SEATTLE -- Making his first big league start at first base and just his third appearance in the majors in nearly 13 months, Jesus Montero made strides in proving that he belongs with the Seattle Mariners. Tracy McGrady Jersey . Montero hit his first big league home run in more than a year, played error-free in the field and helped the Mariners sweep a two-game set over the San Diego Padres with a 6-1 victory Tuesday. The former top catching prospect was suspended 50 games for his connection to the Biogenesis performance-enhancing drug investigation last year and began the season at Triple-A Tacoma. "I really appreciate the opportunity that the Mariners are giving me again," Montero said. "Its really hard for me, what I was going through last year -- very tough year. Little by little, was in Triple-A working hard to be here and they gave me an opportunity again, and I feel really happy that they were paying attention to me. Now Im here. "I just want to appreciate that opportunity that they give me again and I want to just help them, help them to win." Montero, who said he was using a heavier bat than usual as he normally does against left-handers, showed the power that has made him a top prospect by reaching out of the zone to pull a low pitch for a two-run homer to left in the second and give the Mariners a 2-1 lead. The two runs would prove to be enough for starter Roenis Elias, who pitched seven strong innings. Elias (6-5) allowed three hits and struck out six without a walk while facing the minimum in five innings. After failing to win a game for nearly a month, Elias has won three of his last four. The only mistake Elias made turned into a solo home run by Rene Rivera in the second. "It was a good day for me," Elias said through an interpreter. "I had control of it and went out and did what I was capable of doing. Thank God it worked out well for us." "He has a good, live, young arm," San Diego manager Bud Black said. "He threw some secondary pitches as the game went on when he was behind the count, which I think helped him." Robinson Cano added two more insurance runs in the fifth with his fourth home run of the season to give the Mariners a 4-1 lead and it was enough to chase San Diego starter Eric Stults. Stults (2-9) allowed four runs, six hits and a walk. The left-hander struck out five, but had trouble finding the strike zone consistently and needed a season-high 102 pitches. The Padres bullpen was unable to keep the game close, as reliever Tim Stauffer loaded the bases and then gave up a two-run double to Kyle Seager. The Seattle third baseman leads the team with 47 RBIs, the most by a Mariner through 71 games since Raul Ibanez had 49 in 2007. The Padres have scored two runs or less 10 times in the last 15 games and have recorded four hits or less 13 times this season. NOTES: The teams travel to San Diego for another two-game set. Seattle RHP Felix Hernandez and San Diego RHP Andrew Cashner are slated to pitch in the opener on Wednesday. ... Black said INF Jedd Gyorko (plantar fasciitis) is not close to returning from the 15-day DL, despite being eligible to be reinstated on Friday. Gyorko, though, may be able to shed his walking boot on Friday. Mike Mitchell Jersey . According to the sportsbook BoDog, the Stampeders are 8/5 favourites to take home the Grey Cup at Mosaic Stadium in Regina on November 24. Bryn Forbes Jersey . - Young and old.MIAMI -- Christian Yelich stepped to the plate 0 for 4 in the game and 0-since-the-minors when batting with a chance for a walkoff win. This time he came through. The Miami outfielder hit a two-out, bases-loaded RBI single in the ninth inning Thursday to give the Marlins a 4-3 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies. Yelich said the walkoff hit was his first since Single-A. As a reward he was mobbed by his teammates after rounding first base. "You know youre probably going to get beat up a little bit out there, but its an awesome feeling," he said. "I got horse-collared for a second, but thats all right. Ill take it. Im glad I could win that one." The Marlins won despite squandering a 3-0 eighth-inning lead. They improved to 19-6 at home, best in majors, and have scored a game-ending run in four of their past six victories at Marlins Park. That gives them five walkoff wins this year, which is tied with the Pittsburgh Pirates for the most in the majors, according to STATS. "Nobody wants to play extra innings," manager Mike Redmond said. "We wanted to get that thing done with and go out and have a nice meal." Miamis Henderson Alvarez threw seven shutout innings, while Cole Hamels allowed three runs in seven innings. The Phillies lost two of three in the series and are 20-24 going into an 11-game homestand starting Friday. "Were so close for that sort of explosion to happen and for everything to come together," Hamels said. "Its a matter of time before it will happen, but I know personally it should happen soon." Philadelphias Marlon Byrd tied it in the eighth with a two-run homer, his sixth. Miamis Marcell Ozuna hit a two-run homer, giving him two homers and seven RBIs in the past two games, and he threw out a runner at third from centre field. Ozuna also started the ninth-inning rally. He singled with one out off Jake Diekman (2-2), then took second on a two-out single by Jeff Mathis. Pinch hitter Reid Johnson reached on an infield single that Diekman bobbled, sending Ozuna to third and bringing Yelich to the plate. "Im thinking, Dont leave me here," Ozuna said. "He did a good job." Yelich grounded a 1-1 fastball up the middle. Spurs Jerseys China. "It was fitting to get Yellie up there at the end," Redmond said. "He has been in a couple of sits where he has had a chance to get a big hit and hasnt come up with one. I was sitting there thinking, This would be a perfect day for him to get a big hit, and sure enough he did." Marlins closer Steve Cishek (4-1) struck out two with a runner at second to end the ninth. The Phillies went 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position, with Byrds homer the lone hit. With the Phillies trailing 1-0, manager Ryne Sandberg let Hamels bat for himself in the seventh. He then gave up a single and Ozunas eighth homer on an 0-2 pitch to start the bottom of the seventh. Ozuna had been batting .113 in May before his breakout in the past two games. "When he gets hot, hes as good as anybody," Redmond said. Jimmy Rollins singled in the third to take over sole possession of second place on the Phillies hit list with 2,218. He trails on Mike Schmidt, who had 2,234. Notes: RHP David Buchanan will be recalled from Triple-A Lehigh Valley to make his major-league debut Saturday for the Phillies against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Buchanan will start in place of LHP Cliff Lee, who is on the disabled list with a mild elbow strain. ... RHP Jonathan Pettibone, who has been on the Triple-A disabled list, received a cortisone injection and will try to pitch with a small labrum tear, the Phillies said. Hes expected to resume throwing next week. ... Marlins INF Jeff Baker left the game in the ninth inning with a bruised right shoulder following a collision at first base. His status is day to day. ... The Marlins transferred INF Rafael Furcal (groin) to the 60-day disabled list retroactive to March 21. They selected the contract of RHP Chris Hatcher from Triple-A New Orleans. ... The Marlins lead the majors with 54 infield hits. ... RHP Tom Koehler (4-3, 2.25) is scheduled to pitch against RHP Marco Estrada (3-2, 3.64) when the Marlins open a weekend series at home Friday against Milwaukee. ... The Phillies return home Friday to face the Dodgers, with RHP Roberto Hernandez (2-1, 3.98) scheduled to pitch against LHP Clayton Kershaw (2-1, 4.43). ' ' '
SACRAMENTO, Calif. Gus Williams Jersey . - After going nearly a month without a victory, the Detroit Pistons now proudly own a two-game winning streak.Greg Monroe scored 24 points, Josh Smith had 21 points, 13 rebounds and five blocked shots, and the Pistons beat the Sacramento Kings 95-90 on Saturday night.The Pistons used a 24-14 advantage in the third quarter and never relinquished the lead in registering back-to-back wins for only the second time all season.Detroit, 5-19 this season, had lost 13 straight and was one loss shy of tying the franchise record before beating Phoenix on Friday.When youre 3-19 there is no pressure to win with that kind of record. You can play carefree, and just try to play your game, said Smith, who shot 6 of 9 from the field.Smiths game, which included seven turnovers, was far from perfect, and his teammates werent, either. Detroit missed 14 of 20 3-pointers, was outrebounded 55-43 and its 15 turnovers resulted in 20 points.But it helped that the Kings were again without leading scorer and rebounder DeMarcus Cousins, who missed his ninth straight game with viral meningitis. The Kings have gone 2-7 without Cousins, who has no timetable for a return.Rudy Gay made four 3-pointers and scored 20, and also added eight rebounds and eight assists for the Kings, who shot 35 per cent. But Gay also struggled overall, hitting just 6-of-22 attempts. Usually productive point guard Darren Collison missed nine of 10 shots and had three points.Definitely holding them to 35-per cent shooting was good, Detroit coach Stan Van Gundy said. We made it tough on Rudy Gay — a great player — and Collison. We did what we wanted to do defensively.Carl Landry had 15 points and Ben McLemore 14 for Sacramento, which has dropped three straight and eight of 10.Andre Drummond had 12 points and 10 rebounds, and Kyle Singler added 11 points for Detroit, which had a season-high nine blocks.With the Pistons clinging to a four-point lead, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope hit a 3-pointer and DJ Augustin made two free throws to make it 88-79 with 34 seconds remaining. Consecutive 3-pointers by McLemore cut the lead to three points, but Monroe had a breakaway dunk to help seal the victory.The Pistons spread the ball around offensively in the second half and played effectively on defence against the cold-shooting Kings, who opened the season with a 9-5 record but have struggled since losing Cousins.I dont think we are waiting for DeMarcus to come back. We just are not playing the right basketball right now, Collison said.Regardless when he comes back or not, we are not playing the right basketball. DeMarcus does a lot of things that are good for us and he also builds us up because he is so talented. But you never want to rely on just one guy to build you up.Detroit trailed by three points before scoring 11 unanswered to start the third quarter. The Kings missed their first nine shots and went scoreless for more than 4 1/2 minutes. Despite a 13-0 run later in the period, Detroit only led 67-60 entering the fourth.I thought we missed a lot of great looks. That third quarter really hurt us, Kings coach Michael Malone said. We shot 18 per cent in that quarter. So that makes it hard to build a lead and win games when you struggle to make shots.___TIP-INSPistons: Point guard Brandon Jennings had another rough evening offensively, finishing with three points. He is averaging 5.3 points in the past seven games.Kings: Sacramento entered the game averaging less than five 3s a game. The Kings made 7 of 14 in the opening half and finished with a season-high 11. ... Reserve forward Omri Casspi missed his second straight game with a left knee bone contusion.FATHER VS. SONBrendan Malone, the father of Kings coach, is an assistant coach with the Pistons. The two spoke for about 10 minutes outside the Kings locker room after the game, with father providing some consoling words. My son is a very good coach, hes done a nice job with this team, Brendan said. But I understand what hes up against right now, hes doesnt have his best player. Thats difficult.UP NEXTPistons: Visit the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday.Kings: Host Oklahoma City on Tuesday. Oklahoma City Thunder Store . Adding playoff teams. Monitoring instant replay from league headquarters. Possibly creating a set of guidelines to prevent locker-room bullying. Gary Payton Jersey . An offseason trade acquisition from Kansas City, Greinkes National League debut was delayed by a non-baseball injury in the spring, and he was 0-1 after dropping an 8-0 decision at Atlanta in his initial appearance with the Brewers on May 4. MARANA, Ariz. -- Its rare to hear Ernie Els describe his week at the Match Play Championship as "wonderful." Hes usually not around long enough to say anything at all. This time, the wacky world of match play is working in his favour. Even though Els has made more bogeys than birdies, even though he didnt break par at Dove Mountain until his quarterfinal match Saturday, the 44-year-old South African is two matches away from claiming another World Golf Championship. Els made birdie from the desert on the par-5 eighth hole to take the lead for good against 20-year-old Jordan Spieth, and then pulled away for a 4-and-2 victory to reach the semifinals for the first time in 13 years. "At times I havent played my best, as you guys have well-documented and know," Els said with a laugh. "But its match play. Ive just done enough to get through." Graeme McDowell was the only other player who felt lucky to still be around, only for his luck to run out against Victor Dubuisson of France. McDowell had reached the quarterfinals even though he never led a single hole while any of his previous three matches were in progress. He finally took a lead -- 60 holes into this tournament -- and wound up losing. Typical of his week, it went down to the wire. Dubuisson hit a beautiful chip from the rough in front of a corporate suite behind the 16th green to save par, while McDowell missed a 6-foot putt to lose the hole. Dubuisson saved par with another superb chip behind the 17th green, and had one more in his bag from below the 18th green to save yet another par. McDowell narrowly missed a 25-foot birdie putt that would have extended the match. "Lucky, lucky to even be here today," McDowell said. "But actually played quite nicely most of the day. It all boiled down to my putter actually let me down. I had a chance on 14 for the hole, chance on 15 for the hole, missed a short one on 16. My luck is going to run out sooner than later." Els plays Dubuisson, a rising star in the European ranks who won the Turkish Open, where Tiger Woods finished five shots behind. In other quarterfinal matches: -- Jason Day reached the semifinals for the second straight year with a 2-and-1 win over Louis Oosthuizen, who played with a nagging back injury. -- Rickie Fowler lost a 3-up lead to Arizona grad Jim Furyk, only to win the last two holes for a 1-up victory for a shot at Day. Furyk was in the same spot as Dubuisson on the 18th hole, but his first chip rolled back down the hill toward his feet. Fowwler is the No. John Johnson Jersey . 53 seed, the highest to reach the semifinals since Zach Johnson was No. 59 in 2006 when it was held at La Costa. Els long held a reputation as a wizard in match play, having captured the World Match Play Championship seven times when it was at Wentworth and featured smaller fields and 36-hole matches. This version hasnt been kind to him. He reached the semifinals in 2001 at Metropolitan Golf Club in Melbourne, only to lose to Pierre Fulke. Els didnt imagine it would take this long to get back, though he understands that anything can happen -- and usually does -- over 18 holes of match play. "I really had a love-hate relationship with this event, as you guys well know," he said. "I was lucky enough to get in the field a couple of years ago and beat Luke Donald in the first round. But most of the time, I lost in the first round here either on the 18th or 19th hole. Its been a frustrating time in this event." The semifinals will be Sunday morning, following by the championship match. "Im just very glad to be here on Sunday," Els said. "Hopefully, it goes good tomorrow. I still feel Ive got a really good one in me." Fowler never looked like he would need to go 18th holes the way his match against Furyk started. And then he was happy to get there. Furyk was 3 down with only six holes remaining when he made three straight birdies and won a fourth straight hole at No. 16 with a par when Fowler flubbed a chip. Furyk missed the fairway on the 17th, however, allowing Fowler to square the match. On the 18th, Furyk came up just a fraction short of perfect and saw the ball roll back down the false front of the green. His chip was heavy, and that one rolled back toward his feet and led to bogey. Fowler navigated a quick birdie putt down the slope to a concession range and escaped. "Disappointed," said Furyk, in the quarterfinals for the first time in 14 appearances in this World Golf Championship. "I fought all way back from 3 down. I had all the momentum and I didnt put the ball on the fairway on 17 and didnt put the ball in the fairway on 18. I dont feel I handed the match away, but I definitely made it too easy on him the last two holes." It was the third straight round in which Fowler was trailing with three holes to play, and he pulled out wins against Jimmy Walker, Sergio Garcia and Furyk. The only easy time Fowler had was against Ian Poulter. "Its nice to get a win no matter how it happens," Fowler said. ' ' '