Each and every weekday a.m. let's rise and shine together to celebrate the hardest hits and the prettiest passes the National Football League has to offer. Today's Roll Call starts at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., where the Patriots hang on after blowing an early 10-0 lead. Richard Seymour preserves the victory for New England by blocking Nick Folk's 48-yard field-goal attempt as time expires.
GotD: Red Sox 19, Rangers 17
X: Ten runs just don't buy what they used to. Papi goes semi-Tatis, hitting a pair of three-run bawmz to help the Bostons drop a dime on the Rangers in the first. But 10 runs ain't nothin', especially at the Fens, to the majors' best offense, and Chuck Norris' guys take a 16-15 lead in the sixth. Feldman from Accounting was off the hook, the first major leaguer to give up 12 runs (six earned) and not get stuck with the loss since the Cardinals' Gene Packard allowed 12 and still beat the Phillies in 1918 — the same year a flu pandemic killed up to 40 million people. And the Red Sox won a World Series, blah, blah, blah.
Y: Like Ortiz, Kevin Youkilis hits a pair of homers, including a go-ahead three-run liner off a sign atop of the Green Monster in the eighth. The 36 combined runs tied an AL record, set by Boston-Philadelphia on June 29, 1950. Jamie Moyer turned 21 that summer.
Z: Knuckleballer Charlie Zink — a name that sounds appropriate to the Red Sox, for some reason — tried unsuccessfully to hold Tim Wakefield's jock. The back of Boston's bullpen stopped the madness. Happy Papelbon to you.
* * *
Feelin' Rundown (the non-Hulk results from Tuesday's action):
Rays 3, A's 2, Rays 1: No cheating allowed in blogging. Rays lose. Another five-inning start for Kazmir, which would drive me nuts, if I weren't already there. Moment of silence for Huston Street as a closer (lots of A's fans have been clamoring for it), but Brad Ziegler has been awesome in middle relief, and seems like a swell guy. Welcome him. Please, no petting.
Yankees 9, Twins 6 (12 inn.): If they had lost this one, Li'l Steinbrenner was set to buy all three major New York-area airports to keep the Yanks from landing after the road trip.
White Sox 9, Royals 0: Javier Vazquez is the worst good pitcher in baseball, just as likely to strike out 10 as he is to allow multiple homers. If the Sox hang on/overtake/whatever the Twinkies and win the AL Central, Vazquez will get hammered in Game 3 of the ALDS. In the year 2000! ...
D-backs 4, Rockies 2: Adam Dunn in right field, Conor Jackson in left. Instinct says to pray for Chris Young in center. Well, baseball instinct says to pray. You should say your prayers (and eat your vitamins, my little Hulkamaniacs) for Darfur, or the troops, or for the sick kids.
Astros 12, Giants 4: Berkman goes granny. Tim Lincecum goes gimpy after a batted ball strikes him in a knee. Seriously, without Lincecum, Aaron Rowand's going to have to start running face-first into the fence on every play for the Giants to be interesting. Lou Seal chasing Peter Magowan around, Benny Hill-style, also would work. And the Candlestick Crazy Crab playing third base. Hang on, we have an announcement. The Astros are over .500. Happy, fella from yesterday?
Dodgers 4, Phillies 3: Hamels pitches just well enough to not win — again. Rooting for a tie in the NL West and a three-way (tie) in the NL East. They'll be playing baseball into December trying to figure it all out. Wha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! Ha-ha-ha! Ha!
Marlins 4, Cardinals 3: Oh, Hanley. Well you came and you hit a three-run homer. In the bottom of the second. Oh, Hanley. And then no one did nothing for the rest of the game. So why did we stay here for seven more innings? Oh, Hanley.
Angels 7, Mariners 3: Angels are to the AL West like the invaders in Independence Day were to Earth. Except prettier. K-Rawd now 11 saves behind Bobby Thigpen's 1990 record. He's had no fewer than 10 saves in any month so far, so he's probably going to destroy the mark. Will MLB bring in Thiggy's (and Roger Maris') family for the record-breaking moment?
Blue Jays 6, Tigers 4: True story: Detroit is entirely north of Canada. Despite two homers by Gary "On Waivers, But Almost Everybody's On Waivers This Time of Year So Don't Read Much Into It And He's Making $14 Million Next Year So He Won't Be Claimed And/Or Traded Anyway" Sheffield, who plays for that dastardly curmudgeon named Jim Leyland, the Ontarians are successful in taking back part of the L.P.
Indians 7, Orioles 5: Ninety-two wins takes the AL Central. If the Tribe, who have won five straight, can finish 38-6, it's theirs.
Reds 5, Pirates 1: Micah Owings (he is SO April) on the way to the Reds, Hal McCoy reports, in the Adam Dunn deal. The move will put 20 points on his slugging percentage. Owings', not McCoy's. McCoy will continue to slug about .460.
Brewers 5, Padres 2: The Broowe Croowe now 7-0 since Prince Rogers Fielder told Manny Parra to have a seat and Parra, in turn, told Prince to have another veggie burger. Braun's back. Forced him to sit out for a third straight game. (Gotcha?) Is it karma for thrice weaseling out of an Answer Man interview? Did I say that out loud?
Cubs at Braves, ppd. (rain): Tears for Skip Caray. Coming up next on the Superstation after Braves baseball, Patrick Swayze stars in "Roadhouse."
* * *
Photo of the Day: Sir Sidney begs for another chance
"I swear I left my car keys somewhere around here. Just gimme a sec."
* * *
Edinson Volquez (Reds) 6 2/3 IP, 5 H, ER, 3 BB, 5 K, Win
Ian Kinsler (Rangers) 2-5, HR, 4 RBI
Marlon Byrd (Rangers) 5-6, 4 R, 3 RBI
Chris Davis (Rangers) 2-5, 2 R, 4 RBI
Dustin Pedroia (Red Sox) 5-6, 5 R, 2 RBI
Ortiz (Red Sox) 3-4, 4 R, 2 HR, 6 RBI
Youkilis (Red Sox) 2-5, 2 HR, 5 RBI
Sheff (F.A.?) 2-4, 2 HR
Berkman (Astros) 1-4, HR, 4 RBI
Xavier Nady (Yankees) 2-5, HR, 4 RBI
Vazquez (White Sox) 8 IP, 5 H, BB, 10 K, Win
Jeff Suppan (Brewers) 8 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, Win
* * *
(Negativity gets the night off)
* * *
Words of Mouth
"At some point, you're thinking about going for a field goal." — Red Sox manager Terry Francona.