2006 April

1st  The Rangers trade OF David Dellucci to the Phillies in exchange for pitcher Robinson Tejeda and OF Jake Blalock, brother of Texas outfielder Hank.

2ndThe White Sox open the season with a 10-4 win over the Indians. Jim Thome homers in his first game for the Hose and Brandon McCarthy gets the win in relief in a game that is held up nearly 3 hours because of rain.

3rdThe Cardinals down the Phillies, 13-5, in their season opener. Jimmy Rollins strokes an 8thinning double for Philadelphia, extending his 2-season hitting streak to 37 games.

The Orioles open their season with a 9-6 win over the Devil Rays. CF Luis Matos becomes the first player in Orioles history to homer in back-to-back opening days since Frank Robinson in 1969-70.

The Florida Marlins set a modern major-league record by starting six rookies in their opener. They collect five hits but no runs as they lose to the Astros, 1–0.  Roy Oswalt goes 8 innings for the win.

The Red Sox become the first team to start an Opening Day infield that has none of the team’s starting infielders from the previous postseason. The Sox open with Mike Lowell-3B, Alex Gonzalez-SS, Loretta-2B, Youkiles-1B. Lowell homers as does David Ortiz to back Curt Schilling’s win, 7–3. Schilling’s batterymate, .Jason Varitek is the first Red Sox catcher to start Opening Day for seven straight seasons.

The Yankees roll by the A’s, 15-2 as Alex Rodriguez has a grand slam and 5 RBI. Hideki Matsui has 4 hits, including a 3-run homer, to drive in 4. Randy Johnson, with 7 IP, is the recipient of the offense. A’s starter Barry Zito joins Brad Havens (1983) and Dave Stewart (1995) as the only Opening Day starters since 1945 to give up seven or more runs and record just four outs. The A’s are wearing a right-sleeve arm patch on their home uniforms in memory of Bill King, their lead radio announcer since 1981. The patch features a microphone emblazoned with King’s name and his signature call, “Holy Toledo.” The Blue Jays are paying tribute to Tom Cheek who broadcast 4,306 consecutive regular-season games beginning with the team’s first ever in 1977. The team will wear a left-sleeve arm patch featuring a microphone and the initials “TC.”

Anaheim tips the Marines in their season opener, 5–4, when Orlando Cabrera drives in 2 runs in the top of the 9thwith his 3rdhit of the game. Mariner Kenji Johjima became the first catcher in 122 years to homer in his first game in the majors; the last catcher to accomplish the feat was Jerry Moore in 1884.

4thThe Padres-Giants contest is wiped out due to rain. It is the first home rainout for San Diego in 2,884 days.

5thThe Tigers defeat the Royals, 14-3. C Ivan Rodriguez leads the Detroit attack with 5 hits, including 3 doubles and a HR, while CF Curtis Granderson adds a HR.  Tiger pitcher Jeremy Bonderman allows a run in 6 2/3 IP.  The Tigers will win again tomorrow and set a record for the most homeruns (15) in the first three games of a season.

Paced by Torii Hunter’s 4 hits, including a grand slam, and 6 RBI, the Twins roll to a 13-4 win over the Angels. Shannon Stewart and Luis Rodriguez also homer to back Brad Radke’s 6 innings and a win.

The A’s use a five-run 8thto beat the visiting Yankees, 9-4. Yankees RF Gary Sheffield hits his 450th career HR and passes Frank Thomas and Jeff Bagwell into 28th place on the all time HR list. Thomas, now playing for the A’s, has some satisfaction, collecting 3 RBI.

Dwight Gooden is sentenced to a year + a day in prison for violating his probation by using cocaine.

In the Reds 8-6 victory over the Cubs, Ken Griffey Jr. hits the 537thHR of his career to move past Mickey Mantle into 12thposition on the all-time list. Winning pitcher Bronson Arroyo clubs his first ML homer, off Glendon Rusch.  He’ll hit another off Rusch in two weeks.

The Phils Jimmy Rollins has a single in 4-3 loss to Cards to run his consecutive game hit streak to 38. Skip Schumaker hits his first ML homer and Albert Pujols also homers.

6thUsing his newly perfected knuckleball, Texas pitcher R.A. Dickey ties a post-1900 major league record by surrendering six HRs to the Tigers in a 10-6 Detroit victory. The only ML pitcher to give up more homers was Charlie Sweeney of the St. Louis Maroons who allowed seven to the Detroit Wolverines (AA) on June 12, 1886. It is Dickey’s last ML appearance for the next two years. Detroit clouts 7 round-trippers in the contest, and sets a major league record with 15 homers in their first three games, breaking the mark of 10, set by the 1998 Mariners. The Tigers set a team record for any 3-game span, breaking the mark of 14, set in 1997.

The Phillies lose their 3rdstraight game to the Cardinals, 4-2, and Jimmy Rollins loses his 38-game hitting streak as he is held hitless in 4 ABs. Rollins hit .379 (64-for-169) during his two-season streak and fell just 7 games short of the all-time record of 45 held by Willie Keeler. “Wee Willie” got a hit in the final game of the 1896 season then posted at least one safety in 44 straight games to begin 1897. Rollins joins Vada Pinson (31 games 1965-66), Ron LeFlore (31 games 1975-76) and Hal Morris (32 games 1996-97) as the only players since 1960 with 30-gamers over two years.

Devil Rays pitcher Mark Hendrickson hurls a complete game 3-hit shutout, defeating the Orioles, 2-0. It is the first complete game shutout for TB since 2003. The streak of 349 consecutive games without a complete game shutout is 2ndin AL history behind the 1994-96 Brewers (386).

Pedro Feliz honors three former major-leaguers (including his own manager, Felipe Alou) when he drives in Barry Bonds, Moises Alou and Lance Niekro with a bases-clearing double during the Giants’ six-run 3rd against the Braves’ against Jorge Sosa. According to Dave Vincent, Feliz is the first major-leaguer in the last 49 years to drive in three sons of ex-major-leaguers on the same play. Further research reveals that it is only the 11th time since 1957 that three sons of big leaguers were on base at the same time. Doing some record setting of their own in the 6-4 loss, Brave batterymates Brian McCann (C) and Jorge Sosa (P) became only the 11th such duo to hit back-to-back homers in the majors when they go yard consecutively. It is the first ML hit and homer for Sosa, who will have two more hits, both homers, this year.

7thThe Tigers defeat the Rangers, 5-2, as Chris Shelton becomes the 3rdplayer to hit 5 HRs in his teams first 4 games. Lou Brock (1967) and Barry Bonds (2002) are the others who have accomplished the feat.

The Brewers down the Diamondbacks, 3-1, for their 4thconsecutive win. Derrick Turnbow gets the save for Milwaukee, becoming the 1stpitcher to save each of his team’s first 4 games of the season since the save became an official statistic in 1969.

At Camden Yards, Roger Clemens is lifted after giving up 4 runs in the 7th, but wins his first of the year as the Red Sox prevail, 14-8. Trot Nixon has a 2-run homer and 4 RBIs, noteworthy in that the Red Sox go to the plate a ML-record 16 times in the game with the bases loaded. The next team to match this will be the 2011 Yankees, who will hit a record 3 grand slams in the game.

8thBarry Zito, Kiko Calero, Joe Kennedy, and Huston Street combine to 1-hit the Mariners as the Athletics cruise to a 3-0 victory. Richie Sexson’s 2nd-inning 2B is Seattle’s only hit.

The Giants double the Braves, 12-6. The Giants starting outfield of Barry Bonds (41), Steve Finley (41), and Moises Alou (39) is the oldest in ML history.

9thAs the Rockies down the Padres, 10-4, Colorado OF Cory Sullivan ties a ML record by hitting 2 triples in the 5thinning. He is the fifth major leaguer to do so and the first since Gil Coan in 1951. The last N.L. player to hit 2 triples in a frame was Curt Walker in 1926.

The Cubs use a five-run 8thto double the Cards, 8-4.  The big blow is Michael Barrett’s grand slam off Jason Isringhausen. Cubs SS Ronny Cedeno has 4 hits. In his debut, starter Sean Marshall becomes the 1,800th Cubs player.

In the Indians 3–2 win over the Twins, Bob Wickman passes Doug Jones to become the Indians all-time saves leader when he earns his 130th save. Johan Santana (0-2) gives up all 3 Tribe runs.

Travis Haffner gets his own candy as the Pronk bar is released by Malley’s Chocolate of Cleveland.  Haffner announces it is the best candy bar he’s ever tasted.

10thThe Cardinals defeat the Brewers, 6-4, in the 1stgame played in the new $365 million Busch Stadium in St. Louis. The new stadium will seat 40,713 through July 12 and 46,861 after that date. Mark Mulder gets credit for the victory, and also hits a HR in the contest.

Tampa Bay loses to the Orioles, 6–3, in the Devil Ray’s home opener. The sellout crowd is just the fourth sell-out at their home park, Tropicana Field, since they began playing there in 1998.

11thIn the Yankees home Opener, the Bronx Bombers use a 5-run 8thto up end the Royals, 9-7. Derek Jeter’s 3-run homer is the big blow in the frame. Jason Giambi hits 3-run homer in the 1stto start the Yankee scoring. Yankee Stadium public address announcer Bob Sheppard misses the game due to a hip injury; Sheppard hadn’t missed an opener since he began his announcing gig in 1951, a period of 55 years or 20,083 days.

Japanese outfielder Tomoaki Kanemoto sets a new world record for playing every inning in the most consecutive games, 904, breaking Cal Ripken’s record of 903.

The California Supreme Court rules 6-1 that being hit in the head is “an inherent risk of baseball” and, therefore, a junior college player cannot sue to recover damages caused by a beaning he suffered in 2001.

At RFK Stadium, Vice-president Dick Cheney throws out the first ball and the Mets proceed to beat the Nationals, 7-1. Brian Bannister allows one hit in 7 innings. Greeted with loud boos and some cheers, Cheney’s pitch is short of home. He wore a Nationals jacket that seemed bulky, possibly filled out with a bulletproof vest.  He was the first vice president to throw out the first ball since Hubert Humphrey in 1968. Placido Domingo sings the National Anthem.

Anthony Velazquez sets a high school record as he throws his second consecutive perfect game. The junior at Bayside High in New York City, who goes by the nickname “Tiki,” recorded his first perfecto on April 11 against John Browne High then followed with another slice of perfection against Flushing High. The only other U.S. high school pitchers to throw two perfect games in their careers were Ken Beardslee in the late 1940s and L.J. Grantham in 1958 and 1959.

12thThe Rangers pound the Angels, 11-3. Vladimir Guerrero singles in the 4thinning, and has now hit safely in all 39 career games against Texas. It is the longest streak by any player against one team since divisional play began in 1969.

13thThe Dodgers rout the Pirates, 13-5, with the help of 7 RBIs from reserve Cody Ross, who hits a grand slam and 3-run HR in successive at bats. Ross becomes one of the few MLers in history to begin his career by hitting grand slams for each of his first two homers. The only other active player to perform the feat was Craig Counsell in 1997-98.

At Dolphins Stadium, the Marlins jump on Padres starter Dewon Brazleton (0-2) for 8 runs en route to a 9-2 win. For Brazelton, it is his last his last career decision and he ends with a ML-record 0-17 on the road. His record in his home park is 8-8.

14thThe Pirates place 1B Sean Casey on the 16 day DL after John Mabry inadvertently strikes Casey in the back with his elbow. Casey suffers 2 fractures in his lower back and is expected to miss 6-8 weeks. The Bucs will call up utilityman Mike Edwards and move pitcher Kip Wells from the 15 to the 60-day DL.

Kevin Millwood of the Rangers tops Barry Zito of the A’s as both go 7 innings in the 6-3 Texas win. Frank Thomas of the A’s hits his 200thHR as a DH to join Babe Ruth and Ernie Banks as the only big-leaguers to hit 200 or more homers at two different positions. Ruth hit 357 as a right fielder and 313 as a left fielder, Banks hit 210 as a first baseman and 277 as a shortstop. Thomas hit 249 as a first baseman.

15thThe Athletics edge the Rangers, 5-4. Oakland gets back-to-back-to-back HRs from Eric Chavez, Frank Thomas and Milton Bradley in the 6thinning off 3 consecutive pitches.

The Cardinals triple the Reds, 9–3, taking a 6–0 lead after three innings. Albert Pujols homers and Hector Luna homers and drives in three runs. Scott Spiezio’s adds a seventh inning pinch home run, to join his father, Ed, as the first father-son duo to have each homer for the Redbirds. The senior Spiezio played for the club from 1964 to 1968 hitting five long balls. It was the 28th time that a father and son have hit at least one homer for the same major-league team.

16thIn St. Louis, Albert Pujols slugs 3 consecutive HRs, including a walk-off shot in the 9th, to help the Cardinals to an 8-7 win over the Reds. It is the 2ndthree-HR game in Pujols’ career.

The Phillies defeat the Rockies, 1-0, behind Brett Myers and 2 relievers. It is only the 2nd1-0 game in the 1one-year history of Coors Field.

Braves pitcher John Smoltz outduels Jake Peavy as he allows 4 hits to beat the Padres, 2-0.

Curse of the bobblehead? On Huston Street bobblehead day, the closer relieves with the A’s ahead of Texas, 3–1, in the 9th. He gives up four runs on five hits, including a 2-run homer by Mark Teixeira, and takes the 5–3 loss. Eric Chavez is 4-for-4 with 2 doubles for the A’s.

17thThe Cardinals edge the Pirates, 2-1. In the first inning, Albert Pujols ties a ML record by hitting a HR in his 4thconsecutive AB. Jason Marquis makes the 2-run homer stand up by pitching 8 innings and allowing one run.

The Giants score 3 runs in the last 2 innings to edge to host Diamondbacks, 10-9. Diamondback reliever Casey Daigle joins his wife Jennie Finch to become the only husband-wife team to strike out Barry Bonds; Finch, the Olympic softball star, struck out Bonds for a bit on “This Week in Baseball” last summer and Daigle whiffs Bonds in the 6th.

After the Mariners take a 9thinning lead at Fenway, the Sox answer when Mark Loretta hits a 2-out, 2-run homer to give Boston a 7–6 win. David Ortiz hits a pair of homers in the game. The Red Sox tied an obscure record by winning their 18th straight one-run game at Fenway going back to last season; only two other major-league teams did this, the 1925-26 St. Louis Browns and the 1963-64 Baltimore Orioles.

The Mets defeat the Braves, 4-3, to give Pedro Martinez his 200thcareer win. By winning, New York opens up a 5-game lead over the 2ndplace Braves, making them the first team in big league history to build a cushion that big after only 12 games of the season.

18thThe NL Central leaders, the Houston Astros (10-4), reach the .500 mark as a franchise when they even their record at 3,507-3,507. But it isn’t easy as they edge the Brewers, 13-12. Milwaukee scores 10 runs in the last three innings on 2 homers by Carlos Lee and one by Prince Fielder. Roy Oswalt (3-0) is the winning pitcher.  The Astros join 12 other clubs with overall records of .500 or better.

Washington tops the Phillies, 10-3, putting the game away with 2 runs in the 8thand 4 more in the 9th. Ryan Church connects for a grand slam against Geoff Geary in the 9th.

Houston scores 10 runs in the first 3 innings against the Brewers, then has to hold on as Milwaukee scores 10 in the last 3 innings. The Astros win, 13-12. Morgan Ensberg has 3 hits, including a pair of homers, while Carlos Lee has 4 hits, including a pair of homers.

19thA bird flies into the visiting clubhouse at Camden Yards in Baltimore about two hours before game time. As soon as it lands on the carpet, it reportedly strolls directly over to the locker of Cleveland Indians pitcher Paul Byrd. The Orioles then flip the bird to the Indians, pummeling them 18-9 on 21 hits. Each team hits three homers with the Orioles getting three-run homers from Ramon Hernandez and Jay Gibbons. Every starter for the Birds records a multi-hit game.

The Cubs (9-5) score three unearned runs in the 8thto beat the Dodgers, 5–4, but lose Derrek Lee, who breaks two bones in his right wrist in a collision at first base. When he returns to action on June 25, the club will be 28-45.

20thAccording to Forbesmagazine, the New York Yankees are the 1stbaseball team valued at more than $1 billion.

The Mets rally for 6 runs in the 8thinning and defeat the Padres, 7-2. Julio Franco hits a pinch 2-run HR in the inning to become the oldest player in history, at age 47, to hit a homer. He surpasses the record set by Philadelphia A’s pitcher Jack Quinn in 1930 who homered at 46 years and 357 days of age. Kaz Matsui hits an inside-the-park HR in the 3rdinning, making him the 1stperson in ML history to homer in his first AB of the season in each of his first 3 seasons.

The Nationals down the Phillies, 10-4, to give Frank Robinson his 1,000thwin as a manager. He is the 53rdskipper to reach the milestone.

21stThe Blue Jays defeat the Red Sox, 7-6, in 12 innings despite a pair of HRs by Manny Ramirez. Ramirez becomes the 4thperson in ML history to hit 200 or more homers for 2 different teams—Cleveland and Boston. Jimmie Foxx, Mark McGwire, and Rafael Palmeiro also performed the feat. The Jays score 4 runs in the 8thon 3 homers—by Russ Adams, Wells and Troy Glaus, then score the winner in the 12thon Lyle Overbay’s double off of Rudy Seanez.

The White Sox hold their annual Dog Day celebration and attract 325 canines in addition to the 31,827 humans. Behind Mark Buerhle (3-0) they make the Twins heel, 7–1, beating Johan Santana (0-3).

The Rangers down the Devil Rays, 13-7. Michael Young gets 5 hits for Texas, including 3 doubles.

Washington beats Atlanta, 7-3, as Alfonso Soriano clouts four extra base hits—three homers and a double.

The Astros edge the Pirates, 3-2, as Morgan Ensberg homers for the 6thconsecutive game, a new Houston club record.

Albert Pujols blasts a two-run homer for the 1,000th hit of his career, and drives in 4 runs as the Cards deal the visiting Cubs a 9-3 defeat.  Pujols, at 26 years and 95 days of age, is the sixth-youngest player among active major-leaguers to reach that milestone. Ken Griffey, Jr., was the youngest reaching the 1,000 mark in 1995 when he was 25 years and 268 days old.

22nd The Brewers shut out the Reds, 11-0. Milwaukee ties a ML record with 5 HRs in the 4thinning, four of them off of Brandon Claussen, tying another record. Bill Hall, Damian Miller, Brady Clark, JJ Hardy, and Prince Fielder (off reliever Chris Hammond) all connect in the frame. It is only the fifth time in major-league history that a team has gone yard five times in one frame. It’s happened four times in the N.L, all against Reds pitching, and just once in the A.L.

Arizona takes a 5-0 against Los Angeles and hangs on for a 5-4 win.  Chad Trace is 4-for-4 with 3 doubles for the D’Backs.  Kenny Lofton of the Dodgers joins Steve Finley of the Giants as the only active players with 100 career triples when he hits a three-bagger. Lofton is playing for his 10thteam, just the 10th major-leaguer to do so. He joins Todd Zeile and Tommy Davis as the only position players to work for that many.

23rdJason Giambi has two homers and a double to drive in five runs in the Yankees 7-1 win over the Orioles. Orioles SS Miguel Tejada is the total offense with 4 hits including a homer. He has all 3 that winning pitcher Randy Johnson gives up and one more off of Mo Rivera, for all 4 hits for Baltimore, tying a ML mark.

The Cubs place Derrek Lee on the D.L. with a fractured right wrist. They were 9-5 before his injury; they’ll go 9-23 without him.

24thAt Houston, Nomar Garciaparra hits a grand slam as the Dodgers score 5 runs in the 9thinning and beat the Astros, 6-2.

The Dodgers trade OF Cody Ross to Cincinnati Reds for a player to be named later (Ben Kozlowski (June 1, 2006). The Reds waste no time in moving Ross, selling him in two days to the Marlins for $1. Money well spent, Ross will hit 24 homers and 90 RBIs in 2009.

25thThe Red Sox beat the Indians, 8-6. Jonathan Papelbon records his 9thsave in 9 chances, tying the ML record for saves by a rookie in April. KC’s Mike MacDougal set the mark in 2003. The win goes to Keith Foulke, who pitches one inning in relief of Curt Schilling, who throws 133 pitches in 6 2/3 innings.  David Ortiz homers in the 7thand Manny Ramirez hits a 3-run homer in the 8th.

The Mets top the Giants, 5–1, as Barry Bonds hits #710. He is now four homers behind Ruth.

26thThe Royals defeat the Twins, 3-1. Minnesota becomes the 3rdteam in AL history to trail in each of their first 20 games of the season, joining the 1910 Browns (28) and 1988 Orioles (21).

The Diamondbacks edge the Padres, 3-2. Mike Piazza hits his 400thcareer HR in the 9thinning for SD.

Barry Bonds hits a 2-out 2-run pinch homer in 9thto give the Giants a 7-7 tie with the Mets, but the New Yorkers score a pair in the 11thto win, 9-7. Barry lines out to end the game. Earlier, Julio Franco hits a 2-run pinch single, then swipes 2B, the oldest player in 97 years to steal a base. Arlie Latham, a player-coach for the New York Giants, set the record by swiping a bag on August 18, 1909 in a 14-1 laugher when he was 49 years old.

Oakland defeats Texas, 6-4. Texas closer Francisco Cordero sets a ML record with his 5thblown save of the month, a new mark for April.

The Reds shut out the Nationals, 5-0, as Bronson Arroyo, Kent Mercker, and David Weathers combine for a 1-hitter. Ryan Zimmerman’s 4thinning single is Washington’s only hit.

In Creighton’s 9-1 loss to the Kansas Jayhawks, Creighton reliever Pat Venditte tosses two perfect innings. The ambidextrous Venditte retires six batters, three right-handed and three left-handed, and records a strikeout with each arm. Nick Czyz allows one hit in the win.

27thThe Indians pound the Red Sox, 15-3. Ben Broussard hits a pair of homers and drives in 8 runs for Cleveland.

Tampa Bay’s top prospect Delmon Young is suspended indefinitely by the International League, a day after throwing a bat that hit a replacement umpire in the chest.

28thThe Indians edge the Rangers, 7-6. Kevin Mench homers in his 7thstraight game for Texas, becoming the 1stright-handed batter to ever do so.  It must be the shoes; Before the streak, Mench changed his shoe size from 12 to 12-1/2 on the advice of an orthotics specialist.

The Nationals defeat the Cardinals, 8-3. Albert Pujols hits his 13thHR for St. Louis, tying the ML record for homers in the month. Ken Griffey Jr. (1997) and Luis Gonzalez (2001) also homered 13 times in April.

The Reds beat the Astros, 5-4, defeating Roy Oswalt for the first time in their history. Oswalt had been 15-0 against Cincinnati, the only pitcher in ML history to record that mark against a team. Oswalt (4-1) gives up 3 runs in 6 innings pitched.

Mets minor league pitcher Yusaku Iriki is suspended for 50 games after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance, making him the first player to be penalized under MLB’s toughened steroid rules. Ten players have been suspended this season under the minor league program.

29thThe Cardinals’ Albert Pujols sets a new ML record by hitting his 14thHR for the month of April as St. Louis edges Washington, 2-1.

In a 17-6 win over Toronto, the Yankees became the 15th team to score in every inning (8 innings) in which they batted (excluding rain shortened games). It was the 2nd time in team history (1939) the Bombers score in every frame matching the Cleveland Spiders as the only team to score a run in every inning of a full-length game twice in franchise history; the Spiders accomplished the feat in 1889 and 1894. Yankees 1B Jason Giambi has a homer and 4 RBI and reaches base 4 times, while Johnny Damon scores 5 runs. Reed Johnson gets hit by pitches three times for the Jays. He joins Damion Easley as the only players since 1957 to be hit by a pitch three times in a game twice in their careers.

The Tigers pound out 23 hits as they maul the Twins, 18-1. Justin Verlander is the easy winner as batterymate Pudge Rodriguez has 4 hits and Carlos Guillen has 2 homers and 5 RBI.

Kansas City’s Reggie Sanders hits a 1st-inning grand slam off Estaban Loaiza of Oakland but loses it when the game is rained out in the 3rdinning.