Sports by the Numbers MLB Stat of the Week
33 The number of years (33) Skip Caray spent calling games for the Atlanta Braves. The Braves club has been decimated by injuries all season, but they were dealt a much more serious blow on Sunday when they lost Skip Caray. Those of us who grew up on TBS will miss his legendary humor, his sarcasm, his intimate knowledge of the game, but most of all, we will miss his passion and love for the game that were so evident in his broadcasts.
6 Francisco Liriano tossed (6) scoreless innings against Cleveland on Sunday. The Twins lefty earned his first big league victory since July 23, 2006, but more importantly, the Twins are now in first place in the Central Division, half a game ahead of the White Sox. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire is hoping to keep his team ahead in the standings, and he said of Liriano's performance after the game, "That's a good start to having him back in the rotation."
12 If you think the Braves will not play a role in determining the winner of the N.L. East, well think again - Atlanta plays (12) consecutive games against Philadelphia and New York during the final two weeks of the season. The Braves have been plagued by injuries all season - and plagued as well by their inability to win close ball games (6-23 in one run games) or anything on the road (18-35) - but their schedule and their play in September could have a big impact on who gets to play in October. So far, the Mets are 2-7 against the Braves this year, while the Phillies are 10-2.
66 Tampa has won five straight and (66) games overall - only four shy of the franchise record of 70 wins set in 2004. NY and Boston both went 5-5 during their last ten games, and both gave up two games in the standings during that stretch to the Rays. Tampa begins the first full week of August in first place in the A.L. East - and with a three game lead.
598 The winning percentage (.598) for the Chicago Cubs. Just when the Brew Crew caught Chicago in the standings, the Cubs got things going again. Chicago went 7-3 during their last ten games, while Milwaukee went 3-7 during that same stretch. The Cubs now own a five game lead and, at 67-45, the best record in the N.L.
615 The batting average (.615) for Manny Ramirez in three games for the Dodgers. He is off to a good start, batting 8 for 13 with a pair of homeruns and five RBI. Joe Torre said, "He certainly changes the personality of our lineup." The big question that everyone is asking, however, is will Manny cut his hair?