PITTSBURGH The Toronto Blue Jays got a new manager, a bad scare and the same old result on a night much changed but, actually, not much changed at all.
Shortstop John McDonald misplayed Jason Michaels' hard-hit grounder with the bases loaded and none out for a game-ending error in the 12th inning, and the Pittsburgh Pirates ruined Cito Gaston's return as the Blue Jays' manager with a 1-0 victory Friday night.
Jays ace Roy Halladay pitched seven shutout innings, but was lifted after being struck on the right temple by Nyjer Morgan's line drive that deflected to third baseman Scott Rolen for an inning-ending out in the seventh. Halladay, who had precautionary X-rays after the game, apparently was not injured and is expected to make his next start.
The Blue Jays didn't announce until minutes before the game ended that the ball struck Halladay in the head. TV replays appeared to show the ball striking the pitcher's glove before deflecting to Rolen.
"He seems to be doing well and hopefully it's a minor little bruise," catcher Rod Barajas said.
Doug Mientkiewicz doubled for his third hit to start the 12th against Jesse Carlson (1-1), Toronto's fifth pitcher, and Jack Wilson singled off the plate on a ball that traveled about 45 feet down the third-base line.
"You're just hoping to get something going there," Mientkiewicz said.
He did. Jason Frasor replaced Carlson to walk Raul Chavez and load the bases before pinch-hitter Michaels ended it with his grounder against a drawn-in infield.
CUBS 4, WHITE SOX 3: At Chicago, Aramis Ramirez led off the bottom of the ninth with his second homer of the game to send the Cubs to a victory at raucous Wrigley Field. Ramirez lined a 1-0 pitch from Scott Linebrink (2-2) over the fence in center and the majority of the 41,106 fans most of them obviously pulling for the Cubs went into a frenzy. The White Sox had a 3-1 lead headed into the seventh before Derrek Lee and Ramirez hit back-to-back homers off reliever Octavio Dotel to tie the game. A.J. Pierzynski and Jermaine Dye also homered for the White Sox.
It was the first time the rivals met as first-place teams since interleague play began.
MARINERS 10, BRAVES 2: At Atlanta, Jose Lopez drove in four runs with three hits, including a three-run double in the eighth, and the Mariners enjoyed one of their best offensive games of the year by routing the Braves in Jim Riggleman's debut. The Mariners matched their season high with 15 hits, including a season-high eight doubles. They scored five runs in the eighth, also matching their high mark for an inning this season.
REDS 4, YANKEES 2: At New York, Edinson Volquez pitched seven sharp innings in Cincinnati's first game at Yankee Stadium in 32 years, and the Reds beat Mike Mussina and New York to end a five-game skid. Jolbert Cabrera had four hits before departing with a dislocated finger and Joey Votto homered for Cincinnati, which snapped New York's seven-game winning streak. Ken Griffey Jr. added an RBI single in his first game in the Bronx since 1999.
ANGELS 7, PHILLIES 1: At Philadelphia, Ervin Santana struck out nine in seven impressive innings, Vladimir Guerrero hit a two-run homer and Los Angeles beat Philadelphia. Santana (9-3) allowed two hits and one unearned run. He overpowered the NL's second-highest scoring offense with a nasty slider and a blazing fastball that reached 98 mph.
ASTROS 4, RAYS 3: At St. Petersburg, Fla., Roy Oswalt rebounded from a poor outing, Carlos Lee had a two-run double and Houston snapped an eight-game losing streak.
TWINS 7, DIAMONDBACKS 2: At Minneapolis, Scott Baker won for the first time in more than two months, Craig Monroe homered and Minnesota beat Randy Johnson and the Diamondbacks. The Big Unit hasn't won since May 18 and remains stuck at 288 career wins, tied with Tommy John for 24th all time.
GIANTS 9, ROYALS 4: At Kansas City, Mo., Ray Durham had three hits, including a bases-clearing double in a four-run sixth, and the Giants snapped the Royals' five-game winning streak.
CARDINALS 5, RED SOX 4: At Boston, Kyle Lohse won his sixth straight start and the Cardinals hit three homers to beat the Red Sox in their first game in Boston since Curt Schilling's "bloody sock" victory in the 2004 World Series.
Tim Wakefield (4-5) pitched well after rain delayed the start of the game by one hour, 14 minutes. But three of the seven hits he allowed in seven innings were homers, and he dropped to 1-4 in his last eight starts.
ORIOLES 8, BREWERS 5: At Milwaukee, Aubrey Huff went 4-for-5 with two homers, and Baltimore's bullpen pitched seven scoreless innings. Huff, who has five homers in the past five games and 14 this season, hit solo shots in the fourth and eighth innings.
METS 7, ROCKIES 2: At Denver, Carlos Delgado hit a two-run homer as part of a five-run second and John Maine composed himself after a shaky first, lifting the Mets over the Rockies.
Maine (7-5) went 6 2-3 innings, giving up two runs and six hits as he stopped a two-game slide. He surrendered a two-run homer to Jeff Baker in the first inning, but blanked the Rockies after that, retiring eight straight at one point. He also had six strikeouts.
NATIONALS 4, RANGERS 3 (14): At Washington, Elijah Dukes drove in the winning run with two outs in the 14th inning with his fifth hit. The Nationals loaded the bases with a hit batter and two walks. His ground ball off Jamey Wright (4-3) found a hole in the left side of the infield, enough to score Felipe Lopez from third and generating a mob scene around Dukes at first base.
PADRES 6, TIGERS 2: At San Diego, Adrian Gonzalez drove in the go-ahead run with a bases-loaded single in the eighth inning and the Padres snapped a four-game losing streak.