The Juice: Twins' Kubel stuns Rivera, Yankees with big slam

Gather 'round, because it's time to recap the most recent diamond doings. Roll Call starts in the Bronx, where Jason Kubel(notes) struck a blow that got Yankees fans right in the gut.

Game of the Day: Twins 6, Yankees 3

What's it like to watch all of the air get sucked out of a baseball stadium? Check out Kubel, whose go-ahead granny against Mariano Rivera(notes) helped the Minnesota Twins break a nine-game losing streak against the Yankee Doodles. (Nine times. Twelve if you count the playoffs, which the Twins don't.)

"You probably should have recorded that. Take pictures. It's probably not something you will see often," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said of Rivera's off day. "He's the best in the game."

Well, if you'd just let me finish, Gardy, they *did* record it:

Watch the slam

If silence had a sound ...

So, Mr. Kubel, how does it feel to have ruined the day of 45,000 New Yorkers (plus two or three more watching on TV) and helped claim the Twinkies first victory in the Bronx since July 4, 2007?

"It's a pretty good feeling," Kubel said. "It's an even better feeling that we finally beat them."

The home run probably bugged Rivera, who had not allowed a run in 11 innings this season coming in, but he was really upset because he walked in a run the batter before.

Rivera also had converted 51 straight saves at home and and hadn't given up a grand slam since 2002. But he could not pitch out of the mess Joba Chamberlain(notes) helped create.

"You assume he's going to close every single game," Yankees slugger Mark Teixeira(notes) said. "If you ask people in New York, they probably think his save percentage is a thousand, because that's how good he is."

Kubel reminded them all that no one is perfect. Not even >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>.

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They Also Played

Reds 7, Cardinals 2: The Cardinals came into town in first place, but the Reds make them leave in second. How rude!

Tigers 5, Red Sox 1: Armando Galarraga(notes) > John Lackey(notes)? That's why I don't bet baseball games. He who gambles lives in shambles. ... Do you want to hand Jim Leyland the trophy, or should I? OK, here we go:

The Tigers are the first team to win four straight series at home against reigning playoff teams since 1995, when baseball began putting four teams in the postseason, according to STATS LLC.

It's actually just a good sign that the Tigers are a good team, and that's all we need to know.

Phillies 4, Brewers 2: Good news for the Brewers: Bernie got to slide down the slide on back-to-back homers by Corey Hart(notes) and Casey McGehee(notes) (who dressed up like one of the guys from Grand Funk Railroad).

Bad news: Everything else. The Crewers are 4-14 at the Sudsy Confines of Miller Park — and three of those wins came in the first week of the season. That makes them extra not-good at home ever since.

The Phillies got through a close game without Brad Lidge(notes), Ryan Madson(notes) or Jose Contreras(notes). J.C. Romero(notes) closed it out. You see? It is possible for everyday relief types to get saves. It's not THAT much different than pitching the sixth or seventh.

Angels 4, Athletics 0: A four-hitter for Joel Piñeiro, and the Halos make a stand with a sweep. That should get them going mentally.

Giants 4, Astros 3: Barry Zito(notes) rebounded from his first loss (even though losses for pitchers are for saps) with another solid start. He did allow his first home run of the season. Pretty amazing that it came eight starts in.

Rays 2, Mariners 1: Joe Maddon, ladies and germs:

"How about this: I've got defense and pitching as the ground game. Hitting is the passing game," Maddon began. "Right now we're playing a good ground game, and it seems to be working. And that's what I'm digging."

Marlins 10, Mets 8: Chris Coghlan(notes) probably had the biggest hit, a pinch-hit, three-run homer in the seventh to stall a Mets rally. The reigning NL ROY came in with an OPS — an OPS — of .507 and two extra-base hits all season.

After getting swept by the Fish, the Mets have gone from last place, to first place and back to last (as noted on the Twitter by Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman).

Royals 5, White Sox 3: Royals are 2-1 since firing Trey Hillman, so they're all set. ... There's a report the Rangers are interested in A.J. Pierzynski(notes). Might be time to break up the band. Smile, Ozzie!

Braves 13, D-backs 1: Tim Hudson(notes) didn't have no-hit stuff; but it was three-hit stuff. What the devil is wrong with Dan Haren(notes)? Do you know? If you do, send a postcard with the answer to A.J. Hinch.

Blue Jays 5, Rangers 2: Brandon Morrow(notes) has been much more inconsistent than simply "bad." This makes four quality starts in eight appearances and three of those were really solid.

Cubs 4, Pirates 3: Not rooting for one team or against another, but it would have been interesting to see what the reaction would have been if the Pirates had swept the Cubs at Wrigley. Way to mess everything up, CUBS!

Indians 5, Orioles 1: Manny Acta allowed Jake Westbrook(notes), coming off elbow reconstruction, to throw 116 pitches. He was going for a shutout, but I don't know about the wisdom of this.

Rockies 2, Nationals 1: Welcome back to the majors, Jeff Francis(notes). ... Tyler Clippard(notes) will have all of the Nationals decisions this season, it has been decided by the Council of Elders.

Dodgers 1, Padres 0: A pretty big sweep for the Dodgers (and a 6-0 road-trip swing) even though it's just May. But we'll see how annoying the injury to Andre Ethier's(notes) right pinkie becomes.

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Follow Dave on Twitter — @AnswerDave

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