Notes on a day in baseball:
• Six. We were sorely disappointed when we found out last year that Josh Beckett-Danielle Peck was just a short-term thing. But we have learned to mask our pain through various hobbies and busy work, much like Beckett himself. On Wednesday he became the first Red Sox pitcher to begin the season 6-0 since Roger Clemens in 1991, as Boston beat Oakland 6-4. Next up for Beckett is the threesome that hold the team record of eight straight wins to open the season; Babe Ruth (1917), Dave Ferriss (1945) and Roger Moret (1973). As if we had to tell you. You know it's kind of amazing what a pitcher can do when he doesn't throw his fastball in every freaking clutch situation all season. It's also worth noting that the Athletics also lost Mike Piazza to a shoulder injury. He's supposed to be out for 4-6 weeks.
• They'd Prefer Three, But It's Hard Enough To Get One. Cubs win two games in 12 innings, in one day! (Administers smelling salts). Jason Marquis threw a four-hitter over eight innings to win his fourth consecutive start for a 7-1 win over the Pirates. That followed a three-inning makeup of a rain-delayed game, won by the Cubs 8-6.
• Yuniesky Betancourt Rules Your Dreams. The Mariners won their seventh in the past eight as Yuniesky Betancourt hit a tiebreaking homer in the seventh inning of a 3-2 win over the White Sox.
• Bah. Anthony Reyes (0-5), you are the weakest link! Goodbye. The Brewers continue to own the best record in baseball (note to web surfers of the future: Not a misprint!) after a 4-0 win completed a sweep over the Cardinals. Prince Fielder's two-run single helped Milwaukee win its ninth game in the past 11 tries.
• First Place, Here We Come! As
Professor Dumbledore George Steinbrenner promised, heads began to roll on Wednesday for the Yankees. They have located the problem, and it is strength and conditioning coach Marty Miller. The current rash of pitching injuries is your fault, Miller! Pack up your ointments and get the hell out. And while you're at it, take the head groundskeeper with you.