Elias Says ...
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports.
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:
• Chris Duffy homered to lead off the top of the first, and he broke a 5-5 tie leading off the ninth in the Pirates' 7-5 win over the Cubs. Only one other player during the expansion era -- that is, since 1961 -- hit tie-breaking homers leading off both the first and the last inning of the same game: Reed Johnson of the Blue Jays in 2003, also against the Cubs.
• Shawn Chacon blew a 5-0 lead before the Pirates won the game in the ninth. It was the second consecutive time Chacon failed to win a start in which he was staked to a lead of five or more runs. He couldn't complete five innings in the Yankees' 11-9 loss to the Nationals earlier this season, in which he had a seven-run lead. Prior to that, Chacon had won all 19 starts in which he led by five or more runs.
• Let there be no doubt, the King of Queens is not Brad Penny, the losing pitcher in the Mets' 7-0 win over the Dodgers. Penny allowed all seven Mets runs in 5 2/3 innings, raising his career ERA at Shea Stadium to 6.75 -- by far the highest among pitchers to start at least 10 games there. The second-highest mark is 5.96 by Randy Jones, the 1976 NL Cy Young Award winner.
• Tom Glavine improved his career record against the Dodgers to 20-18. It had been more than a quarter-century since an opposing pitcher reached the 20-win mark vs. the Dodgers. Phil Niekro was the last to do so in 1979, one year after Tom Seaver did it.
• Justin Verlander improved his record to 16-7 in the Tigers' 7-2 win over the Twins. Verlander is the first rookie to win more than 15 games in a season since Jason Jennings of the Rockies in 2002 (16-8). Over the past 75 years, the only other Tigers rookie to win 16 or more games was Mark Fidrych (19-9 in 1976).
• It may look as though Joe Mauer and Derek Jeter are tied at .344 for the American League lead in batting average, but Mauer holds a fractional lead (.3444 to .3439). The difference between their batting averages is the equivalent of one hit over 1,981 at-bats.
Mauer led Jeter by 26 points just two weeks ago (.361-.335 through August 24). Since then, Mauer has only six hits in 37 at-bats (.162), while Jeter is 21-for-49 (.429).
• Josh Johnson quickly blew a 3-0 first-inning lead and suffered the defeat in the Marlins' 14-8 loss to the Phillies. The Marlins' four rookie starters -- Johnson, Ricky Nolasco, Scott Olsen, and Anibal Sanchez -- won their first 24 decisions of the season when staked to a lead of three or more runs, but they have lost two of their last three. Nolasco lost to the Cardinals after holding a four-run lead last Tuesday.
• Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla batted 1-2 in the Marlins' order and both were held hitless. That snapped a streak of 50 games in which they batted in the leadoff and second slots and combined for at least one hit.
• Who needs Travis Hafner when you've got Ryan Garko? Garko went 3-for-3 with a pair of walks in the Indians' 9-1 win at Chicago on Thursday night. The last Indians rookie to record a so-called "perfect day" at the plate in a game of at least five plate appearances was Brian Giles in 1996.