David Brown

Morning Juice: Rockies' Spilborghs slams Giants (RIP) in 14th

David Brown
Big League Stew

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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 the rarefied air of Denver, where the Rockies let the Giants sniff victory before snuffing them out, it says here, for good.

Game of the Day: Rockies 6, Giants 4 (14 inn.)

Don't ... don't you want me?: You were working as a waitress in a cocktail bar when this game began, but your shift was probably over by the time the winning run scored. A huge swing game in the standings, it seemed neither team ever really wanted it to end. But a riotous ending it had after being tied 1-all until the 14th! All the poor Giants had left to protect a 4-1 lead was Justin Miller(notes) and Merkin Valdez(notes) and neither was up to the task.

Five hours later: Miller walked pitcher Adam Eaton(notes) (boo!) with the bases loaded and Valdez threw two fastballs to Ryan Spilborghs(notes), who went oppo on the second one for a game-ending grand slam. Spilborghs sprinted around the bases faster than Usain Bolt — which made up for Dexter Fowler(notes), who had fouled a ball off his knee and could barely gimp around the bases — into what looked like a mosh pit at home plate. It was a scene reminiscent of the Rockies in late '07.

There she goes.

Spilborghs had failed against Brian Wilson(notes) with a runner on third base in the 10th and he also couldn't track down Edgar Renteria's(notes) triple in the top of the 14th that helped put the Giants ahead.

"I had a chance off Wilson and missed my opportunity," Spilborghs said. "And then I felt like I missed the ball with Renteria and he got a triple. I was almost shaking because I wanted a chance to redeem myself."

The blast boosted the Rox's wild card lead to four. Not insurmountable, mathematically, with five weeks to go. But there's no way the Giants get off the mat after this one.

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"It's a two-game swing," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "They're looking like they’re going out of here two back and now they’re going home four. That’s absolutely huge."

How'd they get there?: The teams combined to strand 27 runners with Giants pitchers — starting with Barry Zito(notes) — walking 13. Jason Marquis(notes) pitched another strong game at Coors and Eaton, despite walking five himself, picked up his first NL victory of the season after being fired by the Orioles and Phillies earlier. ... Gametime: 4 hours, 57 minutes.

That's a mullet, Billy Troy Cyrus Tulowitzki. Arrest him!

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Feelin' Rundown (none of these games needed to take oxygen):

Tigers 10, Angels 7: Possible playoff preview!!! Not how you'd think a Justin Verlander(notes)/Jered Weaver matchup might go. They tried to do their best Lions impression, bursting to a 10-0 lead before making their manager squirm, but the Tigers held on to win a big game on the road, a Motown deficiency this season.

Not even an appearance from this man ...

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... could close the deal for the Halos.

Phillies 6, Mets 2: How good has Cliff Lee(notes) pitched for the Phillies? Looking at the numbers — 0.68 ERA, 0.75 WHIP — you can barely tell he's there.

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Here's another aspect of Cooperstown's "Eric Bruntlett: Live" exhibit: When you go and ask Bruntlett (above, left) about the unassisted triple play, find out when the next Judd Apatow/Seth Rogen (right) vehicle comes to the silver screen.

Mariners 3, Athletics 1: Big hit: Two-run homer Ken Griffey Jr. No. 625, against Vin Mazzaro(notes), a virgin to Griffey homers until now. He's the Kid, he's almost 40!

Brewers 7, Nationals 1: Is Strasburg here yet? This one counts as a day game because it started about 4:30 in the afternoon. The Brewers have been terrible in day games but, sure enough after the clock struck six (and it becomes "night" in baseball time) Ryan Braun hit a two-run homer to spark a six-run sixth inning.

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Why do the Brewers seem to have a werewolf (beerwolf?) thing going on in which they're only effective at night? Braun's slugging percentage is over .600 at night but about .460 in daylight. He's pretty hairy, too.

Red Sox 12, White Sox 8: Contrerass.

Rays 12, Blue Jays 7: The Rays send ol' Doc to his worst loss in two years. Seven earned runs and 12 hits over six, pushing his ERA over 3.00 for the first time since May. Is Halladay spent, tired or fatigued, even?

"It just gets back to making pitches, it really does," Halladay said tersely. "It's that simple. When you don't, they cost you. That's really all I can say."

And with that, he keeled over and turned to dust. No, he didn't, but what a way to go out that would have been.

Twins 2, Orioles 1: Scott Baker(notes)? Able. ... The sod for Target Field has arrived. They should plant it in the Metrodome, try it out, see if it works first.

Indians 10, Royals 6: Valbuenasnoches, Cleveland.

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