Elias Says ...
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports.
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:
• Curtis Granderson hit an 0-2 pitch for a game-winning triple off Mike Mussina in the seventh inning of the Tigers' 4-3 victory over the Yankees. Mussina allowed only four RBI on 0-2 pitches during the regular season, and he hadn't allowed a go-ahead RBI on an 0-2 count in his last 61 regular-season starts, dating to April 6, 2005.
• The Tigers rallied from a 3-1 deficit against Mussina, who was undefeated at Yankee Stadium over the past four regular seasons when staked to a lead of two or more runs (29-0 with six no-decisions). But Mussina is now just 5-3 in 10 postseason starts in which he has led by two runs, and his team lost both games in which he didn't record a decision.
• An early turning point was Justin Verlander's three-pitch strikeout of Alex Rodriguez with two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the first. Rodriguez has four hits -- none of them homers -- in his past 38 postseason at-bats, and he is hitless in his past 14 postseason at-bats with runners in scoring position.
• Here's a reality check for those who thought David Wells could spin postseason magic for the Padres: He has won two of his past seven postseason starts, including Thursday's loss to the Cardinals. Wells made 10 postseason starts from 1995-98, posting a record of 8-1 with a 2.99 earned-run average. Since then, he is 2-4 with a 4.08 ERA.
• Albert Pujols went 3-for-4 in the Cardinals' victory. Pujols has a .437 batting average (38-for-87) in his last 23 postseason games, after batting .224 (13-for-58) in his previous 16 playoff appearances.
• Tom Glavine pitched six scoreless innings to earn the victory in the Mets' 4-1 win over the Dodgers. Glavine, who has 290 regular-season wins, defeated Hong-Chih Kuo, who has one victory. Here's a surprise: Not only was that not the largest differential in postseason history, but it wasn't even close. The "record" was set during the 1925 World Series, when Walter Johnson of the Senators (397-257 at that time) defeated Emil Yde of the Pirates (33-12).
• Kuo, whose lone regular-season victory came against the Mets last month, set a record for fewest career wins at the time of a postseason start. The previous record was two, by Gary Waslewski when he started Game 6 of the 1967 World Series for the Red Sox.
• Jaromir Jagr, who ranked second in the NHL with 52 goals last season, scored 29 seconds into the Rangers' season opener, a 5-2 win over the Capitals. The only other player to score in the first minute of his team's opening game while coming off a season of 50 or more goals was Theo Fleury. Fleury scored 51 goals in 1990-91, then lit the lamp 16 seconds into the Flames' 9-2 win over the Oilers in their 1991-92 opener.
• Brendan Shanahan reached the 600 mark for his career with two goals in his Rangers debut. No other player in NHL history scored a milestone goal of 300 or more -- that is, a multiple of 100 -- in his first game for a new team. Two players scored their 200th career goal in team debuts: Mark Hunter for the Flames and Stephane Richer for the Devils, both in 1991.
• Marc-Andre Fleury made 40 saves in the Penguins' 4-0 victory at Philadelphia. That's an NHL record for saves in an opening-game shutout. The previous record was 38 by Glenn Hall of the Blackhawks in a 3-0 opening-night win over the Bruins in 1964.
• The Penguins had three teenagers on the ice in their 4-0 victory over the Flyers: Sidney Crosby, Jordan Staal and Kristopher Letang. Pittsburgh was the first team in 11 years to play three teens in its opening game of a season. The last was the Winnipeg Jets in 1995 (Shane Doan, Jason Doig and Craig Mills).
• The Maple Leafs clobbered the Senators 6-0 in Ottawa on Thursday to gain a split of the two-game series between the NHL's Ontario franchises to open the season. It was only the fifth time that a pair of teams met on each of the first two days of play in the NHL. The others: Blues vs. Red Wings in 2005; Sharks vs. Flames in 1998; Rangers vs. Bruins in 1961; and Red Wings vs. Black Hawks in 1960.
• The Lightning held the Thrashers to 11 shots in a 3-2 shootout win. That equaled the lowest SOG total that any NHL team has recorded in its opening game of the season. The Penguins had only 11 shots in a 3-0 loss to the Kings to open the 2003-04 season.
• The Canucks took a 3-0 lead against Dominik Hasek and cruised to a 3-1 win at Detroit. It was only the second time in the past 60 years that the Red Wings trailed by three goals at home in their season opener. The other was in a 4-2 loss to the Minnesota North Stars in 1971.
• The Blackhawks defeated the Predators 8-6 at Nashville in the highest-scoring season opener in the NHL since 1989, when the Flames beat the Red Wings 10-7. Martin Havlat became the first player ever to score multiple goals and multiple assists in his Blackhawks debut (he had two of each).
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