May 14, 2013 |
The Rick Ankiel epic just keeps going. The 33-year-old slugger was just released by the Houston Astros after hitting .194 with five homers and 11 RBIs - and striking out 35 times in 65 at-bats. It looked like the end for the guy who arrived as a hard-throwing lefty with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1999 but had to reinvent himself as a power hitter when his control on the mound totally deserted him in 2000. After an outfield stint with the Cards, he played for the Royals, Braves, and Nationals before ending up in Houston.
April 2, 2013 |
HOUSTON - Rick Ankiel and the Houston Astros made an impressive debut in the American League, trouncing the Texas Rangers, 8-2, on Sunday night in the major league opener and giving Bo Porter a win in his first game as a manager. Ankiel launched a pinch-hit three-run shot for the first home run this season, Bud Norris pitched well for the win and Erik Bedard threw 31/3 scoreless innings for his first career save. Having switched from the National League to the AL in the offseason, the Astros earned their first opening-day victory since 2006 and the 4,000th regular-season win in franchise history.
September 13, 2011 |
Little-used Pedro Ciriaco became the most unlikely of opponents to damage the St. Louis Cardinals' playoff chances. Ciriaco hit a tiebreaking double to cap a three-run rally in the eighth inning and the Pittsburgh Pirates stunned visiting St. Louis, 6-5, last night, snapping the Cardinals' season-high five-game winning streak. "It's just a great feeling for him . . . after all the challenges he's had this year," Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said of Ciriaco, sent back and forth from the minors six times this season.
August 8, 2010 |
The baseball season is more than two-thirds over, and it's pretty clear which teams have emerged as the contenders and which ones have faded as pretenders. The Phillies, Atlanta Braves, St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds, San Diego Padres, and San Francisco Giants are the class of the National League. The New York Yankees, Tampa Bay Rays, Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox, Minnesota Twins, and Texas Rangers are the best in the American League. One of the above will be crowned World Series champion in three months.
June 9, 2009 |
Out of arms Don't congratulate Arizona's Mark Reynolds for the three-run homer he slugged in the 18th inning Sunday to end the season's longest game. He hit it off a shortstop - San Diego's Josh Wilson - to give Arizona a 9-6 win. The Padres had used all their relievers and had starter Chad Gaudin - the loser in Friday night's series opener - pitch the 16th and 17th before turning to Wilson in the 18th for his third career appearance. Wilson pitched in high school, and his two other big-league relief appearances had been in blowout losses.
May 7, 2009 |
Twice Garret Anderson put the Atlanta Braves ahead, and the second time they stayed there. Anderson's first three RBI this season helped the Braves end a four-game losing streak last night by beating host Florida, 8-6. The longtime Angels star, acquired in the offseason, came off the disabled list Tuesday after missing 12 games with a strained quadriceps. "I'm just happy to be out there playing," said Anderson, who has only 33 at-bats. "I haven't played that many games this year, and it's going to take some time to get into shape.
August 3, 2008 |
If this is the Joe Blanton that the Phillies will be seeing down the stretch, then they have just two words for the burly righthander: Welcome aboard. Blanton, who joined the Phils in a July 17 trade with Oakland, pitched like a pennant-race difference-maker in his third start with his new club last night. He held the St. Louis Cardinals to four hits and a run in seven innings as the Phils eked out a 2-1 win at Busch Stadium. "He was super," Phils manager Charlie Manuel said.
July 12, 2008 |
Kyle Lohse limited the Pirates to six hits over seven shutout innings and Rick Ankiel and Ryan Ludwick homered, helping St. Louis break out of a scoring slump with last night's 6-0 victory over host Pittsburgh. Lohse (11-2), one of the NL's biggest first-half pitching surprises, won his eighth in a row by limiting the Pirates to one extra-base hit. He hasn't lost in 12 starts since May 9, giving up two runs or fewer in all but two of his last 10 starts. Lohse, who went 3-0 in 11 starts for the Phillies last season, didn't need much offense.
April 30, 2008 |
Slumping Ryan Zimmerman spent some time working with Barry Larkin before the game, and then had a season-high three hits, including a homer and tiebreaking two-run double, to lead the Washington Nationals past the visiting Atlanta Braves, 6-3, last night. Zimmerman and Nick Johnson hit consecutive solo shots in the third inning off Tom Glavine, who was coming off his first trip to the disabled list in a 22-season career. Then, in Washington's four-run seventh, Zimmerman hit his double off reliever Blaine Boyer (0-3)