Notes from a day of baseball:
• 1. Now Appearing In A Limited Engagement: The First-Place Mets. Say an alien (legal or otherwise) arrives on our shores for the first time, and ambles up to you to ask a question in his quaint, broken English. "Which team," he asks, "is the best baseball team in all of America?" Imagine your chagrin when you realize that the next words to leave your mouth will be "New York Mets." Yes, the Mets are 9-2, the best start in franchise history, following their 9-3 win over the Brewers on Sunday. Now the cynics out there may point out that five of those wins have come against the Nationals, and the others over the Marlins and Brewers. To those people we say, do not bother us with your "logic" and your "facts." Xavier Nady is hitting .366, a hundred points higher than his career average, with three homers. And that pace will continue. Anyone who says differently is JUST WRONG.
• 2. For His Next Trick, He'll Walk On Water. Here's something that makes more sense than the Easter Bunny: worshipping Albert Pujols. The Cardinals' slugger yanked three out of the yard on Sunday, including a 441-foot walk-off homer in the ninth to give St. Louis an 8-7 win over the Reds. We're not worthy! He had five RBI and four runs scored as the Cards ended a 4-2 homestand, their first at new Busch Stadium.
• 3. The Adventures Of Robinson Cano. Apparently, since Jason Giambi came clean to steroid investigators, he figures he can keep taking them. The Big G had two homers on Sunday and Robinson Cano and Alex Rodriguez had one each to lead New York to a 9-3 win over Minnesota and climb out of last place in the A.L. East. Personally, we'd rather loathe the Yankees than pity them, so we hope it's only one of many wins to come.
• 4. The Josh Beckett Drinking Game. Speaking of trends we'd like to see continue, we just can't get enough of Boston's Josh Beckett. Remember, this is a guy who went nuts when a hitter took a step toward first base on a pitch he thought was ball four. That's Julian Tavarez loco, if you ask us. But unlike Tavarez, Beckett has a 3-0 record and a 1.29 ERA after Sunday's 3-2 win over the Mariners. We propose a new drinking game: a shot for every Beckett fist pump. Even Curt Schilling is saying "Now, that guy's intense."
• 5. Los Tigres Son Muy Macho. Hey Barry: This is how it's done. Chris Shelton has eight home runs this season, the latest giving Detroit a 1-0 win over Cleveland on Sunday. The eight homers over his team's first 12 games is a feat that not even Babe Ruth accomplished; Shelton's the first to do it in A.L. history, actually. Mike Maroth (2-0) scattered three hits over seven innings and struck out five for the win, as the Tigers moved into a three-way tie for first in the A.L. Central.