1st Boston trims the Indians, 7–1, behind the strong pitching of Tim Wakefield, who doesn’t allow a hit before Matt Lawton’s HR in the 5th. Manny Ramirez and Brian Daubach hit back–to–back homers, and Johnny Damon scores 3 runs. Jim Thome reached 100 walks for the 4th consecutive year and the 6th time in his career. Thome is the only player in Indians history to ever have consecutive 100 walks seasons.
Arizona tips the Giants, 7–6, as Tony Womack smacks 2 homers and lays down a 9thinning bunt single to load the bases. David Pellucci follows with a 2-run double to win it. Jeff Kent has 2 RBIs to reach the 100-RBI mark for the 6thstraight time, a record for second basemen. D’Back pitchers continue to respect Barry Bonds, walking him 4 times today. They walked him twice yesterday and 4 rimes on the 30th, giving him 10 walks in three straight regulation-length games. Barry will have tomorrow off and get a walk on the 3rd.
2ndThe A’s defeat the Royals, 7–6, for their 19th straight victory to match the longest winning streak in AL history. The 1906 White Sox and the 1947 Yankees both reached 19.
The Dodgers pummel the Diamondbacks, 19–1, with only a 9thinning score preventing them from tying the team mark for most lopsided shutout ever. The 24 hits ties the mark for the team in Los Angeles. They score 8 of their runs in the 7th inning, with Beltre and Kinkade homering in the frame. The last hit for LA is the first ML homer by Dave Ross, and it comes off Mark Grace, who pitches the 9thinning. Grace brings down the house with his best impression of relief pitcher Mike Fetters, who is noted for taking a deep breath, staring at third base, and then jerking his head toward the batter and giving him an intense glare. He might look like Mike Fetters but he pitches like Mrs. Fetters giving up four runs.
The Cubs beat the Brewers, 17–4, to salvage a split in their doubleheader after Milwaukee takes the opener by a score of 4–2 on solo homers by Ron Belliard (2), Eric Young and Jose Hernandez. Glendon Rusch wins his 8thstraight over the Cubs. Chicago P Kerry Wood ties a ML record in the second game by fanning four Brewers in the 4th inning. Wood also homers off Andrew Lorraine, one of 5 gophers he serves up. Another is Sammy Sosa’s 494thhomer, moving him ahead of Lou Gehrig on the all-time list.
Four pitchers post their first win of the year:
Braden Looper (1–5) in his 66th relief appearance of the year, extends the Mets home losing streak to 15 in the 12–inning first game of a doubleheader. Florida wins 3–2. Preston Wilson ties the game in the 9thwith a HR, and Juan Encarnacion wins it with an RBI double. The Mets take the nightcap, 11–5, overcoming back-to-back home runs in the 2ndby Derrek Lee and Mike Lowell. Mike Piazza drills a pinch 3-run HR. The win snaps the Mets home loss streak at 15 games, a NL record set the 1911 Braves. They last won at home on July 31.
Rauch (1–1), the tallest pitcher in major league history lowers his career ERA from 9.82 to 9.72 with 2 ER in 2 IP in his first appearance since May 2. The White Sox win, 5–4, as Jose Valentin hits a pair of homers, the 2ndsnapping a tie.
Pittsburgh’s Salomon Torres (1–0), pitching in the majors for the first time since July 20, 1997, starts and goes 8.1 scoreless innings against the Braves. He also collects his first hit since 1994. as the Pirates win, 3–0. Torres, 30, retired as an active player in 1997 and served as Montreal’s pitching coach in the Dominican Summer League before signing with Pittsburgh in January. Fortunately for the Braves, only 18,931 fans, the smallest crowd in Turner Field history, see the game.
3rdThree Rangers pitchers combine to one–hit the Orioles, winning by a score of 7–1. Starter Aaron Myette was ejected after throwing two pitches and replaced by Todd Van Poppel who threw 2 hitless innings. Van Poppel was in turn replaced by rookie Joaquin Benoit who did not give up a hit until Jerry Hairston’s leadoff triple in the 9th. Benoit got credit for a 7–inning save, the longest since saves were first recorded in 1969.
Pittsburgh P Salomon Torres makes his first ML appearance since 1997 as he defeats the Braves, 3–0. Torres retired in 1997, became a coach in the Dominican Republic, then began his comeback in January.
Andy Van Hekken (1–0), with a fastball topping out in the mid–80s, becomes the first American Leaguer to throw a complete game shutout in his debut since Mike Norris in 1975, and the first Tiger since Schoolboy Rowe in 1933. He stops Cleveland 4–0. The Holland, Michigan native was 5–0 at Toledo (AAA) before his promotion.
The Mets lose the first game of their doubleheader against the Marlins, 3–2, but bounce back to take the nightcap, 11–5. The loss in the opener sets a new NL record for consecutive home losses with 15. The AL mark is 20.
4thThe Athletics set an AL record by defeating the Royals, 12–11, for their 20th straight win. Oakland blows an 11–0 lead, but scores in the bottom of the 9th on Scott Hatteberg’s pinch homer for the game winner.
Aaron Myette, ejected yesterday for 2 pitches behind Mora, starts today’s game, allowing 6 of the 11 walks in an 8–3 loss to Baltimore. According to the New York Times, it is the first back to back start by a pitcher since Steve McCatty in 1980 [though 5 pitchers—Dennis Martinez (Baltimore), Bert Blyleven (Cleveland), Pete Vuckovich (Milwaukee), Rick Langford (Oakland), and Juan Eichelberger (San Diego).made the last start before the 1981 strike and the first start after].
By beating the Dodgers, 7–1, Randy Johnson (20-5) wins his 20thto join Arizona teammate Curt Schilling. Big Unit strikes out 8 in his CG victory. Only Sean Green’s 40thhomer, with 2 out in the 9th, prevents the shutout. Matt Williams, with a 3 run homer, and Steve Finley hit back-to-back homers off Allan Ashby in the 1stto provide Johnson with his cushion.
5thAnaheim beats Tampa Bay, 10–1, as OF Garret Anderson homers twice and drives home 7 runs.
Texas pounds Baltimore, 11–2, as SS Alex Rodriguez homers twice to give him 50 for the year. He becomes the 5th player in history to record successive 50–HR seasons.
6thThe Twins shut out the A’s, 6–0, to end Oakland’s AL–record winning streak at 20 games.
The Cardinals defeat the Cubs, 11–2, as brothers Andy and Alan Benes oppose each other in the 7th matchup of brothers in ML history. Andy gets the win while Alan takes the loss. The Cards score all 11 of their runs in the 3rd inning as Andy has two hits, both off his brother.
7th The Tigers defeat the Yankees, 2–1. Detroit 1B Eric Munson hits a HR in his 1st ML at bat.
Texas pounds Tampa Bay, 11–2, with Herbert Perry’s 3–run home run being the big blow. The round–tripper enables the Rangers to tie a ML record of hitting homers in 25 consecutive games.
8thThe Rangers set a ML record by homering in their 26th consecutive game as Texas falls to Tampa Bay, 6–3. Rafael Palmeiro’s solo shot in the 6th inning is the record–breaker. The streak will be ended at 27 games on the 10th.
The Mariners score 8 runs in the 11th inning and go on to defeat the Royals, 16–9. This ties the AL mark for most runs by a team in the 11th, last tied in 1991.
In Houston’s 6–2 win at Los Angeles, Dodger P Kazuhisa Ishii is struck by a line drive off the bat of Brian Hunter that fractures his skull. Ishii will be out of action until next spring.
9thThe Diamondbacks beat the Padres, 5–2, as Randy Johnson reaches 300 strikeouts for the 5th consecutive season, extending his ML record.
Texas shrugs off two Seattle homers from their first two batters, Ichiro Suzuki and Desi Relaford, and beats Seattle, 12-7. Alex Rodriguez hits two 3-run homers for Texas and Dennys Bayes throws 3 scoreless innings of relief for the win.
For the 3rdtime this season, Alex Gonzalez ends a game with a HR, as the Cubs beat Montreal, 3–2. His 9thinning solo HR off Jim Brower snaps a 2-2 tie.
10th A game after their 10–game win streak ends, the Angels inch closer to the first place A’s with a 6–5 win at Anaheim. The A’s blow a 4–0 lead but the Angels tie in the 4thand go ahead on Shawn Wooten’s 2–run double in the 6th. The Angels lead the M’s by 6 games in the wild card race.
11thAt Yankee Stadium the Yankees remember the tragedy of last year with a special monument in Monument Park memorializing those killed as part of the 50–minute pregame ceremony. The Orioles wear 5–sided patches honoring the victims of the attack on the Pentagon. The game goes 11 innings, before Nick Johnson ends in with an RBI single. The Yankees win, 5–4, despite striking out 14 times. Orlando Hernandez issues a walk in the 8thwhen he goes to his mouth on a 3–2 count while standing on the mound. It was the first walk in 6 full games (65 innings) by a Yankee pitcher, the longest steak since WW2, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Steve Karsay later hands out another walk.
The Mets and Braves split a doubleheader, with Atlanta winning the 1st game, 8–5, and New York taking the nightcap, 5–0. John Smoltz gets the save in the opener, making him the 7th pitcher in history to record 50 saves in a season. Smoltz will set the NL season saves record with 55, topping the old mark of 53 shared by Randy Myers and Trevor Hoffman. Chicago’s Bobby Thigpen set the major league record of 57 in 1990.
13thThe White Sox score 8 runs in the 9th inning to seal a 13–2 win over the Yankees.
14thP Derek Lowe wins his 20th game as the Red Sox beat the Orioles, 6–4. Lowe becomes the first pitcher in history to win 20 games the season after saving 20. He is also the first to record at least 40 saves and later win 20. Dennis Eckersley and John Smoltz did it the other way around.
The Yankees beat the White Sox, 8–4, in a rain–shortened affair. Chicago C Miguel Olivo hits a 3–run HR in his first ML at bat.
The Diamondbacks shut out the Brewers, 5–0, as Randy Johnson wins his 22nd game of the season. Johnson fans 17 Milwaukee batters in the contest.
15thThe Minnesota Twins become the first team to clinch a spot in the playoffs, defeating the Indians, 5–0. Minnesota will be making its first postseason appearance since 1991,
The Angels trounce the Rangers, 13–4, as 3B Troy Glaus strokes 3 HRs.
The Diamondbacks beat the Brewers, 6–5, as Curt Schilling fans 8 batters to give him 300 on the season. He and Randy Johnson become the first teammates to record 300 strikeouts in the same season.
The Cubs shut out the Reds, 6–0, as OF Sammy Sosa drives in his 100th run of the season on a 3–run HR in the 8th inning. In doing so, he joins Mel Ott and Willie Mays as the only NL players to post 8 consecutive 100–RBI seasons.
At Comerica Park, the Royals spoil the unveiling of Ernie Harwell’s statue by beating the Tigers, 9-3. Harwell is on hand as is 82-year-old former player Cliff Dapper. Dapper was on Brooklyn’s Montreal roster in 1948 when he was traded for Harwell, then the announcer for the Atlanta Crackers. They had not met before today.
17thAlfonso Soriano gets 5 hits, including a double and HR, as the Yankees fall to the Devil Rays, 9–7. Bernie Williams scores his 100thrun in the loss to reach that mark for the 7thstraight year. He is the 4thYankee to score 100 this year, the first Yankee team to do so since 1941. Williams and Jeter combine to tie the ML record for consecutive years for teammates both having 100+ runs.
18thThe Diamondbacks trounce the Padres, 10–3, as 1B Greg Colbrunn hits for the cycle. Colbrunn adds a 2nd HR among 5 hits and drives home 4 runs for Arizona. Colbrunn is the first player to hit 2 HRs in a game while hitting for the cycle since George Brett (May 28, 1979).
19thThe Braves defeat the Phillies, 6–0, as Bobby Cox becomes the 12th manager in ML history to reach the 1,800–win mark.
The Expos beat the Marlins, 6-5, behind Bartolo Colon. Colon becomes just the 2nd pitcher in ML history to win 10 games in both leagues in a single season, joining Hank Borowy who turned the feat for the Yankees and Cubs in 1945.
Toronto beats Baltimore, 9–3, as Blue Jays OF Shannon Stewart gets 5 hits, including a double and HR.
In Chicago, the Royals top the White Sox, 2–1. In the 9th inning of the contest, KC 1B coach Tom Gamboa is attacked by 2 shirtless fans that jump out of the stands. He suffers several minor cuts, and the father, William Ligue, Jr., and son pair are arrested and charged with assault.
Minnesota rookie OF Mike Ryan gets 2 hits, scores 2 runs, and drives home 2 runs, all in the 1st inning of his ML debut. Unfortunately, the game is rained out after 2 innings and all records are washed away.
20thThe Cardinals clinch the NL Central title with a 9–3 win over the Astros.
Baltimore’s Mike Bordick sets a ML record with his 102nd consecutive errorless game at SS as the Orioles drop a 4–2 decision to the Red Sox. He also extends his ML mark of errorless chances at SS to 504.
21stThe Yankees beat the Tigers, 3–2, to clinch the AL East for the 5th straight year.
The Rockies collect 20 hits and crush the Diamondbacks, 15–8, as OF Juan Pierre strokes 5 base hits. The Snakes blow a 5-run lead, but need just one win to clinch the NL West. They also lose P Brian Anderson who is forced to leave the game after suffering a broken foot when he is hit by a line drive off the bat of Bob Petrick in the 3rd.
Speedster Esix Snead shows he can do more than run as he hits a 3-run homer in the bottom of the 11thto give the Mets a 6-3 win over the Expos. Snead entered the game as a pinchrunner in the 8thand was picked off.
Florida’s Brad Penny goes to 3–0 this year against the Braves, winning 6–4. Kevin Millar, whose 25-game hit streak was stopped yesterday, has an RBI in the 8th.
Behind Wade Miller’s 12thstraight win, Houston beats the Cardinals, 6–3. Miller’s streak ties a club record. Lance Berkman has a double and homer, driving in 3 runs, and Eli Marrero hits a HR for the 3rdstraight game. Miller’s batterymate Brad Ausmus collects his 1000th career hit, but also ties the NL record with his 30th GIDP of the season. Ernie Lombardi had 30 GIDP to set the mark.
22ndIn the final game to be played at Cinergy Field (the former Riverfront Stadium), the Phillies top the hometown Reds, 4–3.
The Braves beat the Marlins, 4–1, as Greg Maddux joins Cy Young as the only pitchers in ML history to win 15 or more games in 15 consecutive seasons.
Pedro Martinez (20-4) allows 2 runs in the 1stinning, then coasts to his 20thwin of the season as the Red Sox beat the hapless Orioles, 13–2. Trot Nixon hits a grand slam and Johnny Damon a pair of homers to keep the Sox playoff hopes alive. Martinez joins Derek Lowe in giving the Sox the first pair of 20-game winners since 1949.
Mike Sweeney of the Kansas City Royals and Manny Ramirez of the Boston Red Sox are locked in a tight race for the American League batting title. After play today, Sweeney has a lead of less than .001 over Ramirez, .346578 to .346062. But, by Thursday, Ramirez will move ahead by .003099 after going 4–for–11 to raise his average to .3465116 while Sweeney will go 2–for–10 to put his mark at .343413.
The Pirates beat the Cubs, 5–4, as Kris Benson wins his 5thstraight. Fred McGriff hits his 30thHR for the Cubs, setting several marks with the round-tripper. He is the first player to hit 30 homers for 5 different teams, and it is the 42ndML park he has homered in, breaking a tie with Ellis Burks at 41.
23rdThe Cardinals use 9 consecutive 2–out hits to score 10 runs in the 7th inning on their way to a 13–1 win over the Diamondbacks. The D’Backs lose more than the game when Luis Gonzalez separates his shoulder in an outfield collision with Womack’s knee.
The Red Sox edge the visiting Orioles, 5–4 in 15 innings. Johnny Damon walks, goes to 3B on a wild throw to 1B by Willis Roberts, then scores on a wild pitch. Both teams score in the 14th, as Jeff Conine homers to make up for an error in the inning. Gibbons has 2 solo HRs for Baltimore, and Shea Hillenbrand one for Boston. The O’s have lost 26 of 30.
24thThe host Royals mount a 15-hit barrage to flatten the Tigers, 17-2. Miguel Asencio leaves after 5 innings with the win, allowing 2 runs and Aaron Guiel hits a pinch 3-run homer off Kyle Farnsworth in the 8th. Another bright spot for the Royals is Dusty Wathan, son of John, who makes his ML debut as a catcher in the 8thand doubles in a run in his first at bat. It will be his only ML hit.
25thThe Braves beat the Phillies, 7–1, as OF Andruw Jones clouts 3 home runs and drives home 4 runs.
Casey Fossum gives up solo homers to Frank Thomas and Joe Crede, but the Red Sox score 4 in the 6thoff Jon Garland to beat Chicago, 4–2. Fossum helps his cause by snaring a pop bunt in the first inning and trotting to 1B to complete an unassisted DP.
Curt Schilling strikes out 10 in 8 innings, but allows 6 runs as St. Louis beats Arizona, 6-1. Schilling passes the 300 strikeout mark for the season and his 33 walks allowed is the best ever for a pitcher striking out 300 in a season.
Completing the worst season in the franchise’s 34-year history, the Milwaukee Brewers replace Wendy Selig–Prieb as president and Dean Taylor as general manager. Ulice Payne takes over as president while Doug Melvin replaces Taylor. Milwaukee (56-106) is one of four teams this year to lose 100 games, a first in major league history. Kansas City will finish 62–100, Detroit (55–106) and Tampa Bay (55–106). The last season with three 100–game losers was 1985 (Cleveland, Pittsburgh and San Francisco).
26th Livan Hernandez (12–16) pitches a masterful 2–hitter as the Giants beat the Padres, 6–0. Hernandez is tied with Ben Sheets for most losses in the NL. The Giants stay 3 games ahead of LA for the wild card spot. Reggie Sanders connects twice for homers, and Barry Bonds walks in his 16thstraight game to tie Jack Clark’s NL record set in 1987. He’s walked 194 times; he’ll end the year with 198 passes, a new ML record topping Ruth’s mark of 1923. Bonds will finish with a .582 on–base percentage, easily topping the old mark of .553 that Ted Williams had set in 1941.
27thThe Pirates beat the Cubs, 13–3. Brian Giles scores 5 runs for Pittsburgh and drives home 6 with a double and a pair of HRs. Giles will hit a pinch 2-run HR, his 38thhomer of the year, tomorrow to finish the year with 103 RBIs. He now has 4 years in a row when he’s reached 35 homers, joining just 3 others—Alex Rodriguez, Sammy Sosa, and Rafael Palmeiro.
The Dodgers keep their slim playoff hopes alive with a 1–0, 10-inning win over the Padres. Paul Lo Duca’s homer off Jeremy Fikac is the winner.
28thAt San Francisco, the Giants clinch the NL wild card over LA by defeating the Astros, 5–2. The two clubs set a ML record by using 16 pitchers in the game. Barry Bonds has 2 RBIs, including a splash homer, his 46thof the year. It’s the 20thhe’s plopped in the bay; only 26 have been hit there. Bagwell and Lane homer for the Astros.
The Diamondbacks clinch the NL West title by virtue of a 17–8 win over the Rockies. The 17 runs ties a club mark. Matt Williams and Steve Finley each homer twice and Rob Barrajas has 4 hits and 4 RBIs.
29thThe D’Backs clinch the home field advantage with an 11–8 thumping of the Rockies. John Patterson is the winner over fellow rookie Stark (11–4). In the 2nd, Patterson is thrown out at 1B by RF Gabe Kaplar 9–3, on an apparent hit, and serves up a HR to Juan Pierre, his first homer in 590 at bats. Pierre avoids matching Harold Reynolds, who went homerless in 1989. Curt Schilling, in his first relief appearance since 1992, tees up a 3–run HR to Brant Butler in the 8th. Chad Moeller leads the Snakes with a 4–for–4 effort, including 2 homers and 6 RBIs.
The Cardinals win their 97th, beating the Brewers, 4–0. Andy Benes pitches 5 innings before leaving with a back twinge. Wayne Franklin pitches 7 innings for the Brewers. Edgar Renteria knocks in the game’s first run in the 8thwith the first of 2 RBIs. He finishes with 82 RBIs, the highest for a Bird SS since Doc Lavan’s 82 in 1921. Albert Pujols has no RBIs, but finishes with 127, one behind NL leader Lance Berkman. Pujols is the first batter since Ted Williams in 1939–40 to drive in more than 250 runs in his first two seasons in the majors. Pujols drove in 257 runs in his first two campaigns. Just 4 big–leaguers have posted 250 or more RBIs in their first two years in the majors. Joe DiMaggio holds the record with 292 ribbies in his first two; Dale Alexander with 272, is in 2ndplace.
The Florida Marlins report their second–largest crowd of the year—28,599—thanks to the purchase of 18,000 tickets by an unnamed fan. Thus the Marlins end the season with an attendance mark of 813,118 just ahead of the Expos reported 812,545. The Marlins reward the fans with a 4–3, 10th-inning win over the Phillies. Luis Castillo, with 3 stolen bases in the game, scores from 3B on a foul fly. He finishes the year with 48 steal, high in the NL. The Marlins finish below .500 again, and have only finished above .500 in 1997, when they won the WS. The Phils (80-81) finish below .500 for the 14thtime in 16 years.
The Cubs fire manager Bruce Kimm, who took over from Don Baylor on July 5. Kimm requested that the announcement be made prior to the game, a 7–3 Cubs win. Kerry Wood (12-12) strikes out 9 in 6 innings, and the Cub relievers add 6 more. The Cubs end the season leading the majors in strikeouts by batters (1,269) and pitchers (1,333), the first team to accomplish the feat since Boston (UA) in 1884. Sammy Sosa hits his 49thto lead the NL; it is 499th career homer (45 have come in starts by Wood). Pluses for the Bucs include 2 homers, one by Tony Alvarez, his first in the majors. Josh Fogg (12-12) sets a modern club record for starts by a rookie (33); Sam Leever had 39 in 1899.
30thThe Devil Rays and Tigers both fire their managers, with Hal McRae leaving Tampa Bay and Luis Pujols exiting from Detroit.