MLB Notebook: Haren makes Angels history
Starter Dan Haren was in such command Thursday vs. the Mariners that he did something unprecedented in Angels history.
Haren threw his first shutout of the season -- a four-hitter with a career high 14 strikeouts -- in the Angels' 3-0 win over Seattle, and his 14 K's were the most in a shutout for an Angels pitcher since Chuck Finley fanned 15 on May 23, 1995.
But no Angels pitcher before Haren had struck out as many as 14 and issued no walks in a shutout. Before Haren, the most recent big league pitcher to toss a shutout, walk none and strike out as many as 14 was Erik Bedard, on July 7, 2007.
Haren was the 16th pitcher since 1918 to have a line like this. Only Roger Clemens (three) and Pedro Martinez (two) had more than one such performance.
Haren's line produced a game score (an equation used to measure a pitcher's dominance) of 93. It is the second highest score for an Angels pitcher this season, after Jered Weaver's 95.
The most recent season in which the Angels had two performances which generated a game score of at least 93 was in 1976, when Frank Tanana had a pair of them. The most recent time an American League team had two in a season was in 2007, when Minnesota's Johan Santana and Scott Baker each had one. The most recent time a team had pair of games with game scores this high this early (46 games into the season) was in '02, when Arizona's Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson each had one.
The White Sox hit five homers -- including Alejandro De Aza's first career grand slam -- and beat the Twins, 11-8.
A.J. Pierzynski hit his seventh home run of the year. It was the third time in his White Sox career Pierzynski had hit at least seven as a catcher through Chicago's first 45 games. The most homers as a White Sox catcher through 45 team games was 13, by Carlton Fisk in 1985. Sherm Lollar ('55), Fisk ('88) and Pierzynski (2007) each had eight, and Lollar (1958, '59) and Pierzynski (2005, '12) are tied with seven through 45 games.
Paul Konerko went 2-for-4 with his 10th homer of the season and two RBIs. It was the 191st time in his White Sox career Konerko had posted a multihit game with multiple RBIs. That total is the second most for the franchise since 1918, behind Frank Thomas' 233 games. Harold Baines ranks third, with 173 such games.
Miami's Giancarlo Stanton hit his 10th home run of the season, a 458-foot shot in the second inning of a 14-7 loss to the Giants.
Most home runs through 294 games
The Marlins outfielder has 66 career homers in 294 games. That home run total for a player in his first 294 contests is tied for the 13th most in history.
Switch-hitters Melky Cabrera and Angel Pagan each contributed four RBIs in the Giants' win over Miami.
This game marked the third time in the live-ball era in which the Giants had a pair of switch-hitters with four RBIs each in a game. It had first happened on Aug. 16, 1972, when Ken Henderson drove in five runs and Tito Fuentes chipped in with four RBIs. It happened again on Aug. 24, 2010, when Andres Torres and Pablo Sandoval each had four RBIs.
Carlos Ruiz went 3-for-5 for the Phillies -- one of four players on the team to have at least three hits -- and Philadelphia used 18 knocks to defeat the Cardinals, 10-9.
Ruiz has collected at least three hits seven times this season. He is the only Phillies catcher in the live-ball era to have that many performances through the team's first 46 games.
Ruiz, Joe Mauer (with seven in 2010) and Ramon Hernandez (seven in '06) are the only catchers in the past 10 seasons to have as many as seven games with at least three hits through 46 team games.
Cincinnati's Devin Mesoraco hit his first career grand slam to help lead the Reds to a 6-3 win over the Braves that capped a four-game sweep of Atlanta.
Thanks in part to Mesoraco's slam, eight of the nine runs produced in this game came via home run. For the series, the two teams combined to score 24 runs, with 21 of those coming on 16 home runs.
The breakdown: Fourteen of the Reds' 16 runs came on 10 home runs and seven of the Braves' eight runs came on six home runs.
Here and there
Albert Pujols hit his 450th career home run in the Angels' win over Seattle. The 450 came in 1,750 career games. That total in that amount of games is the eighth most in history. Mark McGwire had the most, with 550.
Shin-Soo Choo hit his first home run to lead off a game, as Justin Masterson and the Indians defeated Justin Verlander and the Tigers, 2-1. Choo was moved to the leadoff spot in the Cleveland batting order on May 14. Since that move, the right fielder has a slash line of .350/.447/.600 and the Indians have won eight of 10.
Roger Schlueter is senior researcher for MLB Productions This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.