Happy Fourth of July to everyone. Stay safe. And remember never light Ladyfingers or Mighty Mite firecrackers in your hands ... the have fast fuses. I speak from experience on that.
Since we are going Motown videos, I went with this one .. for, well, that's none of your damn business ...
Obviously we know what the cultural significance of this day.
On the baseball front, M's bullpen coach John Wetteland was born today, and Yankees owner George Steinbrenner is celebrating his 80th birthday today. That pleases me simply so I can link to this VIDEO. Here' s a compilation of all the times that Larry David playing Big Stein on Seinfeld.
I can't embed those videos for some reason.
Also from nationalpastime.com ..
1939 - In a slugfest at Shibe Park, Red Sox third baseman Jim Tabor hits two grand slams as well as a third home in Boston's 18-12 victory over the A's. It's only the second time the feat as been accomplished, both coming in a game against Philadelphia Athletics.First inning
Pasco native Jeremy Bonderman gives up a single to Chone Figgins but gets Russell Branyan to ground into a 4-6-3 DP.
An interesting inning for Cliff Lee. Austin Jackson leads off with a swinging bunt single and then Magglio Ordonez later lines a ball of Lee's foot for a single and causing Jack Zduriencik's pulse to quicken a little. But Lee stays on the mound and gives up an RBI single to Miguel Cabrera. After that Lee gets Boesch to pop out and Raburn to ground out to end the inning. Tigers lead 1-0. Lee threw 20 pitches, 15 for strikes.
The M's get a little something going with Gutierrez picking up a one-out single and then later on an attempted steal of second, the Tigers guessed right with a pitch-out and still Gerald Laird's throw was horrible - bouncing into centerfield allowing Guti to go to third. Bonderman then walked Kotchman to put runners on first and third with one out. But he struck out Josh Wilson and Rob Johnson to end the threat.
Cliff Lee has a more normal Cliff Lee-like inning with two strikeouts and a fly out.
The M's go up 3-1 on a Russell Branyan three-run homer. Ichiro reached on a fielder's choice, Figgins drew a walk and Branyan ripped a first-pitch fastball out to right-center an approximated 390 feet.
Cliff Lee is back to being his normal self. After throwing20 pitches in the first inning, he's thrown 22 over the last two innings with with 15 strikes.
The M's get a leadoff single from Casey Kotchman. But he doesn't even make it off of first base.
Cliff Lee issues his sixth walk of the season to Miguel Cabrera to start the inning - though a couple of those pitches were borderline. And then I noticed that CB Bucknor was umpiring the game, so I wasn't suprised. Lee then gives up a single to Brennan Boesch. But Lee shows how good he is. He gets a flyout from Ryan Raburn and then strikes out Brandon Inge and Gerald Laird.
As I said a few days ago, before they were shut down by Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander, the M's are an offensive JUGGERNAUT. Franklin Gutierrez comes up with an RBI single and Casey Kotchman rips a three-run homer to right to give the M's a 7-1 lead. That's Kotchman's first homer since April 18.
During that inning, Bonderman wasn't happy with some of the calls from home plate umpire CB Bucknor, who is awful behind the plate and is considered the worst umpire in baseball by players and coaches. Bonderman was tossed from the game after the inning was over and then catcher Gerald Laird was also tossed for arguing with Bucknor.
Jose Lopez gets a one-out double and later in the inning Casey Kotchman reaches base for the fourth time this game, drawing an intentional walk. But the M's fail to score as Josh Wilson grounds out weekly to end the inning.
Cliff Lee gives up a double to Brennan Boesch, who's been super impressive, but strikes out Ryan Raburn to end the threat.
Cliff Lee gives up a hit, and a questionable hit but gets out of the inning with two strikeouts and a ground out. He's at 97 pitches. And there is no movement in the bullpen.
JUGGERNAUT!!! The M's add another run as they load the bases and Lopez gets a Richie Sexson RBI single. The M's now lead 8-1.
Lee gives up back to back singles to start the inning, including a ground ball of his leg. But he got Boesch to fly out to left, and strikes out Raburn and Inge.
Casey Kotchman singles to reach base for the fifth time in this game. Just and outstanding day.
Lee won't get his fourth complete game as Brandon League comes in to pitch. He gives up a double and a walk, but he gets out of it. M's win. 8-1.