New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge made baseball history after blasting his 61st home run of the season to equal Roger Maris' franchise and American League (AL) single-season record.

Judge, who had gone homerless in seven games, crushed a two-run homer in the seventh inning in Wednesday's game against the Toronto Blue Jays.

Judge's record-tying 61st home run comes with another seven games remaining in the regular season. Maris' mark dates back to 1961.

The 30-year-old had gone 31 consecutive homerless plate appearances coming into Wednesday's game with some speculation he may be rested with the Yankees clinching the AL East on Tuesday.

Only three players have scored more homers in a single season than Judge; Barry Bonds (73 in 2001), Mark McGwire (70 in 1999 and 65 in 1999) and Sammy Sosa (66 in 1998, 64 in 2001, 63 in 1999).

Toronto Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr treated his home fans to a 3-2 walk-off win against the New York Yankees in extra innings.

Guerrero, 23, is considered one of the best young hitters in the sport, and he was one of only three players in the game to tally more than one hit on Monday.

After a Gleyber Torres sacrifice-fly and an Isiah Kiner-Falefa solo home run gave the Yankees a 2-0 lead heading into the fourth inning, singles to Bo Bichette and Guerrero set the table for Teoscar Hernandez's game-tying two-run double.

That 2-2 score would hold for the rest of regulation as both bullpens delivered five consecutive scoreless innings, and the Blue Jays had no interest in dealing with AL MVP favourite Aaron Judge in the 10th frame.

With runners on first and second base and two outs, the Blue Jays opted to intentionally walk Judge as he remains one home run away from the Yankees' and American League single-season record of 61, set 61 years ago by Roger Maris in 1961. The next batter, Anthony Rizzo, would harmlessly ground-out with bases loaded.

New York could have walked Guerrero with two outs and a runner on second base, but chose to pitch to him, and were punished with a walk-off single.

The win trimmed the Yankees' lead in the AL East to seven-and-a-half games, although the Blue Jays will likely make the playoffs regardless as they lead the race for the AL Wildcard spots.

Braves rookie pitches a shutout

The Atlanta Braves appear to have unearthed another stud rookie pitcher, with 23-year-old Bryce Elder pitching a complete game shutout in his side's 8-0 win against the Washington Nationals.

In just the eighth start of his career, Elder made it through all nine innings in 106 pitches, allowing six hits and one walk with six strikeouts. His emergence is a bonus for the Braves, who already have both contenders for National League Rookie of the Year in starting pitcher Spencer Strider and center-fielder Michael Harris II.

Albeit a small sample size, Elder now boasts an ERA of 2.76, and he has rattled off four consecutive quality starts, including a 10-strikeout outing against the Miami Marlins.

Santander hits two homers in high-scoring Orioles win

Anthony Santander hit two of the Baltimore Orioles' four home runs in a 14-8 win against the Boston Red Sox, with the two sides combining for 29 hits.

Of the 18 starters from both sides, only three players failed to get a hit in the game, while Santander, Cedric Mullins, Austin Hays, Rougned Odor and Kyle Stowers all collected at least two each for the Orioles.

Star 21-year-old prospect Gunnar Henderson also had a strong day for Baltimore, hitting a two-run home run and drawing three walks.

Aaron Judge remains rooted on 60 home runs for the season after he was kept homerless for the fourth straight game in the New York Yankees' 7-5 win over the Boston Red Sox on Saturday.

Judge had one walk but ended up none-for-three with two strikeouts and a fly out to medium center as the wait draws on to pull level with Roger Maris' franchise and American League (AL) record of 61 home runs in a single season.

The Yankees outfielder was left frustrated when he tried to hold his swing on a wide 2-2 fastball but umpire Chris Conroy signaled a third strike.

"Even for a guy that hit 60 home runs, he still doesn't hit them every day," Yankees coach Aaron Boone said. "A lot of things got to line up to go deep, even for the best of the best. So as long as he continues to take good at-bats and make good swing decisions, it'll happen sooner rather than later."

Judge's showing meant his batting average dropped to .314, with Boston's Xander Bogaerts going two-for-four to move ahead of him at .315, denting the Yankee's triple crown hopes.

Anthony Rizzo's seventh-inning two-run blast earned the Yankees the win in front of a sell-out crowd after scores were locked at 5-5.

Manoah helps Blue Jays claim key win

Alex Manoah led the way as the Toronto Blue Jays regained the top AL Wild Card spot with a 3-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Manoah sent down seven shutout innings with eight strikeouts – including his 300th career K - allowing only four hits with two walks.

Whit Merrifield hit a seventh-inning three-run blast to open up a three-run lead, capping a strong week after two homers against the Rays on Thursday.

The win means the Blue Jays (85-67) lead the Rays (84-68) by one game for the first AL Wild Card spot. The Seattle Mariners (83-68) are next.

Padres make ground in NL Wild Card hunt

Yu Darvish claimed his 16th win of the season as the San Diego Padres defeated the Colorado Rockies 9-3 to climb into second spot in the National League (NL) Wild Card race.

Darvish finished with eight strikeouts across six innings, allowing only five hits and two runs, but the Padres pulled clear with a six-run seventh inning.

Jake Cronenworth and Ha-Seong Kim both had two-run singles amid the seventh inning where they turned a tight game into a rout. The Padres move to 84-68, ahead of the Philadelphia Phillies (83-68) in the NL Wild Card race.

Aaron Judge hit his 60th home run of the season to kick-start an incredible last-inning 9-8 comeback win for the New York Yankees against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday.

Judge, who has 20 more home runs than any other player this campaign, is now one away from tying the Yankees and American League record for home runs in a single season, set by Roger Maris in 1961.

Against the Pirates, the Yankees found themselves trailing 8-4 entering the final inning after Pittsburgh's Rodolfo Castro's three-run homer in the eighth frame, with Bryan Reynolds and Jason Delay each driving home a pair of runs earlier in the contest.

Judge finished the game one-for-four at the plate, but his one hit was emphatic, leading off the ninth inning with a 430-foot launch over the left-field wall to trim the margin to 8-5.

An Anthony Rizzo double, followed by a walk to Gleyber Torres and a single to Josh Donaldson loaded the bases, allowing Giancarlo Stanton a chance to be the hero.

On a 2-2 count, Stanton connected with a changeup on the outer-half of the plate and pulled it 410 feet into the New York sky to end the game, sending the Yankees fans wild.

With the win, the Yankees remain five-and-a-half games clear of the Toronto Blue Jays atop the AL East, and they trail only the Houston Astros for the best record in the American League.

Lindor's grand slam delivers a Mets win

Two big home runs were the key for the New York Mets in their 7-5 win against the Milwaukee Brewers, highlighted by Francisco Lindor's grand slam.

The Mets trailed 4-0 heading into the sixth inning, where Pete Alonso blasted a three-run home run. An inning later, it was Lindor's turn for a big bomb, launching his grand slam 413 feet to left-field to grab the lead.

After a late RBI single to Willy Adames, Mets closer Edwin Diaz came in to finish the job, striking out three of the four batters he faced for his 31st save of the season – the seventh most in the majors.

Blue Jays win a 29-run shootout

A combined 14 runs were scored in just the last two innings of the Toronto Blue Jays' 18-11 win against the Philadelphia Phillies, with the teams combining for 36 hits.

Despite being on the losing side, Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto had a memorable day at the plate as he finished five-for-five with a home run and a double. 

For the Blue Jays, Teoscar Hernandez went four-for-five with two doubles, while All-Star catcher Alejandro Kirk went three-for-five, and Danny Jansen was three-for-six.

The Tampa Bay Rays made MLB history with all nine hitters in their starting line-up being Latin American for the first time in their 11-0 blowout win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday.

The feat occurred on Roberto Clemente Day, the official annual date the MLB holds to coincide with the start of Hispanic Heritage Month. The late Clemente is a Hall of Fame outfielder from Puerto Rico, who was a two-time World Series winner and National League MVP.

The Rays hitters did not let him down either, with Yandy Diaz blasting a three-run homer at the top of the second inning to open up a 4-0 lead. Isaac Paredes launched a solo home run in the seventh inning, while he also had an RBI single.

Rays manager Kevin Cash claimed that he did not realise that he had made history with his side's line-up until halfway through the game.

Meanwhile, the defeat is the Blue Jays' second biggest blowout loss this season, leaving them 81-63 but still well placed in the American League Wild Card race.

Carrasco stars as Mets sink Pirates

Clemente's former side, the Pittsburgh Pirates, were brushed aside 7-1 by the New York Mets, for whom Carlos Carrasco starred.

The Mets 35-year-old right-hander tossed down 11 strikeouts across six innings, allowing only four hits, one earned run and two walks. The win was Carrasco's 15th of the season.

Francisco Lindor crushed a two-run homer into the upper deck for his 24th blast of the season, setting a Mets' single-season record for a short-stop.

Pujols' 700 chase stalls with sac fly

The cameras and phones came out with bases loaded in the ninth inning searching for history, but Albert Pujols could only deliver a sacrifice fly in the St Louis Cardinals' 3-2 loss to the Cincinnati Reds.

Pujols is three runs shy of becoming only the fourth player in majors' history to blast 700 homers, but he could not add to his tally, although his sac fly to right allowed Brendan Donovan to get home to halve the margin in the ninth.

Corey Dickerson ground out to end the game as the Reds snapped their six-game losing run, with solo blasts from Nick Senzel and Aristides Aquino.

The New York Yankees took advantage of an outrageous three-run error to defeat the Boston Red Sox 5-3 on the road on Wednesday.

With the game scoreless entering the fifth inning, a fielding error allowed Aaron Hicks to reach base safely for the Yankees, and after Aaron Judge got on base as the next batter with an infield single, the Red Sox committed a costly mistake.

Gleyber Torres hit a regulation single to right-field, and while Hicks came around to score, Red Sox catcher Connor Wong tried to pick Torres off at first base, but instead sent his wild throw wide and back into the outfield, allowing Torres and Judge to both round the bases and score.

Instead of a 1-0 game, it was a 3-0 score, with those two runs proving to be the difference.

Wong would do his best to make up for the error later in the fifth inning, driving in a run with his double, but the poor fielding continued throughout the night.

The Red Sox were gifted a run in the eighth inning to cut the margin to 4-2, before another error in the ninth inning handed the Yankees an insurance run, with Clay Holmes coming in to collect the save.

Torres finished three-for-five at the plate, and he was the only player to register more than one hit.

On the mound, Nestor Cortes was credited with his 10th win of the season as he went five innings, allowing one run from three hits and two walks with seven strikeouts.

Brayan Bello took the loss for the Red Sox, despite having no earned runs in his five innings, striking out six batters in five innings.

With the win, the Yankees are now six games clear of the Toronto Blue Jays in the race for the AL East, and six games behind the Houston Astros for the best record in the American League.

J-Rod makes more history in Mariners win

Seattle Mariners standout rookie Julio Rodriguez became the first player to ever reach 25 home runs and 25 stolen bases in their first season, nabbing his 25th base and 26th home run in his side's 6-1 win against the San Diego Padres.

The heavy Rookie of the Year favourite hit a home run as the very first Mariners batter of the game, and after being hit by a pitch in the fifth inning, he stole second base to accomplish the feat. Mike Trout in 2012 and Chris Young in 2007 both technically reached 25 and 25 as rookies, but it was their second season after both debuted at the tail end of the previous campaigns.

It was another tremendous start for the Mariners' big addition at the trade deadline, with Luis Castillo pitching six scoreless innings, striking out nine batters while only allowing five baserunners.

Guerrero, Harper bring up milestones

Both Toronto Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr and reigning NL MVP Bryce Harper of the Philadelphia Phillies brought up home run milestones on Wednesday.

Guerrero became the 10th-youngest player to reach 100 home runs after turning 23 in March. He reached triple figures in 486 games, which is 48 games more than it took his father, Vladimir Guerrero Sr, although Senior was two years older.

Meanwhile, Harper hit his 100th home run as a member of the Phillies after arriving in 2019, bringing his career total to 283.

The Phillies beat the Miami Marlins 6-1, and the Blue Jays beat the Tampa Bay Rays 5-1.

The Tampa Bay Rays welcomed back star shortstop Wander Franco to the lineup after a two-month injury absence, and he returned in style with three hits in a 4-2 road win against the New York Yankees on Friday.

Franco, 21, was rewarded for his stellar rookie season with an 11-year, $182million contract extension, but his second year has been derailed by a fracture in his wrist before finally getting the all-clear Friday morning.

Batting second in the Rays' lineup, Franco hit a double in his first at-bat, and after a pop-out in the second inning, he stepped back to the plate in the fourth frame and doubled again. A single in the sixth inning would complete a three-for-five day at the plate, with two runs scored and two RBIs.

Also going three-for-five at the plate with two doubles and two RBIs was Franco's teammate Randy Arozarena, with the duo combining to drive in all of the Rays' runs.

They had some breathing room early thanks to an excellent start on the mound by Drew Rasmussen, who held the Yankees scoreless through the first six innings, finishing with 10 strikeouts while only allowing six hits and no walks.

An Aaron Judge single in the seventh frame, after Rasmussen had been pulled, gave the Yankees their first run of the contest, with a Kyle Higashioka home run in the ninth proving to be a consolation.

For Judge, the AL MVP favourite, the RBI was his 119th of the season, which is 10 more than any other player. He also has 19 more home runs than any other player (55) and 36 more total bases than any other player (339).

With the win, the Rays have cut the Yankees' lead in the AL East to three-and-a-half games, and they will play twice more over the weekend.

Bo Bichette's bat stays hot

Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette is in the midst of one his best ever hot streaks with the bat, hitting his fifth home run from his past four games in his side's 4-3 win against the Texas Rangers.

Bichette, 24, had three home runs on Monday against the Baltimore Orioles, and followed it up with a home run the very next day in a game where he went four-for-five at the plate. 

Against the Rangers, Bichette opened the scoring with an RBI ground ball in the first inning, and in his next at-bat, he took advantage of star teammate Vladimir Guerrero Jr getting on base and knocked a ball 385 feet over the right-field wall.

Bichette now has five home runs from his past 18 at-bats, after totaling 18 homers from his first 536 at-bats his season.

Cron launches the season's longest home run

C.J. Cron hit a ball he will never forget as his Colorado Rockies defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 13-10 in a high-scoring shootout.

In a game with eight home runs – with six of them traveling at least 418 feet in the altitude-assisted Coors Field – one stood above the rest as Cron connected on a 504-foot nuke to left-field. 

It is the longest home run this season, and ties him for the 10th-longest home run ever recorded.

Christian Yelich blasted the biggest home run seen in the majors since 2019 as the Milwaukee Brewers lost 10-7 to the Colorado Rockies in extras on Tuesday.

Yelich led the game off with a 499-foot home run into the third deck at Coors Field, which was also the third largest blast since Statcast started tracking homers in 2015.

Only home runs from Nomar Mazara, 505 feet in 2019, and Giancarlo Stanton, 504 in 2016, bettered Yelich's effort. Yelich's dinger came from the fourth pitch of the game from Rockies starter Chad Kuhl.

It was only one part of a thrilling contest that ended in the 10th inning with Randal Grichuk delivering a three-run home run to give the Rockies the edge.

The Rockies had trailed 6-1 going into the eighth inning before Grichek capped a five-run rally with a solo blast.

Colorado did most of their damage after Brewers starter Brandon Woodruff exited, having allowed one earned run, two hits and two walks across seven innings with five strikeouts.

Benches clear as O's edge Jays

The benches cleared as tempers flared during the seventh inning of the Baltimore Orioles' 9-6 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.

The incident occurred after Bryan Baker struck out Matt Chapman to finish the Blue Jays innings, with the right-hander appearing to make a "chirping" signal at the Toronto dugout who took umbrage and rushed on field on masse.

The Orioles, who improve to 72-64 to boost their wild card hopes, scored three runs in the eighth inning to pull away led by Ryan Mountcastle's two-run single, with Adley Rutschman safe after review.

Mets NL setback as Cruz blasts

Oneil Cruz lined a home run out of PNC Park into the Allegheny with a two-run blast as the Pittsburgh Pirates blew out the New York Mets 8-2.

Cruz displayed his unique power from Tommy Hunter over right-field and to blast his side into an 8-2 lead.

The result is a major blow for the Mets who slip to 85-51, alongside the Atlanta Braves with the same record in the National League East.

Aaron Judge stole the show in the New York Yankees' 7-4 win against the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday, blasting yet another home run as he pushes for Roger Maris' 61-year-old record.

Maris hit 61 home runs in the 1961 season, setting a new record for a Yankees player, and with 32 games remaining, Judge is now up to 51. It is the second straight day he has hit a home run, and he has five in his past eight games.

His long-ball proved to be the difference between the two teams, with his three-run shot in the fourth inning extending his side's lead from 4-2 to 7-2.

It was the third Yankees home run of the night after Andrew Benintendi connected as the second batter of the game, giving him his second home run since being traded to New York at the deadline.

Anthony Rizzo followed suit in the second inning with his own solo homer to make it 2-0, before Los Angeles' Max Stassi tied things up later in the frame with a two-run home run.

Judge now has 15 more home runs than second-placed Kyle Schwarber from the Philadelphia Phillies as he makes his case as the AL MVP, while his biggest competitor for the award – the Angels' Shohei Ohtani – finished two-for-four at the plate with a double. 

The Yankees are seven games clear of the Toronto Blue Jays for the AL East lead.

Valdez dishes up another quality start

Houston Astros pitcher Framber Valdez produced a terrific start on the mound to help his side to a 4-2 road win against the Texas Rangers, collecting his league-leading 23rd quality start of the season.

From Valdez's 25 starts this season, 23 have been considered quality starts, meaning at least six innings pitched with no more than three earned runs, and he did it in style.

Valdez ended up pitching eight full innings, striking out eight batters while only allowing two runs, while future Hall-of-Fame teammate Jose Altuve provided run support with his 22nd home run of the campaign.

No other starting pitcher has more than 19 quality starts, with five players on that number – including Valdez's Astros teammate Justin Verlander.

Vladdy stars for the Blue Jays

Toronto Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr went three-for-four at the plate with a home run in his side's 5-3 home win against the Chicago Cubs.

Guerrero batted in the Blue Jays' first run with an RBI single in the fifth inning, and after a three-run homer to Teoscar Hernandez in the sixth, Guerrero added a final insurance score with a solo blast in the seventh frame.

On the mound, Kevin Gausman was strong for Toronto, striking out nine batters in his six innings while giving up two runs.

Both Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout hit home runs as their Los Angeles Angels defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 8-3 on Sunday night.

The duo, who have combined for four of the past eight AL MVP awards, both hit their 28th homer of the season, with Ohtani's coming in the seventh inning to make it a 6-1 game, before Trout finished things off in the ninth frame.

They were two of four Angels home runs on the night as Luis Rengifo opened the scoring with a two-run shot in the third inning, before Kurt Suzuki also connected on a solo home run an inning later.

Overall, Ohtani reached base four time just a day after striking out nine batters on the mound, finishing three-for-four at the plate with a walk, while Trout was two-for-five. 

They are both tied for ninth in the majors for home runs, although nobody in the top-20 has had fewer at-bats than Trout, who missed over a month of action after suffering an injury in July.

Mookie mashes another moonshot

Los Angeles Dodgers right-fielder Mookie Betts hit a home run against the Miami Marlins for the third consecutive day, helping his side to a convincing 8-1 victory.

Betts, who hit two home runs in the opening game of the series on Friday before hitting one more on Saturday, wasted no time on Sunday, smashing the third pitch of the game 416 feet over the center-field wall. His 31 home runs this season tie him for fourth-most in the league.

On the mound, Julio Urias was terrific for the Dodgers, giving up just one hit in six innings, although that hit did go for a home run, and he allowed four walks.

Ray shows his Cy Young credentials

Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Robbie Ray was at his dominant best in the Seattle Mariners' 4-0 home win against the Cleveland Guardians.

Ray struck out seven batters in seven scoreless innings, conceding just three hits and no walks from 103 pitches.

With the bat, all of the Mariners' runs resulted from two swings, with a three-run home run to Dylan Moore, and a solo homer to Ty France.

Miami Marlins ace pitcher and heavy NL Cy Young Award favourite Sandy Alcantara shut down the best team in baseball single-handedly, pitching a complete game in his side's 2-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Alcantara needed 111 pitches to get all 27 outs, striking out 10 batters while giving up one run from six hits and two walks.

The one run he gave up was a solo home run to Mookie Betts in the third inning, continuing a hot series for Betts after hitting two home runs yesterday. It was Betts' 30th home run of the season – only six players have more.

Miami had to manufacture their runs the hard way, relying on small-ball. In the fourth inning, Jon Berti hit a single and then stole second base, allowing Brian Anderson to tie the game at 1-1 with an RBI base hit.

Two innings later, the Marlins took the lead when they capitalised on a fielding error as Edwin Encarnacion's single was bobbled by the left-fielder, letting Joey Wendle scamper home.

The Marlins showed incredible trust in their star in the ninth inning, as a pair of singles and a walk loaded the bases, but Joey Gallo could not be the hero for the Dodgers, grounding out to first base to end the game.

Alcantara has clearly been the best pitcher in the NL this season, and might have a case as the best starter in all of baseball.

He has tossed 19 more innings than any other player, and he is the only pitcher with more than 5.4 WAR (wins above replacement) – putting a gap on the field with 6.4. Of his 26 starts, 19 have been 'quality starts', meaning at least six innings pitched with no more than three earned runs.

Ohtani blanks the Blue Jays

The most unique player in baseball was the star of the show in the Los Angeles Angels' 2-0 win against the Toronto Blue Jays, with Shohei Ohtani striking out nine batters in seven shut-out innings.

Ohtani, who has hit the 11th-most home runs this season (27), has also struck out the seventh-most batters, with 176 in his 22 starts. Among starting pitchers, only Atlanta Braves rookie Spencer Strider (13.3) has a better strikeouts-per-nine-innings figure than Ohtani's 12.4.

He did not collect a hit in his four at-bats on Saturday, but was walked twice.

Yankees sputter in extra innings loss

The New York Yankees could only muster one hit in 11 innings against the Oakland Athletics, going down 3-2 in extras.

Athletics starting pitcher Adam Oller produced a career-best showing, giving up one hit and one walk in eight complete innings, while Yankees starter Domingo German also had his best stuff, carrying a perfect game into the sixth frame.

In extras, the Yankees scored their only two runs from a bases-loaded wild pitch, but that 2-0 lead was wiped out with one swing as pinch-hitter Stephen Vogt connected on a two-run home run. In the 11th, after the Yankees failed to score, the Athletics won with a walk-off error when New York second-baseman D.J. LeMahieu could not complete a double-play.

The Boston Red Sox blew a golden opportunity with bases loaded, no outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, going on to lose 6-5 to the Toronto Blue Jays in extra innings on Thursday.

In a game where the two sides combined for 28 hits, the Blue Jays got off to a hot start with a pair of scores in the opening inning courtesy of a Bo Bichette two-run double.

The Red Sox, in front of their home fans, tied things up in the second frame with RBI singles to Carlos Arroyo and Bobby Dalbec, before Rafael Devers' double an inning later gave his team a 3-2 lead.

It was then Vladimir Guerrero's turn to put the Blue Jays ahead with a two-run single in the fourth, which was another short-lived lead as the Red Sox tied things at 4-4 later in the inning through a Dalbec sacrifice-fly.

When Danny Jansen's solo home run in the six inning again gave the visitors a one-run lead, it seemed like it was destined to be the Red Sox's day as they instantly answered back, with Jarren Duran's double making it a 5-5 tie, which would hold until the ninth inning.

After the Blue Jays were unable to get a run across, the Red Sox manufactured runners on second and third base in the bottom of the ninth, with no outs. After an intentional walk, the bases were loaded for Franchy Cordero.

Cordero struck out swinging, before Enrique Hernandez grounded to third-base, where elite fielder Matt Chapman gathered, stepped on third base and threw to first for the game-saving double-play.

A pair of well-directed ground-outs brought across the go-ahead run for the Blue Jays, with Jordan Romano securing the save and the win.

DeGrom puts on a clinic

New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom showed once again why he is considered the best pitcher in the sport, dominating the early stages of his side's 3-1 win against the Colorado Rockies.

DeGrom, in only his fourth start of the season after he missed the first half due to lingering injuries, sat down the first 12 batters he faced, including seven strikeouts, before the Rockies finally got their first baserunner in the fifth inning.

As he ticked over 75 pitches he lost some life in his pitches, but he still finished with one earned run from six complete innings, allowing three hits and one walk to go with nine strikeouts.

Goldschmidt adds to his MVP case

Heavy favourite for the National League MVP, Paul Goldschmidt, hit two home runs as his St Louis Cardinals defeated the Chicago Cubs 8-3.

After a three-run first inning, every score from that point on for the Cardinals came courtesy of Goldschmidt's bat, with a two-run single in the fourth inning, followed by a 403-foot solo home run in the sixth, and a two-run, 428-foot home run in the eighth.

Goldschmidt now leads the NL in batting average (.339), on-base percentage (.420), slugging percentage (.637), RBIs (105) and total bases (284), and is second in home runs (33).

The New York Mets won a barnburner on Sunday as they came from behind in the ninth inning to defeat the Philadelphia Phillies 10-9 on the road.

It looked early on like it would be a fun night for the Philly fans in attendance, with the hosts jumping ahead 3-0 through a three-run Alec Bohm home run before they recorded a single out.

Philadelphia ended up with their first five batters reaching base, and Nick Maton batted in the fourth run of the frame with his single.

The Mets showed fight in the middle innings, with Michael Perez bringing in two runs with his base hit in the second, before Daniel Vogelbach trimmed the margin to one with his RBI double in the third, and Starling Marte tied things at 4-4 in the fourth with a single.

Just when the Phillies started to feel the pressure, Bohm came through with his second three-run homer of the night to jump back ahead 7-4 later in the fourth inning, and that score would hold until the seventh.

After Pete Alonso and Tyler Naquin got on base, Mets left-fielder Mark Canha tied things up with a single swing as his 345-foot shot barely scraped over the left-field wall, and there were plenty of fireworks still to come.

Jean Segura sent the home fans into raptures with his solo home run in the eighth inning, giving the Philles an 8-7 lead, before Canha delivered once again, connecting on a two-run shot for his second home run of the game. Brandon Nimmo then launched his own solo homer to add one more insurance run for the Mets.

That extra tally would be needed, as the Phillies were able to score once in the ninth inning through a sacrifice fly, but they could not manufacture a 10th run to force extra innings.

Bohm finished with six RBIs and Canha had five, while eight more players had multiple hits as the two sides combined for 30 knocks.

Yankees steady the ship

The New York Yankees collected a much-needed 4-2 victory at home against the Toronto Blue Jays, avoiding a series sweep, although they have now lost six consecutive series after dropping the first three games.

New York had won three of their past 17 games entering Sunday's contest, and they benefited from a strong start by pitcher Nestor Cortes, who finished with one earned run from three hits and one walk in his six innings.

With the bat, D.J. LeMahieu batted in two of the four runs, although one was not credited as an RBI due to a fielding error, before newly acquired lead-off hitter Andrew Benintendi came through with the scores tied at 2-2 with his first home run as a Yankee to grab the winning break.

Lou Trivino shut the door out of the bullpen, pitching the last two-and-a-third innings for the Yankees, giving up just one walk and no hits.

Ohtani struggles on the mound

A disappointing pitching performance from Shohei Ohtani doomed the Los Angeles Angels to a 4-0 away loss against the Detroit Tigers.

Ohtani, who has struck out no fewer than five batters in each of his past 11 starts – averaging 9.1 per game over that span – finished with just two strikeouts as he was only able to make it through four innings, making it his second-shortest start since April.

He allowed five hits, but a season-high four walks in a showing that got off to the worst possible start, with Tigers lead-off hitter Riley Greene sending Ohtani's very first pitch of the game 448 feet over the right-field wall.

Tempers boiled over during and after yet another defeat for the New York Yankees, with manager Aaron Boone scolding his side's efforts and imploring them "to play better".

The Yankees suffered a familiar fate on Saturday, losing 5-2 to the Toronto Blue Jays as the New York franchise succumbed to a 15th defeat in just 19 games.

Gerrit Cole voiced his frustrations throughout the match and was caught on camera banging on the dugouts in anger, yet that fury could not stop the Yankees from further squandering their advantage at the top.

The Yankees entered the All-Star break with a 64-28 record but have since gone 9-20, with their AL East lead over second-placed Toronto down to just seven games.

Boone offered his honest thoughts after defeat on Friday, but was enraged by yet another failure the following day as he doubled down on his comments and urged his side to improve.

"We have to play better. Period," he said, pounding the table as he spoke. "And the great thing is, it's right in front of us. It's right here, and we can fix it.

"It's there and we can run away from this thing. And we got the dudes in there to do it. But we have to do it. If we don't score, it's tough to win.

"The good thing is we are in first place. We get to write the script the rest of the way. No one else can get in our way if we go play our game."

Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge echoed Boone's sentiments, though he suggested his side will bounce back sooner rather than later. 

"We're not happy about it. If you lose one game, or if you lose 10 games, you're not happy at all," he added.

"But if we sit here and stay frustrated about one game, it's going to lead into the next game.

"So, it's about us picking ourselves up, and not forgetting we're the New York Yankees. And we have to go out there and show people that."

The Yankees will look to avoid a four-game sweep against Toronto on Sunday.

Albert Pujols closed in further on 700 career home runs after blasting two homers in the St Louis Cardinals' 16-7 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday.

The 42-year-old, who started the game on 690 home runs, blasted over deep left center for a second-inning home run from Madison Bumgarner to put the Cards up 3-0.

Pujols made it a multi-homer game with a near-identical blast from a 3-2 pitch from Bumgarner in the fourth inning, bringing up his 692nd career home run.

The 11-time All-Star, who has said this is his last season, had hit a career-first pinch-hit grand slam earlier this week against the Colorado Rockies.

Pujols backed that up with a four-hit game, with a sixth-inning hit slamming into the wall for a single, while he grounded to left field in the seventh.

The veteran passed Stan Musial into second for total bases in majors' history in the process, reaching 6,143.

Pujols also closed within two home runs of Alex Rodriguez (694) in fourth for most homers all-tme.

Yankees slump again as Cole jeered

Aaron Boone was left fuming once again as the New York Yankees slumped to their 15th loss from their past 19 games, going down 5-2 to the Toronto Blue Jays.

Gerrit Cole had not allowed a hit until the Jays piled on four fifth-inning runs to pull clear, leaving the home crowd to jeer the Yankees pitcher who was televised yelling and punching the dugout.

The defeat means the Yankees are 9-20 since the All-Star break, with their margin over second-placed Toronto down to seven games in the American League East.

May on fire in Dodgers return

Right-hander Dustin May returned with nine strikeouts in five scoreless innings in his first game in 15 months as the Los Angeles Dodgers won 7-0 over the Miami Marlins.

May had not played since May 2021, dating back 476 days, having undergone Tommy John surgery but he exploded back on to the scene for the Dodgers, falling one short of a career-high for Ks.

Justin Turner and Will Smith both blasted three-run homers for the Dodgers, who improved to 83-36 in the National League.

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