MLB

Ozuna homer leads Braves rally over Padres as White Sox shock Yankees

By Sports Desk May 15, 2022

The Atlanta Braves came out best after an action-packed eighth inning to defeat the San Diego Padres 6-5 on Saturday.

Down 5-2 in the bottom of the eighth following a four-run inning from the Padres, the defending World Series champions responded with a four-run inning of their own to split the opening two games of a three-game series.

Marcell Ozuna scored a home run and Austin Riley hit the go-ahead double in the response to hand the Braves the win, in what has been a sputtering start to the season.

Charlie Morton pitched solidly, striking out nine and giving up two hits over 83 pitches in six innings.

Atlanta have now won four of their past six games to move to a 16-18 record for the season.

Robert ruins Yankees win streak

Luis Robert drove home the winning run in the ninth inning to hand the Chicago White Sox a 3-2 win over the American League East-leading New York Yankees.

The Yankees were relentless at the plate over the opening two games of the series, scoring 25 runs but faced difficulty against Dallas Keuchel, who struck out three and gave up only four hits over 86 pitches.

While New York still hold the best record in baseball at 24-9, the loss ends a five-game winning streak.

Marte mashes Mariners

Patrick Mazeika hit the game-winning home run in the seventh inning, but Starling Marte was the star for the New York Mets in their 5-4 win over the Seattle Mariners.

Marte tripled, doubled, singled and claimed three RBIs from four at-bats for the Mets, who let a 4-0 lead slip when Jesse Winker tied with a three-run home run in the seventh inning.

Batting ninth, Mazeika had the final say however, mashing Andres Munoz inside the right-field foul pole for his second home run in the major leagues.

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    The Seattle Mariners acquired veteran slugger Carlos Santana from the Kansas City Royals for a pair of pitchers on Monday, helping to fill the void at first base in the wake of Ty France's injury.

    The 36-year-old Santana is in the midst of a third straight sub-par season, batting .216 with four home runs and 21 RBIs in 52 games, but has shown significant improvements at the plate in the past three weeks.

    After slashing .157/.291./.244 with seven extra-base hits in his first 37 games, Santana has compiled a .367/.492./.592 slash line with two home runs, five doubles and 11 RBIs in 15 contests since June 7.

    An All-Star in 2019 with the Cleveland franchise, Santana's 263 career home runs are the seventh-most by a first baseman since his 2010 rookie season.

    Santana will take over at first for France, who suffered a Grade 2 flexor strain in his left forearm on Thursday and is sidelined indefinitely. 

    France was enjoying a stellar season before his injury, batting .316 with 10 home runs while leading Seattle with 45 RBIs.

    The Mariners, who own baseball's longest active playoff drought at 20 seasons, begin play on Monday in fourth place in the AL East, seven games out of the league's second wild card spot.

    As part of the trade, Seattle sent right-hander Wyatt Mills and minor league righty William Fleming to Kansas City, with the Mariners also receiving cash considerations.

    Santana, who was first traded to the Mariners in 2018 but returned for a second stint in Cleveland 10 days later, is in the final year of a two-year, $17.5million contract.

  • Benches clear in clash between Angels and Mariners after seemingly intentional hit-by-pitch Benches clear in clash between Angels and Mariners after seemingly intentional hit-by-pitch

    Six players and both managers received ejections following a benches-clearing brawl during the second inning of Sunday’s game between the Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Angels.

    The nasty incident occurred after Angels pitcher Andrew Wantz hit Mariners outfielder Jesse Winker in the hip with a pitch to begin the second inning, after throwing behind rookie star Julio Rodriguez in the opening frame.

    After exchanging words with Wantz and briefly moving towards first base, Winker then charged the Angels’ dugout on the third-base side as both teams’ benches and bullpens emptied.

    Numerous punches were thrown in the resulting fracas, which delayed the Angels’ eventual 2-1 win for more than 15 minutes. When order was restored, both Winker and Wantz were ejected along with Seattle outfielder Julio Rodriguez and shortstop J.P. Crawford, Angels pitchers Raisel Iglesias and Ryan Tepera and each team’s manager – the Mariners’ Scott Servais and the Angels’ Phil Nevin.

    Tensions between the American League West rivals were already running high after Seattle pitcher Erik Swanson’s errant pitch sailed over Angels star Mike Trout’s head in the Mariners’ 5-3 victory on Saturday night.

    Wantz was not originally scheduled to start the game, with the change coming in the hours leading up to start time, prompting those on the Mariners' side to believe he was brought in with the intent to hit batters.

    "It’s classless," Mariners starting pitcher Marco Gonzales said afterward. “To throw at Julio, who’s a kid, over something that happened last night when we were trying to win a ballgame in the ninth inning, (not) put the tying run on base. It’s just classless to come out and change your pitcher before the game.

    "It’s clear. The intention is clear."

    Wantz, who was making his first career major league start, denied intentionally throwing at either Rodriguez or Winker.

    "I was pretty amped up for my first start and the first one just got away from me," he said. "It was sweaty. I was sweating.

    "First day game I’ve pitched (in the majors), and that’s that. Second one to Winker was a cut fastball inside and just yanked it. That’s all I’ve got to say."

    Nevin also downplayed the incident afterward.

    "You play eight games in a matter of a week against the same team, things like this happen," he said. "The scheduling, tensions, that’s baseball sometimes – unfortunately there’s some ugly incidents once in a while. I think that’s just what happened today."

    Winker later directed obscene gestures towards several Angels fans as he left the field, actions he expressed remorse for during his postgame interview.

    "The only thing I’m going to apologise for is flipping the fans off. That’s it," he said. "As fans, they’re spending their hard-earned money to come watch us play a game, and they didn’t deserve that. So, I apologise to the fans, especially the women and children."

    The two teams are scheduled to face one another 11 more times this season, including a four-game series in Seattle from August 5-7. The Mariners will visit Anaheim twice more in 2022, a three-game series in August and a four-game set in September.

  • Aaron Judge hits walk-off home run in extra innings, Cease and McClanahan put on a pitching show Aaron Judge hits walk-off home run in extra innings, Cease and McClanahan put on a pitching show

    New York Yankees star Aaron Judge continued to mount his case for AL MVP on Sunday as he crushed a three-run, walk-off home run to complete a 6-3 comeback win against the Houston Astros.

    All the momentum was with the Astros early coming off Saturday's meeting where they became the first team in 19 years to hold the Yankees hit-less, and they added to that history to begin this contest.

    Jose Altuve gave the Astros a 1-0 lead with a first-inning home run, before the road team jumped ahead 3-0 with a two-RBI single to Maurcio Dubon in the fourth frame.

    The Yankees did not have a hit through six-and-a-third innings – making it a streak of 52 at-bats without a hit, the longest dry spell by any team since 1974.

    Giancarlo Stanton finally broke the seal with a 436-foot solo homer in the seventh frame, before D.J. LeMahieu tied things up with a two-run shot an inning later.

    Neither team was able to find a run in the ninth, forcing extra innings, where Michael King was able to keep the Astros from scoring, setting up Judge to connect on the walk-off winner in the bottom of the 10th.

    Judge is the current favourite for AL MVP, and the home run was his 28th of the season – six more than any other player.

    Yankees starting pitcher Nestor Cortes put in a solid performance, striking out seven batters in five innings while conceding three earned runs from five hits and two walks.

    Astros starter Jose Urquidy was even better, allowing just one run from one hit through seven complete innings.

    With the win, the Yankees move their league-best record to 53-20, leading the second-placed New York Mets by six-and-a-half games.

    McClanahan shows Cy Young quality

    Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Shane McClanahan has emerged as the top choice for the AL Cy Young Award as the league's most outstanding pitcher, and he dominated the Pittsburgh Pirates in his side's 4-2 win.

    McClanahan struck out 10 batters, holding the Pirates to one run from four hits and no walks through his seven full innings.

    His dominance was rewarded, keeping the Rays tied at 1-1 until the seventh inning when they would finally find their rhythm and string together three consecutive two-out hits to make sure McClanahan had the lead before he was withdrawn, and was thus credited with the win.

    White Sox issue Cease and desist to Orioles offense

    Chicago White Sox ace Dylan Cease was at the top of his game on what turned out to be a great Sunday for star pitchers, striking out a career-high 13 batters in a 4-3 home win against the Baltimore Orioles.

    His 13 strikeouts in seven complete innings was one shy of this season's most strikeouts in a game, set by Miami Marlins star Sandy Alcantara when he sat down 14 batters against the Atlanta Braves last month.

    With the bat, the White Sox jumped ahead in the second inning courtesy of a two-run Gavin Sheets homer, and they held that lead throughout.

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