Kansas City Royals: Country music star Garth Brooks had fans on their feet and cheering after he singled Thursday in the Royals' 10-7 loss to the Mariners.
Brooks came in as a pinch hitter against left-hander Mike Myers
in the ninth inning, hitting a grounder to shortstop Adam Jones.
The rookie covered some ground up the middle to field the ball, and
first baseman Dave Hansen couldn't quite make the catch.
"I was even more surprised than the pitcher," said Brooks,
whose only previous hit was a single off Mike Sirotka of the
White Sox on March 21, 1999.
Fans cheered, and someone flipped the ball to the 42-year-old
Brooks as he removed his helmet and left for a pinch runner. He was
limping slightly, saying later that he'd aggravated a hamstring he
initially pulled last week.
Vazquez, acquired from Montreal in the offseason, struck out
four, throwing 35 of 46 pitches for strikes. He pitched an extra
inning because he hadn't reached his scheduled pitch count.
The Yankees have dropped five straight.
The Yankees loaded the bases with one out in the fourth, but
scored just once on Lino Urdaneta's wild pitch.
Derek Jeter made it 3-2 on a fifth-inning sacrifice fly.
Jorge Posada started at catcher for the Yankees. He had been the
designated hitter the past two games to rest a sore shoulder.
Yankees closer Mariano Rivera continued his dominating spring by
striking out two and breaking two bats during a perfect ninth. He
has struck out seven and allowed two hits in five innings overall.
In other Yankees news, spring training instructor
Reggie Jackson was obeying major league baseball's gag order on
steroids before the game. On Wednesday, Jackson told a reporter
that some of baseball's increased home run totals were the result
of steroids. "I was supposed to stay in the coaching room,"
Jackson said. Yankees GM Brian Cashman said he did remind Jackson
of the MLB decision.
Montreal Expos: Larry Broadway drove in two runs
with a broken-bat single in the ninth inning to give the Expos a 3-2 victory over the Mets on Thursday night.
Heilman pitched four no-hit innings and was one batter short of
perfect when he walked Terrmel Sledge in the fourth. Heilman struck
out five and threw 51 pitches during his third outing of spring.
The Mets' new lineup worked to perfection in the first inning.
Kaz Matsui, playing as a designated hitter with the blessing of the
Expos, drew a walk. Jose Reyes sacrificed him to second, and Cliff
Floyd doubled to right-center off Expos starter Livan Hernandez for
a 1-0 lead. Catcher Mike Piazza singled to center to give Heilman a
2-0 lead to work with.
"I felt like I could have stayed out there, but it's spring
training," Heilman said. "Throwing a no-hitter right now doesn't
do much good. It's the regular season that counts and that's what
we're getting ready for."
Pettitte pitched shutout ball, allowing one hit and striking out
Pettitte, who allowed two hits in two innings against Atlanta in
his first outing with the Astros, needed only 29 pitches to breeze
through the Pirates' lineup and threw 20 strikes.
Houston won the game in the ninth on a two-out single by Phil
Mulder, coming back from a stress fracture near the hip in his
right leg, gave up one run and three hits. He previously had been
in a "B" game on March 6.
Junior Spivey doubled in the first, advanced on an error by left
fielder Billy McMillon and scored on Jeff Liefer's sacrifice fly.
After Geoff Jenkins' two-out double, Mulder retired six straight
batters before Spivey singled and was caught trying to steal
In other A's news, Oakland traded infielder Jose Flores on Thursday to the Dodgers for cash.
Flores, a non-roster player, appeared in seven games with the
A's as a second baseman and shortstop in September 2002. He was
0-for-3 with a walk, a hit by pitch and stolen base.
Flores was a 34th-round pick in the 1994 amateur draft.
Colon allowed one hit and one walk in 3 2/3 innings and struck
out two Thursday in the Angels' 5-0 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Troy Glaus sprained his right ankle running to third base on
Adam Kennedy's fourth-inning single. Glaus tried to recover and
reach third, but pulled up and was tagged out. He walked off the
field and is day-to-day.
Colon, 15-13 with the White Sox last year, did not get
out of the first inning in his first spring outing, a 26-3 loss to
Oakland. He got just two outs in that game, allowing two hits, two
walks and two unearned runs.
He retired eight in a row against Arizona until Chris Snyder
singled and 10 of 12 batters in all. He left after walking Luis Gonzalez.
Ben Weber, Frankie Rodriguez and Bobby Jenks followed Colon and
combined on a five-hitter. Jenks struck out three and has not
allowed a run in six innings this spring.
World Series champion Florida improved to 7-2 and have outscored
The Marlins' Carl Pavano allowed two runs in four innings in his
second start of spring training. Blaine Neal (1-0), Nate Bump and
Michael Neu each pitched one scoreless inning. Neu earned his first
The Marlins' other pitcher, Armando Benitez, gave up three hits
and two runs in two innings but was satisfied with his outing.
"All of my pitches broke good," said Benitez, the Marlins' new
closer. "I don't care if they hit me."
Minnesota starter Brad Radke gave up three hits and two runs,
both scoring on Cabrera's homer in the first.
Burnett, the Pirates' top pick in the 2000 amateur draft, made
his first start of spring training and allowed two hits and struck
out two in two innings. Van Benschoten, the Pirates top pick in the
2001 draft, pitched three hitless innings.
While Van Benschoten is expected to open the season in Triple-A,
Burnett is competing a roster spot.
Wright, trying to earn the fifth spot in Atlanta's rotation, was
sharp until there was one out in the third, when he allowed four
straight hits and three runs.
"If I could catch the ball, maybe I would've given up one
run," said Wright, upset that Omar Vizquel's sharp grounder
skipped past him into center field for an RBI single.
"It was neat to come back here," said Wright, who rose to
prominence with the Indians in the 1997 World Series, then spent
five years battling inconsistency and shoulder injuries before
being released in 2002.
Vizquel and Ricky Gutierrez had run-scoring singles, and Matt
Lawton hit an RBI double as Cleveland took a 3-2 lead in the third.
Wright came back to strike out his final two batters.
Sanders missed four days of spring training to be home while his
wife, Wyndee, gave birth to their fourth daughter, Cooper, on
Sunday. He went 3-for-4, hitting a solo homer in the first and a two-run drive in the
Sanders is expected to start at right field this year in place
of J.D. Drew, who was traded to Atlanta during the offseason.
Sanders batted second and could end up hitting in that spot
during the season. The outfielder usually has hit lower in the
order but was in the No. 2 slot about five years ago.
NL Cy Young Award
winner Eric Gagne made his second preseason appearance and retired
the side in order in the fourth.