Giants ring in ceremony with another walk-off win

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Giants ring in ceremony with another walk-off win

April 9, 2011BOXSCORE GIANTSVIDEOMLBPAGE MLBSCOREBOARD

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Miguel Tejada galloped around first base like his old Oakland self of a decade ago, thrilled to produce his first game-winning hit for the World Series champion Giants.Tejada hit a two-run double that glanced off the glove of center fielder Colby Rasmus with two outs in the ninth inning and San Francisco rallied late for the second straight day, beating the St. Louis Cardinals 3-2 on Saturday night a few hours after receiving its World Series rings.And, after this dramatic finish, manager Bruce Bochy considered letting his new shortstop sport the ring for a little while."I'm really happy right now," the 36-year-old Tejada said. "I'm going to enjoy the moment. I just need to be aggressive. I'm an aggressive hitter."The Giants celebrated this one as though they had just won the championship all over again, with ace Tim Lincecum among those who sprinted out of the dugout to hug Tejada. Tejada skipped in jubilation after his 15th career game-ending hit.It came against Cardinals closer Ryan Franklin (0-1), who blew his third save in four chances and second in two days. St. Louis lost 5-4 in 12 innings Friday."When you win games like this early it has a little bit of a carryover," Pat Burrell said. "We had the right guy up at the right time. He's a pro. He's been doing this so long. You want him up in a situation like that."Ramon Ramirez (1-0) pitched the ninth for the win and San Francisco secured its first series victory of the season.Franklin allowed Buster Posey's one-out single and then a walk to Burrell. Aaron Rowand flied out to bring up Tejada, who fouled off pitches down each base line before coming through with the big hit off a fastball."I'm just having a rough time right now. I'm doing everything I think I can," Franklin said. "I threw some pitches in and some pitches out and I tried to throw the fastball in and it wasn't where I wanted it."Rasmus ran down Tejada's high drive at the edge of the warning track in left-center, but tried to catch it by his hip and the ball deflected off his glove to the ground. Both runners scored easily."It definitely ruined my evening," Rasmus said. "I felt like I got a real good jump on it."The finish spoiled a solid start by St. Louis lefty Jaime Garcia, who outdueled Matt Cain and struck out a career-best nine batters for the second straight outing this year.Rasmus hit a go-ahead homer leading off the seventh. Cain had gone 32 1-3 innings without allowing an earned run dating to last year before Skip Schumaker scored on a wild pitch in the sixth.Mark DeRosa drove in San Francisco's first run with a single in the fifth while making a rare start.Tejada, the 2002 AL MVP across the bay with Oakland, then gave the sellout crowd of 41,742 even more to cheer about as fans continue to celebrate the city's first title since the club came West in 1958.Garcia threw his first career complete game against San Francisco last Aug. 22, a three-hit shutout in a 9-0 victory at Busch Stadium - and appeared headed for another impressive win. Garcia held the Giants scoreless over 14 innings dating to last year before allowing DeRosa's single.He gave up four hits and one run and walked one in six innings Saturday."I'm happy with the way we're competing but I'm not happy with the results," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said of his team's 2-6 start.Giants center fielder Andres Torres left in the top of the fourth with a mild left Achilles' strain. X-rays were negative and he is scheduled to be evaluated again Sunday.Torres was hurt after charging in to field Lance Berkman's line drive for the first out, then stayed in as Rasmus popped up to shortstop. But Torres began hobbling in pain and athletic trainer Dave Groeschner hustled out to check on him followed by manager Bruce Bochy.Rowand moved from right to center to replace Torres, and Nate Schierholtz entered to play right. Schierholtz tripled and had a pair of singles.Cain carried a streak of 27 1-3 innings without allowing an earned run into his second outing of the year after he tossed six shutout innings last Saturday against the Dodgers.The right-hander and longest-tenured member of the Giants didn't allow an earned run in 21 1-3 innings during last fall's improbable postseason run."Incredible postseason run he had. It is fitting to have him out there," Bochy said. "What an unsung hero he is with the way he pitched."Six of the first eight games for the Giants (4-4) have been decided by two or fewer runs.Members of the other Bay Area championship teams each threw out a ceremonial first pitch: Steve Young of the NFL's San Francisco 49ers, Al Attles of the NBA's Golden State Warriors, Jim Otto of the NFL's Oakland Raiders and Reggie Jackson representing the Oakland Athletics. Lincecum ran out to greet Jackson with a handshake.The Giants wore commemorative uniforms and caps with gold lettering instead of the standard orange or black.On Sunday, Posey - San Francisco's NL Rookie of the Year catcher - will be presented with his award in yet another pregame ceremony.NOTES: Cardinals cleanup hitter Matt Holliday deemed himself set to return to the lineup for Sunday's series finale against LHP Barry Zito, though La Russa didn't commit. The slugger underwent an appendectomy on April 1. ... Bochy thanked a few of the Cardinals players for their patience waiting through Friday's 50-minute pregame ceremony. ... Giants RF Cody Ross, on the DL with a strained right calf, expects to begin running and fielding flyballs early in the week. He likely will need a short rehab stint in the minors before rejoining the team. ... San Francisco has won nine of its last 14 against the Cardinals at AT&T Park dating to 2007.

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from A's loss despite five home runs

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from A's loss despite five home runs

BOX SCORE

Hit five home runs, and a team has to like its chances of winning.

The A’s simply couldn’t keep up with the Houston Astros’ bats, however, in an 11-8 loss Wednesday night that snapped Oakland’s four-game winning streak. Khris Davis went deep twice, and Ryon Healy, Jed Lowrie and Matt Olson all went deep as the A’s set their season high for home runs.

But Houston racked up 17 hits against Jesse Hahn (3-6) and four relievers and evened this three-game series at a game apiece. It was the second time Hahn has gotten knocked around by Houston inside of a week.

The A’s took an early lead, 5-4, in the third on the second of Davis’ two homers, part of a four-run rally for Oakland. But the Astros answered right back with five runs in the bottom half, and the A’s never recovered from that momentum swing.

Hahn’s struggles continue: Hahn was trying to rebound after the Astros hung nine earned runs on him last Thursday at the Coliseum. Things didn’t improve Wednesday at Minute Maid Park, as the right-hander lasted just two-plus innings and allowed six runs on nine hits. Is this a case of one team simply having Hahn’s number or do the A’s make a move and try someone else in the rotation? It bears watching.

Krush Davis x 2: It was apparent early this would be a slugfest, with Khris Davis homering twice within the first three innings as the A’s tried to keep pace. He led off the second with a shot to left field, then came back with a three-run blast to left in the third that put Oakland up 5-4. The homers were his team-leading 20th and 21st.

Reddick-ulous night: Josh Reddick filled up the stat sheet against his old team in every way imaginable. He went 3-for-4 with three RBI and two runs, and twice caught the A’s by surprise by stealing third base. For good measure, he turned in an excellent running catch in right field to rob Yonder Alonso.

Strange offensive night: What to make of this night offensively for the A’s? They hit a season-high five homers but also struck out a whopping 17 times. No matter … you can’t hang this one on the offense, because …

The pitching staff just couldn’t hold things down: Josh Smith was called upon to hold down the fort after Hahn departed in the third, but Smith was tagged for three runs on four hits. Daniel Coulombe and John Axford also got touched for runs. Rookie Michael Brady did turn in 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

Cubs outfielder vows he didn't give Trump the middle finger at White House

Cubs outfielder vows he didn't give Trump the middle finger at White House

WASHINGTON – Albert Almora Jr. didn’t use Wednesday’s Oval Office photo op as a subtle form of political protest, but it did sort of look like the Cubs outfielder gave President Donald Trump the middle finger, at least from that angle in an image that went viral on Twitter.    

“There was two fingers! Look closely, there was two fingers!” a veteran player yelled across the room as reporters gathered around Almora’s locker inside the visiting clubhouse at Nationals Park. 

“Guys were giving me a hard time about it,” Almora said, “but I pointed out the second finger. We’re all good.”

In another White House visit that didn’t look nearly as unofficial or informal as the Cubs said it would be, one snapshot became Almora with part of his left hand in his pocket. Almora stood near Kris Bryant – who held a 45 Wrigley Field scoreboard panel – and Trump at his desk with the World Series trophy.

“Obviously, it’s unfortunate,” Almora said with a laugh. “I’m getting ready to take a picture and I’m posing there. But you guys know that I would never do that to the president of the United States. 

“I respect everybody. It is what it is. We laugh about it now, but there’s definitely two fingers out there.”

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