"Help! The infield tarp has got me!" If you heard those words, what would you do? The host Colorado Rockies cowered in their dugout, but the Phillies' Shane Victorino is made of stronger stuff. Hearing the panicky cries of Rockies groundskeeper Keros Johnson, who was trapped in the middle of a wind-whipped, out-of-control tarp, Victorino snapped into action, battling the heaving cloth into submission and saving the day on Sunday. It must have been similar to the way that Jason and the Argonauts once battled the many-headed Hydra. Is Victorino a hero? Modestly, he says no.
"That's not why you do things,'' Victorino said. "I felt like we needed to help, just in case.'' Johnson shall now live another day, and so will the Phillies. After a 50-minute rain delay, Victorino's two-run homer led Philadelphia to an 8-4 win over Colorado, staving off the franchise's 10,000th loss. It was a freak July storm that caused the tarp to go batshit crazy, and it may have destroyed all of Coors Field if not for the heroic efforts of Victorino and the Phillies, who secured it with the help of bulbous bench coach Jimy Williams, seen above, who acted as an anchor. "One guy flew 10 feet in the air,'' said Adam Eaton, who also pitched in. "We were just hoping they're not hurt. They all thanked us. You hear stories about people getting hurt.'' Jimmy Rollins had three hits — including a pair of run-scoring singles — and Pat Burrell hit his 11th homer for Philadelphia.
• Do Not Shove Ichiro. Late four-run rally, check. Benches-clearing scuffle, check. Odd Ichiro Suzuki quote, Check. All was in place on Sunday for a 7-3 Seattle Mariners victory over the Oakland Athletics. Jason Ellison had four hits and scored the game-tying run in the seventh, and Jose Lopez had three hits, including his eighth home run. After Raul Ibanez's bases-loaded double in the seventh, the relay throw from shortstop Bobby Crosby got by A's catcher Jason Kendall. As Oakland starter Joe Blanton tried to retrieve the ball near the Seattle dugout, he shoved Suzuki, who had scored on the play. Ellison, the closest player to the incident, took exception and went after Blanton, and the dugouts cleared. Blanton and Miguel Batista were ejected. Ichiro: "I was happy to see Ellison do what he did. The way we're playing it feels like this team is bonding.''
• Jay Power. Alex Rios is quietly having a great season, hitting .294, heading to the All-Star Game and ending the first half with a run-scoring single in the ninth to give the Blue Jays a 1-0 win over the Indians. Toronto starter Josh Towers retired the first 17 batters and went eight-plus innings for the win.
• Mixing Metaphors With Ozzie Guillen. All is well on the south side as Javier Vazquez threw his second straight complete game to lead the White Sox over the Twins 6-3, and Mark Buehrle agreed to a four-year contract to stay with Chicago. "The White Sox organization is showing people we are trying and we aren't going to throw the white flag,'' White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said.
• Barry, Barry Tired. Barry Bonds went 0-for-3 — remaining at 751 home runs — and the Giants were booed when they pulled him for a pinch hitter in the eighth. Chris Duncan drove in three runs for St. Louis, which won 7-0.