ST. LOUIS (AP) The Cardinals were eliminated from postseason contention when Leonys Martin leaped at the center-field fence to rob Paul DeJong of a tying home run with two outs in the 11th inning, preserving the Chicago Cubs’ 2-1 win over St. Louis on Thursday night.
St. Louis, which went 5-14 against its rival, missed the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time since 2007 and 2008. At 82-77, the Cardinals are assured their fewest wins since going 78-84 in 2007.
A day after clinched their second straight NL Central title, the defending World Series champions started only two position players who had played in at least 100 games: outfielders Ian Happ and Kyle Schwarber.
Schwarber singled off Matt Bowman (3-6) with one out in the 11th and Davis, who struck out in his first three at-bats, hit a run-scoring double down the left-field line.
Jen-Ho Tseng (1-0) pitched three hitless innings.
RAYS 9, YANKEES 6
NEW YORK (AP) – Aaron Judge hit his 51st home run to give the Yankees a quick lead, but New York missed a big chance to tighten the AL East race when Sonny Gray and the bullpen fell apart in a loss to the Rays.
The Yankees stayed three games behind division-leading Boston, which fell to Houston 12-2. Each team has three games left and both are assured playoff spots – if they wind up even, the Yankees would host the Red Sox in a tiebreaker Monday.
Brett Gardner, Greg Bird and pinch-hitter Aaron Hicks also homered for New York, which had won three in a row. Wilson Ramos homered during a seven-run burst in the fifth inning for the Rays, who had lost three straight.
ASTROS 12, RED SOX 2
BOSTON (AP) – Major league batting leader Jose Altuve had three of Houston’s 17 hits, Carlos Correa had four and the Astros chased Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez in the second inning to win and keep Boston from clinching the first back-to-back AL East championships in franchise history.
Despite the loss, the Red Sox were guaranteed no worse than a tie for the division title when the Yankees lost 9-6 to Tampa Bay.
Boston needs one more win or Yankees loss to win the division; otherwise, the teams would meet in a one-game tie-breaker in New York on Monday to see who needs to play in the wild-card game and who advances to the AL Division Series – likely facing the Astros.
Altuve had two singles and his 39th double to raise his batting average to .350. Brad Peacock (13-2) allowed two runs and four hits in five innings, striking out two and walking one for the AL West champion Astros.
MARLINS 7, BRAVES 1
MIAMI (AP) – Giancarlo Stanton homered twice to become the first player to hit 59 in a season since 2001, and the Miami Marlins opened the last series of Jeffrey Loria’s tenure as owner by beating the Braves.
Stanton hit a solo home run in the fourth, then added a two-run drive in the eighth that would have gone 467 feet unimpeded, according to MLB’s Statcast.
He has 33 home runs since the All-Star break and 10 multihomer games this season. He became the sixth player to reach 59, joining Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire, Roger Maris and Babe Ruth.
Ichiro Suzuki got his 27th pinch hit of the year, one shy of the record John Vander Wal set in 1995.
Dee Gordon got two hits for the Marlins, who despite a 75-84 record assured themselves of second place in the NL East, their highest finish since 2009.
INDIANS 5, TWINS 2
CLEVELAND (AP) – Carlos Carrasco struck out 14, Jason Kipnis and Roberto Perez hit two-run homers and the Indians notched their 100th win, 5-2 over the understandably sluggish Twins. Minnesota clinched a wild-card berth hours earlier.
Carrasco (18-6) dominated a Minnesota lineup loaded with reserves and September call-ups. He allowed six hits – all singles – in 8 1-3 innings and improved to 3-0 with a 0.92 ERA against the Twins. The right-hander also moved into a tie for the league lead in wins with teammate Corey Kluber and Kansas City’s Jason Vargas.
Kipnis, who has moved from second base to center field, connected for a two-run homer – his first since Aug. 18 – in the sixth inning off Trevor Hildenberger (3-3) as the Indians jumped to 31-4 since Aug. 24.
This is just the third time Cleveland has won 100 games in a season. The last team to do it was Cleveland’s powerful 1995 squad, which lost to Atlanta in the World Series.
ATHLETICS 4, RANGERS 1
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) – Ryon Healy hit a tiebreaking two-run single in the sixth inning to help the Athletics beat the Rangers.
It was the fifth straight road win for the Athletics and seventh consecutive loss for the Rangers. It’s Texas’ longest skid since an eight-game slide in 2015.
Bruce Maxwell took to a knee in the Oakland bullpen during the national anthem. The catcher was warming up starter Sean Manaea, out of view from many fans and cameras. One fan near the Oakland dugout said ”boo” in a normal voice, and a small number of fans booed when Maxwell batted in the second inning. Maxwell has been the only major league baseball player to take to a knee, mirroring protests by NFL players against racial injustice. This was Maxwell’s first road game since he began his protest last weekend.
Manaea (12-10) gave up three hits and no earned runs in 6 2/3 innings. Blake Treinen pitched a scoreless ninth for his 15th save in 20 opportunities.
Miguel Gonzalez (8-13) took the loss.
BREWERS 4, REDS 3
MILWAUKEE (AP) – The Brewers closed within two games of Colorado for the National League’s second wild card with three games left, rallying to beat the Reds as Brett Phillips hit a go-ahead double in the sixth inning.
Milwaukee (84-75) closes the regular season at St. Louis, and the Rockies host the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Brewers are assured of their best record since finishing 96-66 in 2011, when they lost to the Cardinals in the NL Championship Series, Milwaukee’s last playoff appearance.
After Cincinnati tied the score in the sixth on RBI singles by Scooter Gennett against Brent Suter and Jesse Winkler off Oliver Drake, Jared Hughes (5-3) entered with two on and the Reds loaded the bases when the reliever bobbled Jose Peraza’s bunt for an error.
Hughes struck out Adam Duvall and got Stuart Turner to ground into a double play.
NATIONALS 5, PIRATES 4
WASHINGTON (AP) – The NL East champion Nationals began their last – and meaningless – series of the regular season without a sore Bryce Harper and with a blown save by closer Sean Doolittle in what became a victory over the Pirates, whose starting pitcher, Ivan Nova, left after getting hit by a pitch on his throwing hand while batting.
Howie Kendrick, a possible starter instead of Jayson Werth in left field when Washington opens its NL Division Series against the reigning World Series champion Chicago Cubs on Oct. 6, was taken out in the third inning after diving to try to catch a sinking liner. The Nationals did not immediately announce whether Kendrick was injured.
WHITE SOX 5, ANGELS 4
CHICAGO (AP) – Rob Brantly hit the game-tying home run in the eighth inning and Tim Anderson hustled home for the go-ahead run as the White Sox rallied for a victory over the Angels.
Anderson scored from first base on a single by Rymer Liriano, as the throw from left fielder Ben Revere went to second base and Anderson alertly headed home, scoring easily on reliever Jesse Chavez (7-11).
Carlos Perez homered for the Angels, who used seven pitchers and sat stars Mike Trout and Justin Upton one night after being eliminated from playoff contention.
Gregory Infante (2-1) earned the win in relief, throwing a scoreless eighth inning. Juan Minaya earned his eighth save with a perfect ninth inning for the White Sox, who won for the 12th time in 19 games.
TIGERS 4, ROYALS 1
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Daniel Norris threw five scoreless innings to pick up his first victory in more than three months as the Tigers snapped a season-high nine-game losing streak by beating the Royals.
Norris (5-8) gave up two hits in five innings. He was 0-4 in four starts and four relief appearances since a June 16 triumph over Tampa Bay.
The Tigers had been outscored 68-39 in their losing streak, which was their longest since dropping nine straight Sept. 1-9, 2005.
Nicholas Castellanos’ fifth-inning double with the bases loaded scored Alex Presley, JaCoby Jones and Dixon Machado. Jones singled home Andrew Romine with the first run of the inning.
Royals left-hander Danny Duffy (9-10) did not make it through the inning.
- Adam Duvall
- AL East
- AL West
- Brent Suter
- Brett Phillips
- Bruce Maxwell
- Bryce Harper
- Chicago Cubs
- Chicago White Sox
- Cincinnati Reds
- Cleveland Indians
- Dee Gordon
- Detroit Tigers
- Giancarlo Stanton
- Houston Astros
- Howie Kendrick
- Ian Happ
- Ichiro Suzuki
- Iván Nova
- Jared Hughes
- Jayson Werth
- Jen-Ho Tseng
- José Peraza
- Kyle Schwarber
- Leonys Martin
- Los Angeles Angels
- Matt Bowman
- Miami Marlins
- Milwaukee Brewers
- New York Yankees
- NL Central
- NL East
- Oakland Athletics
- Oliver Drake
- Paul DeJong
- Pittsburgh Pirates
- Scooter Gennett
- Sean Doolittle
- St. Louis Cardinals
- Stuart Turner
- Washington Nationals