Mariners rookie Michael Pineda is still mastering English, but he's got pitching in the Major Leagues all figured out. With six strikeouts over six innings against the Tigers, the 22-year-old pitcher tallied his fifth straight quality start and became the first Mariner to begin his career by collecting four April victories. "I'm a little surprised," said Pineda. "But I'm working for this. I'm working all the time to be a great pitcher on the mound." (MLB.com)
04/29/2011 4:16 PM ET
Big Leaguers Notebook: April 29
Pineda pitching well to start season for Mariners
Corey Patterson laid down a rare squeeze bunt to give the Blue Jays the go-ahead run in the ninth inning against the Rangers (MLB.com). In other outstanding performances, Mike Pelfrey tossed seven innings of one-run ball, Jon Lester allowed two runs through eight innings, Jeff Niemann pitched a no-hitter through six innings, and Stephen Drew sent an 0-2 pitch over the wall for the first grand slam of his career.
New daddy Ian Desmond shined in his return to Washington, leading the Nationals over the Mets with a triple and a home run (MLB.com). "I'm really proud of him," manager Jim Riggleman told The Washington Post. "Fatherhood exceeds anything that we do out here, anyway. With everything else that's going on in his life right now, this just tops it off." Fellow Major Leaguer and Hawaii native Kurt Suzuki and wife Renee also became new parents this week, saying aloha to new daughter Malia Grace on Thursday. Tweeted Suzuki: "UNBELIEVABLE feeling!"
Major League players across the league are sending out their thoughts and prayers to people affected by this week's tornadoes. University of Alabama alumnus Alex Avila and Mississippi natives Mitch Moreland, Julio Borbon and Roy Oswalt, whose childhood home in Weir, Ala., was destroyed by a tornado last year, are among those reaching out to family and friends after the devastating storms. Said Tuscaloosa, Ala., native and New York Yankee David Robertson, "I'd love to go down and help my parents and whoever needs help." (Detroit News, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Philadelphia Inquirer and Newark Star-Ledger)
All-Star outfielder and 2009 Marvin Miller Man of the Year Curtis Granderson gave a behind-the-scenes look at his endless
humanitarian work, as he reached out to the New York community at the NYC Marathon lottery drawing at Central Park and donated baseball bats to the South Bronx Campus baseball and softball teams (YouTube). To join Granderson's NYC Marathon team or to support the many charitable endeavors of his Grand Kids Foundation, visit http://grandkidsfoundation.org/.
Brad Ziegler will welcome more than 300 military troops and families to the ballpark Friday night through his foundation, "Pastime for Patriots". The Oakland A's pitcher purchases the tickets to provide his special guests with a night to temporarily escape the difficulties of life with loved ones stationed abroad, with the A's Community Fund providing a matching contribution to the scholarship fund established by Ziegler's foundation. Ziegler proudly supports the military in honor of his veteran grandfather and brother-in-law currently training in the Navy. (MLB.com)
It was Panda vs. parrot faceoff for Pablo Sandoval in Pittsburgh. (MLB.com)
MLB super fan Mike O'Hara interview David ... ahem ... Gordon Beckham at the MLB FanCave. (MLB.com)
Quote of the Day: "This must be what it's like to feel like Sam Fuld." -- Fuld's Rays teammate Ben Zobrist. "Zorilla" recorded seven hits, two home runs and 10 RBIs in the team's Thursday doubleheader against the Twins and set a new Rays record for single-game RBIs (8). (St. Petersburg Times)
Tweet of the Day: Jeremy Guthrie (@JGuthrie46): "Anyone else think it's strange that Kate Middleton is marrying #Yankees Mark Teixeira in a few hours? #RoyalWedding".