The two-home-runs-in-one-inning phenomenon, usually found only in Little League and the softball game at your company picnic, appeared at Yankee Sradium on Wednesday in the form of a limping, self-satisfied Alex Rodriguez. The two clouts in an eight-run seventh led New York over Seattle 10-2, effectively sounding the death knell for the Mariners' playoff chances. It was their 11th loss in 12 games (slide whistle sound effect here), dropping them three back of the Yankees in the wild card race.
Poor, dumb saps. With the least bit of effort they could have ousted the Yankees from the playoffs this season, but it was not to be. Rodriguez, meanwhile, had to talk his way into the lineup after rolling his ankle against Seattle on Tuesday. He became the first Yankees player in 30 years to homer two times in one inning. Cliff Johnson did it on June 30, 1977. Who were the others? Joe DiMaggio (1936) and Joe Pepitone (1962). Rodriguez, 32, leads the majors with 48 homers and 134 RBI. The team had sent him for an MRI at 3:30 p.m., which angered him, for some reason. A-Rod hates going downtown. And I repeat ... Joe Pepitone. I love typing that.
• Forget About It Jake. It's Phoenix. Jake Peavy was not built for pitching on three days' rest; it says so right there in the instructions. Taking the ball a day earlier than scheduled to try and give the Padres some breathing room in the NL West, Peavy instead gave up a bevy of hits to the worst-hitting team in the NL, the Diamonbcaks prevailing 9-6. Arizona is now a game ahead of SD in the West. Arizona's Miguel Montero homered twice, not in the same inning.
• Livin' On Timo Time. Timo Perez's single off the wall in right with two outs in the 11th won it for the Tigers, 2-1 over the White Sox. Kenny Rogers returned from the disabled list and pitched well, Mike Hessman homered, and Detroit remained 3 1/2 games behind the Yankees in the wild-card race.
• Baltimore Gives Up Several Runs. More double homer goodness, this time by Carlos Pena of the Devil Rays (one was a grand slam, and he had seven RBI) as Tampa beat the Orioles 17-2.
• The Red Pinstripe Diaries. Matt Diaz's two-out, three-run double in the ninth gave Atlanta a 9-8 win over the Phillies, who gagged up leads of 5-0 and 8-2. Diaz's hit actually skipped off the tip of Chris Robertson's glove.