For a moment in the fourth inning in Pittsburgh on Thursday night, Lastings Milledge thought he had hit his first home run of the season. He ran hard out of the box, but he broke into a home run trot when he heard the stadium fireworks.
05/07/2010 3:08 PM ET
No fireworks needed in Pittsburgh
Milledge hits double, not first homer of season, Thursday
As it turned out, however, someone had hit the button to send the fireworks into the sky a bit prematurely.
"I think that was the most exciting double in PNC Park history," Milledge told MLB.com. "It was my fault, and I didn't look at the ball. I was running hard, making sure that I had a double, and I looked up and all the fireworks were going off, and I had a lapse for a second. It was totally my fault, but what an exciting double. I had a lapse for a second and got caught in the moment. I never thought that it didn't go out because the music was playing and the fireworks. But clearly it didn't go out, it was a double, and I've got to go in the weight room in the morning."
Milledge got two RBIs on the double and two more on a first-inning double to lead the Pirates to an 11-1 blowout of the Cubs.
Bergesen produces in his 'best game ever': Brad Bergesen pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings in the Orioles' 2-0 victory over the Twins at Target Field on Thursday night. After the game, Baltimore manager Dave Trembley said Bergesen looked as good as he's even seen him.
"I'll tell you this, that's the best game I've ever seen Bergesen pitch," Trembley told the Baltimore Sun. "He's a guy that we count on. He was our best guy last year as far as quality starts. He had the setback, went down to Triple-A. I think he's really handled himself very mature. He knew there were things he had to work on, both from the mental side and the physical side. He went and did it, and it showed tonight. You just have to be thrilled for him."
Ethier adds another walk-off hit: Picking up where he left off last season, Andre Ethier delivered a game-winning grand slam against the Brewers on Thursday. He had six walk-off hits last season.
"I don't know what it is, for some reason I just keep getting up in that situation where I get an opportunity to do it," Ethier told the Los Angeles Times of his history of walk-off hits. "I can't figure it out, but it definitely makes it a lot easier when there's a guy standing on third with one out."
Beckham pleased with what he's seeing at plate: Gordon Beckham drew six walks in a three-game span this week. The White Sox second baseman believes it's a sign of things to come.
"They are encouraging," Beckham told MLB.com. "Six walks, that total probably is the most walks in three games I ever had in my life, which is good. There has been some, especially [Wednesday], there were a couple of pitches that I missed that I normally hit, but those didn't come in the walks. They came in the outs I made. It's encouraging how I'm seeing the ball well. I'm having good takes. It's always a good part of a good at-bat. Seeing a ball, knowing it's a ball and not even offering. And the pitches I am swinging at, I'm taking good swings and fouling them back. I'm a tick off, just a tick off. It's coming. There are a lot of positives."
Pelfrey not expected to miss start: Mike Pelfrey skipped his bullpen session on Tuesday, but the Mets' right-hander said his shoulder is feeling fine and that he will take the mound for his start on Friday.
Pelfrey had an MRI on his right shoulder on Monday after experiencing some tightness. The MRI didn't reveal any damage, and Pelfrey was set to throw his bullpen on Tuesday before pitching coach Dan Warthen decided to do a low-intensity workout instead.
"One hundred percent me," Warthen told the New York Daily News of the decision, which manager Jerry Manuel confirmed was made by the coach. "He was ready to go. The trainers had him all stretched out and ready to go. I said, 'Let's use common sense here.'"
Narveson, Zaun making connection: Gregg Zaun didn't catch Chris Narveson during any games during Spring Training, but the Brewers worked well together on Tuesday. Narveson allowed three runs in six innings of work as the Brewers defeated the Dodgers, 11-6.
"Me and Zaunie knew exactly what we wanted to do," Narveson told MLB.com. "The first time out, I think we were still trying to figure out how we wanted to best use my pitches. There's a comfort, and you know that when you're thinking of a pitch, he's thinking of the same pitch. That makes you feel good on the mound."
Berken shines in relief: One of the bright spots this season in Baltimore has been the work of Jason Berken, who is working out of the bullpen for the first time in his career. In his first seven outings, Berken has a 1.88 ERA.
"I feel like I've been able to transition pretty good with a lot of help from guys who have been in the 'pen [to] help me smooth it out," Berken told MLB.com. "I like coming to the field every day knowing I have a chance to pitch."
Brett Carroll getting his hits: Brett Carroll is one of those hitters who stays on the ball so long he gets hit a lot. He's been hit by four pitches so far this season. No other Florida player has been hit more than once.
On top of that, when he was on a rehab assignment in the Minors, Carroll was hit four times in five games.
"This is definitely the most in this short amount of time, but I'm pretty used to getting hit," Carroll told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "I wear an elbow pad because I want to try to see the ball deep every time, so I'm going to try to stay on it. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing, but I figure I'm going to wear a few from time to time."
Fowler finds his stroke during homestand: Dexter Fowler says he found his stroke during the Rockies' last homestand,.
"The way I'm swinging the bat, I really can't get mad," Fowler told MLB.com. "I've been barreling stuff up when I hit it. That's all you can do. The more at-bats you get, the more comfortable you're going to feel in the box. I guess I've just got to keep swinging it.
"It's a lot easier than last year. You're seeing pitchers for the second year. You've had at-bats against them and success against some of them."
Ohlendorf encouraged after rehab outing: Out since April 7 with back spasms, Ross Ohlendorf said he felt good after Wednesday night's rehab outing, during which he threw 59 pitches, 41 for strikes, at Double-A Altoona. He did not allow a run.
"It felt about normal," he told MLB.com. "About maybe 70 percent. I'm not sure. I'm hoping to make my next start. I felt really good, especially last week, and I'm really encouraged about how things are going."
-- Red Line Editorial