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WEAVER WINS 4 STARTS BEFORE HIS TAXES ARE DUE
Jered Weaver defeated the White Sox on Friday night, improving to 4-0 in 2011. He set a major-league record for the earliest calendar date on which a starting pitcher won his fourth game of a season. Of course, the major-league season starts much earlier now than it did in the past, so it's also worth noting that prior to Weaver, the last starting pitcher to register his fourth victory within his team's first 13 games of a season was Roger Clemens for the 1991 Red Sox.
ANOTHER GAME-WINNER FOR DAMON
Johnny Damon's two-run single in the sixth inning gave the Rays a 2-1 lead, and Tampa Bay never surrendered that advantage in a 5-2 win against the Twins. Damon has now produced the game-winning RBI in each of his last four games, tying the longest such streak for any major-league player since 2003. Juan Rivera drove home the game-winning run in four consecutive Angels games in 2009.
ICHIRO EXTENDS MULTI-HIT STREAK IN KANSAS CITY
Ichiro was 2-for-5 at Kansas City on Friday night, giving him at least two hits in each of his last 10 games at Kauffman Stadium. That is now the longest current streak of multi-hit games for any active player at any stadium. Ichiro had been tied with Chase Utley, who has a nine-game streak with at least two hits at Coors Field.
PENDLETON HAS PERFECT DEBUT
The Yankees' Lance Pendleton, making his major-league debut, pitched three innings in relief and retired all nine Rangers batters that he faced. The only other active pitcher who faced at least nine batters in his first career game and retired them all is Max Scherzer, for the 2008 Diamondbacks. Scherzer opposed 13 Astros hitters in his debut and did not allow any of them to reach base.
MORTON LOSES SHUTOUT ON LATE HOME RUN
Charlie Morton shut out the Reds for 8¿ innings, before allowing a solo home run to Jay Bruce, settling for a complete-game win in the Pirates' 6-1 victory. The last Pittsburgh pitcher whose lone run allowed in a complete game came on a homer with two outs in the ninth inning was coincidentally the man who started against Morton on Friday night. In 2001, Bronson Arroyo's shutout was broken up with one out to go on a home run by the Mets' Jay Payton, forcing Arroyo and the Pirates to settle for a 10-1 win at Shea Stadium.
HARANG SETS PADRES RECORD
Aaron Harang defeated the Astros on Friday night to improve his record to 3-0 this season. He also became the first pitcher to win each of his first three career starts for the Padres, while allowing one earned run or less in each of those games.
IANNETTA CLEARS THE BASES
Chris Iannetta's three-run triple was the big hit in the Rockies' 5-0 win against the Cubs. Iannetta became the second major-league player to hit a triple with the bases loaded this season, joining another catcher, the Marlins' John Buck.
CARDINALS BATS ARE BOOMING
The Cardinals have recorded more than 15 hits in each of their last four games, the team's longest such streak since June 1930. That 1930 club set a franchise single-season record with a .314 team batting average.
PAIR OF TWO-RUN SINGLES FOR CABRERA
Asdrubal Cabrera was 2-for-4 with four RBIs against the Orioles, with a two-run single in the third inning and another single that plated two teammates in the seventh inning. Cabrera became only the second Indians player in the last five seasons to produce at least four RBIs in a game, while not recording an extra-base hit in that contest. Ryan Garko did that in 2008, when he went 4-for-5 against Texas, with four singles and six runs batted in.
MARLINS STAY UNBEATEN IN ONE-RUN GAMES
The Marlins edged the Phillies 4-3, improving Florida's record in one-run games to 4-0 in 2011. That's one shy of the longest such streak to begin a season in franchise history. The Marlins won each of their first five games decided by the minimum margin in 2008.
JAYS RALLY AT FENWAY
The Blue Jays rallied from a 3-0 deficit to beat the Red Sox in Boston, 7-6. It was only the second time in the last nine seasons that Toronto won a game at Fenway Park after trailing by at least three runs.
A FIRST FOR GARLAND
Jon Garland's balk on Friday night was the first of his major-league career. Coming into the game he had thrown 2029.1 innings without a balk, the most among active pitchers. That distinction now belongs to Randy Wolf, who had never balked in 1914.2 innings.
ROLOSON WINS PLAYOFF GAME AT 41
Tampa Bay goaltender Dwayne Roloson recorded his first playoff win since he led the Oilers to the Stanley Cup Final in 2006 with a 5-1 victory against the Penguins on Friday night. The 41-year-old Roloson is only the third NHL goaltender in the last 38 years to win a playoff game after his 40th birthday. The others were Dominik Hasek, who won 10 playoff games for the Red Wings at age 42 in 2007 and two more with Detroit at age 43 in 2008, and Curtis Joseph, who won a game in relief for the Flames at age 40 in 2008.
GAGNE TIES LIGHTNING ASSISTS RECORD
Simon Gagne tied the Lightning record for assists in a playoff game when he set up three goals in Tampa Bay's 5-1 win at Pittsburgh that evened its series against the Penguins at one game apiece. The other players with three assists in one game for the Bolts were Fredrik Modin (in 2004 vs. the Islanders) and Martin St. Louis (twice: 2004 vs. Canadiens, 2007 vs. New Jersey). Gagne's three assists also matched his career highs for assists and points in a playoff game, set with the Flyers in Game 5 of their 2004 series against Toronto. Entering play on Friday, Gagne had not recorded an assist in any of his last 13 postseason games.
ROOKIE BLANKS RANGERS
Capitals rookie Michal Neuvirth, who made his NHL playoff debut with a 2-1 overtime victory against the Rangers on Wednesday, made it two wins in two games by shutting out the Rangers 2-0 on Friday. Neuvirth is the third rookie goaltender to post a playoff shutout for Washington, joining Bob Mason, who had one in 1987, and Semyon Varlamov, who had a pair of shutouts in 2009.
ARNOTT SCORES PLAYOFF GOAL FOR FIFTH TEAM
Jason Arnott scored his first playoff goal for the Capitals in Washington's Game 2 victory on Friday. Arnott has scored postseason goals for five different NHL teams (the Oilers, Devils, Stars, Predators and Capitals), tying him with Mark Recchi and Cory Stillman for the high among active players.