Date: July 17, 2012

Elias Says...

By Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.
Special to ESPN.com

MLB

THE UNLIKELIEST WIN OF THE CENTURY---OR ANY CENTURY?

From Elias: The Astros defeated the Padres, 2-0, at Petco Park last night in a victory that only the longshot players would have touched. Houston came into the game winless in its last 13 road games and its starting pitcher, J.A. Happ, had lost his last 11 decisions as a visitor dating back to May 2011.

Here's the money part: It had been 116 years since a visiting pitcher on a road losing streak longer than 10 games posted a victory for a team that had lost more than 10 straight road games. That's no typo. Until last night, there hadn't been such a victory in Major League Baseball -- or maybe we should call it Base Ball -- since two weeks after the close of the first "modern" Olympics and a month before the introduction of the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

The last pitcher to do so was Jake Boyd, pitching for the original Washington Senators on April 28, 1896. Boyd had an 0-11 career record on the road prior to his victory at Oriole Park III, and he never won another game, home or road, in his brief major-league career.

Houston Astros, San Diego Padres

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Ortiz

ORTIZ TIES RECORD SET BY FOXX

From Elias: David Ortiz went 1-for-3 with a walk in the Red Sox' 5-1 victory over the White Sox. It was the 10th consecutive game in which Ortiz had at least one hit and one walk, matching the longest such streaks in the live-ball era. The only other players to record a 10-game streak of that type since 1920 were Jimmie Foxx (1932), Eddie Stanky twice (1948 and 1950), Bobby Murcer (1975), and Victor Martinez (2006).

Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox

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Youkilis

YOUKILIS SHINES IN RETURN TO FENWAY

From Elias: Kevin Youkilis went 3-for-4 in his first game at Fenway Park as a visiting player. It was Youkilis' first three-hit game at Fenway Park in more than a year. His last was a 3-for-4 performance against the Orioles on July 9, 2011.

Only three other players returned to Fenway after playing at least 500 games for the Red Sox and got three or more hits in their first game back: Everett Scott with the Yankees in 1922 (3-for-3), Lou Finney with the St. Louis Browns in 1945 (3-for-5), and Wade Boggs with the Yankees in 1993 (4-for-4).

Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox

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Cook

COOK PITCHES TO CONTACT AS NO OTHERS HAVE

From Elias: Aaron Cook recorded neither a strikeout nor a walk in five innings on Monday night. Cook became the first pitcher in modern major-league history with two or fewer K's and two or fewer BB's over his first five starts of a season.

Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox

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Ibanez

IBANEZ SLAMS YANKEES TO VICTORY OVER JAYS

From Elias: Raul Ibanez hit a tie-breaking grand slam in the bottom of the eighth, leading the Yankees to a 6-2 win over the Blue Jays. Prior to the home run, Ibanez had been hitless in 11 bases-loaded at-bats for the Yankees, and he had just one hit in his last 20 ABs with the bags full over the last 365 days.

Ibanez is only the second Yankees player to hit a grand slam after turning 40 years old, which he did on June 2. Jose Cruz hit a slam on July 16, 1988, a few weeks shy of his 41st birthday.

New York Yankees, Toronto Blue Jays

CARDINALS STAGE ANOTHER LATE RALLY FOR ROOKIE MANAGER

From Elias: The Cardinals scored three times in the top of the ninth to post a 3-2 victory at Milwaukee. It was St. Louis's third win for Mike Matheny after trailing by two or more runs in the ninth inning or later. Only one other Cardinals skipper posted three such victories in his first season as a major-league manager: Jack Hendricks in 1918.

St. Louis Cardinals, Milwaukee Brewers

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Dunn

DUNN MAKES SUCCESSFUL DEBUT AS MARLINS' CLOSER

From Elias: Mike Dunn recorded the first save of his major-league career, pitching a scoreless ninth inning in the Marlins' 5-3 win over the Nationals. In fact, Dunn had barely a whiff of a save situation until Monday night. In 125 previous relief appearances he had never been called on to protect a lead of three or fewer runs in the ninth inning, and had done so only five times in the eighth with mediocre results: three holds, two blown saves.

Miami Marlins, Washington Nationals

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McCutchen

McCUTCHEN EXTENDS HIS SURGE

From Elias: The beat goes on for Andrew McCutchen, who went 2-for-4 in the Pirates' 5-4 loss at Colorado. McCutchen had 48 hits in his previous 100 at-bats. That was the highest hit total over a span of 100 ABs since Matt Holliday compiled a 48-for-100 stretch for the A's and Cardinals in 2009.

Pittsburgh Pirates, Colorado Rockies

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Wells

MARINERS FIND A NUMBER-THREE HITTER

From Elias: Casper Wells, making only his sixth start of the season in the third slot in the batting order, drove in five runs in the Mariners' 9-4 win at Kansas City. Coming into the game, Mariners third-place hitters had only 38 RBIs for the season, tying the #3 hitters of the Red Sox and Rays for the lowest such total in the American League.

It was only the second game in the last four seasons in which Seattle's third-slot hitter drove in at least five runs. Mike Carp did it against the Indians last September.

Seattle Mariners, Kansas City Royals

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Bauer

ROOKIE MILEY SNAPS REDS' WINNING STREAK

From Elias: Wade Miley struggled through the early innings but recovered to pitch into the sixth inning and earn a victory in the Diamondbacks' 5-3 win at Cincinnati, snapping the Reds' winning streak at six games. Only one other rookie pitcher started and won a game this season versus a team on a winning streak of six or more games. Coincidentally, Christian Friedrich of the Rockies also did that against the Reds (May 25).

Arizona Diamondbacks, Cincinnati Reds

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Tillman

TWINS ROUT TILLMAN & ORIOLES

From Elias: The Twins scored seven runs in the first inning and cruised to a 19-7 victory over the Orioles, setting a single-game scoring record for one team at Target Field. The previous high was 15 runs, set by the Twins in 2010 and equaled by the Rays and the Dodgers in 2011.

Chris Tillman, the Orioles' starter, failed to complete the first inning, although six of the Twins' seven runs were unearned. Tillman has allowed 42 first-inning runs in 38 career starts.

Minnesota Twins, Baltimore Orioles

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Porcello

PORCELLO THROWS 18 STRAIGHT STRIKE ONES

From Elias: Rick Porcello threw a first-pitch strike to the first 18 batters he faced on Monday night. That was the longest such streak to start a game since Zach Duke threw first-pitch strikes to the first 19 batters he faced against the Dodgers on May 1, 2010.

Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels

ANGELS BLOW ANOTHER 3-RUN LEAD

From Elias: The Tigers rallied from a 5-2 deficit to post an 8-6 victory over the Angels, who blew a three-run lead in a loss to the Yankees on Friday night. Prior to that, LA had won 32 consecutive games in which they led by at least three runs.

Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels


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