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A Save in a 12-1 Ballgame

Sean GallagherContributor JS emails in to alert me about an odd occurrence in the Cubs game on Wednesday. A save was awarded despite the final score being 12-1. On any given day in baseball, several closers will be awarded saves. However, it’s not often that a non-closer gets a save, especially in a ballgame where the margin isn’t three runs or less. So Carlos Zambrano went his obligatory five innings for the win, then came in Sean Gallagher to go the rest of the way, pitching four effective innings to get the save. Because it happens so infrequently, it’s a good time to bring up the three circumstances under which a save can be awarded:

Credit a pitcher with a save when he meets all three of the following conditions:
(1) He is the finishing pitcher in a game won by his club; and
(2) He is not the winning pitcher; and
(3) He qualifies under one of the following conditions:
- (a) He enters the game with a lead of no more than three runs and pitches for at least one inning; or
- (b) He enters the game, regardless of the count, with the potential tying run either on base, or at bat, or on deck (that is, the potential tying run is either already on base or is one of the first two batsmen he faces; or
- (c) He pitches effectively for at least three innings. No more than one save may be credited in each game.

As JS astutely points out, Scott Boras must have had the “effectively” clause stricken from the rule books in order to help him make more money. Can’t say I disagree.

(AP Photo/Joseph Oliver)

Bad Day to be Cuddyer, Worse to be Garland, Suicide Watch for Guillen

That was just the sort of embarrassing loss that could put people over the edge. After all, how often is it that your team gives up a 20 spot — in baseball no less. And how often is it that your team scores 14 runs, yes 14, only to lose? Not often is my guess. That’s why it was truly a crappy day for the White Sox. But here’s something I’m going to need some help with. How do you leave a pitcher in long enough to give up 12 runs — 11 earned?

I guess all you have to do is look one line further in the boxscore to find out. Rather take your chances with Garland than whatever schlub they had in the pen who was about to come in for the long relief and give up an additional six runs in three and a third.  So for Garland, probably the worst outing of his career — 12 runs, 11 earned over three and a third. His ERA jumped from 3.15 to 3.92 in one freaking game. That’s really bad. Like Ozzie says, if he doesn’t have anyone in his pen who can do the job, to whom does he turn?Â

Another thing to check out. Michael Cuddyer. How much does it suck when your team bangs out 20 runs, and you go 0-for-6. Those are the types of games that pad your stats for the entire week. Not Cuddyer. Everyone on the team is probably happier than shit, and he’s over in a corner in the dugout watching video wondering how he took an ofer.Â

Which brings me to last but not least, Ozzie Guillen. This game was probably a microcosm of the entire White Sox season.  Whatever can go wrong did go wrong.  Your offense finally wakes up, but then it’s your most reliable pitcher who gets blown up. As does the bullpen. And your fielding? Five errors. Pfffh. I’m sure Ozzie enjoyed that show. Anywhoo, I’m usually not one to break down the significance of individual games in a 162-game-season, but if I know anything, I’d guess that this was the final straw for the White Sox. This was an embrassing loss. I can’t wait for the post-game Guillen fireworks. They should be exciting! Now, imagine if they lose the second game of the double-header. Now THAT would be incredible.

Bad Night to Be Twins RP Jason Miller

He had truly one of the worst — if not the absolute worst — pitching lines I’ve ever seen. Let me describe it: seven hits, two walks, eight runs (all earned), all over 1/3 inning. Yes, Jason Miller managed to give up eight runs while getting only one out. His ERA for the outing was 216. 216!

Sad part is the outing ruined what was going as a good season for the rookie; he hadn’t given up a run in three prior appearances. So much for that. And let me tell you, I couldn’t be happier. Last night was the most delighted I’ve been as an Angels fan since 2004. 16 runs, 23 hits, and everybody in the lineup delivered. I was literally wetting myself. That’s what the Angels have been missing since letting Glaus, Guillen, and Molina go (no complaints about Guillen). I hope this offensive outburst only continues for the rest of the season.

Nick Swisher Is Better Than the Entire Oakland Team

OK, first check the final score of the game, and then check the scoring summary below:

Pretty impressive huh? The A’s were held to just four runs, but miraculously Nick Swisher drove in six. Incredible! The boxscore was from the usually impeccable Yahoo! Sports.