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Today is Saturday, April 29, 2017.

Saturday, April 29, 2017
Major League Baseball
Rockies vs. Diamondbacks 8:10 (EDT) Preview

Rockies-Diamondbacks features matchup between young, old pitchers


Saturday, April 29 at 3:41 AM (EDT)

PHOENIX -- A wily veteran goes against a youngster in Saturday's second game of the three-game series between National League West leaders Arizona and Colorado.

Zach Greinke (2-2, 2.93 ERA) will take the mound for the Diamondbacks vs. the Rockies' Tyler Anderson (1-3, 7.11)

Greinke is 7-4 all time vs. the Rockies with a 4.09 ERA in 19 starts.

Anderson had two no-decisions in two starts vs. the Diamondbacks in 2016, his rookie season, both losses. He pitched 10 innings against them with a 6.30 ERA.

Anderson had a no-decision in the Rockies' 8-4 comeback win Monday vs. Washington. He allowed six hits and four runs in 5 2/3 innings.

Anderson, manager Bud Black said, has had fine stretches "where he's really strung pitches together and really strung innings together."

But he has also been roughed up in "that odd inning or two" that has turned games against him, Black said.

"We got to break through that big inning. There's been just a little bit of variable performance inning to inning, not so much game to game. All the games have been sort of the same."

Black said he is impressed with the Diamondbacks, "especially offensively. They're swinging the bats. They're scoring early, late."

The Rockies will have to continue to be mindful of the Diamondbacks' potent running game.

"The best way to combat that is to keep their base-stealers off base," Black said.

The Rockies' attention to the Diamondbcks' running game showed up on Friday night when A.J. Pollock reached base on an infield hit in the third inning.

Rockies pitcher Kyle Freeland made a host of throws to first to tie up Pollock. But in so doing, he ended up walking Chris Owings on four pitches. Then Paul Goldschmidt singled to center to drive in Pollock.

In the seventh, Pollock drew a walk from Adam Ottavino, then Ottavino threw the ball away on a throw to first, allowing Pollock to advance to second base.

Pollock proceeded to steal third. Ottavino got out of the jam by getting Goldschmidt to ground out to third baseman Nolan Arenado.

Earlier, Pollock and Owings executed a double steal in the fifth, but pitcher Kyle Freeland got out of the inning without allowing a run.

The Rockies are hoping that outfielder Carlos Gonzalez' slow start is coming to a close. He went 2-for-4 in Friday night's 3-1 win to raise his average to .225.

"We're seeing good takes and good swings," Black said of Gonzalez.

"I think it's getting closer on Cargo, I really do."

The Diamondbacks are hoping to keep their streak alive of winning every home series. They've won their first four home series for the third time in club history (they won the first five in 1999 and 2008).

They've been helped by pitching staff that's striking out lots of batters, including a franchise record 51 Ks during the four-game series with the Padres.

The Giants also struck out 12 Rockies batters Friday night, making it five straight games they've struck out 11-plus hitters, a first for the franchise.


Padres vs. Giants 9:05 (EDT) Preview

Padres' Schimpf carries HR streak into matchup with Giants


Saturday, April 29 at 3:55 AM (EDT)

SAN FRANCISCO -- Ryan Schimpf will attempt to hit a home run for a fourth consecutive game Saturday when the San Diego Padres and San Francisco Giants continue their three-game series.

Schimpf made it three in a row in Friday's series opener with a two-run shot off Giants right-hander Jeff Samardzija in the fifth inning.

Samardzija was pitching a no-hitter at the time.

Schimpf's three-game run is a career best and gets him halfway to the Padres' record of six, which was set by third baseman Craig Nettles in 1984.

Matt Cain, the Giants' scheduled starter Saturday, faced Schmipf three times when the clubs met in San Diego earlier this month. He gave the slugger little to hit, walking him three straight times while throwing a total of two strikes.

Cain (2-0) struggled through his worst start of the season in that April 7 game, allowing four runs and six hits in 4 1/3 innings. He received a no-decision in the 7-6 loss.

Padres leadoff hitter Manuel Margot belted two homers off Cain that day.

The veteran has rebounded with three outstanding outings, allowing two runs and 11 hits in 18 innings.

Cain has gone 8-14 with a 3.23 ERA against the Padres in 37 career appearances, including 36 starts.

Schimpf had only one hit -- the homer -- in Friday's 4-3 loss to the Giants. He now has nine hits this season, six of which have been homers.

"I'm not thinking about it to be honest with you," Schimpf said of his streak. "Really, as cliche as it may be, it's just about trying to stay prepared, put your work in, and try to put together a good at-bat. Try to put your best swing on it, and whatever happens after that, it's out of your control."

Right-hander Jhoulys Chacin (2-3) will try to get the Padres back on the winning track in the second game of the series. He limited the Giants to three hits in 6 2/3 innings in a 2-1 win on April 8.

Chacin has alternated losses and wins in his five starts, allowing 20 runs and 24 hits in 14 1/3 innings in the three losses, as opposed to no runs and six hits in 14 2/3 innings in the two wins.

All three of his poor efforts have come on the road.

Chacin has pitched well at AT&T Park in his career, going 1-1 with a 1.41 ERA in five starts. He's 6-6 with a 3.22 ERA overall against the Giants.

One guy he'll have to deal with is Giants rookie Christian Arroyo, who has exploded onto the scene since getting called up from Triple-A Sacramento to make his major-league debut Monday.

The 21-year-old has hit two home runs in his last three games, including a tiebreaker in the bottom of the eighth on Friday night that provided the Giants' winning margin.

"I guess the home runs," Arroyo responded to reporters when asked if anything that's happened this week has surprised him. "Not that they're surprising. Just that I never envisioned myself getting called up and hitting two home runs."


Phillies vs. Dodgers 9:10 (EDT) Preview

Phillies focus on getting even in series with Dodgers


Saturday, April 29 at 3:48 AM (EDT)

LOS ANGELES --- The start of a seven-game trip didn't go exactly the way the Philadelphia Phillies would have liked. They're hoping the second act produces a better result.

Two right-handers will square off Saturday when the Phillies face the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium.

The Phillies' Zach Eflin (0-2, 2.25 ERA) will oppose the Dodgers' Brandon McCarthy (3-0, 2.25) in the second of a three-game set.

On Friday, the Dodgers rallied from a two-run deficit for a 5-3 victory, ending the Phillies' six-game winning streak. They have had trouble with the Dodgers during the past two seasons, losing 10 of the 14 meetings.

A two-run double by shortstop Freddy Galvis staked the Phillies to a 2-0 advantage in the third inning, but they were unable to hold the lead.

"When you think about it, it's nice to get a two-run lead, but you don't want to hang on for nine innings to hold a two-run lead," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "You want to add on. We just couldn't add on. Maeda pitched pretty well, mixed it up. We just couldn't zero in on him and hit him for a big inning."

McCarthy has been solid so far. In his last start, McCarthy allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings in a 6-2 win by the Dodgers over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday. The seven innings were the most worked in more than two seasons by McCarthy, who struck out six and walked one.

McCarthy is 0-1 with 1.20 ERA in two career starts against the Phillies. He hasn't faced them since April 2014, when he was a member of the Diamondbacks. McCarthy also went seven innings in that start, enduring a 2-0 setback despite fanning 12 with a walk on 103 pitches.

In his last outing on April 23, Eflin limited the Atlanta Braves to a run and three hits with three strikeouts and no walks in seven innings. The Phillies posted a 5-2 victory in that game.

Against the Dodgers, Eflin is 0-1 with a 21.00 ERA in one career start. Eflin was tagged for seven runs, seven hits and two walks with no strikeouts in three innings in a 9-4 loss on Aug. 8, 2016, at Dodger Stadium. Corey Seager, Chase Utley and Yasmani Grandal all homered against Eflin.

Eflin also will need to be concerned with Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner, who has a career-best 14-game hitting streak going and went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBIs in Friday's win over the Phillies.

"(Turner) has been locked in since spring training," manager Dave Roberts said. "He's been consistent with his stroke and his defense and baserunning have been outstanding."

Since he started his streak on April 13, Turner is batting .400 with five doubles, five runs and seven RBIs. Overall, Turner is batting .381 with 10 RBIs.

After the three-game series against the Dodgers, the Phillies will travel to Chicago to face the Cubs in a four-game set at Wrigley Field.


Mets 3 vs. 2 Nationals In-Progress

Unbeaten Strasburg returns as Nationals face Mets


Saturday, April 29 at 1:56 AM (EDT)

WASHINGTON -- The Washington Nationals are in the position to put some distance between themselves and the New York Mets, who some experts picked to win the National League East Division this season.

But Nationals manager Dusty Baker doesn't expect the Mets, who have been banged up by injuries, to concede so quickly this weekend. New York slugger Yoenis Cespedes went on the 10-day disabled list Friday with a hamstring injury after he was hurt on Thursday against the Atlanta Braves.

"It is going to be a good series and a good fight," Baker said Friday. "They are not going to give up. These guys can definitely pitch."

That was certainly the case as Jacob deGrom fanned 12 batters and catcher Travis d'Arnaud hit two homers and had a career-high five RBIs to help the Mets snap a six-game losing streak with a 7-5 victory on Friday..

The series continues as Washington right-hander Stephen Strasburg (2-0, 2.89 ERA), who came off the paternity list Thursday, will pitch against New York on Saturday afternoon at Nationals Park. He will be opposed by right-hander Zack Wheeler (1-2, 5.40).

Strasburg and his wife, Rachel, welcomed their second daughter earlier this week. The former No. 1 overall draft pick will make his first start since April 20. He is unbeaten in four starts and has gone at least seven innings in each game.

In his career against the Mets, Strasburg is 7-3 with a 2.53 ERA in 12 starts.

Asdrubal Cabrera is 3-for-9 against Strasburg with two homers while Jay Bruce is hitting .385 in 13 at-bats against Strasburg. Jose Reyes has 22 at-bats against Strasburg and is hitting .227. Current members of the Mets are hitting .241 in 187 at-bats against Strasburg.

But now Strasburg won't have to face Cespedes, who brings life to New York's lineup.

"We're going to see what we're made of," infielder Reyes told

"Anytime your best hitter is not in your lineup, it changes the dynamic of it," Mets first baseman Bruce told "I think the most important thing is to have him healthy. We need him, and we don't need him before he's ready."

The Nationals may also have to see what they are made of as center fielder Adam Eaton was helped off the field Friday in the last of the ninth after he beat out an infield single. He hurt his left leg beating out an infield single.

"Just that he hurt his leg and they're going to take him in tomorrow for evaluation," Baker said late Friday. "As you saw, same thing we saw, it didn't look too good. We'll know something more tomorrow. MRI tomorrow. It's his leg. We don't really know yet."

Wheeler is 2-7 with a 5.09 ERA in nine career starts against Washington and has given up 30 earned runs in 53 innings.

He suffered the loss April 23 at home to Washington in a 6-3 decision as he gave up four runs and four hits in seven innings. Wheeler will have to contend with a Washington team that entered Friday with the best batting average in the majors at .284. The Nationals also led the majors in runs with 139.

Right fielder Bryce Harper is hitting .405 with eight homers and 25 RBIs. Second baseman Daniel Murphy is hitting .347 with five homers and 25 RBIs.

Earlier this year, Baker put lefty hitters Harper and Murphy back-to-back in the order. But for the past few games, he has put right-handed hitter Ryan Zimmerman, who hit two homers Friday and has 10 this year, between Harper and Murphy.

"I don't know if I will be able to do it the rest of the year," Baker said.


Orioles 2 vs. 9 Yankees In-Progress

Late rallies continue to be story of Orioles-Yankees rivalry


Saturday, April 29 at 2:29 AM (EDT)

NEW YORK -- The first four meetings between the Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees have been decided in the seventh inning or later.

After the series opener featured eight home runs and the Yankees scoring 10 runs after the sixth inning, will there be a fifth game decided in the late innings?

It's a scenario the Orioles and Yankees would like to avert for their respective pitching staffs Saturday afternoon, when the teams continue their three-game series.

Baltimore won the first two meetings at home April 7 and 8 by rallying from deficits of four runs and three runs. The Yankees claimed the final meeting in Baltimore by coming back from a three-run deficit but may have topped themselves Friday by scoring nine times against one of the best bullpens in the majors for a wild 14-11 victory decided on Matt Holliday's three-run home run in the 10th inning.

"It's an amazing feeling," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "We're down 9-1, and then we were down 11-4. They never quit. We have the ability to hit the ball out of the ballpark and that's what we did."

On Friday, Aaron Judge hit two home runs, Jacoby Ellsbury hit a grand slam and Starlin Castro slugged a game-tying three-run homer off Brad Brach in the ninth. All of those allowed the Yankees to win for the 13th time in 16 games on Holliday's three-run shot in the 10th.

"We're a team that fights and battles," Judge said. "The whole game I felt we were in it, to be honest."

The comeback negated one of Baltimore's better offensive showings. The Orioles pounded out 15 hits and scored their second-most runs of the season.

Manny Machado highlighted a three-hit night with a 470-foot home run while Mark Trumbo and Wellington Castillo homered for the Orioles, who have dropped 12 of their last 13 series openers in New York.

"We've got to forget about this one quick," said Baltimore right-hander Kevin Gausman, who gave up both home runs to Judge. "Obviously, it's going to be some tough games between these two teams. These games mean a lot early on, but as you can see, it's going to be a grind against them all year."

The Yankees will try to get their fourth straight home series win and improve to 10-1 at home by handing the ball to Michael Pineda.

Pineda is 2-1 with a 3.86 ERA but still struggles with two outs. Last year, Pineda allowed a .325 average with two outs, but this season, it is .310 (9-for-29), though teams are 6-for-24 with two outs in his last four starts.

The right-hander will be pitching on six days' rest due to an off day and a rainout in Boston. He last pitched during Saturday's 11-5 win at Pittsburgh, when he allowed three runs and five hits in five innings.

Pineda is 3-13 with a 4.93 ERA when pitching on six or more days' rest.

Lifetime against the Orioles, Pineda is 4-3 with a 4.16 ERA in 12 starts. Since getting 16 strikeouts against them on May 10, 2015, he is 1-3 with a 6.35 ERA in six starts.

Ubaldo Jimenez will be on the mound and looking to reverse his slow start. He 1-0 with a 5.95 ERA through four starts so far.

In his one win, Jimenez pitched 7 2/3 scoreless innings at Cincinnati on April 19. In his other starts, the right-hander has posted a 9.75 ERA, including Monday, when he lasted just 3 1/3 innings against Tampa Bay due to difficulty commanding his sinker and issuing four walks in his final inning.


Rays 1 vs. 2 Blue Jays In-Progress

Rays try to extend woes of Blue Jays


Saturday, April 29 at 2:32 AM (EDT)

TORONTO -- The Tampa Bay Rays would like to keep things going the way they are when the play the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday afternoon at Rogers Centre.

While the Rays (12-12) were getting even Friday night by using a three-homer eighth inning to propel themselves into a 7-4 victory, the Blue Jays (6-17) kept digging themselves into a deeper hole.

All Toronto can hope for is that the Saturday's against Tampa Bay is the beginning of a massive turnaround. The Rays will start Matt Andriese (1-0, 3.86) and the Blue Jays are going with left-hander Francisco Liriano (1-2, 4.58 ERA).

The Blue Jays keep putting themselves in a position to win before failing to close the deal. They led 3-1 before Tampa Bay scored four runs in the eighth and added two more runs in the ninth.

It was eighth time in the Rays' 12 victories this season -- and the fifth in their past six -- that they have come back to earn the win.

It could be a good sign.

"You hope so," Rays third baseman Evan Longoria said. "Those are the kind that tend to catapult you forward. We needed that one. It's just a really good job staying in the game nine innings. ... It shows some really good resilience by the ball club being able to put that one (an 11th-inning loss in Baltimore on Wednesday) behind us."

"I was really impressed with the way the guys just continued to battle," Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said. "We were patient enough and got something going."

Toronto's bullpen also let a 4-0 lead get away Thursday in the first game of a doubleheader against the St. Louis Cardinals and lost 8-4 in 11 innings.

Blue Jays manager John Gibbons admits that they are painful losses.

"That's the key, when you're in a spot to win it, you've got to win those games," Gibbons said. "Losing is always tough, especially the close ones when you're in the driver's seat."

Jason Grilli gave up the game-tying home run in the eighth and Dominic Leone served up a two-run blast into the restaurant to center by Logan Morrison that gave Tampa Bay the lead. It has been a familiar story for the Toronto bullpen.

"We're in a little bit of a rut with some guys down there, that's obvious," Gibbons said. "We were on a nice little roll not too long ago, these are our guys. We'll keep on running them out there, they're all capable, they're all good."

Starter Marcus Stroman, who struck out 10 in 7 1/3 innings and left with a 3-2 lead, said, "It's just a matter of things turning around for us. It's just frustrating. We kill ourselves to be at our best when we're out there so when things don't go our way, it's tough. We're doing everything in our power to turn this around."

Liriano will try to get the job done Saturday in his second outing against the Rays this season.

In his first start of the season on April 7, Liriano lasted only one-third of an inning against the Rays at Tropicana Field. He allowed three hits, four walks and five runs but did not factor in the decision in Tampa Bay's 10-8 victory. In his most recent start, Liriano allowed five hits, four walks and two runs in 5 1/3 innings in a 2-1 loss to the Los Angeles Angels. In his career against the Rays, he is 2-3 with a 5.85 ERA in 11 games (10 starts).

Andriese is 0-1 with a 4.88 ERA in eight career outings (four starts) against Toronto. The right-hander is 0-0 with a 4.05 ERA in two career starts at the Rogers Centre, going 3 2/3 innings and three innings in those starts. He has allowed 20 homers over 83 2/3 innings pitched since the 2016 All-Star break.


White Sox 3 vs. 2 Tigers In-Progress

Tigers' Fulmer looks to cool off White Sox


Saturday, April 29 at 2:25 AM (EDT)

DETROIT -- Michael Fulmer has shown no signs of a sophomore slump.

Fulmer earned the American League Rookie of the Year award last season, posting an 11-7 record and 3.06 ERA. The Detroit Tigers right-hander has picked up where he left off, making four quality starts in April.

He'll try to extend that streak when he faces the Chicago White Sox and left-hander Derek Holland on Saturday afternoon at Comerica Park. Fulmer will try to halt the Tigers' three-game slide and the White Sox's five-game winning streak in the process. Chicago won the opener of the three-game series 7-3 on Friday.

In his last outing, Fulmer (2-1) tossed a season-high seven innings and held Minnesota to two runs on four hits while striking out seven.

"I don't know if he's doing a ton different. He's just continuing to perform well," Detroit manager Brad Ausmus said. "It's not like he came up with another pitch or that he's attacking hitters grossly different than he did a year ago. He's continuing to do what he did last year."

Last year, the hitters might have been blindsided by Fulmer's swift development. Fulmer really took off by commanding his changeup to complement his blazing fastball.

Whatever adjustments batters have made against Fulmer, he seems to be staying ahead of the curve.

"When the hitters know you, there's more pressure on the pitcher," Ausmus said. "You can catch a few by surprise for a year or part of a year, although nowadays they see a lot more video than they did even 20 years ago. He's going to probably have to adjust the more he pitches, but clearly so far, so good."

Fulmer has only walked six batters while striking out 23 despite having trouble with his secondary pitches in his first two starts. He faced the White Sox twice last season and did not get a decision while recording a 3.86 ERA.

Knee and shoulder injuries marred Holland's last three seasons with the Texas Rangers but he's off to a strong start with Chicago.

He signed a one-year, $6 million contract in December after the Rangers exercised a $1.5M buyout of the final year of his contract with them. Holland (2-2) has posted a 1.99 ERA in his first four starts and collected his second win in his last outing, holding Cleveland to one run on three hits over six innings.

"He's a veteran presence, combined with (James) Shields and Q (Jose Quintana), guys that have been around and have performed in the past," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "Our hope was that he'd be able to come in and execute and do what he's been doing for us. He's kind of stabilized us a little bit. He's done a nice job to this point."

Holland reached double digits in wins from 2011-13 but started just 35 games the past three years because of the injuries. Last year, he was 7-9 with a 4.95 ERA. He's 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA in four starts against Detroit.

"I don't know if I would say he's exceeded expectations," Renteria said. "He's definitely lived up to what the organization foresaw in terms of how we've seen him in the past."

Chicago is hopeful that first baseman Jose Abreu will return to the lineup. He sat out on Friday after suffering a mild right hip flexor strain against Kansas City on Wednesday.


Reds 0 vs. 0 Cardinals Postponed Preview

Reds hope to wear down Cardinals


Saturday, April 29 at 3:36 AM (EDT)

ST. LOUIS -- On the heels of a tough loss Friday night in St. Louis, Cincinnati Reds manager Bryan Price found a positive as he sat in his office at Busch Stadium.

"It was certainly good to see our guys come back and make that push in the eighth inning," he said.

The push of which Price spoke only turned a 7-1 blowout into a 7-5 loss, but it could definitely give the Reds a boost for the middle game of its three-game series with the Cardinals on Saturday.

The Reds rallied for four runs in the eighth against two relievers, even putting the tying run on base before Seung Hwan Oh induced a first-pitch popup from Billy Hamilton to end the rally. Oh cruised through the ninth for his sixth save of the season.

If nothing else, though, Cincinnati was able to wade into a St. Louis bullpen that was taxed for 7 2/3 innings Thursday in a doubleheader sweep of Toronto. The Reds could derive an advantage on Saturday if they can find a way to get to Mike Leake.

Their former teammate has been nails in April, going 3-1 with a 1.32 ERA, including a 6-4 win Sunday in Milwaukee in which he gave up three hits and two runs in six innings. Averaging nearly seven innings per start, Leake has so far performed a 180 from the pitcher who was pounded for a career-worst 4.67 ERA in his first season with the Cardinals.

Leake's former teammates have been hardest on him since his departure, battering him for a 5.64 ERA in five starts in the last two seasons as well as three losses. The third loss occurred April 7, although it was hard to fault Leake after he allowed six hits and a run in eight innings with a walk and six strikeouts in a 2-0 decision.

Bronson Arroyo has some history of his own that he hopes to avenge against St. Louis. The 40-year-old right-hander is 8-18 with a 4.84 ERA in 40 career outings, 38 of them starts, when facing the Cardinals.

Arroyo was treated harshly the day after Leake dropped his pitching duel to rookie Amir Garrett, giving up six hits and six runs in four innings of a 10-4 loss. Aledmys Diaz was Arroyo's biggest nemesis, walloping a solo homer and a three-run shot off him. But Arroyo has consecutive wins over Baltimore and the Chicago Cubs.

Of late, the St. Louis offense has looked like the one many thought it would in the offseason. It has collected at least 10 hits and scored at least five runs in seven of the last eight games.

The surge of leadoff man Dexter Fowler has keyed the attack, as he has nine hits in the last four games. His constant presence on base has put steady pressure on pitchers and infused the lineup with confidence.

"You never want to put pressure on any one guy," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said, "but we've seen him take better pitches and get better counts for about the last week. Certainly he's one of the players who can change the feel of our offense."


Cubs vs. Red Sox 4:05 (EDT) Preview

Lackey back at Fenway as Cubs face Red Sox


Saturday, April 29 at 2:20 AM (EDT)

BOSTON -- Fried chicken and beer.

The words became infamous after the collapse of the 2011 Boston Red Sox, a meltdown that led to the firing of Terry Francona, who had won two World Series in the previous seven years.

Pitchers Jon Lester and John Lackey were the ones in the middle of the mess, with them downing fried chicken and beer in the clubhouse during games, a sign that Francona had lost his handle on the team.

A lot has happened to both of them since, and while Lester will not face the Red Sox at Fenway Park this weekend, Lackey will be on the mound for the Chicago Cubs and oppose Steven Wright in the second game of the three-game series Saturday.

Lackey missed the 2012 season with Tommy John surgery and then went 10-13 in the regular season and 3-1 in the postseason in 2013, winning the deciding game for Boston in the World Series. He was traded by the Red Sox at the trade deadline in 2014 -- Boston getting Joe Kelly and Allen Craig in the deal -- and then signed with the Cubs last season.

"To see how he rewrote his own story here in Boston I think is pretty miraculous in a way," said Boston manager John Farrell, who was both a pitching coach and manager for Lackey. "He rehabbed the Tommy John, he got himself in shape, he came out and performed. ... I can still hear the reaction when he walked off in Game 6 after what he had been through.

"That was a really special moment, to clinch a World Series with him on the mound."

Both Saturday starters take the mound looking for some positive results.

Wright is 1-2 with an 8.66 ERA and is struggling to regain his form after suffering a right shoulder injury as a pinch runner in Los Angeles last season. He has allowed 33 hits and 17 earned runs in 17 2/3 innings, walking four and striking out nine.

Farrell said Wright "discovered some things" in his last bullpen session, bringing "a bit more energy in his delivery" that has led to more movement on the knuckleball

Lackey, who will make his first regular-season start against Boston since Sept. 15, 2009, is 1-3 with 4.88 and has lost his last three starts. He has yielded 23 hits and 13 earned runs in 24 innings, walking nine and striking out 16.

Lackey gave up five earned runs in six innings in his last start.

"I felt I definitely pitched a lot better than the numbers are going to show," Lackey said. "I didn't give up a whole lot of hard contact. What are you going to do?"

Opponents are hitting just .245 against Lackey, but a whopping .413 against Wright.

Both right-handers have done well in interleague play -- Lackey is 22-16 with a 3.24 ERA in 48 games (47 starts) and Wright 3-0 with a 2.79 ERA in four games (three starts) and a .207 opponents' batting average.

While this is Lackey's first start against the Red Sox in almost eight years, he has not had much success against them, going 3-7 with a 5.25 ERA against Boston in the regular season and 1-2 with a 2.57 ERA in the playoffs, His last postseason start against the Red Sox for the Los Angeles Angels was in the 2009 AL Division Series, where he pitched 7 1/3 scoreless innings in a win.

Boston's slumbering bats erupted for five runs in the first inning Friday night and then held on for a dramatic 5-4 victory in the opener of the three-game interleague series.

The Cubs went 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position in the loss, leaving manager Joe Maddon steaming.

"None of this double-digit left-on-base stuff. We've got to start moving runners across the plate," Maddon said. "We've got them out there and the right guys coming up, but we're not doing that with any consistency."


Mariners vs. Indians 4:10 (EDT) Preview

Mariners eye extending win streak against Indians


Saturday, April 29 at 2:42 AM (EDT)

CLEVELAND -- The Seattle Mariners are wounded but still winning.

Seattle has been beset by a flurry of early season injuries but has managed to piece together a three-game winning streak against the two top teams in the American League Central. During the streak, the Mariners have outscored their opponents 13-2.

On Friday night in the opener of a three-game series, the Mariners got great pitching to beat the Indians 3-1. Seattle will try to extend their winning streak to four games in the second game of the series Saturday afternoon at Progressive Field.

Both teams had key players out of the lineup on Friday, Michael Brantley and Nelson Cruz. Brantley had a scheduled day off. Cruz was scratched from the Mariners' lineup because of a tight left hamstring.

The Mariners will be anxious to get Cruz back in their lineup. At the start of play Friday, he was leading the American League with 19 RBIs. In his last 16 games, he is hitting .404 with five home runs and 17 RBIs.

It has been a luckless season so far for Seattle when it comes to injuries. The Mariners currently have seven players on the disabled list, including key performers such as Felix Hernandez and Mitch Haniger.

"A lot of teams go through adversity like this," manager Scott Servais said. "We'll get them back, but right now it's hurting us a little bit."

Brantley, who missed most of the 2016 season due to a shoulder injury, is still working his way back into being an everyday player. Manager Terry Francona gives Brantley occasional days off to keep his shoulder strong.

"I'm still cognizant of him growing into playing every day, and he feels good," Francona said. "I don't want him to not play, but I want to do the right thing for the long haul."

Brantley is doing his part. He had a 10-game hitting streak snapped Thursday, but is still hitting .300 for the season with four home runs and 15 RBIs.

Cleveland's Saturday starter will be right-hander Danny Salazar (0-1, 2.57 ERA), who leads the American League in strikeouts per nine innings. Salazar's 14.3 is two strikeouts more than the next closest pitcher, and considerably more than his mark last year of 9.49, which ranked fifth in the league.

Salazar was 0-1 with a 2.57 ERA in one start against the Mariners last year. In two career starts against Seattle, he is 0-1 with a 3.65 ERA.

With 577 career strikeouts, Salazar needs five to pass RHP Corey Kluber (581) for the second-most strikeouts by an Indians pitcher in his first 90 career appearances. Herb Score is first with 616.

The Mariners will counter with right-hander Yovani Gallardo (1-2, 4.84). The 31-year-old will make just his second career start against the Indians, his first in eight years.

Gallardo's only other start against Cleveland came on June 16, 2009, when he pitched for the Milwaukee Brewers. In that game, he was the winning pitcher in a 7-5 victory. He went five innings, allowing two runs and five hits with eight strikeouts and six walks.


Athletics vs. Astros 7:10 (EDT) Preview

Astros getting healthy as they host A's


Saturday, April 29 at 3:13 AM (EDT)

HOUSTON -- At one point during the Astros' series against the Cleveland Indians, Houston manager A.J. Hinch had a two-time batting champion, a near All-Star last season, and a potential Hall of Famer on his bench in part due to a rash of injuries.

While splitting their six-game road trip through Tampa Bay and Cleveland, the Astros lost a pair of outfielders (George Springer and Jake Marisnick) plus All-Star second baseman Jose Altuve to injury. The cruelty in Altuve going down with a sore shoulder was that his injury came via a collision with Teoscar Hernandez, an outfielder called up to replace Marisnick (concussion) on the active roster.

The spate of injuries, albeit minor, gave Hinch a peek at his roster depth. Things were a bit closer to normal on Friday, when the Astros (15-8) opened a three-game series with the Oakland Athletics with a 9-4 victory at Minute Maid Park.

"We try to prepare for everything," Hinch said. "Even if you do prepare for everything something comes up like a decision to move your outfield around. You can't plan for every single incident that happens but we try to play out every scenario. Usually I use Marwin (Gonzalez) as my answer to everything, so it's helpful to have him on the team.

"For the most part, you try to prep for anything that happens. No matter what you prepare for, you don't plan on having a bench of (Carlos) Beltran, Springer and Altuve. That looks awkward and feels awkward when I write it. We still found a way to play some good games."

Right-hander Joe Musgrove (1-1, 5.91 ERA) will start the middle game of the series for the Astros. He will make his third career appearance against Oakland, against whom he is 1-0 with a 0.84 ERA with 11 strikeouts over 10 2/3 innings. In eight career appearances at Minute Maid Park, Musgrove is 3-2 with a 2.74 ERA.

Athletics right-hander Andrew Triggs (3-1, 2.42 ERA) will oppose Musgrove and the Astros. Triggs will make his fifth start of the season and 11th of his career. In two career appearances against the Astros, both in relief in 2016, he posted a 9.00 ERA and did not record a decision, recording nine strikeouts in six innings.

Like the Astros with the return of Altuve and Springer, the Athletics (10-13) also received some good news in advance of the series opener. Ace right-hander Sonny Gray pitched exceptionally in his second rehab start, twirling six shutout innings for Triple-A Nashville on Thursday night. Gray has yet to pitch for Oakland this season after being placed on the 10-day disabled list with a strained right lat.

Gray could return to the rotation as early as Tuesday against the Minnesota Twins. For a team with eight players on the DL, his return would be a boon.

"When you lose your No. 1 guy, everybody feels it," Athletics manager Bob Melvin said. "Get him back, that's a boost for you. We've been rotating other guys on the DL too now ... but whenever you get a guy like him back, everybody feels like you have a better team and that the pieces are in place the way you anticipated coming out of spring."


Braves vs. Brewers 7:10 (EDT) Preview

Phillips expected to return as Braves face Brewers


Saturday, April 29 at 3:24 AM (EDT)

MILWAUKEE -- Brandon Phillips is expected to be back atop the Atlanta Braves' batting order Saturday when they take on the Brewers at Miller Park.

Phillips has missed Atlanta's last two games after straining his groin while trying to steal second base in the first inning of the Braves' game against the Mets Wednesday. He sat out Thursday's contest and took batting as well as infield practice Friday at Milwaukee, but manager Brian Snitker decided to give the veteran one extra day.

"He's doing good," Snitker said Friday. "We'll try and stay away from (using him on defense Friday), but hopefully he'll be good to go tomorrow. That's the plan."

Acquired in a winter trade with the Reds, Phillips has been off to an outstanding start with the Braves, batting .352 with five doubles, two home runs and nine RBIs in 19 games.

The 35-year-old vowed to avoid the disabled list after the injury happened.

"I'm going to wrap it up," Phillips told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "I'm going to do something. I'm going to be like Chipotle burrito, I'm wrapping that thing up. I'm not going on the DL, I promise you that."

He's had his way with Milwaukee during his years with the Reds, posting a .292 average and .772 OPS in 174 games. He's been slightly better on the Brewers' home turf, batting .298 with nine homers and 60 RBIs at Miller Park.

Phillips has thrived against Jimmy Nelson, the Brewers' scheduled starter Saturday, going 8-for-21 with a pair of home runs over the last three seasons.

Against the Braves, Nelson has done well. He's 0-1 with a 2.31 ERA in two career starts, including a no-decision in his only start last season, when he allowed just a run over six innings while striking out eight in a 2-1 Brewers victory.

He'll be trying to bounce back after a tough outing his last time out. Nelson walked six batters in a loss to the Cardinals.

"Walks are always frustrating," Nelson said. "I went through a stretch there where I lost some (velocity).

"You just try to calm down, slow down and not try to do too much. (Catcher) Manny (Pina) did a good job of slowing me down. I battled to get out of it, tried to minimize the damage and give our guys a chance."

Nelson shouldn't have to worry much about run support; the Brewers feature the National League's most productive offense this season and lead the majors with 40 home runs and 91 extra-base hits.

It'll be up to Jamie Garcia to stop them. The veteran left-hander has had his way with Milwaukee over his nine previous seasons with the Cardinals, posting an 11-6 record and 2.88 ERA in 20 career starts, including a 5-2 mark and a 3.80 ERA in eight starts at Miller Park.

He comes into the game 0-1 with a 4.24 ERA in four starts this season and has given up only four runs in 12 1/3 innings over his last two starts, goes for Atlanta on Saturday.


Pirates vs. Marlins 7:10 (EDT) Preview

Pirates' Nova set to pitch against Marlins for first time


Saturday, April 29 at 2:51 AM (EDT)

MIAMI -- The Pittsburgh Pirates will try to win their fourth series of the season -- and their second on the road -- on Saturday night when they play the Miami Marlins.

The Marlins have lost three games in a row.

Pittsburgh will start right-hander Ivan Nova (2-2, 2.00 ERA), who has never faced the Marlins.

Nova, 30, is off to a great start this season. Aside from the impressive ERA, he has lasted at least six innings in each of his four starts. All four of his outings are considered "quality starts - at least six innings and no more than three runs allowed."

His most recent start was probably his best, beating the New York Yankees 2-1. He went seven innings and allowed four hits, one walk and one run, striking out seven.

Nova, who spent more than six years with the Yankees, credited his new teammates for allowing him to master his old ones.

But Yankees manager Joe Girardi, despite taking last week's loss to Nova, said his organization made the right decision to let him go.

"Nova had some good years and some tough years," Girardi told The Record. "We had to make a decision. Last year, at the time, we thought it was the right decision."

The Pirates are hoping the Yankees regret their choice to let Nova walk out the door.

Miami will likely send up some pretty good lefty hitters to face Nova, most notably gifted three-hole hitter Christian Yelich and speedy leadoff man Dee Gordon.

On the mound, the Marlins turn to Dan Straily, who made six appearances against the Pirates last year, including five starts, compiling a 2-2 record and a 3.38 ERA.

For his career, Straily is 28-22 with a 4.23 ERA in 90 appearances, including 80 starts. He has allowed 73 homers in those appearances.

Straily is coming off the best start of his career last week at the San Diego Padres.

Although he did not get a decision, Straily struck out a career-high 14 batters. He became just the third player in major league history to get at least 14 strikeouts in less than 100 pitches.

It was a surprisingly efficient effort despite his poor work in the bullpen warming up before the game.

"If you saw (my warmup tosses), you would wonder if I should even be starting," Straily told The Miami Herald. "They were all over the place.

"But in the game, there is a different type of intensity and focus. Your concentration is better, and you go out there and get the job done."

Straily's 14 strikeouts were the most by a Marlins pitcher since the late Jose Fernandez did it last year.

No one expects Straily to be the next Fernandez. But Straily has been solid, and he is starting to mesh with catcher J.T. Realmuto, which will be the next step for him.

"He had me guessing what I was going to throw," Straily said of the pitch selection Realmuto called for in the 14-strikeout game. "If he had me guessing, imagine what that did to the hitters."


Angels vs. Rangers 7:15 (EDT) Preview

Surging Angels pose tough test for Rangers, Darvish


Saturday, April 29 at 2:45 AM (EDT)

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Both Yu Darvish and Jesse Chavez are coming off strong starts heading into the second of a three-game series between the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels on Saturday at Globe Life Park.

Darvish (2-2) allowed just two runs in eight innings his last time out in Texas' 5-2 win over the Kansas City Royals. He looked like the Yu Darvish that the Rangers originally paid more than $50 million just to negotiate with before his first major league contract, striking out eight, going deep into the game and keeping his pitch count manageable.

The Royals are currently sitting in fifth place in the American League Central, though. Darvish is 8-2 with a 3.48 ERA in his career against the Angels (13-12), who are two games ahead of the Rangers (10-13) in the AL West.

While the Angels come into Saturday's matchup riding a season-best five-game winning streak, the Rangers have fallen on more hard times, losing three of four after showing some good signs in that four-game sweep of Kansas City.

Chavez (2-2) also feasted against a last-place team in his last start, allowing just one run in six innings against the Blue Jays in a 2-1 Angels win.

Los Angeles used the home run to dispose of the Rangers in Friday's series opener, sandwiching Mike Trout's seventh homer of the year, a two-run shot in the sixth inning, between Yunel Escobar's no-doubter on the first pitch of the game, and Albert Pujols' game-winning three-run shot in the top of the eighth.

"Albert has been driving runs all along, even if some hits haven't fallen in for him," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said after Friday's win. "That's a huge hit at the time, needless to say, and it's good to see him feeling a little more comfortable in the box."

Pujols' homer against the Rangers was his third of the year and No. 594 for his career. The 17th-year slugging veteran is 15 back of Sammy Sosa for eighth all-time.

The Rangers, though, hope to put it behind them quickly.

"It was just one pitch," said Jeremy Jeffress, who gave up Friday's game-winning homer in the eighth. "I'm not going to overthink it. The guy's a good hitter. it was just a bad pitch selection in a bad location."

Trout, who moved into a tie for second in the AL with his seventh homer Friday, is one of just three major leaguers with four home runs against Darvish. Trout, who bumped his batting average up to .355 with three hits Friday, comes in with a .308 mark against Darvish.

"I'm just getting a pitch and not missing it," Trout said Friday. "Just trying to keep it simple, and go with it."


Twins 0 vs. 0 Royals Postponed Preview

Royals looking to end skid as they host Twins


Saturday, April 29 at 3:31 AM (EDT)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- After a seven-game, seven-loss trip to Texas and Chicago, the Royals thought returning home would reverse their woes.

That playing in Kauffman Stadium would be an elixir.

It was not Friday night as they opened a 10-game homestand with a 6-4 loss to the Minnesota Twins, who rallied with a four-run eighth.

The series continues Saturday night with the Twins starting right-hander Phil Hughes. The Royals will counter with right-hander Jason Hammel.

The Royals' puny offense showed some life in the homestand opener with four runs and eight hits, including Brandon Moss and Salvador Perez home runs. The Royals had scored two runs or less in nine of their previous 10 games.

"Right now, we're just not getting it done (offensively)," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "You can come up with all the excuses that you want to come up and it's a matter of going out and getting some hits, getting some runs on the board and taking it from there."

Twins manager Paul Molitor is excited about the bat of 23-year-old third baseman Miguel Sano, who hit an opposite-field two-run homer and a two-run double off the top of the wall.

"He was a huge part of our offense tonight with the two big swings he had," Molitor said. "When Miggy is going good he's going to hit the ball to left, right, center. That's a good sign when he hits one (out) to the opposite field like that."

Sano has seven hits in his last 11 at-bats, raising his average to .297 with six home runs and 20 RBIs, all team highs. He started the season 14-for-62, .226, for 19 games.

Another hot Twins' bat the Royals will try to slow down is Eddie Rosario, who extended his hitting streak to a career-high 10 games with two singles.

The Royals have few warm bats, much less hot. They are hitting .205 with a .268 on-base percentage. The Royals have struck out 178 times. Only two Kansas City regulars are hitting above .247.

Hughes is 7-5 with a 4.91 in 14 outings, 13 of them starts, against the Royals. He is 4-3 with a 5.49 ERA in seven career starts at Kansas City. He last faced them on June 8, 2015.

Eric Hosmer has a .303 batting average, 10-for-33 with four RBIs, against Hughes. Lorenzo Cain is 2-for-12, .167, off Hughes.

Hammel, a 15-game winner last season for the Chicago Cubs, is winless in his first four Royals starts. He has 19 April victories, the most of any month. The last time he failed to win in April was 2010 while with the Baltimore Orioles.

Hammel is 2-1 with a 3.98 ERA all-time against the Twins.

While Hammel has not permitted a first-inning run, he has a 6.75 ERA after the first. Hammel did not make it out of the fourth inning in his Sunday start at Texas when he hit two Rangers and walked two in the fourth.

The two clubs may have a hard time getting this one in, however, with the weather forecast calling for 100 percent chance of rain Saturday.


Friday, April 28, 2017
Major League Baseball
Angels 6 vs. 3 Rangers Recap

Pujols' homer lifts Angels past Rangers


Saturday, April 29 at 12:45 AM (EDT)

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers had an answer the first two times the Los Angeles Angels stuck their nose out in front of them Friday night. But not the third.

As Albert Pujols has done so many times since he began the second leg of his career with the Angels in 2012, he knocked in the game-winning runs of a 6-3 win at Globe Life Park with a no-doubt three-run homer off Rangers reliever Jeremy Jeffress.

It was Pujols' third homer of the season and the three RBIs vaulted him past Rafael Palmeiro and Ken Griffey Jr. into 15th on the major league career RBI list.

The Rangers (10-13) worked around Mike Trout, who homered in the sixth, with a walk to bring Pujols up with one out.

"He had hit the ball hard a couple times, and we were not going to give in there -- move on to Pujols," Rangers manager Jeff Bannister said.

The Angels made the Rangers pay. They scored all six runs via homers.

"Albert is going to be Albert," Trout said. "Big situations, he comes up clutch. He was aggressive that at-bat and got a good pitch to hit."

It came on the first pitch of the Jeffress-Pujols duel, and it came amid a bit of miscommunication between the reliever and catcher Johnathan Lucroy.

"I think I crossed him up," Jeffress said. "I thought I saw more fingers than one."

What was meant to be a sinker turned into a curveball left over the plate, and Pujols deposited it into left field.

Yunel Escobar crushed the first pitch of the game from Nick Martinez 438 feet into left-center field to give the Angels a 1-0 lead before most of the crowd of 28,968 had a chance to reach their seats.

Martinez settled down immediately after misplacing the curveball that Escobar displaced over the visiting bullpen, facing just one over the minimum number of hitters in the next four innings.

The Rangers responded with a hot start from the top of their lineup as well. Both left fielder Delino DeShields and shortstop Elvins Andrus singled sharply into center field to start the bottom of the first, but the threat was stymied somewhat when Andrus was put out at second on what would have been a wild pitch, had Angels catcher Martin Maldonado not stayed with the bouncer out to his left and fired a strike to second base for the inning's second out.

With DeShields on third, Rangers center fielder Carlos Gomez hit the team's first sacrifice fly of the season on a moon shot to shallow center field. Trout's throw home was cut off as DeShields came home to tie the score at 1-1.

Martinez struck out seven Angels through five innings, but the Rangers didn't really threaten again until the bottom of the fifth, when Ryan Rua doubled into the corner in left field with one out. Joey Gallo struck out and Lucroy flied out to right to end the inning.

"I thought Nick threw the ball well. He gave up that early first-pitch solo home run on a fastball," Bannister said. "Really after that, the curveball came into play to kind of keep these guys off of the fastball."

Rua's double was the Rangers' only extra-base hit off Angels starter Tyler Skaggs, who carried just a 1-4 record and a 4.44 ERA into the game. Skaggs left after five innings, giving up one earned run, with right side tightness.

The Rangers answered Trout's homer with another single from DeShields and a double from Andrus in the bottom of the sixth to bring Texas within 3-2. Mike Napoli, who came in Friday batting just .150, brought home Andrus to tie the score 3-3 on a single to left.

Protecting a three-run lead in the bottom of the ninth, Angels lefty reliever Jose Alvarez posted the first save of his career.

NOTES: Nick Martinez started for Texas in place of A.J. Griffin, who is recovering from inflammation in his left ankle. Griffin participated in a rehab start Friday at Triple-A Round Rock and threw 37 pitches with no additional trouble with the ankle. ... Angels OF Mike TroutTrout came into the game tied for sixth in the American League with six homers, but his two-run shot in the sixth inning tied him with the American League leaders coming into Friday, including Texas 3B Joey Gallo, at seven. ... Yunil Escobar's homer was his ninth career leadoff home run. ... Carlos Gomez's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the first was the Rangers' first sacrifice fly in 50 games dating to Sept. 2, 2016, when Nomar Mazara hit one against the Astros. ... Angels reliever Jose Alvarez posted his first career save in his 157th appearance. ... The 6-3 win over the Rangers fell on the five-year anniversary of Mike Trout's last call-up to the major leagues.


Athletics 4 vs. 9 Astros Recap

Morton leads Astros past A's


Saturday, April 29 at 12:29 AM (EDT)

HOUSTON -- Barring catastrophic injury or an unforeseen turn of events, the Houston Astros' lineup depth will be a topic of conversation for most of this season, with performances like the one delivered Friday night illustrating precisely why.

With right-hander Charlie Morton producing a career-best strikeout effort, Yuli Gurriel and Evan Gattis paced an offensive outburst down in the batting order in the Astros' 9-4 victory over the Oakland Athletics at Minute Maid Park.

Gurriel and Gattis both finished 3-for-4 with two RBIs while batting sixth and seventh, respectively. Gurriel, who clubbed his second homer of the season in the seventh inning, also scored twice and finished a triple shy of the cycle. Gattis had hits in his first three plate appearances before a flyout in the seventh.

George Springer, Josh Reddick and Carlos Correa added two hits apiece as Houston finished 7-for-14 with runners in scoring position. After injuries slowed them on their recent road trip, the Astros (15-8) embraced superior health.

"Those (Gurriel and Gattis) are strong, bottom-of-the-order hitters, and when we have our full team intact we've got a long lineup and we just keep coming at you," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "I don't want to fall in the habit of falling behind the way that we have in the first month, but this month will convince our players that we are never out of it. We're just going to keep pecking away at them, and we did."

After falling into a 3-0 hole in the top of the first inning, the Astros (15-8) rallied with three runs off Athletics right-hander Jharel Cotton (2-3) in the bottom half.

Gurriel and Gattis delivered run-scoring hits in succession, with Gurriel cutting the deficit to one run with his RBI single up the middle before Gattis' ground-rule double into the right-field stands knotted the score at 3.

"Everyone wants to go out there and shut it down in the first inning after we got on the board, and unfortunately I didn't do that," said Cotton, who allowed six runs (three earned), 10 hits and one walk with four strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings. "I let them creep in, and I took it on for the rest of the game."

Trailing 4-3 in the fourth, Springer legged out a two-out infield single to score Gattis. Gattis struck again an inning later, chasing Cotton with an RBI single to left.

"You saw a good taste of what this lineup can do tonight," said Reddick, who reached base four times. "That's what this lineup is capable of. We've just got to keep grinding and keeping chipping away and we'll come out on top."

Morton (2-2) worked a season-high seven innings and had a career-high 12 strikeouts. He allowed five hits and four runs, all coming via two home runs from Athletics left fielder Khris Davis, who posted his 13th career multi-homer game.

The problems with Davis were glaring. Morton surrendered two one-out baserunners in the first inning before Davis drove a 1-0 pitch 423 feet into the Astros bullpen in right-center field for a 3-0 lead.

Davis' solo shot to right in the third, his ninth homer, carried 395 feet and seemed to negate the Astros' rally.

Excluding his early issues with Davis, Morton pitched effectively. After Davis' second opposite-field homer gave the Athletics a 4-3 lead, Morton kept building momentum and retired 13 of the final 15 batters he faced, nine via strikeouts.

"He was good," Oakland manager Bob Melvin said of Morton. "He has a good sinker, good cutter, got a hard breaking ball. He throws 95-96 miles an hour. He was pretty good."

The Athletics (10-13) have dropped five consecutive games.

NOTES: Athletics RHP Sonny Gray allowed two hits in six shutout innings for Triple-A Nashville on Thursday night in what was his second rehab start. Gray was placed on the disabled list on March 30 with a strained right lat. He could return to the Oakland rotation as early as next week depending in part on what the club does with LHP Sean Manaea, who departed his start on April 26 against the Los Angeles Angels with shoulder tightness. ... Astros CF Jake Marisnick appears poised to return from the 7-day concussion disabled list on Monday. Marisnick was concussed running into an outfield wall at Tampa Bay on April 23. ... Astros CF George Springer and 2B Jose Altuve returned to the starting lineup after brief injury hiatuses. Altuve injured his left shoulder during an outfield collision with Teoscar Hernandez on April 25. Springer dealt with a hamstring injury this week.


Braves 10 vs. 8 Brewers Recap

Freeman blast lifts Braves over Brewers


Saturday, April 29 at 12:51 AM (EDT)

MILWAUKEE -- Everything was going according to the plan Friday night for the Milwaukee Brewers, who hit three home runs, held a pair of four-run leads and had a fully-rested bullpen at their disposal.

Of course, rarely does anything in baseball stick to the plan.

The Brewers found that out the hard way as Freddie Freeman broke a tie game in the ninth with a two-run home run to give the Atlanta Braves a 10-8 victory at Miller Park.

"That was a big win for us," Freeman said. "We've been playing good baseball and to come back from that is huge."

The Brewers tagged Atlanta starter Bartolo Colon for six runs on 10 hits and two walks over five innings of work. Colon struck out five but also gave up a pair of home runs.

"We did a nice job against Colon," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "We just took good at-bats, got pitches within the white part of the plate, which is what you have to do against him."

Brewers starter Chase Anderson began the day second in the NL with a 1.13 ERA but allowed a season-high four runs on four hits and walked three with two strikeouts in six innings of work

Anderson had breezed through his first two innings but didn't fare quite as well in the third as the first five Atlanta batters reached. Ender Inciarte made it a 4-1 game with a base hit to left and a bases-loaded double from Matt Kemp tied the game at 4.

"I think Chase kind of battled through it tonight," Counsell said. "The walks in that inning hurt him. The walk to (Dansby) Swanson hurt him. The walk to (Adonis) Garcia hurt him. Those two walks, to me, in that inning were the big ... he made a good pitch to Freeman to get him out. Going through Freeman and Kemp, you're kind of playing with fire in that situation."

Milwaukee's Eric Thames led off the fifth with a single that brought up Ryan Braun, who crushed an 0-1 fastball at the letters to left for his seventh of the season, putting the Brewers back in front, 6-4.

Jason Motte took over for Colon in the seventh and allowed a leadoff double. Domingo Santana came on to hit for Anderson and made it an 8-4 game with this third homer of the season.

The Braves responded with three in the seventh off Jacob Barnes, who hadn't allowed a run this season. Inciarte drove in a pair with a double to left and scored on Garcia's base hit before Corey Knebel came on and snuffed out the rally.

"If you just miss your spot a little bit, they are good at fighting it off or just poking it the other way," Barnes said. "They are kind of small ball and they will occasionally hit a home run. They are good at battling."

"They had good at-bats. They made us work a little bit. They were able to find holes with not the hardest-hit balls."

Knebel only threw seven pitches but Counsell turned to Carlos Torres for the eighth, but Torres couldn't hold the lead. A strikeout and two singles led to a pinch-hit RBI single by Kurt Suzuki, tying the game at 8.

Garcia opened the ninth with a double off Neftali Feliz (0-3) who missed his mark on a 1-1 fastball to Freeman that put the Braves on top.

"It doesn't really matter what the score is, you want to go up there and have a professional at-bat," Freeman said. "You don't want to give at-bats away."

Jim Johnson sealed it with a perfect ninth and earned his fourth save.

NOTES: Brewers RHP Junior Guerra has been throwing bullpen sessions with no issue as he works his way back from a strained right calf injury suffered three innings into his Opening Day start. ... Milwaukee has led at some point in 22 of its 24 games this season, including each of the last 17. ... Braves 2B Brandon Phillips got another day off Friday while he recovers from a strained left groin. Manager Brian Snitker hopes to have Phillips back in the lineup Saturday. ... Snitker said RHP R.A. Dickey, who left Thursday's start after five innings with a left quadriceps strain, is feeling better and expects to make his next start.


Reds 5 vs. 7 Cardinals Recap

Cardinals climb over .500 by beating Reds


Saturday, April 29 at 12:50 AM (EDT)

ST. LOUIS -- Lance Lynn thought he was leaving a bases-loaded mess for a reliever to inherit after walking Devin Mesoraco with two outs in the top of the sixth inning.

Yadier Molina had other ideas.

The St. Louis Cardinals' catcher ended the rally in stunning fashion with a pickoff of Eugenio Suarez, sparking a three-run rally for his team in their half of the sixth that led to a 7-5 win Friday night over the Cincinnati Reds in Busch Stadium.

With Suarez at second and Scott Schebler at first after consecutive singles, Mesoraco worked a full count and then trotted to first after Lynn missed with his 101st and last pitch of the night.

Molina didn't miss with his quick strike. As Suarez rounded third base by a step, Molina and Jedd Gyorko made eye contact. Molina whipped a throw to Gyorko and he slapped a tag on Suarez as Molina jumped in the air and pumped his fist.

"I was waiting for it," Molina said. "It was a timing play."

Lynn said he's never surprised by anything Molina does.

"I saw it in the WBC," Lynn said, referring to Molina's pickoff of Jurickson Profar after Profar celebrated a hit while off first base. "You've got to watch him; he's sneaky. He's always on his toes. I got myself in trouble and he bailed me out there."

For his part, Suarez offered no excuses.

"I was not paying attention, and he got me," he said.

Then St. Louis got Cincinnati with an outburst that doubled a tenuous 3-1 lead and knocked starter Tim Adleman out of the box. Gyorko walloped a homer to right-center, his fourth, Randal Grichuk greeted reliever Blake Wood with an RBI single and pinch-hitter Matt Adams tacked on a sacrifice fly.

Molina added what appeared to be an afterthought sacrifice fly in the seventh that made it 7-1. The Reds made it a bit less of an afterthought by hammering the worn-down Cardinals' bullpen, which worked 7 2/3 innings Thursday in a doubleheader sweep of Toronto, for four runs in the eighth.

Joey Votto belted a two-run homer off Miguel Socolovich, and Scooter Gennett ripped a two-run double off Kevin Siegrist. Pressing its attack, Cincinnati put the tying run aboard when Patrick Kivlehan drew an eight-pitch walk.

Seung Hwan Oh restored order with a first-pitch pop up off Billy Hamilton's bat, then cruised through the ninth in nine pitches for his sixth save in seven chances.

St. Louis (12-11) climbed over .500 for the first time since Opening Night with its ninth win in 11 games. The Reds (10-13) ate their sixth loss in seven contests, falling to 0-4 on their current road trip.

Lynn (3-1) notched his third straight win, yielding a run off six hits and two walks in six innings and fanning five. Adleman (0-1) allowed eight hits and six runs (five earned) over 5 1/3 innings. He gave up a walk and whiffed three.

Scott Schebler started the scoring for Cincinnati in the second with a solo homer to right, his eighth of the season and his fifth in five games.

Adleman found trouble in the third after retiring six hitters in a row. Kolten Wong grounded a double down the right field line to score Grichuk, who reached on a two-base throwing error by Suarez. One out later, Dexter Fowler unloaded a two-run homer to right, his fourth of the year.

Three innings later, the game reached a sudden turning point when Suarez assumed the Cardinals were making a pitching change. He found out the hard way that they didn't.

"There was a big opportunity for the game to swing in the other direction," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. "Yadi has his antenna up for any possible play. He has got some instincts."

NOTES: Cincinnati activated 2014 All-Star C Devin Mesoraco Thursday off the 10-day DL and started him Friday. Mesoraco (shoulder/hip) played 13 games during his rehab assignment at Double-A Pensacola, hitting .170 in 47 at-bats with a homer and three RBIs. ... St. Louis finished with 11 hits, giving it 48 in its last four games. ... Cincinnati RHP Homer Bailey (elbow), who is on the 60-day DL and isn't eligible to come off it until June 1, will throw a bullpen session Tuesday.


Twins 6 vs. 4 Royals Recap

Twins send Royals to eighth straight loss


Saturday, April 29 at 1:12 AM (EDT)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Kyle Gibson is glad he does not have to face teammate Miguel Sano.

Sano homered, doubled and drove in four runs as the Minnesota Twins rallied to beat the Kansas City Royals 6-4 on Friday night.

"Miggy is swinging the bat well," Gibson said. "He's a tough hitter to face. You hope you can get ahead and not use your best pitch and somehow avoid the pitch he's looking for."

The Royals have lost eight straight games. The last time they had a longer losing streak was April 2012, when they lost 12 in a row.

Sano's two-run double off Joakim Soria (0-1) tied it in the ninth. Joe Mauer followed with a two-run double to put the Twins up.

"He was a huge part of our offense tonight with the two big swings he had," Twins manager Paul Molitor said of Sano. "When Miggy is going good he's going to hit the ball to left, right, center. That's a good sign when he hits one (out) to the opposite field like that."

The eighth inning included an Eddie Rosario single, extending his hitting streak to 11 games. Rosario's single struck Whit Merrifield in the glove, but he was unable to handle it.

"When it's a full-speed, forehand like that, if it doesn't hit you in the web, chances of catching it are not very good," Merrifield said. "Unfortunately, it didn't go in my glove, but it's definitely a play I should make."

Right fielder Jorge Bonifacio dropped Max Kepler's liner, making one of the runs unearned.

"When it came off the bat, I saw the ball pretty good," Bonifacio said. "It was in the light. I just try to keep the ball in front of me, not past me back there.

"Yeah, I lost that one. Once in the lights I lost it. I just tried to keep the ball in front of me. We were on top there. After that, the bases were loaded. I was hoping, like, ground ball there, and Sano hit a double and I was more frustrated, a little bit more there. After that, they got on top."

Craig Breslow (1-0) got the victory, retiring the only batter he faced in the eighth inning.

Brandon Kintzler worked the ninth to pick up his sixth save.

Royals starter Ian Kennedy gave up two hits and two runs over 5 1/3 innings for a no-decision.

Gibson yielded three runs on five hits over 5 1/3 innings.

"That's my goal every time out, to keep my team in the game," Gibson said.

Brandon Moss hit a solo homer in the seventh for Kansas City.

Kennedy retired the first 10 Twins he faced before walking Kepler in the fourth. Next Sano worked the count full before homering into the Twins' bullpen, cutting the Royals' lead to 3-2. Sano was 0-for-10 off Kennedy before the blast.

"Fastball, kind of leaked back over the plate too much," Kennedy said of the home run. "It's more impressive that he hit it out that deep to right. He's a big, strong guy. I think there's a questionable call there, earlier in that at-bat."

Salvador Perez gave the Royals a 2-0 lead in the second when he drove a 2-1 Gibson pitch over the left-field fence, landing in the Kansas City bullpen. Eric Hosmer started the inning with a walk and was aboard for Perez's sixth home run of the season.

The Royals made it 3-0 in the third with singles by Merrifield, Mike Moustakas and Hosmer. In Kennedy's last three starts, the Royals scored a total of three runs.

The Royals threatened in the fifth when Bonifacio walked and Lorenzo Cain singled. Hosmer grounded to first baseman Mauer to end the inning.

It was only the second time in 10 games the Royals scored more than two runs in a game.

NOTES: The Twins put LHP Hector Santiago on the bereavement list after his grandmother's death. They recalled LHP Buddy Boshers from Triple-A Rochester. ... The Royals hit .152 (5-for-33) with runners in scoring position on their just concluded 0-7 trip. ... Twins 2B Brian Dozier went 0-for-5. He is 1-for-his-last-23 at Kauffman Stadium.


Rockies 3 vs. 1 Diamondbacks Recap

Rockies, Freeland shut down Diamondbacks


Saturday, April 29 at 2:05 AM (EDT)

PHOENIX -- Kyle Freeland appears to be a rising star for the Colorado Rockies.

The right-handed starter shut down the Arizona Diamondbacks' potent attack Friday night as the Rockies edged the Diamondbacks 3-1.

In stopping the Rockies' three-game losing streak, Freeland (3-1) lowered his ERA to 2.93 while giving up one run and six hits in six innings. He walked two and struck out two.

"I was impressed with how he hung in there," manager Bud Black said. "I've seen that from him. There's a high degree of focus.

"There's something to that for a starting pitcher. You have to retain your intensity and focus and not let down and know when a situation arises where you have to make a pitch or two."

Such a "situation" arose in the fifth inning, when the Diamondbacks pulled off a double steal and had slugger Paul Goldschmidt up with one out. Freeland jammed him high and got Goldschmidt to pop out.

"I don't think he was really expecting that," Freeland said. "I think he was expecting us to beat him with sinkers. Jammed him up. He hit a popup."

Freeland then retired cleanup hitter Yazmany Tomas to end the threat.

"That was a big moment in the game," Freeland said. "It could have been a big turning point for them, where they could tie it up or take the lead."

By winning, the Rockies (15-9) moved back into first place in the National League West, a half-game ahead of the Diamondbacks (15-10).

For the Diamondbacks, Robbie Ray also was effective, allowing three runs and five hits. Ray struck out nine and walked three.

"Kind of an unfortunate night for us," Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. "I thought Robbie did an incredible job, keeping a very offensive team down and kept us in striking distance all game long. I felt like he was in control every inning.

"Offensively, we couldn't piece things together. We couldn't string a bunch of hits together, which we typically have done."

Ray said he thought he had a good mix of fastballs and curves, adding, "I was keeping them off balance and keeping the team in the game."

The Rockies' Trevor Story hit a solo homer, his fifth homer of the season, off Ray.

Greg Holland pitched a scoreless ninth inning to get his 10th save of the season.

The Rockies opened the scoring in the top of the first when Nolan Arenado doubled and scored on a seeing-eye single up the middle by Carlos Gonzalez.

They added a run in the third on Story's homer.

The Diamondbacks cut the Rockies' lead to 2-1 in the bottom of the third when A.J. Pollock beat out an infield hit, Chris Owings walked and Goldschmidt singled up the middle.

The Rockies added an insurance run in the seventh when Pat Valaika walked and was sacrificed to second by Dustin Garneau. Pinch-hitter DJ LeMahieu flied out to center, advancing Valaika to third. Charlie Blackmon's line single to left scored the run.

The Rockies also got outstanding defensive plays from Story at shortstop and Blackmon in center field. They also were pleased by Gonzalez, who went 2-for-4 to raise his batting average to .225.

"Good for Cargo," Black said. "I think it's getting closer on Cargo."

NOTES: Rockies RHP Chad Bettis, who is living in the Phoenix area while undergoing chemotherapy treatments for testicular cancer, is watching the games from the Rockies' dugout this weekend. He has watched every game on TV so far. He has seven more treatments scheduled, ending May 16. He hopes to pitch for the club sometime this season. ... Rockies 1B Ian Desmond played left field and hit a homer in an extended spring training game in Scottsdale, Ariz. His return seems imminent, as he likely will report directly to the Rockies instead of going on a rehab assignment, manager Bud Black said. Desmond will play first base in another extended spring game on Saturday. ... The Diamondbacks went 10-9 vs. the Rockies last season, including 4-5 in Phoenix. ... The Diamondbacks have 11-plus strikeouts in a franchise-best five straight games...LHP T.J. McFarland made his first appearance for the Diamondbacks, pitching a scoreless eighth inning.


Phillies 3 vs. 5 Dodgers Recap

Dodgers end Phillies' six-game win streak


Saturday, April 29 at 2:56 AM (EDT)

LOS ANGELES -- After enduring his worst start in a Los Angeles Dodgers uniform since he joined the club last season, Kenta Maeda bounced back with a solid performance Friday night.

Justin Turner drove in two runs and the Dodgers ended the Philadelphia Phillies' six-game winning streak with a 5-3 victory Friday night at Dodger Stadium.

Turner's two-run double in the sixth helped the Dodgers (12-12) defeat the Phillies for the 10th time in their past 14 meetings. Turner extended his hitting streak to a career-high 14 games with a first-inning single. It is the longest active streak in the major leagues.

"(Turner) has been locked in since spring training," manager Dave Roberts said. "He's been consistent with his stroke and his defense and base running have been outstanding."

Maeda (2-2) struck out eight with a walk and allowed two runs on five hits in seven innings. Maeda, who served up a career-high six runs in an 11-5 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks last Friday, is 3-0 in his career against the Phillies.

"I've had a string of bad outings and I felt the pressure going into the game," Maeda said "I knew I had to pitch well or something could happen. We have a lot of great pitchers. I'm very appreciative that Dave let me pitch the seventh inning.

"Once I got into it, I knew I was going to finish it. I threw more cutters tonight than I have in my previous games. My two-seamer was effective and it's the first time this season I was able to use it to get hitters out."

Roberts was certainly pleased with Maeda's outing.

"It was great to see Kenta throw the way he did tonight," Roberts said. "He had clarity and he threw with conviction. He kept the ball down and he threw it tight to left-handers. He and (pitching coach Rick Honeycutt) had an excellent game plan going in and he executed it."

Kenley Jansen struck out the side in the ninth for his sixth save.

Philadelphia shortstop Freddy Galvis went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and extended his hitting streak to 10 games.

Phillies starter Jerad Eickhoff (0-2) gave up five runs on nine hits with three walks and three strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.

"It just comes down to the curveball," said Eickhoff, who is 0-1 with a 6.94 ERA in two starts against the Dodgers. "I had it in the first inning there and then just couldn't find the release point. I struggled with it. I kept them off-balance with the slider and located fastballs. I mean they had seven and eight singles or something like that? So the ball just fell where it did today. It was kind of frustrating but yeah, just the curveball, I couldn't put them away."

Galvis lined a two-run double to right for a 2-0 Phillies lead in the third inning.

In the bottom of the inning, Andrew Toles reached on a single and advanced to third on Turner's base hit. Toles scored on an Eickhoff wild pitch to slice the lead in half.

Enrique Hernandez's run-scoring double with two outs in the fourth plated rookie Cody Bellinger to tie the score at 2.

The Dodgers grabbed the lead in the fifth on Yasmani Grandal's sacrifice fly that scored Corey Seager, who walked and advanced to third on a single by Adrian Gonzalez.

"When you think about it, it's nice to get a two-run lead, but you don't want to hang on for nine innings to hold a two-run lead," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "You want to add on. We just couldn't add on. Maeda pitched pretty well, mixed it up. We just couldn't zero in on him and hit him for a big inning."

NOTES: An error by Phillies SS Freddy Galvis snapped a 25-game errorless streak by the club. ... Phillies 3B Maikel Franco has gone 27 consecutive plate appearances since his last strikeout. It is the second-longest streak of his career since reaching 28 plate appearances in August 2016. ... Phillies RHP Mark Leiter made his major league debut by retiring the side in order in the seventh inning. Leiter is the son of former major league pitcher Mark Sr. ... Dodgers RF Yasiel Puig got the day off. Enrique Hernandez, who was 1-for-4 with an RBI, started in his place. ... Dodgers LHP Scott Kazmir (left hip strain) threw a bullpen session Friday and is scheduled to toss another one Sunday. ... Phillies RHP Zach Eflin (0-2, 2.25) will oppose Dodgers RHP Brandon McCarthy (3-0, 2.25) on Saturday.


Padres 3 vs. 4 Giants Recap

Arroyo homer lifts Giants past Padres


Saturday, April 29 at 2:13 AM (EDT)

SAN FRANCISCO -- The San Francisco Giants were impressed when Christian Arroyo, in his first major-league at-bat, hit a ground ball to the right side that advanced a baserunner to third.

They hadn't seen anything yet.

The 21-year-old homered for the second time in three games Friday night, a tiebreaking solo shot on reliever Ryan Buchter's second pitch of the eighth inning, lifting the Giants to a 4-3 victory over the San Diego Padres in the opener of a three-game series.

Right-hander Jeff Samardzija and two relievers combined on a five-hitter, delivering the Giants their third one-run win in five games on their current homestand.

"A couple of us heard he was 21. We laughed at it," Samardzija said of Arroyo. "He's a smart player. That first at-bat (Monday) says it all."

The Giants' win came despite Padres third baseman Ryan Schimpf's third consecutive game with a home run, a two-run drive in a three-run fifth inning off Samardzija.

"I'm not thinking about it to be honest with you," Schimpf said of his streak. "Really, as cliche as it may be, it's just about trying to stay prepared, put your work in, and try to put together a good at-bat. Try to put your best swing on it, and whatever happens after that, it's out of your control."

Arroyo, the Giants' first-round pick in 2013, picked on a 1-0 fastball from the left-handed Buchter and sent it into the left field bleachers for his second home run of the fairy-tale week.

"I was not trying to hit a home run," he insisted. "Just get on base and keep the line moving. But I got a good pitch and got the barrel on it and I was fortunate that it went out."

The homer was the first allowed by Buchter (1-1) in 10 appearances this season.

Right-hander Derek Law (3-0), who stranded Erick Aybar at third base in the top of the eighth inning to retain a 3-3 tie, got the win.

Giants closer Mark Melancon pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his fifth save.

"He's been a huge shot in the arm," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said of Arroyo. "He's helped us win some games here."

Neither starting pitcher received a decision.

Samardzija left for a pinch hitter in the bottom of the seventh, having allowed three runs (two earned) and four hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out five.

Padres right-hander Luis Perdomo was pulled after six innings, during which he allowed three runs (one earned) and six hits. He struck out five and did not walk a batter.

"The most important thing is that I felt good," said Perdomo, who missed two starts earlier this month with shoulder tendinitis. "I was relaxed (and) felt like I had my pitches working."

Brandon Belt had three hits, including a double, and Joe Panik collected two singles for the Giants, who outhit the Padres 8-5.

Cory Spangenberg had a single and a double for the Padres.

NOTES: The Padres' record for home runs in consecutive games is six, set by 3B Graig Nettles in 1984. ... Padres 2B Yangervis Solarte was hit twice in the game by Giants starter RHP Jeff Samardzija, raising his season total to four. Giants pitchers have accounted for three of the four HBPs. ... The Giants' last four wins have all been by one run. ... The Giants had scored just four first-inning runs before getting two on Friday. ... 1B/LF Michael Morse's sacrifice fly was San Francisco's major-league-leading 11th of the season.


Mets 7 vs. 5 Nationals Recap

D'Arnaud's two homers help Mets top Nats, end skid


Friday, April 28 at 11:31 PM (EDT)

WASHINGTON -- Travis d'Arnaud gave credit to his approach at the plate to Kevin Long, the hitting coach for the New York Mets.

"Keep it simple," said d'Arnaud, the Mets' catcher.

That approach worked Friday night as he hit two homers and drove in a career-high five runs and Jacob deGrom struck out 12 batters in seven innings as the Mets beat the Washington Nationals 7-5.

The Mets snapped a six-game losing streak and cooled off the first-place Nationals, who had won 10 of their previous 11 games. The win spoiled a two-homer night for Washington's Ryan Zimmerman, who had three RBIs.

"Huge night against a great ballclub," d'Arnaud said.

The game ended as lefty reliever Josh Edgin induced Bryce Harper to hit a comebacker to the mound with the bases loaded and one out. Edgin threw to d'Arnaud for the force at home, and the catcher fired to first to retire Harper for the double play.

"He did a great job," d'Arnaud said of Edgin, who got his first save of the season and second of his career.

Harper, playing five years to the day of his major league debut, fanned three times and had a single before coming to the plate in the ninth.

"I thought I would face him, definitely," Harper said of Edgin. "He threw me a slider and got me."

A right-hander from Florida, deGrom (1-1) allowed three runs and six hits while fanning at least 10 batters for the 13th time in his career.

"One of the best in baseball," Harper said of deGrom.

Mets pinch-hitter Kevin Plawecki, batting for deGrom, drove in a run with a bases-loaded single in the eighth off reliever Jacob Turner for a 6-3 lead. Michael Conforto followed with a walk with the bases loaded to make it 7-3.

Zimmerman hit his second homer of the game, a two-run shot in the eighth off reliever Addison Reed, to pull Washington within 7-5. It was his 10th homer of the year and the 17th time he had at least two homers in a game.

The losing pitcher was Max Scherzer (3-2), who gave up five runs and nine hits in six innings.

"I'm sure Max didn't locate as well as he would have liked to," Washington manager Dusty Baker said.

Edgin came in for Jeurys Familia, the regular Mets closer, to get the last two outs.

"I was just going to make him hit a lefty," Mets manager Terry Collins said of Harper. "Big weight off our shoulders. I'm glad it worked."

Asdrubal Cabrera, Jose Reyes and T.J. Rivera added two hits for the Mets, who were swept in three games by Washington last weekend in New York. Trea Turner, Matt Wieters and Daniel Murphy also had two hits for Washington.

Each catcher hit a two-run homer in the second inning while batting from the No. 8 spot in the order.

The Mets took a 2-0 lead in the second as d'Arnaud crushed a two-run homer to left off Scherzer. His third homer of the season came on a 93 mph fastball from Scherzer on a 1-0 delivery.

Zimmerman hit his ninth homer -- the most he has ever hit in April -- to make it 2-1 in the last of the second off deGrom.

Wieters then went deep to center for a two-run shot later in the second as the Nationals took a 3-2 lead.

In the fourth, d'Arnaud cranked a three-run homer to left to give the Mets a 5-3 advantage. It was the first multi-homer game of d'Arnaud's career.

Was Baker surprised the Mets called on Edgin to face Harper?

"No, not really, I mean, like, right now they're in a desperate situation where they're got to try to win every game they can, they've got to put feelings and pride aside, so, no, it wasn't a shock," Baker said. "I saw (Edgin) warming up in the bullpen and then if he had gotten Bryce, then they were going to bring in (Fernando) Salas to face Zim. So, I mean, Bryce is hitting .750 off of left-handers, so you know, that wasn't a great move, but it was a necessary move that they had to make."

NOTES: Mets LF Yoenis Cespedes went on the 10-day disabled list with a hamstring injury. He is hitting .270 with six homers in 18 games. To take his place on the roster the Mets called up LHP Sean Gilmartin from Triple-A Las Vegas ... Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, manager Terry Collins and several players made a visit Friday to the Walter Reed Medical Center to meet with Wounded Warriors, active service men and women and their families ... Washington RHP Stephen Strasburg (2-0, 2.89 ERA) is slated to face Mets RHP Zack Wheeler (1-2, 5.40) on Saturday ... Washington CF Adam Eaton was helped off the field in the ninth after he reached on an infield single. He appeared to hurt his left leg.


Orioles 11 vs. 14 Yankees Recap

Holliday homers in 10th to complete Yanks rally past O's


Saturday, April 29 at 12:07 AM (EDT)

NEW YORK -- A home-run derby broke out at Yankee Stadium on Friday, and when the Baltimore Orioles bolted to an eight-run lead, it didn't appear a dramatic photo finish was in the works.

Then Aaron Judge crept the Yankees closer with another one of his long home runs and the thought was perhaps New York could pull it out. Then Starlin Castro hit a long home run to tie the game in the ninth.

By then the Yankees figured, they might as well win the game.

An inning later, Matt Holliday obliged, hitting a three-run home run with one out in the bottom of the 10th as the Yankees completed a stunning comeback and pulled out a wild 14-11 victory over Baltimore.

"It's an amazing feeling," New York manager Joe Girardi said.

Holliday's 10th career walk-off hit and third career walk-off home run lifted the Yankees (14-7) to their 13th win in 16 games. The Yankees had first and second after opening the 10th with a pair of walks off Jayson Aquino (1-1).

One pitch after Aquino fanned Chase Headley, Holliday delivered the game-winner by sending a breaking ball into the Yankees' bullpen well out of the reach of center fielder Adam Jones.

"I thought I hit it good," Holliday said. "I got enough of it but I wasn't too sure."

Once it was clear Holliday got enough of the pitch, he was met by his teammates during a wild celebration at the plate and his first game-ending home run since Sept. 18, 2009 ended with the designated hitter getting doused with water.

Holliday's drive gave the Yankees their first win when allowing at least 11 runs since July 29, 2014 at Texas and first at home since a 12-11 home win over the Kansas City Royals June 7, 2008.

It was the Yankees' first win when trailing by at least eight runs since a 15-9 win at Boston on April 21, 2012 and their first such win at home since Jorge Posada hit a game-ending home run in a 14-13 win over the Texas Rangers on May 16, 2006.

"We've been battling all year," Yankees starter CC Sabathia said. "It's awesome to see the way this team fights."

"This group is resilient," Girardi said. "We have the ability to hit the ball out of the ballpark and that's what we did."

The Yankees fell behind 9-1 after Sabathia gave up a 470-foot home run to Manny Machado in the fifth and Bryan Mitchell allowed a grand slam to Mark Trumbo in the sixth.

Then the comeback began. It started with Judge's second home run, a drive to center off Kevin Gausman that sliced the deficit to 9-4.

"It just kind of triggered something," Girardi said of the team thinking comeback after Judge's home run.

Baltimore took a seemingly safe 11-4 lead on a two-run single by Jonathan Schoop in the seventh.

Then the fun started for the Yankees.

After knocking out Gausman, Jacoby Ellsbury hit his first career grand slam off Vidal Nuno to make it 11-8. The stage seemed set for Judge's third home run but he struck out to end the seventh.

Two innings later, the comeback continued. Ellsbury made it 11-9 with a run-scoring groundout and Castro drove Brad Brach's first pitch well over the left-field wall.

"The ball was definitely jumping," Brach said. "So just a lot of runs scored there and I got to hold the lead there, that's about it."

Long before Brach blew his first save, the Orioles matched their second-highest run total of the season but ultimately wound up losing a game where they scored 11 runs for the first time since July 29, 2006 against the Chicago White Sox.

"I can't be messing around like I did," Brach said. "You just don't want to lose those games."

Machado fell a triple shy of becoming the fifth player in team history to hit for the cycle. He singled, doubled and homered off Sabathia before going hitless in his final three plate appearances.

After Sabathia was rocked for seven runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings, and after Mitchell allowed four runs, three relievers combined on 3 2/3 scoreless frames. Aroldis Chapman (1-0) fanned Chris Davis to end the 10th and picked up the win.

NOTES: LHP Zach Britton (strained left forearm) allowed a home run and threw 28 pitches in a rehab appearance for Double-A Bowie. Manager Buck Showalter said Sunday is the earliest Britton will return. ... To make room for SS Didi Gregorius on the active roster, the Yankees designated INF Pete Kozma for assignment. ... RHP Chris Tillman (right shoulder bursitis) will throw a bullpen session this season and the Orioles will decide whether his next start will be in the majors or in a minor league rehab game. ... New York SS Didi Gregorius went 2-for-5 in his season debut and it also happened to be his 500th career game. He joined Hall of Famer Bert Blyleven (699 games) as the only Dutch native to reach the milestone.


Rays 7 vs. 4 Blue Jays Recap

Rays bury Blue Jays with late HRs


Saturday, April 29 at 12:22 AM (EDT)

TORONTO -- The Tampa Bay Rays had been held under control by Toronto Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman all night.

Suddenly, the power switch went on for the Rays in the eighth inning. They clubbed three home runs against three pitchers in that inning, capped by Logan Morrison's two-run blast, and added a fourth homer in the ninth.

Instead of being shut down, the Rays emerged with a 7-4 victory in the opener of a three-game series Friday night.

Corey Dickerson and Evan Longoria also homered for Tampa Bay (12-12) in the eighth, and Derek Norris added a homer in the ninth.

Kevin Pillar had four hits, including a homer, for the Blue Jays (6-17), who have lost three in a row.

"To be a good team, you've got to find ways to win close games on the road," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "Today we did that. Stroman was just giving us fits. We just couldn't square him up."

Cash was impressed by Morrison's long drive to center.

"It's not every day you come here and see a ball land up in the restaurant," he said. "That was pretty impressive."

Dickerson led off the top of the eighth with his sixth homer on the first pitch from Stroman.

Jason Grilli (1-3) replaced Stroman with one out in the eighth and gave up Longoria's fourth homer to tie the game at 3.

After Brad Miller walked, Dominic Leone replaced Grilli with two outs and gave up Morrison's fifth homer.

Leone gave up Norris' first homer of the season to lead off the top of the ninth. The Rays added a run on a double by Dickerson, an error by Toronto second baseman Devon Travis and a wild pitch by J.P. Howell.

The Blue Jays' bullpen also gave up a lead in the first game of a doubleheader Thursday against the St. Louis Cardinals, who went on to win in 11 innings.

"We're in a little bit of a rut with some guys down there; that's obvious," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "We were on a nice little roll not too long ago. These are our guys we'll keep on running out there, they're all capable, they're all good."

Rays starter Blake Snell allowed six hits, three walks and two runs in five innings. The left-hander struck out three before Austin Pruitt (3-0) replaced him and allowed three hits and a run over three innings to earn the win.

Stroman allowed five hits, two walks and two runs and had 10 strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings.

"It's just a matter of things turning around for us," Stroman said. "It's just frustrating. We kill ourselves to be at our best when we're out there so when things don't go our way it's tough. We're doing everything in our power to turn this around."

"We needed that one," Longoria said. "Stroman was tough. He pitched us about as good as he could have. He kind of just ran out of pitches."

Pillar led off the bottom of the seventh with his fourth homer on an 0-1 pitch from Pruitt to give Toronto a 3-1 lead.

Jumbo Diaz pitched the ninth for the Rays, allowing Pillar's leadoff double and a single by pinch hitter Chris Coghlan before Jose Bautista hit a sacrifice fly.

Chase Whitley replaced Diaz and picked up his first save of the season.

Norris hit an RBI single in the second to give the Rays a 1-0 lead. The blooper just beyond shortstop scored Tim Beckham, who had walked with two outs and advanced to third on Shane Peterson's single.

The Blue Jays took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the fifth. Pillar started the rally with a double to left and scored on Darwin Barney's single to right. Bautista singled to put runners and the corners. Barney scored when Kendrys Morales grounded to shortstop to start a double play.

NOTES: Toronto designated C Jarrod Saltalamacchia for assignment Friday and selected the contract of C Luke Maile from Triple-A Buffalo. Toronto claimed Maile off waivers from Tampa Bay on April 6 and he started Friday against the Rays. He was 0-for-3 with a walk. Saltalamacchia batted .040 (1-for-25) in 10 games. Maile batted .195 (8-for-41) in 12 games at Buffalo. ... Blue Jays RHP Casey Lawrence was optioned to Buffalo Friday and LHP Matt Dermody was recalled from the Bisons. Lawrence is 0-3 with an 8.78 ERA in four games (two starts) with Toronto. ... Toronto RHP Aaron Sanchez (blister right middle finger) will be activated from the DL to start Sunday against Tampa Bay. ... The Rays activated OF Mallex Smith (strained right hamstring) from the disabled list Thursday and optioned him to Triple-A Durham. ... RHP Matt Andriese (1-0, 3.86 ERA) will start the game Saturday afternoon for the Rays against Blue Jays LHP Francisco Liriano (1-2, 4.58 ERA).


Cubs 4 vs. 5 Red Sox Recap

Five-run first carries Red Sox past Cubs


Saturday, April 29 at 12:13 AM (EDT)

BOSTON -- High drama at Fenway Park.

In April.

"It was a great atmosphere tonight," Boston manager John Farrell said after Craig Kimbrel struck out Addison Russell with the tying run on second, ending the game with his third strikeout of the inning as the Red Sox held on for a 5-4 interleague victory over the Chicago Cubs on Friday night.

"The buildup to this weekend kind of speaks for itself," Farrell said. "But given the way that game went, they're chipping away, getting their way back into this ballgame. Two strikeouts -- he's facing the heart of that order, which is explosive ... just a great atmosphere for it being a game in late April. Craig was outstanding."

The slumbering Red Sox erupted for five runs off Jake Arrieta in the first inning and didn't score again in a game that contained 24 hits, 24 strikeouts, three homers and all kinds of excitement.

On a night that featured the return to Boston of Chicago general manager Theo Epstein and former Red Sox pitchers Jon Lester, John Lackey and Koji Uehara, rookie Andrew Benintendi homered to start the five-run assault against Arrieta (3-1).

Arrieta, who took a no-hitter into the eighth inning of his last start at Fenway, in 2014, lasted 4 1/3 innings and saw his 10-game April winning streak snapped.

Kris Bryant homered off winner Drew Pomeranz (2-1) in the first and Albert Almora hit another in the third. The Boston bullpen, a bit of a mix and match with Tyler Thornburg and Carson Smith hurt and Matt Barnes suspended, patched things together over the final three innings.

While Kimbrel pitched around Ben Zobrist's two-out double, another hero out of the pen was left-hander Fernando Abad. Earlier in the day, the Red Sox (12-10) surprised some people by sending Robbie Ross Jr. to the minors and keeping Abad. All Abad did was strike out out two straight hitter to end the eighth with two men on.

"Two key strikeouts at a pivotal point in the game," Farrell said.

And then came Kimbrel.

"Kimbrel has been Craig," Farrell said. "He's been overpowering. Great stuff."

Kimbrel struck out Bryant and Anthony Rizzo before Zobrist's two-strike double. Then, with the rival fans, including a large Cubs contingent, trying to outscream each other, Kimbrel blew Russell away as the Cubs fell to 12-10.

"How many times have you seen that game this year? We've played that game almost every night," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "Once we start getting that big hit, it's going to turn in a good way. Continue to play until the last out once again.

"I've said this several times already this year, Jake had a hard time early, settled in, got through it. Our bullpen was outstanding. We did a lot of really good things tonight, some really good at-bats, but we came up one out short."

It was the second straight start that saw Arrieta allow at least four runs in the first inning, a career first for the right-hander.

Pomeranz struck out seven in his second win in his last three starts.

"Pomeranz did a great job with (the lead) -- he took the ball and ran," said Boston's Mitch Moreland, who doubled home a run and scored in the first. "Kind of carried us the rest of the way. The bullpen came in and stepped up for us and it was a good win."

Boston had scored 13 runs and been shut out three times in the previous seven games before scoring the five in the first.

The Red Sox came in 5-for-44 with runners in scoring position and with only seven first-inning runs this season. Both were quickly taken care of as the home team came through on its first four chances with runners in scoring position in the first.

Boston went 0-for-6 in clutch spots after that. The Cubs stranded nine, going 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position.

"None of this double-digit left-on-base stuff," Maddon said. "We've got to start moving runners across the plate. We've got them out there and the right guys coming up, but we're not doing that with any consistency."

NOTES: The Red Sox recalled RHP Ben Wright and activated utility man Chase d'Arnaud and optioned LHP Robbie Ross Jr. and OF/1B Steve Selsky to Triple-A Pawtucket. ... Former Red Sox LHP Jon Lester visited with several ex-teammates on the field before the game. He and former GM Theo Epstein, the architect of both storied franchises finally winning a World Series, met the media. Lester brought out the Cubs lineup card and he and RHP Koji Uehara received a video tribute in the second inning. ... Former Boston RHP John Lackey, also part of the video tribute, goes for Chicago against RHP Steven Wright Saturday, both trying to overcome shaky starts to 2017. ... Red Sox INF/OF Brock Holt, on the disabled list with vertigo, started a rehab at Pawtucket. ... Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio is missing the series for a personal matter. ... Ex-Red Sox and Cubs P Ryan Dempster threw out the first pitch. ... Fans can pose for pictures of World Series trophies of both teams before Sunday night's game.


Mariners 3 vs. 1 Indians Recap

Cano, Gamel power Mariners past Indians


Friday, April 28 at 11:00 PM (EDT)

CLEVELAND -- Sometimes a loss can be a wakeup call. The Seattle Mariners had one on Tuesday and they've been wide awake ever since.

On Friday night at Progressive Field, Robinson Cano and Ben Gamel each homered and Ariel Miranda gave up one run and two hits in 5 1/3 innings as the Mariners beat the Cleveland Indians 3-1.

Miranda (2-2) struck out seven and walked two in his first career appearance against Cleveland. The only run he gave up came on a home run by Jose Ramirez in the fourth inning.

Indians starter Carlos Carrasco (2-2) pitched eight innings, allowing three runs and six hits with seven strikeouts. The three runs he gave up came on the two Seattle home runs.

"Two bad pitches. I missed my spot both times," Carrasco said.

Miranda and two relievers combined to hold Cleveland to four hits while striking out 14 and walking two. Edwin Diaz fanned three in 1 1/3 scoreless innings to pick up his fourth save of the season.

It's the Mariners' third win in a row, a streak that began after they were routed by the Tigers 19-9 on Tuesday in Detroit.

"That was one game. Everyone has one like that every once in awhile," Seattle manager Scott Servais said. "But we've bounced back, and we've done it with our pitching."

In their three-game winning streak, the Mariners have outscored their opponents 13-2.

Gamel's solo home run, a towering blast down the right field line, came in the sixth inning to give Seattle a 3-1 advantage. The home run was the first of the season for Gamel and the second of his career.

"I knew I got enough of it, I was just hoping it would stay fair," said Gamel, who has been playing right field since Mitch Haniger went on the disabled list April 26 with an oblique injury.

The Mariners have been riddled by injuries this season. They currently have seven players on the disabled list.

"A lot of teams go through adversity like that," Servais said. "We'll get them back, but right now it's hurting us a little bit."

The game was scoreless through three innings, but Gamel led off the fourth with a double off the wall in left field. Cano then belted an 0-1 pitch over the wall in center for his fourth home run of the season, giving Seattle a 2-0 lead.

"Robby has been trying to find some consistency," Servais said. "He'll have a couple of good at-bats, then look out of sorts for a couple. But he's a veteran player who knows what he's doing up there."

Facing Carrasco helps. In his career against Carrasco, Cano is hitting .412 (7-for-17) with two home runs and six RBIs.

Miranda held the Indians scoreless and hitless through three innings. With one out in the fourth, however, Ramirez hit a fly ball to left field that appeared to hit off the top of the wall.

It was originally ruled a double, but after a video review, the call was changed to a home run, Ramirez's sixth of the season. But that was all the offense Cleveland could come up with against Miranda and the Seattle bullpen.

"Early on, he had a tough time finding his breaking ball, but we didn't make him pay for it," Indians manager Terry Francona said of Miranda. "He beat us with his fastball up. We didn't do much with it, then the second time through the order he found his off-speed pitch. Then they went to their bullpen and those are some pretty good arms."

One of those arms belonged to James Pazos, who pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings while striking out four of the nine batters he faced.

"He was firing bullets and hammering the zone," Servais said.

"I was pretty mechanically sound," Pazos said. "Cleveland has some really good hitters and you've got to be aware of where you're putting your fastball."

NOTES: Indians OF Michael Brantley, whose 10-game hitting streak was snapped Thursday night, was given a scheduled day off. ... C Yan Gomes is only hitting .188 but drawing rave reviews for his defense. Gomes has thrown out 54 percent of attempted base stealers (7-for-13). ... Seattle DH Nelson Cruz, who leads the American League with 19 RBIs and is hitting .478 with three home runs and 11 RBIs in the last seven games, was scratched from the Mariners' lineup due to a tight left hamstring. . . The Mariners announced that RHP Felix Hernandez (right shoulder bursitis) and OF Mitch Haniger (grade 2 sprain of right oblique) are both expected to miss three to four weeks. Both players were placed on the disabled list on Wednesday, and both were examined on Friday in Seattle.


Pirates 12 vs. 2 Marlins Recap

Pirates use big inning to beat Marlins


Saturday, April 29 at 12:21 AM (EDT)

MIAMI -- Gift Ngoepe's sixth-inning triple to right field would have gone over the fence in any other stadium other than Marlins Park, Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

Ngoepe, a speedy rookie second baseman from South Africa, settled for his first career triple and, overall, had a 3-for-3 day in Pittsburgh's 12-2 win over the Miami Marlins on Friday night.

"I was telling the ball to go -- to grow some legs and travel," Ngoepe said of his three-bagger. "It could've been the first home run for South Africa. But that will come."

Ngoepe, the first player from anywhere on the African continent to make the major leagues, has only played two games, but he has already made a significant impact, batting .800 (4-for-5).

Given his first major league start on Friday, Ngoepe responded with his first RBI, in the fourth inning, and his aforementioned first triple, two frames later.

Ngoepe, a 27-year-old who made his major league debut on Wednesday, said all of the attention he has received has been overwhelming. But it is starting to sink in.

"A little bit," he said. "I'm starting to piece everything together. I'm having an amazing time. I'm going to run with it and see where it goes."

The Pirates ran away with this game in the second inning, producing an eight-run frame that gave them a 9-0 lead, and that was more than enough.

Catcher Francisco Cervelli provided the biggest blow of the second inning with a three-run, line-drive triple that went under the glove of sliding left fielder Marcell Ozuna. It was just the 11th triple of Cervelli's 10-year big-league career.

Jordy Mercer, Josh Harrison and Andrew McCutchen each drove in two runs to lead the Pirates (10-12).

Miami (10-11), which opened a five-game homestand, lost its third game in a row.

Jameson Taillon (2-0) earned the win despite not having his best sinker.

"At times, I thought it was really good, but at times I thought it was aimed too low to start with," said Hurdle of Taillon, who allowed five hits, two walks and one run in five innings.

"He had to grind this out because he had seven three-ball counts and only 50 percent first-pitch strikes. Only six hitters retired on three pitches or less."

Marlins starter Adam Conley (1-2), who did not allow a run in six innings last year in his only previous appearance against Pittsburgh, saw his ERA rise from 3.00 to 6.86. He lasted just 1 2/3 innings, allowing five hits, three walks, one hit batter and a career-worst nine runs.

"There's no excuse," Conley said. "I didn't locate my fastball. That's a pitch I really could have used tonight."

Marlins manager Don Mattingly said Conley's struggles on Friday had nothing to do with any injury.

"He's alright physically," Mattingly said. "The only other thing you can look at is he had gone seven days without a start. Maybe he got out of his routine."

Pittsburgh opened the scoring on Mercer's one-out solo homer to left. Mercer pulled an outside 1-2 pitch for his second homer of the season.

The Pirates then had their biggest inning since scoring eight on Sept. 15, 2016 against the Phillies.

Conley dug a hole by allowing a single and two walks to load the bases. Harrison drove in a run with an infield single to deep shortstop. Mercer then took a high 3-1 pitch for ball four and an RBI. McCutchen stroked a two-run opposite-field single to right. After Cervelli's triple, Jose Osuna capped the rally with an RBI single.

Cervelli had two hits in the 14-batter inning, including a leadoff single.

Miami scored in the third, using muscle and a bit of luck. Ozuna drilled a triple over the head of right fielder Osuna. Martin Prado cut Pittsburgh's lead to 9-1 on his swinging bunt. Taillon escaped what became a bases-loaded, two-out jam by getting Justin Bour on a line-drive out to first.

The sixth inning provided plenty of excitement for the Pirates as two of their rookies -- Ngoepe and pinch-hitter Alen Hanson -- hit consecutive triples, putting the Pirates up 11-1 at that point.

"It was nice to see Gift and Hanson with their speed out of the box," Hurdle said. "Gift had a very good game tonight."

NOTES: Pirates CF Andrew McCutchen reached base in his 17th consecutive game. ... Puerto Rican native Monica Puig, who won the 2016 Olympic gold medal for women's tennis, threw out the first pitch. Her presence was part of Puerto Rican Heritage Night at Marlins Park. ... This was the first game of a Pirates stretch during which Pittsburgh plays 14 of 17 games on the road. ... The Pirates also play on 17 consecutive days before getting a May 15 day off, their only rest in May. ... Hall of Famer Tony Perez and former Marlins star Jeff Conine were named MLB All-Star Ambassadors. The Marlins will host the All-Star Game on July 11. ... Pirates veteran RHP Ivan Nova, 30, will make his first career start against the Marlins on Saturday. ... Marlins RHP Dan Straily, who will oppose Nova on Saturday, made six appearances against Pittsburgh last season, including five starts, compiling a 2-2 record and a 3.38 ERA.


White Sox 7 vs. 3 Tigers Recap

White Sox down Tigers for fifth straight win


Friday, April 28 at 11:54 PM (EDT)

DETROIT -- Chicago White Sox manager Rick Renteria didn't consider pinch-hitting for Geovany Soto, even with slugger Jose Abreu on the bench.

Renteria's confidence in the 34-year-old journeyman catcher, a career .246 hitter, paid off when Soto smacked a go-ahead, two-run single in the eighth. That lifted the White Sox, who were also aided by Detroit third baseman Nick Castellanos' three errors, to their fifth straight victory as they downed the Tigers 7-3 on Friday night at Comerica Park.

Soto's two-out hit made a winner of Anthony Swarzak (2-0), who tossed two innings of scoreless relief.

"That's just a matter of him having the experience," Renteria said. "If you're thinking whether I had any thought of doing anything, no I did not. He's been around a long time."

Todd Frazier, Avisail Garcia and Tim Anderson homered for the White Sox (12-9). Garcia, the American League's leading hitter, had three hits, two runs scored and two RBIs.

Chicago starter Mike Pelfrey, released by the Tigers at the end of spring training, allowed three runs on six hits in 4 2/3 innings.

"It's always a little weird any time you pitch against former teammates or play against former teammates," Pelfrey said. "I just tried to keep my head down and not look at them, tried not to make too much eye contact. No matter where it is, you show up to win games and pitch and turn the page. The whole focus here was to help the White Sox tonight."

Justin Upton had a two-run single for the Tigers (11-11), who have lost three straight.

Detroit starter Matt Boyd pitched a season-high seven innings while taking a no-decision. He retired 13 of the last 14 batters he faced, with the one baserunner reaching on an error. Overall, he gave up three runs on seven hits with five strikeouts.

"He threw really well," Tigers catcher Alex Avila said. "He did struggle at times with his command early on, but he really settled in. I was proud of the fact that he was able to get through that (third) inning. A lot of times, those are the innings that snowball, and instead of giving up one run, it's two, three or four. He did a really good job and got stronger as the game went on."

Following Melky Cabrera's leadoff single in the eighth off Alex Wilson (0-1), Castellanos committed fielding errors on the next two plays. That loaded the bases.

"Of course it's disappointing. It (stinks). But what're you going to do about it? It happened," Castellanos said. "If you dwell on it and think about it, it's just going to continue to affect you. Tomorrow is a brand-new day."

A home-to-first double play nearly allowed the Tigers to escape but, after an intentional walk, Soto drilled his single to left to give the White Sox a 5-3 lead.

"He was looking for a pitch out over the plate that he could handle and did what he needed to do," Renteria said.

Anderson smashed a two-run shot off Joe Jimenez in the ninth to make it 7-3.

Upton's looping single to right with the bases loaded gave Detroit a 2-0 lead in the first. Pelfrey minimized the damage by getting Jim Adduci to tap into an inning-ending double play with the bases still loaded.

The White Sox tied the game in the second on back-to-back homers from Frazier and Avasail Garcia. Frazier's only previous homer came on April 11 against Cleveland.

Adduci had trouble picking up Tim Anderson's short fly to right in the third and it dropped in for a leadoff double. Anderson eventually scored on Garcia's infield hit.

The Tigers tied it at 3-all in the fifth on Victor Martinez's RBI single.

NOTES: White Sox 1B Jose Abreu was not in the lineup on Friday. Abreu suffered a mild right hip flexor strain against Kansas City on Wednesday. "We're hoping he'll be back in there (Saturday)," manager Rick Renteria said. ... Detroit 1B Miguel Cabrera took some swings and jogged on Friday as he works his way back from a right groin strain. Cabrera is eligible to come off the 10-day disabled list on Tuesday and he's on track to be activated that day. ... Tigers CF JaCoby Jones had nine stitches removed from his lip on Friday. Jones was placed on the 10-day DL on April 23 after getting hit in the face with a pitch at Minnesota. ... Detroit RHP Francisco Rodriguez is in no danger of losing the closer's role, according to manager Brad Ausmus. Rodriguez is 1-2 with a 6.23 ERA and opponents are batting .350 against him. He's converted six of eight save opportunities. ... Chicago has lost seven consecutive season series to the Tigers.



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