The Wrap: NL (Hosted Games)
Quote of the Night:
"He got himself in trouble, but he pitched out of it. He threw a lot of pitches early. I didn't think he was going to make it to the fifth inning, but he settled down and got a lot of first-pitch outs."
-- Braves Manager Bobby Cox on the best start of young pitcher Tommy Hanson's career.
Braves 7, Reds 0
The Braves were not about to be swept. With the combination of new additions Nate McLouth -- the outfielder gleaned from the Pirates -- and Tommy Hanson -- the superhyped rookie pitcher -- the Braves pushed past a surging Reds squad that had a sweep on its mind. Hanson not only shut out Cincinnati, he also added his first hit and RBI of what could be a long major league career. The Braves also got three shutout innings from their bullpen, including a one-two-three ninth inning of all strikeouts from closer Rafael Soriano.
Blue Jays 8, Phillies 7
Another day, another great escape for Toronto. The Blue Jays rallied to sweep the Phillies, using a tiebreaking homer from catcher Rod Barajas in the top of the ninth to push past a suddenly reeling Philadelphia, which has suddenly lost five of its past six games in interleague action. The dinger made a winner of Jason Frasor, despite a blown save for the reliever. And all of that made a big mess of the Phillies, who have to figure out how to turn around a suddenly reeling stretch.
Cubs 6, White Sox 5
Just when it looked like the Cubs were falling apart, the Chicago Northsiders put together a furious, five-run rally in the final two innings of Thursday's intra-city series finale for a dramatic win at Wrigley Field. The five-run rampage made a winner of Cubs closer Kevin Gregg, who pitched a one-hit top of the ninth to finish off the White Sox for a much needed win.
Rockies 4, Rays 3
Game, set, rubber-match Rockies. Colorado scored its four runs in the third and fourth innings, then leaned on solid pitching from Ubaldo Jimenez, who lasted 6 2/3 innings while allowing just a single run for this third straight win. Closer Houston Street scuffled to record his 15th save, but he got the job done, despite allowing Tampa Bay within a run.
Padres 4, Mariners 3
It took 10 innings, but San Diego finally got an interleague win. Adrian Gonzalez scored the winning run in the bottom of the 10th when he was knocked in by Kevin Kouzmanoff, capping an impressive four-hit day for the first baseman, whose 23rd homer tied Albert Pujols for the major league lead. Closer Heath Bell earned his third win of the season with two innings of one-hit ball, finishing off four scoreless innings by San Diego relief pitching in the win.
Tigers 6, Cardinals 3
Exactly how good is Rick Porcello? Clearly, he's pretty stinking good. The Detroit rookie almost singlehandedly knocked off the Cardinals, keeping his team from being swept by holding St. Louis to three runs after watching his teammates score four in the first inning. Placido Polanco and catcher Gerald Laird later added solo homers for Detroit, which snapped a four-game losing streak with the win.
Dodgers 3, A's 2
Now Joe Torre is ahead of Sparky Anderson. The Dodgers manager won his 2,195th regular season game, breaking his tie for fifth all time with the managerial legend in a tight win over Oakland on Thursday night. Second baseman Orlando Hudson had the big hit for L.A., homering in the third to tie the game before watching his team rally after Oakland tied the game in the top of the seventh, scoring a run of their own to take the win. Ramon Troncoso earned his fourth save while spelling Jonathan Broxton with a perfect two-batter performance in the ninth, picking up where Ronald Belisario had left off.
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