Elias Says ...

A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:


Chris Duffy homered to lead off the top of the first, and he broke a 5-5 tie leading off the ninth in the Pirates' 7-5 win over the Cubs. Only one other player during the expansion era -- that is, since 1961 -- hit tie-breaking homers leading off both the first and the last inning of the same game: Reed Johnson of the Blue Jays in 2003, also against the Cubs.

Shawn Chacon blew a 5-0 lead before the Pirates won the game in the ninth. It was the second consecutive time Chacon failed to win a start in which he was staked to a lead of five or more runs. He couldn't complete five innings in the Yankees' 11-9 loss to the Nationals earlier this season, in which he had a seven-run lead. Prior to that, Chacon had won all 19 starts in which he led by five or more runs.

• Let there be no doubt, the King of Queens is not Brad Penny, the losing pitcher in the Mets' 7-0 win over the Dodgers. Penny allowed all seven Mets runs in 5 2/3 innings, raising his career ERA at Shea Stadium to 6.75 -- by far the highest among pitchers to start at least 10 games there. The second-highest mark is 5.96 by Randy Jones, the 1976 NL Cy Young Award winner.

Tom Glavine improved his career record against the Dodgers to 20-18. It had been more than a quarter-century since an opposing pitcher reached the 20-win mark vs. the Dodgers. Phil Niekro was the last to do so in 1979, one year after Tom Seaver did it.

Jose Reyes's 18th home run of the season was only the second inside-the-park homer at Shea Stadium since 1990.
Marlon Anderson had the other in 2005. There were eight during the 1980s.

Justin Verlander improved his record to 16-7 in the Tigers' 7-2 win over the Twins. Verlander is the first rookie to win more than 15 games in a season since Jason Jennings of the Rockies in 2002 (16-8). Over the past 75 years, the only other Tigers rookie to win 16 or more games was Mark Fidrych (19-9 in 1976).

• It may look as though Joe Mauer and Derek Jeter are tied at .344 for the American League lead in batting average, but Mauer holds a fractional lead (.3444 to .3439). The difference between their batting averages is the equivalent of one hit over 1,981 at-bats.

Mauer led Jeter by 26 points just two weeks ago (.361-.335 through August 24). Since then, Mauer has only six hits in 37 at-bats (.162), while Jeter is 21-for-49 (.429).

Josh Johnson quickly blew a 3-0 first-inning lead and suffered the defeat in the Marlins' 14-8 loss to the Phillies. The Marlins' four rookie starters -- Johnson, Ricky Nolasco, Scott Olsen, and Anibal Sanchez -- won their first 24 decisions of the season when staked to a lead of three or more runs, but they have lost two of their last three. Nolasco lost to the Cardinals after holding a four-run lead last Tuesday.

Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla batted 1-2 in the Marlins' order and both were held hitless. That snapped a streak of 50 games in which they batted in the leadoff and second slots and combined for at least one hit.

• Who needs Travis Hafner when you've got Ryan Garko? Garko went 3-for-3 with a pair of walks in the Indians' 9-1 win at Chicago on Thursday night. The last Indians rookie to record a so-called "perfect day" at the plate in a game of at least five plate appearances was Brian Giles in 1996.

Charlie Batch's 87-yard pass to Heath Miller was the longest TD pass to a tight end in 32 years, since Joe Namath connected with Rich Caster for 89 yards against the Dolphins in 1974.