The Juice is back for its fifth season of fun! Stop by each weekday for an ample serving of news from the action, plus great photos, stats and video highlights.
Beckett blitzed: The Dodgers falling 10-0 to the Rockies sounds like a disastrous start for Josh Beckett with his new team, but he wasn't that bad. He wasn't that good, either. Beckett allowed three runs, seven hits and three walks in 5 1/3 innings, but considering Colorado's Tyler Colvin led off the first with a home run, it could have been worse. Jeff Francis, conversely, was a total mystery to the Dodgers. The idle Giants are up 2 1/2 in the NL West.
One serious roll: The Baltimore Orioles have won 13 straight one-run games after sneaking past the White Sox 4-3. Nate McLouth hit a monstrous two-run homer against Brett Myers to put them ahead in the bottom of the eighth. Earlier, Lew Ford went deep to get the O's on the board. It's just like Eddie Murray and Cal Ripken back in the day. Close victories are definitely the reason they're hanging in the playoff hunt. Quoting the Associated Press: Baltimore is 24-6 in one-run games and 45-18 in games decided by one or two runs.
[Jeff Passan: Reds pitcher Aroldis Chapman thriving in reliever role]
Slipping off the plank: The Pittsburgh Pirates have fallen nine games back in the NL Central and three games behind St. Louis for the NL wild card after losing to the Cardinals 4-3. Matt Holliday hit a go-ahead home run against A.J. Burnett and pitcher Kyle Lohse added an RBI single. Not that pitcher records mean much, but Lohse is 14-2 after going five innings because of a rain delay. He hasn't lost in 13 starts.
Texas toasts Tampa Bay: Adrian Beltre went 3 for 3 with a home run and three RBIs, helping the Rangers beat the Rays 6-5. David Price allowed six runs and 10 hits over four innings after coming in leading the AL in ERA and having 12 straight quality starts of at least seven innings. The Ballpark at Arlington is unsafe for Price, who has a 6.04 ERA in eight starts against the Rangers and a 10.26 ERA in four starts at Texas.
Casey at the rubber: Casey Kelly excelled in his major-league debut, going six innings and combining with three relievers on a four-hitter, leading the Padres to a 3-0 victory against the Braves. Kelly is the key remaining piece from the Adrian Gonzalez trade. Yasmani Grandal hit a home run for the Padres.
Tough night in the Bronx: The Yankees fell 8-7 to the Blue Jays in 11 innings after a rare off-night for closer Rafael Soriano, who blew the save when Colby Rasmus hit a go-ahead three-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning. Soriano, who has three blown saves in 36 opportunities, also blew past reporters without comment. Derek Jeter tied the score in the bottom of the ninth with a solo homer, but the Jays went ahead for good two innings later on a strong baserunning play by Mike McCoy. The Yanks also learned that slugger Mark Teixeira has a Grade I strain of his left calf. He will be out, he says, for a week. That might be wishful thinking.
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Quote of the Day:
"He's the real deal. That's why he's King Felix. That's why he's got the Cy Young, the perfect game, all that stuff. I'm officially a believer. I'm glad he's on my team.''
— Eric Thames of the Mariners after Felix Hernandez tossed a five-hitter at the Twins in a 1-0 victory. Felix is 4-0 this season in games with 1-0 scores. He's got five shutouts overall. Minnesota's Liam Hendriks also went the distance but allowed a home run to Thames.
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Photo of the Day: Whoopsie daisy!
Moises Sierra of the Blue Jays slips on the warning track as a couple of helpful Yankees fans tell him to be careful.
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Three Facts for the Water Cooler:
• The Brewers scored nine runs in the ninth, hitting five homers overall, and blew out the Cubs 15-4. Utility player Joe Mather got the last out of ninth (after allowing a hit), becoming the first position player to pitch for the Cubs since July 3, 1999, when Gary Gaetti did it.
• The Red Sox got a strong performance by Daisuke Matsuzaka and picked up their seventh victory in 19 games, beating the Royals 5-1.
• The Indians have been held scoreless in 36 of the past 39 innings after left-hander Brett Anderson and the Oakland Athletics beat them 3-0. In his second start since returning from Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery, Anderson allowed two hits — the first on an apparent blown call by Jerry Meals in the fifth — over seven innings.
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