Last night’s studs:
1. BRIAN McCANN - The Braves catcher snapped an 0-for-16 spell with a three-run homer and four RBI in Atlanta’s 4-1 win over Washington. More importantly, he ended the Braves’ five-game losing streak, in which they were outscored 27-1. Said leadoff hitter Willie Harris after the game: "Thank God for Brian McCann."
2. MIKE MAROTH - The Cardinals' newly acquired hurler was great in a losing effort, throwing sneaky 80-mph stuff en route to a seven-plus innings of two-hit, one-run ball against New York. Maroth also picked off two runners, was one for two at the dish and stole his first career base.
Oh, yeah. And while Josh Towers doesn’t get cheered by his home crowd unless Gibbons is giving him the hook and showing the Jays’ faithful some mercy, Mets fans actually cheered Maroth when he was removed from the game.
3. WHITE SOX BULLPEN - It was bizzaro night in Chicago as the White Sox bullpen actually saved a game and Ozzie Guillen didn’t call anybody a fag. Over the past 41 games the White Sox bullpen was 2-11 with an 8.12 ERA and seven blown saves, but Nick Masset, Matt Thornton, Ryan Bukvich and Bobby Jenks got crazy last night and actually did their jobs, each throwing a scoreless inning to preserve a 5-4 win over the Devil Rays.
ONE BULLPEN THAT REEKS OF SOILED DIAPERS AND SMEGMA: Tearing a page from its cross-town rivals’ playbook, the Cubbies’ bullpen blew a five-run lead in the ninth, allowing the Rockies to pull ahead 9-8. One fan was so incensed he leapt over the Rockies dugout and charged reliever Bobby Howry, who had just served up a three-run dinger. In a horrible twist of injustice, the fan got clotheslined and Howry got the win after Alfonso Soriano bailed him out with a two-run single in the bottom of the ninth.