Somewhere, Neal Ball and Bill Wambsganss are smiling (which is creepy, because they're dead). They finally get to welcome another member into the Cleveland Unassisted Triple Play Club, as Asdrubal Cabrera made the magic happen on Monday night against the Blue Jays. It was the 14th unassisted triple play in major league history — the Indians have the most, with three — but came in a 3-0 loss to Toronto in the second game of a doubleheader (video following the jump). Cleveland had won the first game, powered by Cabrera's two-run homer, also 3-0.
With Marco Scutaro and Kevin Mench running from first and second, respectively, Cabrera made a diving backhand catch of a line drive by Lyle Overbay, touched second base to force Mench and then tagged out Scutaro. Observe:
You don't see it in the video, but as he ran off the field Cabrera flipped the ball into the stands. Isn't the ball used for the 14th triple play in baseball history kind of valuable? Unlike milestone home run balls, thing thing wasn't even marked, so it's lost to history I suppose. The Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki turned an unassisted triple play last season against the Braves. The last one in the AL was by Oakland's second baseman Randy Velarde, who did it against the Yankees in 2000. The first one in history was recorded by the Indians' Ball, in 1909. Wambsganss, a second baseman, had the only one in World Series play, in 1920 during Cleveland's Game 5 win over Brooklyn.
Fausto Carmona (4-1) earned the win for the Indians in the first game, and Cliff Lee lowered his ERA to .
67 but failed to get the decision in the nightcap. Toronto's B.J. Ryan worked a scoreless ninth for the win.
• Zito Doesn't Lose! Barry Zito's record remained at 0-7 on Monday as he started and went five scoreless innings against the Astros, then losing a 3-0 lead in the sixth on a sacrifice fly and a two-run homer by Lance Berkman. You can hardly blame him for the latter; Berkman has recently signed a soul leasing agreement with Satan, setting a team record with 18 hits over five games and being named NL Player of the Week with a .682 batting average and 1.136 slugging percentage. Houston won 7-3.
• You're Not Funny! One reason newspapers are dying: Baseball beat reporters will laugh at anything. Witness the comedy stylings of Carlos Zambrano, following the Cubs' 12-3 win over the Padres on Monday. Zambrano (6-1) went seven strong innings in 41-degree weather to earn the win, prompting this line. "It's OK for me. I'm from Alaska,'' Zambrano said, drawing laughs at his postgame news conference. Tough crowd ... NOT. Zambrano deserves credit for great efforts on the mound and at the plate (a double and a single), but comedically he's a rung below Carlos Mencia. Note to sports media: Every word out of an athlete's mouth is not automatically comedy gold. Quit sucking up.
• Twofer Monday At Miller Park. Ryan Braun hit two homers for the second game in a row and two Cardinals were ejected — manager Tony LaRussa and catcher Yadier Molina — as the Brewers walloped St. Louis 8-3. Molina and La Russa were tossed for arguing balls and strikes in the fifth, shortly after the second of Braun's homers. Both came off of Adam Wainwright III (3-2), who is not prone to doing that sort of thing very often.
• Quote Of The Day. Manny Ramirez, who hit homer No. 498 in Boston's 7-3 loss to Minnesota on Monday: "I know I have two more to go, but I ain't counting." Whaaa?