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* Rookie 3B Jim Thome became the...


* Rookie 3B Jim Thome became the 49th player to make a game appearance for the Cleveland Indians this year -- a club record. Misery really does love company.

* Former Baltimore Orioles 1B Eddie Murray is coming to life at the plate after a lengthy slump and a mysterious rib-cage injury. He entered Saturday with a 9-game hitting streak and 8 RBI in his past 4 games. *

* Houston Astros IF Jeff Bagwell has to be the leading candidate for NL Rookie of the Year. He has 71 RBI, easily breaking the club record for RBI by a rookie, which was held by Glenn Davis (64 in 1985).

* The AL Rookie of the Year is harder to call, but Toronto Blue Jays reliever Mike Timlin has 10 victories and a 3.41 ERA in 50 games, even though he spent half of August on the disabled list with tendinitis.

* Cincinnati Reds P Jose Rijo, after struggling through an 8-5 victory over the Phillies: "It's like Donald Trump says, 'It's not whether you win or lose, it's whether you win.' "

* Dodgers CF Brett Butler entered yesterday with 51 infield hits and 21 bunt hits.

* Brewers 2B Jim Gantner finally ended baseball's longest homerless streak on Tuesday night when he homered off Oakland's Dave Stewart. Gantner had gone 1,762 at-bats between homers, the streak dating back to June 14, 1987. Amazingly enough, on Friday, Gantner homered again.

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