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  June 13: Roger Clemens strikes out his 4,000th batter and wins his 300th game on the same night. (AP Photo)

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June: Cork, K's, W's and no-no's
A little cork, a big K, a huge W and a giant leg kick put a handful of players in the national spotlight in June. Here's a look at the on- and off-field events that heated up baseball in June:
Team Stories & Headlines

By Jason Beck /

June 1
This looked like a date ready to be in stone, with Clemens looking for 300 against the lowly Tigers. Detroit, however, didn't see it that way. After watching a 7-1 lead disappear, Clemens left with no decision, which is what the Tigers and Yankees had for about three more hours, before New York won in 17 innings.

June 2
MLB fined Curt Schilling for destroying a Questec camera, used to evaluate umpires' strike zones. Meanwhile, San Diego's 4-1 win over Arizona earned Carlton Loewer his first win since being injured in a hunting accident three years earlier.

June 3

What was supposed an ordinary Interleague game between the Cubs and Devil Rays became the center of baseball controversy when umpires found cork in Sosa's shattered bat. He immediately acknowledged the mistake, but the investigation was just starting. A number of professional careers were just starting, as well. The annual First-Year Player Draft began with a familiar name, as Delmon Young went with the first overall pick. Big brother and Tigers slugger Dmitri gave an inside look at the Young home on draft day.

June 4
Bat-gate picked up steam, then lost it. MLB investigated 76 other bats confiscated from Sosa, but none of them contained a foreign substance like they found within the bat in question from the previous night. Reaction from around the Majors poured in.
Sights and Sounds
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June 5
Woody Williams came within five outs of putting a nice, pretty wrapping on his 8-1 record. The Cardinals starter took a no-hitter into the eighth inning against the Blue Jays until Orlando Hudson hit a one-out single.

June 6
The ruling came down: an eight-game suspension for Sosa, who immediately appealed it. That provided a sidenote to the first Yankees-Cubs meeting since the 1938 World Series. Interleague Play also brought about a reunion between two former crosstown rivals, the Philies and A's. Back in Cincinnati, Halladay won his eighth straight start.

June 7

Youth was served, history again delayed in the dream matchup between Clemens and Kerry Wood. Clemens took a 1-0 lead into the seventh but lost it in a 5-2 Cubs win. The other end of the pitching spectrum came at Coors Field, where the Royals and Rockies combined for 38 runs in Kansas City's doubleheader sweep.

June 8
With his suspension under appeal, Sosa picked up his 2,000th career hit as the Cubs took the rubber game of their series against the Yankees. While the Bronx Bombers were in Chicago, Seattle stormed New York to hold the Mets to one run on nine hits in 18 innings for a doubleheader sweep. Jamie Moyer became the Majors' first 10-game winner.

June 9
The first game ever between the Phillies and Angels was the only game on the scoreboard. Vincente Padilla paced a six-hitter in the Phillies' 3-0 win.

June 10

Hours after Sosa had his appeal hearing with MLB COO Bob DuPuy, a fan in Baltimore made his claim for dumbest night at the ballpark by running on the field and throwing corks at Sosa. Around the same time, Carlos Delgado was making his claim as the next slugger to watch, uncorking his league-leading 20th home run and 70th RBI in a 13-8 slugfest over Pittsburgh.
June 11

Not a single pitcher had no-hit the Yankees in 45 years. But six pitchers? That was a first for any team. Enter Houston's bullpen, which relieved an injured Roy Oswalt in the second inning and posted zeroes the rest of the way in an 8-0 win.

June 12
The curtains fell on a pair of memorable careers. Mets general manager Steve Phillips, the architect of New York's NL pennant-winning team in 2000 and chief recruiter for more big-name free agents than fans can count, paid the price for the club's slow start with his job. On the opposite end of the country, Matt Williams announced his retirement and devoted himself to raising his three kids.

June 13

America's fascination with 299 finally ended. In his fourth try, Clemens earned his 300th victory in a 5-2 over the Cardinals at Yankee Stadium. For all the trouble, he added his 4,000th career strikeout the same night.

June 14
Mike Hampton and the Braves put an end to Jamie Moyer's seven-game winning streak in a classic duel. Hampton held the Mariners to a run on two hits in seven innings, fueling Atlanta to a 3-1 win.

June 15
The Mariners strike back on Atlanta's own wise, veteran control artist. Gil Meche's 7 1/3 innings of four-hit ball overshadowed Maddux's seven-inning, five-hit, 11-strikeout gem. The Mariners pulled out a 2-1 win and knocked Maddux's record to 5-6.

June 16
Who is this kid with the big leg kick, anyway? Willis, still a relative unknown to the baseball nation despite a four-game winning streak, stomped onto the national scene with a one-hit shutout of the Mets. He outpitched Tom Glavine, barely, for a 1-0 Marlins win and a 5-1 record.

June 17
The Mets didn't wait long for their revenge. Rookie Jae Seo only lasted 6 2/3 innings, but New York's bullpen held up his one-hitter and 1-0 lead. A four-run ninth turned it into a 5-0 Mets win.

June 18
While baseball said hello again to Sosa, back from his suspension, it said goodbye to a pioneer. Larry Doby, the first African-American to play in the American League, passed away at age 79. On the field, two current players were flirting with greatness. Clemens proved he wasn't done with success after reaching 300 wins; he took a no-hitter into the eighth inning at Tampa Bay. Problem was Carlos Zambrano had a two-hitter going, and the bullpens took a scoreless game into the 12th before Alfonso Soriano's RBI single earned New York a 1-0 win. In Los Angeles, Dodgers catcher Paul Lo Duca stretched his hitting streak to 25 games with a sixth-inning double against the Giants.

June 19
Next time you feel like complaining about the travel in your job, think of Bo Hart. He was in the middle of a Triple-A game in Tacoma, Wash. when told of his callup to the Cardinals. He leaves the game in the sixth inning, boards an 11:30 p.m. flight, changes flights in Pittsburgh at 7 a.m. and arrives in Milwaukee around 10 a.m. for a 1:05 p.m. start. After all that, Hart hits a double and a two-run triple in his first Major League game for an 8-4 victory. His journey to a regular big-league gig was just starting.

June 20
At this point, Miguel Cabrera was a skinny little kid playing in his first Major League game. By the end of the night, he was a hero. His first big-league hit was a two-run walk-off homer for a 3-1 Marlins win over the Devil Rays. For Jose Lima, his victory was merely a sweet return. Having spent most of the season in the independent Atlantic League until the Royals started him five games earlier, Lima earned his first win in nearly a year with five scoreless innings in a 10-4 win over the Cardinals.

June 21
Willis had a short night for his sixth straight win. He needed just five innings of two-hit ball before the Florida summer rains fell on a 2-0 Marlins victory.

June 22
At this rate, Halladay looked like he could keep winning until September. His eight innings of work without an earned run made him the third pitcher since 1990 to win 11 straight starts.

June 23
Most of Barry Bonds' career milestones these days come on home runs. This one came on a stolen base. When Bonds swiped second base on Lo Duca in the 11th inning, he established the 500-500 club. He also put the winning run in scoring position, scoring minutes later on Benito Santiago's single to beat the archrival Dodgers.

June 24
A year almost to the day after the Expos established their contender status by trading for Bartolo Colon, they had a another deal in place to change the pennant race. But Juan Gonzalez had other ideas, eventually using his no-trade clause to veto the swap. For one night, at least, the Expos quenched their offensive needs elsewhere; Brad Wilkerson became the first Major Leaguer this season to hit for the cycle.

June 25
How much is history worth? Not as much as it used to be. After more than a year of legal disputes, Bonds' record-setting 73rd home run ball from 2001 was auctioned for $450,000 to Todd McFarlane. The comic book creator and Radio host had paid $3.2 million for Mark McGwire's record-setting 70th home run five years earlier. Welcome to the new economy. Now, how much are Karim Garcia and Dan Miceli worth? A player to be named and cash, according to a trade with the Yankees.

June 26
Willis was at it again, owning the Mets this time with 10 hits allowed instead of one. He went seven innings in the Marlins' 6-1 win for his seventh straight victory. Delgado homered twice for the Blue Jays, reaching 25 homers and 86 RBIs.
June 27
That momentum didn't last long. A day later, the Marlins gave up 10 runs before they retired a batter, and the Red Sox kept on hitting in a 25-8 rout. The late innings took a frightening turn when Florida reliever Kevin Olsen was struck in the head by a line drive.

June 28
The Marlins strike back. A day after the rout, Florida overcame a 9-2 deficit with four runs in the eighth and four more in the ninth. Mike Lowell's three-run homer capped the 10-9 win.

June 29
The Yankees took control of New York, capping the first season sweep of the Subway Series with a 5-3 win over the Mets. On the other coast, Oakland's Eric Byrnes helped avoid a sweep in the Bay Bridge Series by hitting for the cycle.

June 30
Moyer took a no-hitter into the seventh inning. He didn't get the no-no but settled for his 11th win of the season. The Marlins won, too, moving back to .500 at 42-42. They wouldn't have a losing record again for the rest of the season.

Jason Beck is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.