Notes from a day in baseball:
• The Philadelphia Story. We were all ready to send Charlie Manuel off to the laugh factory when he sent Brett Myers to the bullpen a little while back, although the move did generate from Myers our favorite baseball quote of the year so far: "Let me let you direct that question to my arm." On Thursday, Myers closed a game for the first time, um, ever, and got the save in the Phillies' 9-7 win over the Giants. He pitched the ninth in place of the injured Tom Gordon, retiring all three batters he faced. Meanwhile, Jimmy Rollins continues to perform at a pace that will eventually draw the attention of Lex Luthor; tripling twice and driving in two runs. And suddenly a season that looked hopeless just a couple of weeks ago looks promising. Giants starter Matt Cain and his 1.54 ERA didn't last past the fourth inning, with the Giants losing for the fifth time in seven games. Rollins, a native of Oakland, had to miss his Warriors' win over the Mavericks, which occurred at the same time right across the bay.
• I'm A Walking Candy Apple! The Rangers' Sammy Sosa was hit in the helmet with a pitch on Thursday, but it appears that he's OK. So hard not to make a steroids joke here, so we'll simply recount the Seinfeld episode in which a bird collides with Elaine's head, killing it. Bystander: "It's like that bird couldn't avoid your head. I've never seem anything like it." The Yankees won the first game, 4-3, behind Hideki Matsui's tiebreaking double in the eighth. Then, Mike Mussina (1-1) allowed one run and four hits over five innings in his return from the DL in New York's 5-2 win in the second game.
• We Know. The Bases Are Like Pillows. No one quite admires his own handiwork like Manny Ramirez. The ball that went for his second homer on Thursday — breaking an eighth-inning tie with the Mariners — was already back in the dugout before Manny even got to first during his home run trot. Boston won, 8-7, despite falling behind 5-0 in the first. Seattle had happy amazing fun time with Boston starter Daisuke Matsuzaka, who walked the first three batters and struck out only one over five innings. He gave up seven earned runs.
• Lust In the Dust. The Mets begin packing all of their stuff today to move to their new permanent home: Arizona's Chase Field. New York has won 11 straight there, including Thursday's 9-4 victory in which Damion Easley and David Wright each had three-run homers in the ninth. Arizona's last victory over the Mets in Phoenix came on May 11, 2004, according to AP.
• May We Introduce To You, The One And Only Jamie Shields. James Shields (3-0) gave up three runs over 7 1-3 innings for the win and Rocco Baldelli had a two-run homer in the Devil Rays' 6-4 win over the Twins.