Another First for Nolan
Ranger pitcher Nolan Ryan was ejected for the first time in his 26-year career last Thursday against the A's. Plate umpire Richie Garcia said Ryan had intentionally hit Oakland's Willie Wilson with a pitch in the eighth inning. Ryan had cursed Wilson after the Oakland outfielder tried to take him deep with a big swing and a miss an inning earlier. Wilson then tripled, however, and cursed Ryan back when he got to third. When Wilson came up again, Ryan hit him on a 1-and-1 count. "Willie has some problems if he thinks he can scream obscenities at people and not have them say something back," Ryan said, neglecting to mention that he got the verbal fireworks going. Wilson's reply: "You can't do anything against him or he gets mad. I respect Nolan, but I lost respect for him for doing that.... Me and Nolan are two different things. I'm a guy who's gone to jail, I'm the bad guy, the eight ball. He's the legend. But he can [throw at you] and hurt you, and nobody can do anything to him."
On Aug. 6, San Diego's Gary Sheffield and Fred McGriff became the first teammates to hit back-to-back homers twice in the same game since the Cubs' Ernie Banks and Dee Fondy did it in 1955. Fondy, a scout with the Brewers, was on hand when Sheffield and McGriff performed the feat. "The way those two are going, they'll probably do it again," said Fondy.
They Keep Knuckling Under
With a 9-5 win over the Twins, White Sox pitcher Charlie Hough, 44, joined Bert Blyleven, Jack Morris, Nolan Ryan and Frank Tanana as the only active 200-game winners. He is the 90th pitcher in major league history to reach that plateau. "Gee, only 90 pitchers ever did it, and to do it with my talent is incredible," said Hough, a knuckleballer who took longer to attain 200 wins—almost 23 years—than any of the other 89.
By the Numbers
•A's outfielder Jose Canseco joined Billy Rogell (1938 Tigers), Mel Ott (1943 Giants) and Eddie Stanky (1950 Giants) as the only players in history to walk in seven consecutive at bats. Canseco had five walks in one game, on Aug. 4, against Texas, and two more in his first two at bats on Aug. 5, also against the Rangers. On his third at bat in that game, he had a 3-and-0 count before striking out.