Friday, April 17, 2009

Sizemore's Slam Ruins Yankee Opener; Berkman Blasts Pirates

Players of the Day for Thursday, April 16, 2009 American League The NY Yankees opened an new chapter in their storied history with the first home game at the new Yankee Stadium, but the Cleveland Indians put a damper on the festivities, pounding New York, 10-2. With the game tied at 1-1 in the top of the seventh inning, Cleveland struck for 9 runs off the Yankees' suspect relief corps, capped by Grady Sizemore's grand slam, which put the game hopelessly out of reach. Sizemore's bomb was his only hit of the game, and it occurred after the Indians had already scored four runs in the inning. Victor Martinez completed the scoring with a solo shot in the same inning. Both homers came off reliever Damaso Marte. The grand slam was Sizemore's third homer of the season and upped his RBI total to 10. National League Astro fans haven't had much to cheer about this season, but after taking 2 of 3 at Pittsburgh with a 6-3 win Thursday night, spirits may be rising. Lance Berkman, who hasn't exactly gotten off to a scorching start, broke open a 3-3 game with his second home run of the season, a three-run shot in the sixth inning which sealed the deal for Houston. The Pirates struck for 2 runs in the first and another in the second inning, but were unable to get any more runners across home plate after that. Notes: The Florida Marlins keep winning, leading the NL East with a major league-best record of 8-1, maybe the most astonishing development is a continent away, in the AL West, where the Seattle Mariners lead the division by 2 1/2 games with a 7-3 record. The Mariners finished last in the division last year and were pretty much ruled out of contention by the end of May. This season may be different, owing to the overall weakness in the division. Texas, Oakland and the LA Angels are all 4-5.

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