August 26, 2006


Bartman II in Chicago


Associated Press photos/Charles Cherney
After a fan interferes with Minnesota first baseman Justin Morneau’s attempt to catch a foul ball (top), first base umpire Andy Fletcher calls Chicago White Sox’s Jermaine Dye out in Chicago. It was the final out of the game, which the Twins won 5-4.

By The Associated Press
There’s a new Steve Bartman in Chicago, at least for a day.
A man wearing a White Sox jersey was called for fan interference on a foul pop, resulting in the final out Friday night and giving the Minnesota Twins a 5-4 victory that nudged them past Chicago for the AL wild-card lead.
“I think that guy better leave town because he’s going to get a lot of hate mail,” said Torii Hunter, who homered for the Twins. “I couldn’t understand why the fan interfered with the play.”
The White Sox had a runner on second with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning when Jermaine Dye popped up. Twins first baseman Justin Morneau ran toward the railing and reached out his glove, but never had a chance to make the catch.
Instead, an unidentified man wearing a White Sox jersey leaned over and deflected the ball. Replays showed first-base umpire Andy Fletcher’s call was correct — White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen agreed the fan got in the way and did not argue.
“I wasn’t going to waste my time when half the guy’s body was on the field,” Guillen said. “It was a good call.”
During Game 6 of the 2003 NL championship series, Bartman became a wanted man in Chicago when he deflected a foul fly to left field at Wrigley Field. He was properly not called for interference, and the Chicago Cubs quickly collapsed that night and again in Game 7, losing a chance to reach the World Series.
The Twins moved a half-game ahead of the White Sox for the wild card, with Boston dropping 41/2 games behind.
Jason Bartlett’s RBI single with two outs in the ninth put the Twins ahead. They held on — well, Morneau never got a chance to hold on — and won for the eighth time in 11 games.
“The fan definitely reached over into fair play and interfered with the fielder’s opportunity to make the catch,” Fletcher said. “He got in his way. I believe he would have made the catch had the fan not have been there.”
Jesse Crain (3-5) pitched two scoreless innings for the victory and Joe Nathan got his 27th save. Mike MacDougal (1-1) took the loss.
Mariners 6, Red Sox 0: At Seattle, Jake Woods outpitched Curt Schilling, and the Mariners blanked short-handed Boston.
The Red Sox played minus Manny Ramirez (sore right knee) and Kevin Youkilis (flu). Wily Mo Pena batted cleanup for the first time this season and went 0-for-3, striking out twice.
Seattle won for the third time in four games since an 0-11 road trip. Boston has lost seven of nine.
Woods (4-1) and two relievers combined on a five-hitter. Schilling (14-6) struck out seven, leaving him one short of 3,000 for his career.
Athletics 9, Rangers 3: At Texas, Barry Zito took a no-hit bid into the eighth inning and wound up with his 100th career victory.
Mark DeRosa led off the eighth with a clean single to center field. Zito (14-8) was trying to pitch the majors’ first no-hitter since Randy Johnson threw a perfect game for Arizona at Atlanta on May 18, 2004.
Earlier this month, Zito lost to the Rangers 14-0. This time, Zito and AL West-leading Oakland coasted.
Zito became the fourth Oakland pitcher with 100 victories, joining Catfish Hunter (131), Vida Blue (124) and Dave Stewart (119).
Rookie Edinson Volquez (1-3) was gone after four innings.
Indians 4, Tigers 2: At Jacobs Field, Cleveland rookie Jeremy Sowers kept Detroit sliding in the wrong direction.
The Tigers still have the best record in the majors, but have lost three in a row and 12 of 17. After this defeat, manager Jim Leyland had a message for his team.
“If we want to play in October, we’ve all got to step it up,” he said.
Sowers (6-3) won his fifth straight decision. He teamed with a pair of relievers in holding Detroit to an infield single in the last seven innings.
Jeremy Bonderman (11-6) is winless in six starts.
Orioles 4, Devil Rays 0: At Camden Yards, Daniel Cabrera extended his scoreless streak to 16 innings in pitching Baltimore past Tampa Bay.
Cabrera (7-8) threw seven shutout innings of five-hit ball. In mid-April, he walked nine in five innings against the Devil Rays.
Jason Hammel (0-2) lost as the Devil Rays dropped their eighth straight on the road. After the game, they put All-Star pitcher Scott Kazmir on the 15-day disabled list with tightness in his left shoulder.
Blue Jays 6, Royals 3: At Toronto, rookie Shaun Marcum bounced back from the worst start of his young career by pitching six impressive innings against Kansas City.
In his last outing, Marcum (2-3) gave up nine runs to Baltimore in a 15-0 embarrassment. This time, he allowed one run in an especially satisfying win — Marcum was born in Kansas City and grew up rooting for the Royals.



NAPA takes title with sweep

NAPA scored four runs in the first inning and never looked back Friday night, beating Palm Gardens 14-6 to sweep the best-of-three Cortland Men’s Slow Pitch League American Division championship softball series.
In wrapping up an undefeated playoff run and its first-ever league championship, NAPA rapped out 19 hits, 10 for extra bases, including five triples at Dexter Park.
Steve Phillips led the way, going 3-for-4 with a home run, triple and double, while Ryan Pennello (triple and double) and Bernie Mertz (two RBIs) both went 2-for-3. Bill Phillips was the winning pitcher.
Andrew Jordan went 4-for-4 with a triple for Palm Gardens.
Members of the NAPA team in addition to Steve Phillips, Pennello and Mertz are Bill Phillips, Dick Coats, Brian Dyer, Dan Jampole, Mike Lederman, Jon Lese, Sterling Lolar, Tom Magee, Chris Phalen, Eric Price, Lance Price, Todd Stone and Greg Zacek.