MLB

Atlanta Braves stay hot, Shohei Ohtani retakes MLB home run lead

By Sports Desk June 27, 2023

Spencer Strider struck out 10 in seven innings and Marcell Ozuna hit a go-ahead home run in the seventh for the red-hot Atlanta Braves, who recorded their 11th win in 12 games with a 4-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Monday.

Ozuna snapped a 1-1 tie with his third homer in five games, while Ronald Acuna Jr. added a two-run shot later in the seventh to help Atlanta take the opener of this three-game series between division leaders. 

The Braves are now 18-3 since June 3 and own the National League's best record at 51-27.

Strider improved to 9-2 by holding the AL Central-leading Twins to one run and three hits while extending his MLB-leading strikeout total to 146. The right-hander's only blemish came when he allowed a solo homer to Joey Gallo in the second inning.

Minnesota starter Sonny Gray matched Strider for six innings before surrendering Ozuna's blast and a two-out single by Michael Harris that chased him from the game. He was charged with three runs and struck out five in 6 2/3 innings. 

 

Ohtani's 26th home run helps Angels edge White Sox

Shohei Ohtani retook sole possession of the major league home run lead and Mike Trout scored on a wild pitch in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Los Angeles Angels a 2-1 win over the Chicago White Sox.

Trout led off the bottom of the ninth with a walk against Reynaldo Lopez and Ohtani greeted reliever Aaron Bummer with a walk before the two stars executed a double steal to put two on with none out. After Bummer struck out Brandon Drury, the left-hander uncorked an errant pitch that allowed Trout to slide into home plate with the deciding run.

Ohtani tied the contest at 1-1 with his 26th homer of the season, a 446-foot blast into the right field seats off Dylan Cease in the fourth inning that snapped a tie with Atlanta's Matt Olson for the most in the majors.

Both Cease and the Angels' Reid Detmers engaged in a stellar pitching duel from that point on. Detmers yielded a run on just two hits and two walks while striking out 10 in seven innings. Cease also fanned 10 while allowing one run on five hits in six innings.

Luis Robert homered for the fourth time in three games in the first inning to account for Chicago's lone run. 

 

Orioles withstand long delay to rout Reds

A rain delay of nearly two hours wasn't enough time to slow down the Baltimore Orioles' bats in a 10-3 win over the suddenly struggling Cincinnati Reds.

Five Baltimore players each collected two hits as the Orioles overcame a 1-hour, 44-minute stoppage in the second inning to earn their third consecutive win. Austin Hays gave Baltimore a 2-1 lead with a two-run single before the delay and finished with three RBIs, while Adley Rutschman drove in two runs in the rout.

Jordan Westburg, ranked the Orioles' No. 3 prospect by MLB.com, made his big league debut and recorded his first hit with a fifth-inning single. The second baseman also drove in a run on a fielder's choice.

The Reds were dealt a third straight loss following a 12-game winning streak that was the club's longest since 1957. Cincinnati dropped a half-game behind Milwaukee for first place in the NL Central after the Brewers defeated the New York Mets, 2-1, on Monday. 

Spencer Steer homered and knocked in all three Cincinnati runs while finishing 3 for 3.

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    Chris Bassitt tossed 6 1/3 effective innings to lead the way as the Toronto Blue Jays dealt the New York Yankees their first losing streak of the season with Monday's 3-1 win to open a three-game series.

    Bassitt allowed just one run on four hits to help Toronto to its season-high third straight win. The right-hander has now won back-to-back starts after losing his first two outings of the season. 

    The Blue Jays managed just four hits but took advantage of seven walks issued by New York starter Luis Gil in five innings of work.

    Gil walked three straight Toronto hitters to force in a run after Cavan Biggio opened the bottom of the second inning with a ground-rule double with the Blue Jays trailing 1-0. The right-hander later uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Alejandro Kirk to cross the plate for a 2-1 lead.

    Kirk recorded two of the Blue Jays' four hits, including a two-out double in the third that scored Bo Bichette, who had reached on an infield single.

    The Yankees had briefly gone ahead in the top of the second on Oswaldo Cabrera's run-scoring single, the last of three consecutive hits off Bassitt.

    Bassitt did not surrender a hit from the fourth inning on, however, and relievers Tim Mayza and Chad Green combined for 1 2/3 scoreless innings before Yimi Garcia retired the side in order in the ninth for his second save.

    Gil struck out six but permitted all three Toronto runs as the Yankees lost consecutive games for the first time in 2024. New York was coming off Sunday's 8-7 defeat at Cleveland in which the Guardians rallied for three runs in the 10th inning.

    Riley helps Braves pull away from Astros

    Austin Riley collected three hits, including an RBI single during a four-run ninth inning that enabled the Atlanta Braves to pull away for a 6-1 win over the Houston Astros.

    Four Atlanta relievers combined for 5 1/3 scoreless innings to protect an early 2-1 lead and allow the Braves to take the opener of this three-game series between the two participants in the 2021 World Series.

    Aaron Bummer was credited with the win after retiring two of three hitters in relief of Darius Vines, who held Houston to one run and four hits over 4 2/3 innings.

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    Atlanta answered by scoring two runs in the second off Houston starter Spencer Arrighetti, all with two out.

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    The 31-year-old pitched five seasons for Tampa Bay and won the American League's Cy Young Award after going 21-5 with the Rays in 2018.

    Snell took the mound with a 1-0 lead after the Giants scored once in the top of the first inning, but the left-hander was greeted by a leadoff double from Yandy Diaz and a one-out single by Randy Arozarena that quickly tied the game.

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    Isaac Paredes' two-out RBI single off Snell in the third increased the Rays' margin, and Snell issued two walks in the fourth before Pinto launched a three-run homer to center to extend the lead to 7-1.

    Tyler Fitzgerald doubled in the top of the sixth and scored on Jorge Soler's single to get the Giants closer, though Pinto answered in the bottom of the inning with his second homer of the day.

    A solo homer by San Francisco's Michael Conforto in the seventh was countered by Paredes' solo blast in the Rays' half of the inning as Tampa Bay took a 9-3 lead into the eighth.

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    After the Yankees tied the game on Anthony Volpe's RBI double with two outs in the ninth inning and scored twice more in the top of the 10th, Cleveland struck for three runs off reliever Caleb Ferguson in the bottom of the inning to salvage the series finale.

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    Jose Trevino's solo homer in the fourth increased New York's lead to 4-2, but Cleveland again answered with two runs in the fifth.

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    The score remained 4-4 until former Yankee Estevan Florial delivered a pinch-hit solo homer off Luke Weaver in the eighth.

    Ramirez and Josh Naylor each had two hits and two RBIs for Cleveland, while Allen allowed four runs over 5 2/3 innings. 

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    With a 3-2 victory in the opener, the Yankees are 12-3 for the seventh time in their history and first since 2003. They have won eight of nine road games.

    Poteet allowed one run and six hits over six innings to earn his first win since 2021 with Miami. He did not pitch in the majors last season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2022.

    Soto’s three-run homer came off starter Triston McKenzie and was preceded by Anthony Volpe’s RBI single.

    Josh Naylor and Estevan Florial homered for Cleveland, which is 1-9 in its last five doubleheaders.

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    Brewers slug way to another win

    Jake Bauers snapped a tie with a three-run homer and the Milwaukee Brewers scored at least seven runs again in an 11-5 win over the Baltimore Orioles.

    Rhys Hoskins also homered and Willy Adames and Brice Turang each added three hits for the Brewers, who have scored 58 runs in their last six games, with at least seven in each. That streak ties a franchise record set in 1982 and 1989.

    Ryan Mountcastle, Jordan Westburg and Adley Rutschman went deep for Baltimore, which has allowed 22 runs in the first two games of this series.

    Milwaukee went 6 for 10 with runners in scoring position and is 33 for 69 (.478) over the last six games.

     

    Cubs’ Imanaga continues strong start

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    Imanaga has thrown 15 1/3 innings in his first three major league starts without giving up an earned run. He scattered five hits, struck out four and walked two.

    Mark Leiter Jr., Yency Almonte, Hector Neris and Adbert Alzolay surrendered just two baserunners in 3 2/3 innings of relief.

    Seiya Suzuki and Miguel Amaya added solo home runs as the Cubs improved to 2-3 on a nine-game road trip.

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