Prime Rate. When the Twins beat the Tigers 21-7 last Saturday, Minnesota became the first team since the 1950 Red Sox to score more than 20 runs in two games in the same season. (The Twins had also beaten Boston 21-2 on May 20.) And despite having given Kirby Puckett and Dave Winfield the day off, Minnesota tied an American League record against Detroit when nine Twins got at least two hits each. "[Federal Reserve chairman] Alan Greenspan raises the interest rate to deal with inflation. We have to raise the mound to deal with the hitters," Minnesota starter Jim Deshaies says, laughing about this latest example of how the '94 season has been a nightmare for pitchers. "We shouldn't wait until after the season. It should be done at the All-Star break."
Lucky Number 13. The 13 runs the Padres scored in the second inning against the Pirates on May 31 were the most given up by Pittsburgh in one inning in 104 years—since a 13-run inning by the Chicago Cubs on Aug. 16, 1890. Having also scored 13 runs in the first inning against the Cardinals on Aug. 24, 1993, San Diego now has accounted for the two biggest innings in the National League since the Reds scored 14 in the first inning against the Astros on Aug. 3, 1989. These Padre outbursts were made even more stunning by the fact that San Diego ranked next to last in the league in runs before it blew out the Bucs and before it clobbered the Cards.
A Handful. Mariner ace Randy Johnson struck out 15 last Saturday in pitching his third straight shutout, a six-hit 2-0 win over the Blue Jays. From the beginning of the 1992 season through last weekend, a pitcher had struck out 15 in a major league game only six times: Johnson had done it five times and the Braves' John Smoltz once.
Bulletin. Rookie pitcher Mark Acre of the Athletics struck out the side on 10 pitches against the Blue Jays on June 1. Whenever there's an Oakland pitching highlight—and there have been few this season—it must be acknowledged.