Thursday, June 28, 2007

Numbers Game: Thomas: 500, Biggio: 3002

Editor's Note: It's rare that milestones are reached in baseball, but this season is seeing it's air share of big ones. Seeing two reached in one night is especially pleasing for the fans (and the reporters). On Thursday, Frank Thomas belted his 500th home run and Craig Biggio got his 3000th hit. Both players have been mainstays in the game for most of the past two decades and both are deserving of Hall of Fame inclusion when their brilliant careers are complete. Congratulations to them both. American League Toronto 5 Minnesota 8 - Frank Thomas (right) became the 21st player in major league history to hit 500 home runs with a 3-run job in the 1st inning off Twins' starter, Carlos Silva, and also doubled in another run for 4 RBI. Despite the historic feat, the Twins rallied to win and Thomas was ejected in the 9th for arguing balls and strikes. Torii Hunter homered twice for Minny, a solo shot in the 4th and a 2-run dinger in the 5th, which broke a 5-5 tie and gave the Twins the lead for good. Hunter has 17 homers and 62 RBI on the season. Texas 2 Detroit 5 - Kenny Rogers picked up his 2nd win in as many starts, keeping the Tigers 1/2-game ahead of Cleveland in the AL Central. Rogers allowed a single run on 4 hits over 7 innings, walking 1 and striking out 3. Other AL Scores Oakland 3 Cleveland 4 - P. Byrd, W (7-3) Chi White Sox 5 Tampa Bay 1 - J. Vazquez, W (4-5) 7 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 10 K NY Yankees 8 Baltimore 6 - suspended, to be resumed on July 27 with NY batting in the top of the eighth, 2 out, D. Jeter on 2nd. National League Colorado 4 Houston 8, 11 innings - Craig Biggio (right) didn't waste any time getting his 3000th hit before the home crowd at Houston. After sitting out 2 of 3 games in Milwaukee (though he did pinch hit on the 27th) Biggio rapped out 3 singles in his first four trips to the plate, the 3rd one besides being #3000, also drove in a run to tie the game at 1. Biggio picked up another single in the 9th but was forced out at 2nd on Hunter Pence's grounder. In the 11th, after Troy Tulowitzki's solo homer put Colorado up 5-4 in the top of the inning, Biggio singled with 2 outs and moved to 3rd on Pence's double. After Lance Berkman was hit by a pitch to load the bases, Carlos Lee took Brian Fuentes out of the yard to finish a perfect night for Houston. Biggio finished the night 5-6 with 3002 hits, and Houston got the win. It was Fuentes' third straight blown save and the Rockies' 7th straight loss. Cincinnati 7 Philadelphia 8, 10 innings - Jimmy Rollins doubled, tripled and singled twice in 6 at-bats, his final single in the 11th driving in the winning run in a wild win for Philadelphia. Chase Utley belted a pair of 2-run homers in Philly's 14-hit attack. With the Mets and Braves idle, Philadelphia took over sole possession of second place in the NL East, 3 back of New York. Pittsburgh 7 Florida 9 - The Marlins banged out 15 hits and Scott Olson fanned 10 in 6 innings while allowing 5 runs on 7 hits, avoiding the sweep in the finale of their 3-game series with the Pirates. Other NL Scores LA Dodgers 9 Arizona 5 - Dodgers tied w/San Diego for 1st in NL West, Arizona 1/2 back

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