New York Yankees ace Gerrit Cole starred in the team's 1-0 shutout of the Tampa Bay Rays in MLB action on Wednesday.

Cole put on a show in St Petersburg, where the Yankees pitcher struck out 12 batters over eight innings against the team's American League (AL) East rivals midweek.

The three-time All-Star surpassed 1,500 career strikeouts as a result of his performance for the streaking Yankees, who have won four successive games.

Cole (212 games) is the second fastest pitcher to reach the mark, behind Randy Johnson (206 games).

It was Cole's fifth game this season with 10-plus strikeouts and 0 walks, already the most in a single season in Yankees history, per Stats Perform. The most by any player in a season in the modern era is seven by Cole in 2019.

 

White Sox roll on, Cabrera makes history

World Series hopefuls the Chicago White Sox beat the Minnesota Twins 13-8 for their fifth straight victory. Jose Abreu drove in three runs as he became the sixth Cuban-born player to have 200-plus home runs and 700-plus RBI. White Sox rookie Andrew Vaughn hit the first home run of his career.

Miguel Cabrera became the Venezuelan hit king after the Detroit Tigers defeated the slumping Kansas City Royals 4-2. Cabrera drove in two runs as he surpassed Omar Vizquel for the most major league hits by a Venezuelan player.

The Los Angeles Angels were routed 9-1 by the Houston Astros but it was a memorable day for two-way star Shohei Ohtani. The Japanese sensation became the first player to start as a pitcher and then hit leadoff the following game since 1916.

World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers eased past the Seattle Mariners 7-1. Max Muncy homered for the second straight game, while Julio Urias retired Seattle's first 13 batters and gave up only two singles and a walk as he struck out six.

 

Kansas City's woes continue

The Royals cannot buy a win at the moment. Kansas City are in the midst of a 10-game losing streak – the franchise's longest skid since dropping 10 in succession in 2019.

 

Contreras clubs Ryu

William Contreras hit a moon shot, a 463-foot home run of Toronto Blue Jays ace Ryu Hyun-jin in the fifth inning. The Atlanta Braves still lost 4-1.

 

Wednesday's results

New York Mets 7-1 Baltimore Orioles
Cincinnati Reds 5-1 Pittsburgh Pirates
Cleveland Indians 2-1 Chicago Cubs
San Diego Padres 5-3 Colorado Rockies
Colorado Rockies 3-2 San Diego Padres
Philadelphia Phillies 5-2 Washington Nationals
Detroit Tigers 4-2 Kansas City Royals
New York Yankees 1-0 Tampa Bay Rays
Oakland Athletics 4-1 Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays 4-1 Atlanta Braves
Milwaukee Brewers 4-1 St Louis Cardinals
Houston Astros 9-1 Los Angeles Angels
Chicago White Sox 13-8 Minnesota Twins
Miami Marlins 3-1 Arizona Diamondbacks
Los Angeles Dodgers 7-1 Seattle Mariners

 

Yankees at Rays

The in-form Yankees (20-16) can claim a series sweep of the Rays (19-19) on Thursday. Jameson Taillon starts for the Yankees, while the Rays counter with Rich Hill on the mound.

The Houston Astros brought home four at the bottom of the eighth to claim a 5-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels in MLB on Tuesday.

Shohei Ohtani had 10 strikeouts from seven innings but he was not on the mound, instead at right-field, as the Astros did the damage after Taylor Ward leveled the match up with a home-run at the top of the eighth.

Jose Altuve raced home for the go-ahead knock from Michael Brantley's hit and two batters later with two-on Yuli Gurriel hit his sixth home-run of the season.

Aaron Judge hit his eighth homer for the 2021 season early in the New York Yankees' 3-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays.

At 2-0 down, Mike Zunino hit the biggest Rays home run, at 472 feet, since tracking began in 2008.

Catcher Gary Sanchez spectacularly threw out Austin Meadows on second after an error, while Aroldis Chapman sent down some heat in the ninth to clinch the win. Gerrit Cole should return Wednesday.

 

Red Sox overcome Means, Bieber ripper

John Means, coming off a no-hitter with 14 consecutive scoreless innings pitched, was excellent again for the Baltimore Orioles but they lost 3-2 to the Boston Red Sox.

The Orioles took the lead and held it into the eighth when Albert Almora ran at full speed at center field face first into the wall trying to make a catch, although he got up and walked off. Baltimore plated a subsequent run to go 2-0 up from a Freddy Galvis.

But the Mets found a way back after Kevin Pillar was a foot away from a home run. Pillar eventually slid into home base from Patrick Mazeika's hit to complete a come-from-behind win. Mazeika celebrated his walk-off with his team-mates ripping his shirt off.

Chris Bassitt had 10 strikeouts across seven innings as the Oakland Athletics won 3-2 over the Boston Red Sox.

The As scored two runs in the seventh, with first baseman Matt Olson hitting the plate before he made the decisive catch with runners on two bases in the ninth to seal the win.

Cleveland Indians pitcher Shane Bieber pulled off an instinctual catch from Joc Pederson's hit which traveled with an 111 mph exit velocity in their 3-2 win over the Chicago Cubs.

Bieber made eight strikeouts but it was Jose Ramirez in the fourth who hit a crucial home-run, his 10th of the season.

In a National League Central match-up between two in-form sides, the St. Louis Cardinals got past the Milwaukee Brewers 6-1 with five runs in the 11th including a Tyler O'Neill homerun.

The Detroit Tigers led 7-0 before an almighty comeback from the Kansas City Royals who eventually went down 8-7 with Niko Goodrum getting home at the bottom of the ninth.

Mitch Haniger hit two home-runs, taking his season tally to 10, as the Seattle Mariners blew a 4-1 lead to go down 6-4 against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

 

Ward and Trout clash in outfield

It was not a good night for the Angels, especially when outfielders Ward and Mike Trout had a collision where the former somehow held on to a catch and both avoided injury, walking away with bruised egos.

 

Number 11 for Acuna Jr

Ronald Acuna Jr took the outright lead for most home runs this season, his 11th of 2021 in MLB, but it was not enough for the Atlanta Braves who lost 5-3 to the Toronto Blue Jays.

 

Tuesday's results

San Francisco Giants 4-2 Texas Rangers
Cleveland Indians 3-2 Chicago Cubs
Pittsburgh Pirates 7-2 Cincinnati Reds
Philadelphia Phillies - Washington Nationals
New York Mets 3-2 Baltimore Orioles
Oakland Athletics 3-2 Boston Red Sox 
New York Yankees 3-1 Tampa Bay Rays
Detroit Tigers 8-7 Kansas City Royals
Toronto Blue Jays 5-3 Atlanta Braves 
St. Louis Cardinals 5-1 Milwaukee Brewers
Chicago White Sox 9-3 Minnesota Twins
Houston Astros 5-1 Los Angeles Angels
San Diego Padres 8-1 Colorado Rockies
Arizona Diamondbacks 11-3 Miami Marlins
Los Angeles Dodgers 6-4 Seattle Mariners

 

Yankees at Rays

Last season's runners-up, the Tampa Bay Rays, continue their American League East series against the New York Yankees.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is the real deal. The question is, can he match or even surpass the career of his Hall of Fame father?

Vladimir Guerrero is a name synonymous with baseball. Guerrero Sr. was voted one of the most feared hitters following a stellar career spanning 16 seasons that included an American League (AL) MVP, nine All-Star selections and eight Silver Slugger Awards.

Powerful just like his dad, Guerrero Jr. is now flying the family flag in living up to the hype, spearheading the Toronto Blue Jays' exciting young core in a bid to end their World Series drought, which dates back to 1993.

 

From prospect to star

Guerrero Jr.'s success is no surprise. He had long been on the radar when the Blue Jays signed the top international free agent in 2015. Before making his major league debut in 2019, he worked his way through the minor leagues – initially with the Rookie Advanced Bluefield Blue Jays before opening the 2017 season with the Class-A Lansing Lugnuts. He then joined the Advanced-A Dunedin Blue Jays later that year.

John Schneider – part of Toronto Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo's coaching staff – was manager of the Dunedin Blue Jays that year, a roster which also boasted Bo Bichette, Cavan Biggio, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Danny Jansen, as Guerrero Jr. had 56 hits, 31 runs, six homers, 31 RBI and a .333 batting average.

"Everyone sees the talent and the name obviously because of his dad and all that kind of stuff. But just how intelligent he is… and him as a team-mate and person," Schneider told Stats Perform News. "His team-mates love him. He loves coming to the yard and playing every day, having fun.

"It's been cool to watch him transform himself from a young kid with a ton of talent and having fun to a really established, difference-making major league hitter right now."

Guerrero Jr. – born in Montreal – has 35 hits, 24 runs, seven homers and 23 RBI with a .310 average this season, while boasting a .447 OBP, .549 SLG and .995 OPS – all career highs through 33 games in his third season in the majors. His 456-foot moon shot against the Kansas City Royals has put him in esteemed company in terms of distance this season, while his max 116.1 exit velocity is a number not many in the sport can even dream of matching.

A popular player in the team with an infectious smile, Guerrero Jr. also celebrated an accomplishment beyond even his famous Dominican father achieved – a three-plus homer and seven-plus RBI game last month against Max Scherzer's Washington Nationals as the 22-year-old became the youngest player in MLB history to achieve that feat.

The matchup against the Nationals also featured his third career grand slam. Aged 22 years and 24 days, Guerrero Jr. became the youngest player since Alex Rodriguez (20 years and 345 days in 1996) at the time of his third slam.

"People are drawn to him – players, staff. It's fun to be around him. He comes to the field with a smile every day and he comes every day having fun. It rubs off on guys. It's cool to have him go through the minor-league system with Bo, Cavan, Gurriel and those guys," Schneider said. "They know each other very well, they're comfortable with each other and it's something they've always done. It's easier for them to be themselves now and Charlie does a good job allowing everyone to do that. He has an infectious personality."

In his first 33 games of his third MLB season in 1998, Guerrero Sr. tallied more hits (39), fewer runs (19) and the same number of homers (seven), while he was inferior to his son when it comes to batting average (.307), OBP (.350) and SLG (.535).

"You forget how young he is because of how good he is," Schneider said. "He is always working on things whether it's offensively, defensively or game-planning wise. It's an adjustment period between the minor leagues and the big leagues.

"We've always kind of seen him as a hitter, being this talented and hitting the ball hard. But being able to watch him and look at advanced reports, have a much better plan going into every game has been a big difference. Watching him evolve at first base and third base for that matter has been great. You get the exceptional offense and forget that he is 22 years old and there is always going to be continued development throughout the course of his career."

 

Hard work pays off

During the coronavirus-shortened 2020 season, Guerrero Jr. finished with 58 hits, 34 runs and nine homers with a .262 batting average as the Blue Jays returned to the postseason for the first time since 2016. He had one hit as Toronto bowed out in the Wild Card Round at the hands of eventual World Series runners-up the Tampa Bay Rays.

Guerrero Jr. is now reaping the rewards after an intense offseason – shedding the pounds between the playoffs in October and Spring Training in February. He is gliding around the bases and making a mockery of major league pitching.

His walk percentage has rocketed from 8.2 in 2020 to 17.7 this season – a differential of plus 9.5, the largest increase in 2021, ahead of the Houston Astros' Yuli Gurriel (+7.7), Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Max Muncy (+7.5), Detroit Tigers outfielder Robbie Grossman (+7.5) and Nationals outfielder Victor Robles (+6.7).

In terms of OPS, his increase from .791 in 2020 to .995 (+.205) is the fifth-largest this season, behind only the Boston Red Sox's J.D. Martinez (+.396), Gurriel of the Astros (+.301), Chicago Cubs star Javier Baez (+.208) and Los Angeles Angels superstar Mike Trout (+.208).

Guerrero Jr. has also reached base on 63 occasions through Toronto's first 33 games of the 2021 season. That number ranks eighth all time in franchise history – Jose Bautista (70 in 2014) is first.

"Throughout the course of his career, in the minors, he was always finding himself in good counts," Schneider said of Guerrero Jr's patience at the plate this year. "Part of it was people were very careful with him and I think it's a little bit different in the minors command wise. Now, the biggest thing is that he's doing the same thing – you look up and it's 1-0, 2-0, 2-1 and he is laying off of borderline pitches where I think in his first two years he was putting in play.

"He is laying off those pitches knowing he can put them in play but maybe can't do damage with them. He has the very rare ability to be looking for a heater and get the hanging breaking ball and hit it out. He has better command of his strike zone with the combination of understanding how a pitcher is going to attack him."

Guerrero Jr. is fast becoming one of the elite first basemen in MLB. He is also forming a formidable partnership with team-mate and shortstop Bichette in the field.

In 2021, Guerrero Jr. and Bichette rank eighth for most direct assist-putout combinations by duos with 58 – Texas Rangers pair Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Nate Low (86) top the list, which only counts direct throws from one player to the other.

Guerrero Jr. is also fifth for the most total fielding chances in the majors without committing an error (228) this year.

"He has worked tirelessly with Luis Rivera our infield coach at first base but he always been a very, very good athlete," added Schneider. "Getting himself into really good physical condition has really helped him on both sides of the ball. Last year was kind of a crash-course at first base in a shortened season with a long lay-off due to COVID but he has taken it head-on and learnt new things.

"Just little things like when to get a ball to his right and when to go to the bag. It's just coming at you in a different angle than what he was used to last year. He's been doing a ton of reps and has always had the physical ability."

With 216 career games to his name, Guerrero Jr.'s stat line reads – 219 hits, 110 runs, 31 homers, 125 RBI, a .274 batting average, .353 OBP, .457 SLG and .810 OPS. It is not far off his father at the same stage of his career – 258 hits, 129 runs, 39 homers, 125 RBI, .317 average, .361 OBP, .541 SLG and .903 OPS.

Guerrero Jr.'s numbers also stuck up well against some Hall of Fame first basemen, including Orlando Cepeda, Tony Perez, Eddie Murray, Jeff Bagwell and Jim Thome.

Cepeda: 279 hits, 136 runs, 40 homers, 153 RBI, .319 batting average, .350 OBP, .538 SLG and .888 OPS
Perez: 144 hits, 66 runs, 16 homers, 88 RBI, .254 batting average, .303 OBP, .412 SLG and .715 OPS
Murray: 232 hits, 108 runs, 36 homers, 119 RBI, .280 batting average, .332 OBP, .463 SLG and .795 OPS
Bagwell: 216 hits, 110 runs, 23 homers, 120 RBI, .277 batting average, .372 OBP, .426 SLG and .798 OPS
Thome: 180 hits, 104 runs, 30 homers, 98 RBI, .256 batting average, .346 OBP, .449 SLG and .794 OPS

In the grand scheme of things, Vladdy's career is still in its infancy and he has barely scratched the surface of his potential, but he is on track to follow in his dad's footsteps, and then some.

Fernando Tatis Jr. flexed his muscles as the San Diego Padres crushed rivals the San Francisco Giants 11-1 in MLB action on Sunday.

Tatis launched a 454-foot homer – his ninth of the season – to lead the Padres past the Giants in San Francisco, where San Diego avoided a series sweep in the battle of the National League (NL) West franchises.

Padres star Tatis went deep off Johnny Cueto in the second inning, while team-mate Jake Cronenworth also sent a 445-foot shot to right field in the same frame.

Cronenworth became the fourth Padres player to hit a home run in San Francisco, following in the footsteps of Ryan Klesko (2003), Brian Giles (2008) and Yasmani Grandal (2014).

Chris Paddack pitched three scoreless innings for the visiting Padres before leaving with a 5-0 lead, while Ryan Weather had three shut-out innings.

Elsewhere, the New York Yankees celebrated back-to-back walk-off victories following their 3-2 win over the Washington Nationals.

Giancarlo Stanton was the hero for the Yankees, delivering a game-ending single off Brad Hand in the ninth inning.

 

Ynoa powers Braves past Phillies

Huascar Ynoa won his fourth successive start while also having six hits and six RBI in those games as the Atlanta Braves defeated the Philadelphia Phillies 6-1. Ynoa gave up one run, four hits and one walk while striking out six in six innings. According to Stats Perform, he is the first pitcher to go 4-0 with six-plus hits and six-plus RBI over a four-start span since the New York Mets' Dwight Gooden in 1985.

Jared Walsh hit a two-run double in the third inning to fuel the Los Angeles Angels' 2-1 victory against World Series champions and city rivals the Los Angeles Dodgers.

 

Pearson endures nightmare return

The Toronto Blue Jays finally got to see their top prospect back in action but the rookie pitcher struggled badly in a 7-4 loss to the Houston Astros. Pearson allowed four hits and a career-high five walks in his first start of the season and fifth of his career. He gave up three runs in 2.1 innings of work.

The Mets topped the Arizona Diamondbacks 4-2, however the win was overshadowed by ace Jacob deGrom. In his return to the mound following lat inflammation, DeGrom was pulled after throwing two warm-up pitches before the sixth inning in New York, where the two-time National League (NL) Cy Young Award winner allowed one run while striking out six and giving up one hit over five innings prior to exiting with the trainer.

 

Tucker helps tame Jays

Kyle Tucker hit a three-run homer and tied a career high with four RBI in Houston's success against Toronto. Tucker gave the Astros a 7-0 lead in the fourth inning.

 

 

Sunday's results

Boston Red Sox 4-3 Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees 3-2 Washington Nationals
New York Mets 4-2 Arizona Diamondbacks
Milwaukee Brewers 2-1 Miami Marlins
Chicago White Sox 9-3 Kansas City Royals
Houston Astros 7-4 Toronto Blue Jays
St Louis Cardinals 2-0 Colorado Rockies
Pittsburgh Pirates 6-5 Chicago Cubs
Texas Rangers 10-2 Seattle Mariners
San Diego Padres 11-1 San Francisco Giants
Los Angeles Angels 2-1 Los Angeles Dodgers
Tampa Bay Rays 4-3 Oakland Athletics
Atlanta Braves 6-1 Philadelphia Phillies
Cincinnati Reds-Cleveland Indians (postponed)
Minnesota Twins-Detroit Tigers (postponed)

 

Red Sox at Orioles

The high-flying Red Sox (22-13), who top the American League (AL) East, will put their four-game winning streak on the line against the lowly Orioles (15-19) on Monday. Boston can seal a four-game sweep as they start with Martin Perez, while Baltimore send Jorge Lopez to the mound.

World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers almost blew a 13-0 lead in their wild 14-11 win over city rivals the Los Angeles Angels, a result which snapped a four-game skid.

The struggling Dodgers – whose nightmare stretch saw their record dip from an MLB-best 13-2 to 17-6 having lost 14 of 18 games – raced to a 13-0 lead after five innings in Anaheim on Saturday.

After neither team managed a hit in the first three innings, Mookie Betts inspired the Dodgers with a lead-off walk in the fourth inning followed by a two-run single later in the frame.

Max Muncy, Matt Beaty, Austin Barnes, Betts, Corey Seager and Will Smith all delivered RBI hits for the Dodgers – who added another five runs in the fifth inning.

Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw also struck out five batters and allowed two hits over five scoreless innings before the team's bullpen surrendered 11 runs to the Angels.

The Angels scored seven unearned runs in a two-out rally in the seventh inning, highlighted by a first career homer for Jose Rojas – a three-run shot.

However, the Dodgers managed to hold on as they survived for a confidence-boosting victory in the Freeway Series.

 

Hader history

Milwaukee Brewers ace Josh Hader became the faster pitcher in MLB history to 400 career strikeouts. Hader reached the mark in just over 234 innings, surpassing the mark set by Craig Kimbrel (236) in 2014. Hader struck out the side in the ninth inning as the Brewers defeated the Miami Marlins 6-2. In the same game, team-mate Adrian Houser homered off Daniel Castano on April 27 and again on Saturday. Per Stats Perform, Houser is the first Brewers player to hit his first two career home runs against the same pitcher since Robin Yount in 1974.

Max Scherzer had 14 strikeouts and allowed two hits in the Washington Nationals' 4-3 extra-innings loss to the New York Yankees. It was his seventh game of 14-plus strikeouts and three or fewer hits allowed, a mark only bettered by Nolan Ryan (15) and Randy Johnson (14) in the modern era, per Stats Perform.

Chicago White Sox star Yasmani Grandal has 13 walks in his last four games, tying the most in any four-game span in the modern era, according to Stats Perform. The others with 13 are Babe Ruth (1930) and Bryce Harper (2016). The White Sox eased past the Kansas City Royals 9-1.

 

Musgrove costly in San Fran

Star pitcher Joe Musgrove struggled in the San Diego Padres' 7-1 loss at the hands of in-form National League (NL) rivals the San Francisco Giants. Musgrove gave up eight hits as he allowed four runs and two homers in five innings.

 

Biggio hits first homer in Houston

Craig Biggio enjoyed a Hall of Fame career with the Houston Astros. His son Cavan plays for the Toronto Blue Jays and the emerging second baseman hit his first home run at the ballpark where his father made so many memories. Cavan Biggio had a two-run homer in the second inning as the Blue Jays topped the Astros 8-4 at Minute Maid Park in Houston.

 

Saturday's results

New York Yankees 4-3 Washington Nationals
St Louis Cardinals 9-8 Colorado Rockies
Chicago Cubs 3-2 Pittsburgh Pirates
San Francisco Giants 7-1 San Diego Padres
Oakland Athletics 6-3 Tampa Bay Rays
Detroit Tigers 7-3 Minnesota Twins
Cleveland Indians 9-2 Cincinnati Reds
Milwaukee Brewers 6-2 Miami Marlins
Boston Red Sox 11-6 Baltimore Orioles
Texas Rangers 9-8 Seattle Mariners
New York Mets 4-2 Arizona Diamondbacks
Chicago White Sox 9-1 Kansas City Royals
Toronto Blue Jays 8-4 Houston Astros
Atlanta Braves 8-7 Philadelphia Phillies
Los Angeles Dodgers 14-11 Los Angeles Angels

 

Diamondbacks at Mets

Mets (15-13) ace Jacob deGrom is pencilled in to make his return to the mound in Sunday's series finale against the Diamondbacks (15-18). DeGrom has been sidelined due to lat inflammation. The Diamondbacks will counter with Riley Smith.

A meeting of two of the top teams in the American League nearly produced the second no-hitter of the night in MLB, but the Oakland Athletics settled for a 2-1 walk-off win against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Oakland starting pitcher Sean Manaea was perfect through six innings and had a no-hitter through seven innings, leaving a 1-1 game with one out in the eighth. 

That ended Manaea's bid for his second career no-hitter to follow his April 2018 gem against the Boston Red Sox, but Oakland still managed to pull out the victory against the defending AL champions. 

Seth Brown won it for the A's with a two-out home run off Jeffrey Springs in the bottom of the ninth. 

Brown had driven in the previous Oakland run with a single in the seventh inning. 

 

Miley with fourth MLB no-hitter this season

Cincinnati Reds pitcher Wade Miley threw the fourth no-hitter in MLB this season, shutting down the Cleveland Indians for a 3-0 win. Miley's gem came two days after John Means of the Baltimore Orioles no-hit the Seattle Mariners and is the 17th no-hitter in Reds history.

Austin Slater's tie-breaking home run gave the San Francisco Giants a 5-4 win over the San Diego Padres as the top two teams in the National League West squared off. 

The Washington Nationals scored eight runs in the final two innings to break a 3-3 tie and blow out the New York Yankees 11-4. Josh Harrison hit a three-run home run in the eighth and Juan Soto a two-run homer in the ninth for Washington. 

Francisco Lindor hit a two-run homer in the seventh to tie the game and the New York Mets beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-4 with a walk-off bases-loaded ground ball by Patrick Mazeika in the 10th inning. 

Detroit Tigers star Miguel Cabrera singled in his first two at-bats to give him 2,874 hits in his career, passing Babe Ruth for 45th on MLB's all-time list, in a 7-3 loss to the Minnesota Twins. 

 

Phillies get to Morton early

In his first six starts for the Atlanta Braves, Charlie Morton held opponents scoreless in the first inning while allowing only three base-runners. That luck changed Friday, as seven of the nine Philadelphia Phillies he faced in the first reached base and the visitors posted a 6-0 lead while driving Morton from the game in a 12-2 Phillies win. 

 

Flaherty can hit, too

Shohei Ohtani is not the only MLB pitcher who can go deep at the plate. St Louis Cardinals ace Jack Flaherty crushed a pitch from former team-mate Austin Gomber of the Colorado Rockies for a 416-foot home run. On the mound, Flaherty allowed only three hits in seven innings as the Cardinals rolled to a 5-0 win.

 

Friday's results

Chicago Cubs 3-2 Pittsburgh Pirates
Washington Nationals 11-4 New York Yankees
New York Mets 5-4 Arizona Diamondbacks
Miami Marlins 6-1 Milwaukee Brewers
Minnesota Twins 7-3 Detroit Tigers
Philadelphia Phillies 12-2 Atlanta Braves
Seattle Mariners 5-4 Texas Rangers
Boston Red Sox 6-2 Baltimore Orioles
Cincinnati Reds 3-0 Cleveland Indians
Houston Astros 10-4 Toronto Blue Jays
Chicago White Sox 3-0 Kansas City Royals
St Louis Cardinals 5-0 Colorado Rockies
Los Angeles Angels 9-2 Los Angeles Dodgers
Oakland Athletics 2-1 Tampa Bay Rays
San Francisco Giants 5-4 San Diego Padres

 

Nationals at Yankees

Two pitchers with impressive track records will be on display in New York as three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (2-2, 2.54 ERA) and the Washington Nationals visit two-time Cy Young winner Corey Kluber (2-2, 3.03 ERA) and the Yankees. 

Jose Altuve celebrated his birthday with a home run as the Houston Astros silenced the boo boys in a 7-4 win at the New York Yankees.

The Astros have been booed relentlessly in their first visit to New York since the sign-stealing scandal.

Houston were found to have stolen signs of opposition teams on the way to winning the championship in 2017, as well as for part of 2018 following an investigation last year.

Yankees fans have made their feelings known throughout the MLB series, but Altuve answered the boos by hitting a go-ahead, three-run homer in the eighth inning on his 31st birthday.

The Astros avoided a series sweep against the Yankees, who had their five-game winning streak snapped on Thursday.

 

Braves end seven-year wait

For the first time since 2014, the Atlanta Braves swept the Washington Nationals thanks to a 3-2 victory. It was a bittersweet outing for Dave Martinez, who oversaw his 411th career game as Nationals manager – a franchise record. Washington's Jon Lester also became the 17th left-handed pitcher in MLB history to record 2,400 career strikeouts.

Taijuan Walker allowed just one hit in seven innings to fuel the New York Mets' 4-1 win away to the St Louis Cardinals.

Randal Grichuk had a memorable game after homering, doubling and driving in five runs as the Toronto Blue Jays rallied past the Oakland Athletics 10-4. Marcus Semien homered among his four hits for the Blue Jays, who split the series in Oakland.

The Detroit Tigers and Boston Red Sox combined to score 21 runs without hitting a homer – the latter were 12-9 victors. It is the first time that many runs were scored without a homer at Fenway Park in a nine-inning game since 1961.

 

Twins and their extra-inning woes continue

The Minnesota Twins were outlasted 4-3 by the Texas Rangers after 10 innings. This season, the Twins are 0-7 in extra innings.

The Miami Marlins edged the Arizona Diamondbacks 3-1 but Pablo Lopez is still searching for a win. Lopez improved his ERA to 0.38 over his last four starts following his five-inning, 0 earned-run no decision. Per Stats Perform, he is the first pitcher since ERA became official in 1913 to have a four-start span with 20-plus innings pitched, an ERA under 0.50 and no wins.

 

Ohtani homers… again

Two-way Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani hit his 10th home run of the season in an 8-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. With his homer, it is the second time this year Ohtani has been the starting pitcher one day and then homered the next. According to Stats Perform, the Japanese sensation is the first player in the modern era to do so in the same season.

 

Thursday's results

Houston Astros 7-4 New York Yankees
Philadelphia Phillies 2-0 Milwaukee Brewers
Boston Red Sox 12-9 Detroit Tigers
Texas Rangers 4-3 Minnesota Twins
New York Mets 4-1 St Louis Cardinals
Cleveland Indians 4-0 Kansas City Royals
Toronto Blue Jays 10-4 Oakland Athletics
Atlanta Braves 3-2 Washington Nationals
Miami Marlins 3-1 Arizona Diamondbacks
Tampa Bay Rays 8-3 Los Angeles Angels

 

Dodgers at Angels

It will be an all-Los Angeles affair as city rivals the Dodgers (17-15) and Angels (13-17) meet on Friday. Slumping World Series champions the Dodgers have lost three straight games and eight of their last 10. The Dodgers will send Julio Urias to the mound, while Griffin Canning starts for the Angels.

The Toronto Blue Jays are expecting to wait a while before they get top offseason recruit George Springer back from the injured list. 

Toronto placed Springer on the 10-day injured list with a right quad strain on Wednesday, with the move retroactive to May 3. 

Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins believes star Springer will need more than the minimum length of time to return to the MLB line-up. 

"I would expect it would take more than just the IL stint," Atkins told reporters on Thursday.

"There's a chance I'm wrong, but based on the information that I have right now, I would expect that it would take longer than that IL stint."

Springer had been serving as a designated hitter following his long-awaited Blue Jays debut on April 28.

The 31-year-old has appeared in four games, hitting two home runs against the Atlanta Braves last week but going one for 10 with four strikeouts in his other appearances.

Springer left Sunday's game after three at-bats, complaining of what manager Charlie Montoyo called only "fatigue".  

The World Series champion and MVP joined Toronto on a six-year, $150million contract from the Houston Astros via free agency ahead of the 2021 season, the largest deal in Blue Jays history.

His setback is just one of a number of injury issues for the Blue Jays, who put pitcher David Phelps on the IL on Thursday with a right lat strain as infielder Joe Panik had an MRI after feeling calf pain while running on Wednesday. 

Earlier this week, Toronto put pitchers Tommy Milone (shoulder) and Anthony Castro (forearm) on the IL along with catcher Alejandro Kirk (hip). 

A new day but the same result for struggling World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers, who suffered a 6-5 walk-off defeat to the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday.

The Dodgers were condemned to walk-off misery in game two of Tuesday's doubleheader and the slumping MLB holders experienced the same fate midweek.

Anthony Rizzo hit an RBI single in a two-run 11th inning to lift the Cubs, who completed a sweep of the Dodgers at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

The Cubs swept the Dodgers – who lost for the 13th time in 17 games following a 13-2 start to the season – at Wrigley Field for the first time since 2008.

Meanwhile, Baltimore Orioles ace John Means entered the MLB history books after throwing a no-hitter against the Seattle Mariners.

Means threw the Orioles' first solo no-hitter since Jim Palmer in 1969 as Baltimore blanked the Mariners 6-0.

It was an almost perfect performance for Means, who retired all 27 batters he faced in Seattle but did allow a baserunner when Sam Haggerty reached on a third-strike wild pitch in the third inning.

Means is the first pitcher to throw a non-perfect no-hitter in which the team did not record a walk, hit by pitch or error.

According to Stats Perform, Means is also the second pitcher in American League (AL) history to throw a no-hitter with 12-plus strikeouts and 0 walks, joining Felix Fernandez – who had a perfect game in 2012.

 

Fulmer follows in Ryan's footsteps

Detroit Tigers pitcher Michael Fulmer earned his first career save in a 6-5 win over the Boston Red Sox. Fulmer retied Bobby Dalbec and Kike Hernandez to snap Detroit's six-game skid. According to Stats Perform, Fulmer is the first pitcher to get a save the day after a start of less than an inning since Nolan Ryan in 1973.

Marcell Ozuna hit a grand slam to lead the Atlanta Braves past the Washington Nationals 5-3, while Didi Gregorius also managed a grand slam as the Philadelphia Phillies topped the Milwaukee Brewers 5-4.

Giancarlo Stanton stayed hot with a homer and four runs in the New York Yankees' 6-3 win against the Houston Astros. Stanton homered in back-to-back games for the first time since last July as the Yankees extended their winning streak to six games.

 

A's falter against Jays

The Oakland Athletics were leading the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 before faltering. Toronto produced a five-run eighth inning to rally past the A's. Lou Trivino struggled in the eighth, allowing three hits, five runs – all earned – and two walks. Toronto won 9-4.

 

Ohtani the freak

Is there anything Shohei Ohtani cannot do? The two-way Los Angeles Angels star – returning to the mound – caught his own pitch in a fine example of his fielding and agility. Ohtani pitched five scoreless innings, giving up just one hit while striking out seven but the Angels still lost 3-1 to the Tampa Bay Rays.

 

Wednesday results

Cincinnati Reds 1-0 Chicago White Sox
Colorado Rockies 6-5 San Francisco Giants
Baltimore Orioles 6-0 Seattle Mariners
St Louis Cardinals 4-1 New York Mets
New York Mets 7-2 St Louis Cardinals
Miami Marlins 8-0 Arizona Diamondbacks
Atlanta Braves 5-3 Washington Nationals
New York Yankees 6-3 Houston Astros
Philadelphia Phillies 5-4 Milwaukee Brewers
Detroit Tigers 6-5 Boston Red Sox
Chicago Cubs 6-5 Los Angeles Dodgers
Texas Rangers 3-1 Minnesota Twins
Cleveland Indians 5-4 Kansas City Royals
San Diego Padres 4-2 Pittsburgh Pirates
Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 Los Angeles Angels
Toronto Blue Jays 9-4 Oakland Athletics

 

Blue Jays at Athletics

The Blue Jays will look to split their series away to the Athletics on Thursday. Blue Jays ace Ryu Hyun-jin starts, while the A's counter with Mike Fiers.

The Toronto Blue Jays placed star George Springer on the 10-day injured list with a right quad strain, the MLB franchise announced on Wednesday.

Springer's stint on the IL is retroactive to May 3, while outfielder Jonathan Davis has been recalled to the active roster for the midweek clash against the Oakland Athletics.

Toronto's prized recruit Springer underwent an MRI earlier on Wednesday, having been absent from the line-up on Monday and Tuesday following his removal from Sunday's game in what manager Charlie Montoyo described "fatigue".

"The main reason we did it is because we didn't see him improving fast enough, so we decided to have some imaging done to determine the next steps on him," said Montoyo as Springer's start to life in Toronto is hampered by injury.

Springer had been playing as a designated hitter following his long-awaited Blue Jays debut last month.

The World Series champion and MVP, who joined Toronto on a six-year, $150million contract from the Houston Astros via free agency ahead of the 2021 season – the largest deal in Blue Jays history, hit a pair of home runs against the Atlanta Braves last week.

"I wouldn't call it severe," Montoyo said on Tuesday. "He wasn't going to be out six weeks or four weeks, so I wouldn't call it severe, that's for sure.

"That's why he came back as soon as he did, because it was never severe. When it happened, he never really limped off the field, he just stopped running and went inside because he felt the quad."

In 15 at-bats this season, three-time All-Star and two-time Silver Slugger Springer has tallied three hits, three runs, two homers and three RBI with a .200 batting average.

Clayton Kershaw and Trevor Bauer were on the mound for the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday, but the MLB World Series champions were still swept by the Chicago Cubs.

Dodgers ace Kershaw and reigning National League (NL) Cy Young Award winner Bauer started in games one and two respectively, however, the Cubs were 7-1 and 4-3 victors to sweep the doubleheader in Chicago.

The Cubs secured the day-night sweep in walk-off fashion as the Dodgers lost for the eighth time in 10 games.

Elsewhere, the Houston Astros were greeted by boos and bad words in their first visit to New York since the sign-stealing scandal.

J.T. Realmuto hit a home run into deep left field as the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 4-3 in the MLB on Monday.

Trailing 1-0 at the bottom of the first, Realmuto hit his third home run of the season with a second tier two-run homer to put the Phillies 2-1 up.

For the Brewers, they welcomed back Christian Yelich and Lorenzo Cain from injury but that failed to fire their offense, which has not quite been on song this season.

Cain did return from his quadriceps injury with a lean-back home run in the first inning.

The Phillies improve to 14-15, while the Brewers are now 17-12.

 

Big homers from Laureano and Mullins

On a day where 21 home runs were scored, Ramon Laureano creamed a beauty for the Oakland Athletics in their 5-4 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.

With scores 3-3 at the bottom of the fifth, Laureano made it three straight games with home runs to help his side to a 5-3 lead, which they hung on to.

Cedric Mullins got the ball rolling for the Baltimore Orioles as they scored five times in the eight inning in their 5-3 win over the Seattle Mariners.

Down 1-0 at the top of the eighth, Mullins hit a home run which just eluded Mitch Haniger in center-field.

The Los Angeles Angels went down 7-3 to the Tampa Bay Rays although Shohei Ohtani hit another home run to take his season tally to nine.

 

'How about that play!?'

Pittsburgh Pirates third-baseman Erik Gonzalez made a brilliant play diving to his right and firing to first base to run out Will Myers in the San Diego Padres' 2-0 win.

 

Lights out in St. Louis

With two out in the ninth inning, the lights quite literally went out at the Busch Stadium with batter Alex Reyes quickly backing away in the Cardinals' win over the Mets, although it was only a brief delay.

 

Monday's results

Philadelphia Phillies 4-3 Milwaukee Brewers
Minnesota Twins 6-5 Texas Rangers
St. Louis Cardinals 6-5 New York Mets
Cleveland Indians 8-6 Kansas City Royals
Tampa Bay Rays 7-3 Los Angeles Angels
Oakland Athletics 5-4 Toronto Blue Jays
San Diego Padres 2-0 Pittsburgh Pirates
Baltimore Orioles 5-3 Seattle Mariners 

 

Brewers at Phillies

There is a full fixture card on Tuesday including two double-headers, while the Philadelphia Phillies continue their series against the fast-starting Milwaukee Brewers.

MLB World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers broke their slump with a 16-4 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers.

The Dodgers arrested a three-game skid and avoided a series sweep at the hands of the Brewers thanks to Sunday's onslaught.

A.J. Pollock and Matt Beaty fuelled the Dodgers with grand slams off Brewers rookie Alec Bettinger in each of the first two innings.

Pollock had two home runs and eight RBI, while Beaty contributed four hits and seven RBI against the Brewers as they became the first Dodger duo in history to record seven-plus RBI in the same game.

Elsewhere, the Cincinnati Reds topped the Chicago Cubs 13-12 in a wild walk-off win.

Nick Castellanos – who also clubbed two home runs – hit a game-ending RBI single in the 10th inning to lead the Reds past the Cubs in an epic encounter.

"It felt like a playoff game, to be honest with you," Cubs manager David Ross said. "Back and forth. Heavyweight fight. Wind blowing out in Cincinnati. And we just came up on the short end."

 

Scherzer sizzles as Kluber celebrates 100th win

Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer dominated in a 3-1 win over the Miami Marlins. Scherzer – who carried a shutout into the ninth inning – pitched a five-hitter, finishing with nine strikeouts, five hits and no walks before hurrying to the hospital for the birth of his third child.

Corey Kluber earned his 100th career victory as the New York Yankees beat the Detroit Tigers 2-0. A two-time Cy Young Award winner, Kluber gave up two hits in eight innings, walking one and striking out 10 batters – his first 10-strikeout game since September 2018. He became the 17th active pitcher in the majors to reach 100 wins.

Andrelton Simmons and Mitch Garver homered in a seven-run third inning to inspire the Minnesota Twins' 13-4 rout of the Kansas City Royals.

Marcus Semien homered and drove in four runs as the Toronto Blue Jays swept the Atlanta Braves with a 7-2 triumph. Toronto's Bo Bichette carried an historic start into the game, with a franchise record 124 hits, 69 runs, 32 doubles, 23 homers and 56 extra-base hits through his first 100 career games.

 

Bettinger schooled on debut

It was a forgettable first MLB appearance for Milwaukee's Bettinger. Having never pitched above Double-A previously, debutant Bettinger gave up 11 runs against the Dodgers. He allowed 11 hits and two walks in four innings, while hitting a batter and striking out none.

 

Tatis homer!

The San Diego Padres lost 7-1 to rivals the San Francisco Giants but Fernando Tatis Jr. stayed hot. Tatis homered for the eighth time this season as he became the first player to record 40-plus home runs and 30-plus stolen bases in his first 162 career games.

 

Sunday's results

New York Yankees 2-0 Detroit Tigers
Washington Nationals 3-1 Miami Marlins
St Louis Cardinals 3-0 Pittsburgh Pirates
Toronto Blue Jays 7-2 Atlanta Braves
Cincinnati Reds 13-12 Chicago Cubs
Tampa Bay Rays 5-4 Houston Astros
Cleveland Indians 5-0 Chicago White Sox
Minnesota Twins 13-4 Kansas City Royals
Los Angeles Dodgers 16-4 Milwaukee Brewers
Texas Rangers 5-3 Boston Red Sox
Oakland Athletics 7-5 Baltimore Orioles
Seattle Mariners 2-0 Los Angeles Angels
Arizona Diamondbacks 8-4 Colorado Rockies
San Francisco Giants 7-1 San Diego Padres
New York Mets 8-7 Philadelphia Phillies

 

Rays at Angels

Two-way star Shohei Ohtani will take to the mound for the Angels (13-13), who host the Rays (14-15) on Monday.

Toronto Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said George Springer was feeling fatigued as he allayed concerns over the MLB World Series champion after he exited Sunday's 7-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves.

Springer left the win against the Braves in the sixth inning for a pinch hitter as the Blue Jays claimed a series sweep in Dunedin.

It came a day after Toronto's prized recruit and 2017 World Series MVP hit his first home runs for the Blue Jays – the three-time All-Star only making his long-awaited debut against the Washington Nationals on Wednesday due to injuries.

Springer, who joined Toronto on a six-year, $150million contract from the Houston Astros via free agency ahead of the 2021 season – the largest deal in Blue Jays history, has been playing as a designated hitter and clubbed a pair of homers as the Blue Jays rallied to a 6-5 walk-off triumph on Saturday.

After his removal on Sunday, Montoyo told reporters: "He was fatigued. It was hot today, and [playing] three days in a row swinging the bat, he felt fatigued.

"Of course, we're going to be careful with him and that's why we decided to take him out. It was the best thing for him today."

Blue Jays star Springer was playing in just his fourth game since returning from a quad strain.

It remains to be seen when Springer will play in the field as he continues as a designated hitter ahead of Monday's series opener against the Oakland Athletics.

"We're going to manage his load and his work, but we have to communicate," Montoyo said. "We have to talk to him.

"If he feels like he needs a day off, we're going to give it to him. That's why he's been at DH – we're being careful."

The Blue Jays (14-12) have won seven of their last 10 games to be second in the American League (AL) East, behind the Boston Red Sox (17-12).

George Springer says not "overthinking" things was key to hitting his first home runs for the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday. 

Springer joined Toronto on a six-year, $150million contract from the Houston Astros via free agency – the largest deal in Blue Jays history – ahead of the 2021 MLB season.

He only made his long-awaited debut against the Washington Nationals on Wednesday due to injuries, but starred as the Blue Jays rallied to a 6-5 walk-off win against the Atlanta Braves.

Toronto trailed 4-0 and 5-2 but Springer, who hit a two-run home run in the third inning and a 470-foot shot in the seventh to level the game at 5-5, helped the Blue Jays rally.

Springer – still playing as a designated hitter – attributed his success to being in a positive frame of mind and not worrying about what could go wrong. 

"It's awesome, it's exciting," he told a media conference. "It feels good to help out. Obviously that's a big spot and it's exciting to help the team for the first time in a long time. 

"It felt good. They all count the same so it doesn't matter how far they go. I'm happy to help the team in a big spot. 

"It's a huge win for us against a great team, and onto tomorrow."

On his method in such situations, Springer added: "It's not really overthinking it; it's getting a pitch that I think I can hit well and hopefully not miss. 

"A lot that goes into it. I think it's a mentality thing as well. I need to be able to do the things the game asks me to do and I have to be able to do the things my team-mates expect me to do. 

"I don't want to be out there scared of something. I think I'm in a good spot now and go from there."

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