Semien helps A’s beat Royals 2-1
Semien scored in the first inning and drove in a run in the second. That was all the offense the A’s pitchers needed one day after Oakland had a season-high 19 runs.
Fiers (13-3) scattered eight hits in his 5 1/3 innings, but allowed just Alex Gordon’s RBI double in the sixth. He’s now won 11 straight decisions, dating to May 7, tying Mark Mulder for the second-longest winning streak in Oakland history.
Mike Montgomery (3-7) surrendered an unearned run in the first and another run in the second, but gave up nothing else through 6 1/3 innings.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Aaron Brooks came up with an unexpected pitching gem against the torrid-hitting Nationals, throwing six innings of two-hit ball to help Baltimore end Washington’s five-game winning streak.
Brooks (4-7) came in with a 6.21 ERA and was facing a team averaging 9 1/2 runs over its last 11 games. The right-hander allowed just four baserunners and struck out six, including four in a row bridging the first and second innings.
Washington’s Patrick Corbin (10-6) gave up two runs and four hits in seven innings with nine strikeouts.
CUBS 5, METS 2
NEW YORK (AP) — Yu Darvish pitched eight masterful innings, Javier Báez homered and drove in three runs, and the Cubs topped the Mets in the opener of a pivotal three-game series in the NL wild-card race.
Báez and Addison Russell each hit a two-run homer off Marcus Stroman (7-12). Darvish (5-6) allowed five hits, struck out seven and issued one walk — his first in six starts since his last one on July 23.
New York dropped its fourth straight, all at home, and fell three games behind Chicago for the second NL wild card.
The Astros honored Morton (13-6) with a pregame video recounting the highlights of his two-year stint with the team.
Houston’s hitters didn’t give Morton nearly as warm of a reception in his first trip to Minute Maid Park since signing with the Rays. The Astros tagged him for seven hits and a season-high six runs in four innings, which tied his shortest start this season.
Verlander (16-5) was ejected for yelling at home plate umpire Pat Hoberg in the sixth. He became upset when he thought he struck out Tommy Pham, but the pitch was called a ball.
The Rays got their only run on Joey Wendle’s first homer of the season in the seventh.
TORONTO (AP) — Justin Smoak homered and drove in two runs, leading Toronto to the victory.
The NL East-leading Braves lost their second straight following an eight-game winning streak that matched a season high. They managed just four runs while playing in New York, Colorado and Toronto in a span of three days.
Cincinnati also got a big game from Eugenio Suárez, who went deep for the third straight day and finished with three hits. Suárez leads the team with 37 homers.
Luis Castillo (13-5) struck out 11 in six innings for Cincinnati. Raisel Iglesias got four outs for his 27th save.
DENVER (AP) — Jackie Bradley Jr. opened Boston’s three-homer night with a solo shot into the third deck.
Bradley’s estimated 478-foot blast in the second inning was the seventh-longest this season, according to Statcast.
Rick Porcello (12-10) threw five solid innings and allowed two runs.
Colorado outfielder Sam Hilliard had a two-run homer in his major league debut. Nolan Arenado added a two-run homer in the ninth for the Rockies. Rico Garcia (0-1) got the loss in his first big league start.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Mike Leake pitched into the eighth inning in his first win since joining Arizona in a trade.
Ketel Marte homered in the fifth for Arizona, but came up limping as he ran the bases and left because of a cramp in his right hamstring. Marte’s single in the third gave him a 10-game hitting streak and career-best 21-game streak safely reaching base.
Leake (10-10) won his fifth start since he was acquired in a trade with Seattle on July 31. Archie Bradley got three outs for his ninth save.
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Yadier Molina homered twice and the NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals matched a season high with their sixth straight win in a rain-delayed game inside Miller Park.
Play was halted briefly with the Cardinals batting with two outs in seventh inning as rain poured through the open roof and fans rushed to the covered concourses. The delay lasted about nine minutes as the retractable roof closed.
Miles Mikolas (8-13) struck out 10 for the Cardinals, who have won 15 of 18 and are a season-best 15 games above .500.
Molina’s solo homer in the fifth inning made it 1-all. After Paul DeJong walked with one out in the seventh, Molina homered off the left-field foul pole against reliever Matt Albers (5-4) to break the tie.
Eddie Rosario knocked in an insurance run in the eighth as the AL Central-leading Twins won their third straight to remain 3 1/2 games ahead of Cleveland. Minnesota (80-51) moved to 29 games above .500 for the first time since Sept. 26, 2010.
Tim Anderson’s 14th homer accounted for the only run off Pineda (10-5), who won his third straight start and fourth straight decision. The right-hander allowed four hits and walked one while striking out eight, but was replaced by Sam Dyson to start the sixth after 89 pitches.
Lucas Giolito (14-7) gave up two runs and four hits with three walks in six innings, while striking out nine to reach 203 for the season.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Rhys Hoskins kept Phillies fans booing when he inexplicably dropped a routine throw at first base in the ninth, turning what appeared to be an inning-ending double play into the go-ahead run for Pittsburgh.
After a pair of one-out walks by Hector Neris (2-5), Kevin Newman hit a grounder to second baseman Cesar Hernandez that could’ve let the Phillies escape. Jean Segura’s relay throw should have finishing the inning, but the struggling Hoskins seemed to close his mitt too early and the ball smacked off the leather and rolled away. Adam Frazier scrambled home to score the tiebreaking run in stunning fashion and the Phillies failed to gain ground in the NL wild-card race.
Sean Rodriguez provoked the ire of Phillies fans a day after he won a game a with an extra-inning home run and blasted the crowd for booing. Rodriguez was booed during lineup introductions and each time he came to hit.
Carlos Santana had three hits and scored three times for Cleveland, while four pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts.
Detroit is now 17-44 at Comerica Park and needs to win five of the final 20 home games to avoid becoming the first team since at least 1908 to lose 60 at home.
Adam Plutko (6-3) improved to 2-0 in his last three starts, giving up one run on three hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out a career-high nine.
Andrew Heaney had 10 strikeouts over six innings of four-hit ball in his second straight outstanding start against Texas, but he left trailing 1-0 before the Angels rallied to win the opener of a two-game series.
SEATTLE (AP) — Aaron Judge became the third-fastest player in baseball history to reach 100 home runs, Masahiro Tanaka threw seven sharp innings and outpitched Yusei Kikuchi in a showdown of Japanese starters, and New York beat Seattle.
Judge joined elite company on the first pitch he saw from Kikuchi, hitting a two-run homer off the batter’s eye in center field in the first inning. Judge reached the 100-homer mark in his 371st game. Only Ryan Howard (325) and Yankees teammate Gary Sanchez (355) got to 100 faster. It was Judge’s 17th homer of the season after going deep in all three games at Dodger Stadium last weekend.
Brett Gardner added a three-run homer off Kikuchi and was more than enough offense on a night Tanaka was dominant.
Tanaka (10-7) won for the third time in his past four decisions, allowing just three hits. He struck out seven and Kyle Seager was the only baserunner to reach third base.
Kikuchi (5-9) was done after only four innings, five runs allowed and nearly 100 pitches.
DODGERS 9, PADRES 0
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Walker Buehler dominated the San Diego Padres again, striking out 11 and allowing only four hits in six innings, and Joc Pederson homered to lead the NL West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers.
Buehler (11-3) was strong from the start, walking just two and allowing only three baserunners to reach scoring position. He improved to 4-0 with a 0.64 ERA in four career appearances against San Diego in two seasons.
Manuel Margot, who was beaned by Buehler in the second inning, made a leaping catch at the wall in center field in the sixth to rob Cody Bellinger of a two-run homer, which would have given him sole possession of the MLB lead with 43.
Pederson hit his career-high 27th homer in the third inning off rookie Cal Quantrill (6-5).
Matt Beaty and Enrique Hernandez hit RBI singles in the fourth before the Dodgers blew it open with five runs in the fifth, when they chased Quantrill and had seven straight batters reach with one out.
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