worried about the catcher. We won because we got in his head.” — Washington's Felipe Lopez, on Figueroa.

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