Aaron Judge homered for the 46th time this season to bring up his 100th RBI, but the New York Yankees lost again, beaten 3-2 by the Boston Red Sox in extras on Friday.

Judge cleared the green monster at the top of the third inning with a 429-foot blast to put the Yankees up 2-0.

The home run was 46th for the season, meaning he is equal with Babe Ruth (1921) for homers in the first 113 team games in MLB history. Barry Bonds is the only player to better both, with 48 in 2001.

J.D. Martinez brought in Alex Verdugo to make it 2-1 in the fourth inning, before Martinez sent the game to extras with a ninth-inning RBI with Xander Bogaerts scoring.

In extras, Tommy Pham was the hero for the Red Sox at the bottom of the 10th inning with a shot down the third-base line allowing Christian Arroyo to score.

The result means the Yankees' recent woes continue, sitting 71-42 at the top of the American League (AL) East, with the Red Sox last in that division with a 56-58 record.

 

Soto returns to D.C. to rousing reception

Juan Soto returned to the capital for the first time since his trade from the Washington Nationals to the San Diego Padres earlier this month, receiving a heroes' welcome.

Soto registered his first hit against his former team in the fifth inning, before the Padres piled on seven runs in the frame to open up an 8-0 lead.

Jefferson Profar and Soto scored from Manny Machado's two-run RBI. Soto, who went 2-6, drove in an RBI in the fifth as the Padres ran away 10-5 winners.

 

Mets' winning run halted by walk-off Phillies

The presence of Max Scherzer was not enough to prevent the Philadelphia Phillies from snapping the New York Mets' six-game win streak in a 2-1 walk-off defeat.

Scherzer pitched across seven innings with six strikeouts and nine hits, his second most this season. The Mets right-hander did not walk anyone and only allowed one earned run.

The game went to extras, before Bryson Stott got home from Alec Bohm's sacrifice fly to right fielder Starling Marte, who thundered in a throw but catcher Tomas Nido could not complete the out on the hop.

Framber Valdez threw seven shutout innings as the Houston Astros moved a half-game ahead of the New York Yankees in the race for top seed in the American League (AL) with a 7-3 win over the Texas Rangers.

Martin Maldonado and Alex Bregman both homered for the Astros as manager Dusty Baker returned to the dugout after missing five games due to COVID-19.

Valdez had eight strikeouts across seven innings, allowing only four singles and a walk, earning his third win.

The result improved the Astros to 72-41, sitting ahead of the slumping Yankees who did not play on Thursday and possess a 71-41 record.

"It was outstanding to be back, especially when you come back with the win and come back with Framber throwing the game that he threw," Baker said.

"He pitched an outstanding game. He's very serious about his work and was very composed."

Surging Orioles slip in Wild Card race

The in-form Baltimore Orioles missed a chance to surge into the AL Wild Card spots after going down 4-3 to the Boston Red Sox.

The O's were off to a 7-1 start in August and looked to preserve that with a three-run sixth-inning to square up the game, before Eric Hosmer's decisive go-ahead RBI double.

With the win, the Red Sox snap a four-game losing streak, while it leaves the O's at 58-53, behind the Tampa Bay Rays (58-52) for the third AL Wild Card spot.

Goldschmidt and Arenado fire but Cards beaten

The battle for top spot in the National League (NL) Central division rages on after the St Louis Cardinals were toppled 8-6 by the Colorado Rockies.

The Rockies piled on six runs in the seventh inning, headlined by back-to-back home runs from Brendan Rodgers and Ryan McMahon, while Paul Goldschmidt had three hits including his 27th home run of the season.

Nolan Arenado also homered for the Cards, who hold a 61-50 record, marginally ahead of the Milwaukee Brewers at 60-50 in the NL Central. The Cards have won eight of their past 10.

It was far from a warm welcome for newly acquired New York Yankees starting pitcher Frankie Montas, getting smacked around in a 12-9 away loss to the St Louis Cardinals.

Montas, who was traded from the Oakland Athletics before the deadline, struggled mightily, conceding six runs in the first two innings, with four coming off the bat of Nolan Arenado.

Arenado collected an RBI single in the first inning to cancel out an early Yankees run, and after the visiting side jumped ahead 4-1 in the second frame thanks in large part to a two-RBI base hit from AL MVP favourite Aaron Judge, it all began to fall apart.

Dylan Carlson's RBI double started the rally and cut the margin to 4-2, a sacrifice-fly from NL MVP favourite Paul Goldschmidt made it 4-3, and then Arenado connected on a three-run home run to lead 6-4 after two innings.

Montas would be pulled to begin the fourth frame, finishing with figures of six earned runs from five hits and three walks in his 64 pitches.

To the Yankees' credit, they refused to lay down, with Judge driving in another two runs with a double in the fifth inning to tie the game at 6-6, but the Cardinals continued to answer right back, adding three more runs of their own in the bottom of the fifth.

The Yankees again cut the lead to 9-8, but Paul DeJong put the game to bed in the eighth inning with a three-run homer to grab a winning break.

Overall, the teams combined for 21 runs from 27 hits, with Arenado going three-for-five at the plate with four RBIs, and Judge finishing two-for-five with four RBIs. Judge now leads the majors in RBIs with 97, two more than New York Mets slugger Pete Alonso.

DeGrom makes his case as the game's best pitcher

There were concerns that perhaps injuries would strip New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom of his status as the sport's most elite pitcher, but he continued to dispel that myth on Sunday in his side's 5-2 win against the Atlanta Braves.

DeGrom, in his second start of the season, struck out 12 of the 19 batters he faced, going on to finish with two earned runs from one hit and one walk in five-and-two-thirds innings.

Through five innings, deGrom had a perfect game with 10 strikeouts, but was pulled in the sixth after his first walk of the game was followed by a home run from Dansby Swanson to cut the Mets' lead to 5-2, with both bullpens keeping things scoreless the rest of the way.

Rays pull off improbable late rally

With two outs in the top of the ninth inning, there had yet to be a run in the Tampa Bay Rays' road game against the Detroit Tigers, before an incredible offensive explosion saw the Rays prevail 7-0.

The Rays as a team conceded only three hits and no walks as six pitchers combined beautifully, while the Tigers relied on Matt Manning to get them through most of the game, pitching seven scoreless frames for seven baserunners and seven strikeouts.

In the ninth inning, after two outs, the Rays rattled off consecutive at-bats resulting in a double, three walks, a single, a double and another single as seven straight batters reached base.

Max Scherzer delivered 11 strikeouts across seven innings to cap a perfect day for the New York Mets who swept their divisional double-header with the Atlanta Braves on Saturday.

The Mets got past the Braves 8-5 in the matinee game, followed by a 6-2 victory in the evening led by Scherzer's impressive outing.

The wins were critical in the National League (NL) East where the Mets improved to a 69-39 record ahead of the reigning world champions at 64-45.

Scherzer was at his vintage best for the Mets, amid tension given the Braves had recently closed in on Mets in the race for first place ahead of the five-game series.

"This is what you play the game for," Scherzer said. "You play to face the best, especially deep in the season. You grind it out here in the NL East."

Scherzer's 11 KS means he sits fourth on the all-time MLB list for most 10 or more strikeout games by a pitcher with 109, behind Nolan Ryan (215), Randy Johnson (212) and Roger Clemens (110).

Yankees shut out as Montgomery stars

Jordan Montgomery came back to haunt his former employers only days after being traded as the St Louis Cardinals defeated the New York Yankees 1-0.

Montgomery pitched five scoreless innings for the Cardinals who triumphed courtesy of Paul Goldschmidt's first-inning run driven in by Nolan Arenado.

The Cards new left-handed pitcher, who was involved in the trade deal for Harrison Bader, only managed one strikeout but only allowed two hits and a walk.

Dodgers edge divisional rivals

Max Muncy's fifth-inning go-ahead three-run blast helped the Los Angeles Dodgers topple the San Diego Padres 8-3 in their National League (NL) West battle.

The Dodgers were trailing 3-2 at the time, but Muncy's intervention turned the tide. The Dodgers extend their lead in the NL West with a 74-33 record compared to the Padres who are 61-49.

The home run was Muncy's 11th for the season. Will Smith also had a solo home run, to finish with three hits with two runs and three RBIs.

The Houston Astros received a big boost from new recruit Trey Mancini as he blasted a pair of home runs, punctuated by a grand slam, in his side's 9-3 away win against the Cleveland Guardians on Friday.

Mancini, who was acquired from the Baltimore Orioles this past week, has now hit a home run in each of his two starts for his new club. In doing so, he became the first player in the modern era to hit a home run in his first two starts for his first two teams, after also accomplishing the feat back when he began with the O's.

He struck first in the second inning, tying the game at 1-1 after Amed Rosario hit his own home run to begin the game for the Guardians, and Mancini's second home run of the game came with bases loaded in the third frame for the first grand slam of his career.

Arguably the best hitter in baseball this season Yordan Alvarez went two-for-five and notched his 73rd RBI for the season – the seventh most in the league – and his future Hall-of-Fame teammate Jose Altuve tallied one RBI from his three hits.

On the mound, Framber Valdez secured his 18th consecutive 'quality start' – defined by a pitcher going at least six innings while conceding three or fewer runs – finishing with three earned runs from seven hits and three walks in his six-and-a-third innings.

He now leads the league with 19 quality starts, and his streak of 18 consecutive is the longest since Jacob deGrom rattled off 26 in a row beginning in May 2018.

The win moves the Astros' record to 70-38 – one game behind the New York Yankees for the best record in the American League.

Yankees, Holmes blow late lead 

The New York Yankees led nearly the entire game before eventually falling 4-3 to the St Louis Cardinals, courtesy of a blown save from All-Star reliever Clay Holmes.

Josh Donaldson drove in a pair of runs for the Yankees, while AL MVP favourite Aaron Judge collected two hits and came home to score twice, giving their side a 3-2 lead heading into the eighth inning.

Determined to take no risks, the Yankees brought in Holmes an inning early to try and get to the ninth inning with their lead still in tact, but it was not to be as Holmes conceded a walk and two hits, the second being a two-run double from Paul deJong to steal the lead.

Cardinals closer Ryan Helsley made no such mistakes, closing the door and collecting the save.

Gibson produces near-perfect start for the Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Kyle Gibson had a perfect game through six innings in his side's 7-2 win against the Washington Nationals.

Gibson retired the first 18 batters he faced, striking out three as he relied on strong fielding behind him to accumulate quick outs. His bid for a perfect game was eventually broken up by a hit-by-pitch to begin the seventh frame, and a single from the next batter ended the no-hitter.

He finished with one earned run from two hits and one walk in eight complete innings, while Kyle Schwarber hit his 34th home run of the season to help on the offensive side of the ball. Only Judge has more home runs this season than Schwarber.

Major League Baseball is heading back across the pond next year with the St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago Cubs to meet in the second instalment of the London Series. 

MLB announced on Thursday that the long-time rivals will face off at London Stadium for a two-game series on June 24 and 25, 2023.

The teams were originally scheduled to play in London in 2020, but the games were cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"The Cardinals are excited and honoured to be a part of the London Series next year," Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. said in a release.

"The Cardinals-Cubs rivalry is one of the best in sports, and it will be exciting to bring it to Europe for a new audience to experience."

MLB returns to England after the New York Yankees swept a two-game set from the Boston Red Sox at London Stadium in 2019. Those were baseball's first regular-season games played in Europe.

"The MLB London Series between the Cubs and Cardinals has been in the works for years now, and we're thrilled to finally be able to bring one of baseball's biggest rivalries to fans abroad in 2023," Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts said in a release.

The 2023 London Series is part of an international slate that was approved in the March labour agreement between MLB and the players' association. It also calls for London games in 2024 and 2026, the first France games in 2025, annual Mexico City games from 2023-26, an Asian opener in 2024 and a Tokyo opener in 2025.

Despite missing a pair of National League MVP candidates, the St Louis Cardinals rode a big performance from future Hall-of-Famer Albert Pujols to a 6-1 away win against the Toronto Blue Jays.

With both Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado unavailable for their side's trip to Toronto due to their vaccination status, it was a combination of new blood and a blast from the past as they made it look easy.

40-year-old starting pitcher Adam Wainwright was at the peak of his powers, giving up just five hits and no walks for one earned run in seven innings, striking out eight batters. 

While Wainwright controlled the contest with the ball, 42-year-old Pujols made noise with the bat, knocking a single in his first at-bat, a double in his second try, and then a massive 439-foot, three-run homer with his third trip to the plate. It was longer than any home run Pujols hit in this year's Home Run Derby.

Rookie Nolan Gorman – 20 years younger than Pujols – also went deep with a solo home run, while he and 24-year-old Lars Nootbaar were two of five Cardinals to collect multiple hits.

Blue Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr finished two-for-four at the plate, while ace pitcher Kevin Gausman struggled in one of his worst performances of the season. 

Gausman gave up five runs in less than five innings, allowing eight hits and a walk with his six strikeouts.

Mets walk-off against Yankees

The New York Mets threatened to waste a spectacular start from pitcher Max Scherzer, but ultimately got the job done in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat the New York Yankees 3-2 in walk-off fashion.

Pete Alonso's solo home run in the second inning and Francisco Lindor's RBI single in the third frame were the only runs before Max Scherzer was withdrawn, having pitched seven shut-out innings.

As soon as Scherzer was removed, the Yankees came back with a two-run homer from Gleyber Torres, but Eduardo Escobar led off the ninth inning with a double, setting up Starling Marte to be the hero and drive him in with a base hit.

J-Rod does it again for the Mariners

Rookie All-Star Julio Rodriguez showed once again why he is one of the most exciting young talents in all of baseball, blasting a three-run home run to give his Seattle Mariners a 4-2 home win against the Texas Rangers.

Rodriguez, 21, stepped up to the plate in the seventh inning with two runners on base, trailing 2-1, and he connected on a 419-foot no-doubter over the left-field wall to snatch back the lead.

This season, Rodriguez leads all rookies in hits (96), runs (54), home runs (17), RBIs (53), and stolen bases (21).

Eduardo Escobar and Edwin Diaz came up big as the New York Mets beat their cross-town rival Yankees in what could be a potential World Series rehearsal on Tuesday, emerging with a 6-3 win.

Kicking off a highly anticipated Subway Series, with 2015 being the last time the two teams lead their respective divisions, the Mets made the big plays amid a charged atmosphere in Queens.

Back-to-back home runs from Anthony Rizzo and Aaron Judge put the Yankees up 2-0 in a thrilling first inning, with the Mets rallying back with four runs in their opening frame, including Escobar's huge two-run, two-out shot off Jordan Montgomery.

Before extending their lead to 6-3 in the eighth inning, Diaz came in to close for the Mets, striking out four and giving up a solitary hit for his 22nd save out of 25.

Running away with the American League at one point, the Yankees now only lead the Houston Astros by two games on 66-32, while the Mets moved to 60-37 and within five of the National League-leading Los Angeles Dodgers.

Springer slam propels Blue Jays

Though his team trail the Yankees by 11.5 games in the AL East, George Springer hit the seventh grand slam of his career, as the Toronto Blue Jays claimed a 10-3 win over the St Louis Cardinals.

The Cardinals were without Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado, whose unvaccinated status prohibits them from entering Canadian soil, with Alejandro Kirk hitting his 12th homer of the year.

It was not enough against the Blue Jays, who notched up a tie-breaking five-run sixth inning via Springer's slam and Matt Chapman's RBI single, to extend their winning streak to seven games.

Pinder punches second slam of the night in A's win

The Houston Astros were not able to capitalise on the Yankees' defeat and edge closer in the AL standings, with the Oakland Athletics earning a 5-3 win.

The best and worst records in the AL West faced off and the latter reeled off a four-run third inning to get the eventual win, with Chad Pinder slugging a grand slam of his own off Luis Garcia.

The A's are now one game away from a shock three-game series sweep against the Astros, who remain stuck on 64-34.

The St Louis Cardinals will not have All-Stars Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado available to play in Toronto this week as they have not received the COVID-19 vaccination.

Canada requires all travellers to the country to be fully vaccinated, so Goldschmidt and Arenado will miss the Cardinals' two games against the Blue Jays on Tuesday and Wednesday, as confirmed by president of baseball operations John Mozeliak to reporters on Sunday.

St Louis entered Sunday's MLB action trailing the Milwaukee Brewers by 1.5 games for first place in the NL Central, and with a one-game lead on the Philadelphia Phillies for the third and final wild-card berth in the NL.

Goldschmidt and Arenado have played a major part in that success.

Goldschmidt is batting .333 with 22 home runs and 74 RBIs in 92 games, while Arenado is hitting .299 with 18 homers and 59 RBIs in 90 contests.

They were both selected to their seventh All-Star Game this season. Goldschmidt homered in the NL's 3-2 loss to the AL last Tuesday, but Arenado sat the game out due to tightness in his lower back.

Los Angeles Angels superstars Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout went a combined six-for-10 from the plate on Friday, but their side still went down 5-4 on the road to the Baltimore Orioles after a ninth-inning collapse.

There were three runs scored in the opening six innings, and all three came from one Mike Trout swing in the third frame, sending a 376-foot shot to left-field to open up a 3-0 lead.

Angels starting pitcher Reid Detmers was spectacular, allowing just two hits and one walk in six scoreless innings, striking out seven batters.

But when Detmers was withdrawn, the Orioles finally found their offense, with Ramon Urias getting them on the board with his RBI single in the seventh inning.

Ryan Mountcastle's RBI base hit an inning later trimmed the lead 3-2, but the game appeared to be put to bed in the top of the ninth inning when Ohtani connected on a 418-foot blast to center-field.

Trailing by two, with two outs in the last inning, the Orioles were able to reduce the margin to one run when rookie Adley Rutschman delivered a clutch RBI double into the gap at right-center.

As the very next batter, Cedric Mullins tied the game when his base hit brought Rutschman in to score, and after a wild pitch put Mullins into scoring position, the comeback was completed as Trey Mancini came through with the Orioles' third consecutive hit to win the game.

Raisel Iglesias takes the loss and the blown save for the Angels, giving up four hits and three earned runs in two-thirds of an inning.

For Ohtani, it was his 19th home run of the campaign – only 12 players have more this season. Trout is one of those 12 players, with his long-ball registering as his 24th, good for fourth in the majors.

Phillies pitchers dominate in St. Louis

Zack Wheeler and Alec Bohm put on a show as the Philadelphia Phillies made some unique history in their 2-0 shutout win against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Wheeler pitched seven rock-solid innings, giving up five hits and one walk without conceding a run, with Seranthony Dominguez and Brad Hand also delivering a scoreless frame each to close it out.

With the bat, Bohm scored both of the Phillies' runs with a solo home run in the sixth inning, and then another in the eighth inning.

It was the first time in MLB history that a team has won 2-0 with a multi-homer game by a player eighth or ninth in their side's batting order.

Yankees smack the Red Sox

The New York Yankees have won the first two fixtures of their four-game road series against the Boston Red Sox, hammering the home side 12-5.

Despite a poor outing from Yankees starter Nestor Cortes, where he was withdrawn in the fourth inning after giving up eight hits and two walks for four runs, the Yankees' bats were able to pick up the slack.

Aaron Judge went a disappointing zero-for-five at the plate, but Matt Carpenter and Josh Donaldson were able to hit home runs, and the Yankees racked up 14 hits as a team, although the Red Sox also had 13.

D.J. LeMahieu, Carpenter, Gleyber Torres, Aaron Hicks and Jose Trevino all finished with multi-hit games for the pinstripes as they extended their league-leading record to 61-23 – six games clear of the second-placed Houston Astros.

Eight-time All-Star pitcher Max Scherzer tossed down 11 strikeouts across six scoreless innings in his return from injury but the New York Mets lost 1-0 to the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday.

Scherzer had not played since May 18 due to a strained left oblique muscle but showed no signs of rustiness on his return.

The 37-year-old right-hander was used across six innings for 79 pitches, allowing only two hits and no runs, with the Reds scoring the decisive run in the ninth inning.

The Reds got the victory with Mike Moustakas' sacrifice fly to Brandon Nimmo, allowing Tommy Pham to score.

Scherzer's 11 K performance was the 107th double-digit strikeout display of his career. It was also the fourth time Scherzer has struck out all nine starting hitters in his career. 

The three-time Cy Young Award winner reached a maximum velocity of 97.1 mph.

Scherzer said after the game: "I didn’t have any problems tonight. I felt good, I felt strong. I had nothing tighten up. I wanted to get to that 90-95 pitch count. They just didn't want to send me out there for the seventh. I understand that. Hopefully we'll get to that 90-95 pitch count next time out."

The Mets remain top of the National League East standings with a 50-31 record, with Scherzer 5-1 on the season with a 2.26 ERA.

Matzek magic marks Braves win

Atlanta Braves pitcher Tyler Matzek pulled off a moment of brilliance as they closed on the Mets in the NL East with a 7-1 win over the St Louis Cardinals.

Matzek's moment of magic came in the eighth inning with the Braves already leading 7-1, when he snagged Tommy Edman's one-hopper with a slick behind-the-back grab before under-arming to first base.

The Braves' win was built in the first inning, piling on five runs including two-run shots for Austin Riley – his third home run in five games - and William Contreras.

Atlanta's five-run first inning was their best opening inning of the season, with Riley moving up to 21 home runs for the season, equal eighth in the majors.

Alcantara keeps on keeping on

Sandy Alcantara continued to amaze for the Miami Marlins with another dominant and durable display, claiming 10 strikeouts across eight innings in their 2-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels.

Alcantara, who came into the game with an ERA of 1.95, gave up two hits which were both singles across eight innings. He tied the longest streak in the MLB since 2014 for seven or more innings pitched in 11 straight starts.

The 26-year-old Dominican sent down an 100 mph pitch after the sixth inning, the 12th time he has done that this season. No other starter has done that once.

Bryan De La Cruz's fifth inning homer had put the Marlins 2-0 up, before Tanner Scott closed it out despite a scare after Taylor Ward's sacrifice fly got Michael Stefanic home.

Nolan Arenado sparked a record string of home runs and hit the game-winning drive for the St. Louis Cardinals, in their 7-6 win over the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday.

With two outs in the first inning, Arenado, Nolan Gorman, Juan Yepez and Dylan Carson sent Phillies starting pitcher Kyle Gibson deep, making it the first time in MLB history a team connected for four straight home runs in the opening frame.

The game was tied at 6-6 in the ninth inning when Arenado hit another home run, this time sending Seranthony Dominguez over left field.

Arenado's game-winning performance from four at-bats was impressive enough in isolation, before considering it was backing up from hitting for cycle in Friday's 5-3 defeat to the Phillies.

The Cardinals moved to within a game of the National League Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers, moving their record for the season to 44-36.

Yankees sweep Guardians in double-header 

The New York Yankees are running away with the American League East, taking both games in a double-header against the Cleveland Guardians.

Matt Carpenter homered twice in the opening 13-4 win, before Anthony Rizzo and Giancarlo Stanton hit consecutive home runs and Nestor Cortes shut the Guardians down for six innings, for the 6-1 win in the later game.

The Yankees are 25-6 since May 31, holding a seven-game lead over the Houston Astros in the AL and at 58-21, hold the franchise's second-best record over 79 games.

Freeman leads Dodgers to victory

Freddie Freeman continued his strong form for the Los Angeles Dodgers, hitting the first of three home runs in the opening inning of their 7-2 victory over the San Diego Padres.

Freeman, who leads the Dodgers for OBP at .391 for the season, hit his sixth home run since the start of June after sending Yu Darvish deep. Will Smith and Justin Turner then followed up with solo shots off Darvish to set up the victory.

The Dodgers are now one off 50 wins for the season, moving to 49-28 and extending their lead in the NL over the New York Mets to 1.5 games.

St Louis Cardinals star Nolan Arenado hit for the cycle on Friday, but it was not enough to get his side over the line as they went down 5-3 against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Both Arenado and teammate Paul Goldschmidt are viewed as MVP candidates this season, and they combined early on to give the Cardinals an early lead. 

In the first inning, Goldschmidt got on base with a single and was driven home by an Arenado triple as the next batter, and then in the third inning after Goldschmidt doubled, Arenado drove him in again with a home run, making it 3-0.

From that point on it would be all Phillies, allowing no runs from just two hits and two walks in the last six innings. The Phillies bullpen would also strike out 10 batters from the Cardinals' last 15 outs as five different relief pitchers collected two strikeouts each.

The fifth inning was the turning point of the contest as Mickey Moniak was able to finally put the Cardinals on the scoreboard with an RBI double, with a Kyle Schwarber RBI ground-out and a Rhys Hoskins sacrifice-fly manufacturing another couple of runs to tie it at 3-3.

Phillies designated hitter Darick Hall maintained an improbable stat, hitting his third home run of the season with a solo shot in the sixth frame. Incredibly, he only has three hits for the season, with all three travelling over the fence.

Arenado also collected the third leg of his cycle in the sixth inning, with a double, meaning he needed a single from his final at-bat to complete the feat. He did so, albeit it with the help of a friendly scoring decision as the third-baseman sailed his throw on Arenado's ground-ball, but it was ruled a hit due to how firmly it was struck.

Hoskins gave the Phillies some breathing room in the seventh with a 406-foot home run, setting up Brad Hand to come in and collect the save.

Brewers beat up the Pirates

The Milwaukee Brewers pounded the Pittsburgh Pirates 19-2 on the road in a game where the visitors had two separate innings with at least seven runs.

Rowdy Tellez finished with five RBIs, Willy Adames collected four RBIs on one swing with his grand slam, while five other Brewers drove in at least one run.

Pirates starter Roansy Contreras was only able to get five outs before he was withdrawn in the second inning, having given up seven earned runs from 52 pitches.

Willy's setting off fireworks in Pittsburgh.

MLB x @DairyQueen pic.twitter.com/55vlZFuPBA

— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) July 2, 2022

Ohtani bangs in sole Angels run

Shohei Ohtani hit his 18th home run of the season, but it would be the only run his Los Angeles Angels would score in an 8-1 beating by the Houston Astros.

Ohtani's deep shot came in the very first inning, giving the Angels a 1-0 lead as the third batter of the game, but they would only collect one more hit the rest of the way as Astros starter Cristian Javier produced a career-best performance.

Javier only gave up one hit in his seven innings, while handing out no walks and striking out 14 batters, which ties the league-wide record for most strikeouts in a single game this season. 

Sonny Gray pitched seven scoreless innings as the Minnesota Twins stretched their lead atop the American League Central on Monday, trouncing the Cleveland Guardians 11-1.

Gray was in solid form for the Twins despite only striking out three, giving up only three hits over 97 pitches in those seven innings.

The biggest surprise of the night was the Twins dominating at the plate without a big performance from Luis Arraez, who went zero-for-three on the night. Gary Sanchez's three-run home run in the second inning off Triston McKenzie helped set up the win.

Nick Gordon and Carlos Correa each added home runs in the first a high-profile five-game series in the AL Central.

With the opening win, the Twins extended their lead in the division to three games over the Guardians, who have now lost their last five games.

Yankees leave it late against A's

Josh Donaldson hit a two-run double to spark a winning six-run sixth inning for the New York Yankees, who claimed a 9-5 victory over the Oakland Athletics.

Trailing 5-3 coming into the bottom of the sixth, the Pinstripes were able to rally on the back of catcher's interference calls, a hit batter and a walk to set Donaldson's double up and the eventual win.

The Yankees moved to 54-20 for the season, extending their lead over the Houston Astros in the American League to eight games.

Yepez and Cards crush Marlins

The St. Louis Cardinals moved to within a game of the Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Central, shutting out the Miami Marlins 9-0.

Cardinals designated hitter Juan Yepez had the first multi-home run game of his career, going long off Pablo Lopez and Richard Bleier in the fourth and sixth innings respectively.

Paul Goldschmidt now leads the major leagues for batting average (.347) and OBP (.429) after claiming four hits from as many at-bats.

The St Louis Cardinals are hopeful that the back issue that forced Paul Goldschmidt to miss Tuesday's 6-2 win over the Milwaukee Brewers is nothing serious.

Six-time All-Star Goldschmidt has been a key part of the Cardinals' 39-31 start to the season, with Tuesday's win moving them top of the National League Central ahead of the Brewers.

The in-form Cardinals second baseman has the second-best batting average and OPS in the major leagues this season (.339 and 1.031), behind Luis Arraez (.362) and Yordan Alvarez (1.038) respectively.

Goldschmidt, who was awarded the National League Player of the Week on Tuesday, has an equal-second-best 86 hits this season, with 48 runs and 16 home runs.

The 34-year-old missed the Brewers game due to back tightness, which he had tried to play through as a designated hitter in Monday's 2-0 loss to Milwaukee.

"He'll experience it from time to time," Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol said. "Usually he takes a day, it loosens up, he'll get treatment and be back at it. That's our hope."

"He tried to play through it yesterday. It made sense to give him a day today."

The Cardinals and Brewers meet again on Wednesday, the third of their four-game series.

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