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  • Yankees try to build on series-opening win over White Sox
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, June 27, 2017

    CHICAGO -- The New York Yankees will try to jump-start a winning streak when they meet the Chicago White Sox in the second game of a four-game series on Tuesday night.

    • The Yankees held on for a 6-5 win in Monday's series opener despite a rocky ninth inning in which the White Sox scored four runs and left the tying run on second base. Now, New York (41-33) will try to build upon the victory and move past an ugly stretch in which it lost 10 of the previous 12 games.

      New York might have to do so without starting second baseman Starlin Castro, who strained his right hamstring in the series opener. Castro is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Tuesday after pulling up lame while running to first base on a ground ball.

      "When I tried to run, I felt something tight, but I stopped before the pop," Castro said. "To be honest, I'm walking, I don't feel anything. I've had hamstring situations before and it hurt when I walk, but right now, I feel good walking. I don't know what the MRI is going to say tomorrow, but we'll see."

      In the opposite dugout, Chicago (32-43) is looking to stop a four-game losing streak. The White Sox have lost seven of the past eight games to fall a season-worst 11 games below .500.

      Shortstop Tim Anderson plans to wear corrective lenses at the plate again Tuesday after he debuted them Monday night. Anderson said the glasses corrected a "small" problem with his vision, but teammates joked that they seemed to make a big difference with his three-run home run.

      To Anderson, Chicago's ninth-inning rally was a bigger story than his glasses heading into Tuesday.

      "It's the beginning of something that can be something good," Anderson said. "We definitely hopefully can build off of this and keep going."

      White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana (4-8, 4.69 ERA) is slated to make his 16th start of the season. The 28-year-old has a 2-2 record with a 4.35 ERA in four career starts against the Yankees but has yet to oppose them this season.

      Quintana has struggled this season since inheriting the role of staff ace from left-hander Chris Sale. He is averaging 3.3 walks per nine innings, which is the worst mark of his career. However, he has improved recently with a 2-1 record and 2.25 ERA in his past four outings.

      Yankees right-hander Luis Severino (5-3, 3.30 ERA) is set to make his 15th start of the season. During three career starts against the White Sox, he is 1-2 with a 5.40 ERA.

      Severino will look to bounce back from his worst outing of the year. He allowed six runs (five earned) in six innings his last time out against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The ugly performance was out of character for the talented 23-year-old, who has 24 walks and 95 strikeouts in 87 1/3 innings.

      Severino could be challenged by White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu, who is 3-for-8 with two RBIs against him. Avisail Garcia is 1-for-5 against Severino, but his lone hit was a home run. Meanwhile, outfielder Melky Cabrera has managed only one hit in eight at-bats against the Yankees' youngster.

      Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius is 3-for-3 with a double and an RBI in his career against Quintana. Castro (0-for-14) and outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury (0-for-6) have yet to notch a hit against the southpaw.

  • Yankees' Castro exits due to hamstring strain
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    CHICAGO -- Yankees second baseman Starlin Castro left New York's game against the Chicago White Sox on Monday because of a strained right hamstring.

    • Castro pulled up lame while running out a ground ball in the second inning. He was replaced in the field by Rob Refsnyder in the bottom of the second.

      Castro, 27, is hitting .313 with 12 home runs and 45 RBIs in 73 games. He didn't play Sunday after getting a cortisone shot in his right wrist a day earlier.

  • Indians' Francona leaves bench due to illness
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    CLEVELAND -- Indians manager Terry Francona became ill in the fifth inning of Cleveland's game against the Texas Rangers on Monday night and had to leave the dugout. Bench coach Brad Mills managed the team for the remainder of the game, a 15-9 Cleveland victory.

    • After the game, the Indians announced that Francona was evaluated by the team's medical staff and checked out fine after experiencing symptoms similar to the ones during a June 13 game.

      In that game, a 7-5 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers, Francona left the dugout in the ninth inning after feeling light-headed. He was taken to the Cleveland Clinic for a battery of tests that found nothing. He was released, and the condition was attributed to dehydration. Francona was not taken to the hospital after the Monday night episode.

      Francona also missed a game last year in Washington after experiencing chest pains.

      "We're always concerned when this happens," Mills said. "It's a concern for me, for the staff and for the team. We're just glad that the doctors checked him out, and hopefully we'll know more tomorrow."

      Francona, 58, is in his fifth year as Indians manager, and he guided Cleveland to the World Series last year. He led the Boston Red Sox to World Series championships in 2004 and 2007.

  • Dodgers' McCarthy lands on DL with knee injury
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    The Los Angeles Dodgers placed right-hander Brandon McCarthy on the 10-day disabled list Monday due to right knee tendinitis.

    • The move occurred a day after McCarthy lasted three innings and threw three wild pitches in the second inning of the Dodgers' 12-6 win over the Colorado Rockies.

      McCarthy is 6-3 with a 3.25 ERA in 13 starts this season after being limited to nine starts last season.

      The injury is not expected to sideline McCarthy more than 10 to 12 days, according to manager Dave Roberts.

      Besides putting McCarthy on the disabled list, the Dodgers also optioned right-hander Ross Stripling to Triple-A Oklahoma City and recalled right-hander Brock Stewart and outfielder Trayce Thompson from Triple-A.

      Striping pitched two innings Sunday. In 22 appearances, he is 0-3 with one save and a 4.03 ERA.

      Stewart threw three scoreless innings for a save against the New York Mets on June 20 in his lone major league appearance of the season. He went 0-1 with a 5.19 ERA in four minor league starts this season.

      Thompson went 0-for-8 in three April games with Los Angeles. He hit .211 with a .273 on-base percentage, seven homers and 25 RBIs in 62 games for Oklahoma City.

  • Questions abound in bullpens as Rays, Pirates open series
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    PITTSBURGH -- Eyes could be on the closers when the Pittsburgh Pirates and Tampa Bay Rays open a three-game series Tuesday at PNC Park.

    • The reasons, however, are different.

      For Tampa Bay (40-38), Alex Colome fell to 1-3 after he blew two games in a row on Saturday and Sunday against Baltimore.

      "We've just got to go in and finish teams off," Rays manager Kevin Cash said.

      Colome, who has 20 saves in 23 opportunities, does not describe himself as struggling.

      "I feel like every time I go out, there's nothing different. I just missed, like, one pitch," Colome told the Tampa Bay Times after Sunday's 8-5 loss.

      Cash also stopped way short of raising a red flag.

      "I'm not reading anything into Alex's issue (Sunday)," Cash said. "We've got other things we need to worry about."

      That includes the rest of the Rays' bullpen.

      "Obviously, there's always concern," Cash said. "We need to find a way to get the ball to Alex and not always be a one-run game and not always have Alex come in in the eighth. That's not an ideal scenario to play a full season with, when you ask your ninth-inning guy to come in early."

      To help address that, Tampa Bay has moved Eramso Ramirez back to the bullpen. In addition, reliever Brad Boxberger is expected to return from a back injury soon. His rehab appearance scheduled for Tuesday at Single-A Charlotte could be his last one before being activated.

      "We've given that message to Erasmo and (Boxberger) both -- 'We need you guys. We've seen you good in this spot,'" Cash said. "Hopefully, it can clean up a lot of things for us.

      "Erasmo, you can make the argument he's done some really good things in the rotation; you can also argue he's done some really good things in the bullpen."

      For Pittsburgh (35-41), if there was an "ace" of the bullpen, it would be Felipe Rivero, who recently moved into the closer role and has come through in all three of his save opportunities. He has an 0.68 ERA and 43 strikeouts in 40 innings. Among those with at least 40 innings, he leads the major leagues with an 0.70 WHIP and is sixth overall with 14 holds.

      The rest of the Pirates relievers have struggled.

      "Our bullpen has gone through some turbulence, but I see signs of it working its way back right," manager Clint Hurdle said Sunday -- shortly before St. Louis rallied against that bullpen for an 8-4 win that ended Pittsburgh's road trip at 4-3.

      That trip, however, included taking two of three against the Cardinals as the Pirates claw to stay alive in a competitive if mediocre National League Central.

      "It's a good step forward," Hurdle said. "We're working hard to play better. ... To come in here and win two out of three, we'll take it and we'll move on and get ready to start the homestand."

      Trevor Williams (3-3, 5.09 ERA) gets the start for Pittsburgh looking for a winning record after he struck out a career-high seven in six innings against Milwaukee on Wednesday.

      For Tampa Bay, Alex Cobb (6-5, 4.05 ERA) could be in the midst of a hot streak. He is 2-0 with a 2.29 ERA over his past three starts. Those three games and seven of his last 10 outings were quality starts. He might finally be getting past a string of injuries, including 2015 Tommy John surgery.

      "Throughout the course of the year we all struggle with our mechanics and we lose it and it's hard to find," Cobb said. "After piecing this whole thing back together again, the ability to identify problems and realize where I'm off ... just getting back to peak form, it's going to happen that much quicker for me.

      "The crispness and repetitiveness of each pitch is showing up more each time out. I obviously wanted it to be back by now, but by the second half, it's going to kind of transition to not even thinking about anything. Just going out there and trying to execute pitches, and this whole process will be over with, hopefully."

  • MLB roundup: Indians rally with 13 straight runs
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    CLEVELAND -- Trailing by seven after the top of the fourth inning, the Cleveland Indians rallied for 13 unanswered runs in a wild 15-9 victory over the Texas Rangers on Monday night at Progressive Field.

    • Texas hit four home runs to none for Cleveland, but the Indians pounded five Rangers pitchers for 19 hits. With the exception of Jason Kipnis, every hitter in the Cleveland lineup had two or more hits. Francisco Lindor, Carlos Santana and Lonnie Chisenhall had three RBIs each.

      For Texas, Elvis Andrus had three hits, including two home runs and four RBIs, and Adrian Beltre added a three-run homer.

      Indians reliever Bryan Shaw (2-2) pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings to get the win. Six Cleveland pitchers combined for 17 strikeouts.

      Red Sox 4, Twins 1

      BOSTON -- Chris Sale earned his 10th win, and Mitch Moreland delivered a solo homer and sacrifice fly to lead Boston to a victory over Minnesota.

      The Twins had their three-game winning streak stopped. The Red Sox won for just the second time in five games.

      Sale (10-3) worked 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball to go to 9-1 since April 27. He walked two and struck out nine, yielding four hits and leaving with runners on first and second and one out with Boston ahead 2-1 in the seventh. Heath Hembree came on and got Chris Gimenez to bounce into a double play.

      Yankees 6, White Sox 5

      CHICAGO -- Chase Headley went 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI and a run, and New York held on for a win over Chicago.

      Tyler Austin belted a home run and notched two RBIs for the Yankees. New York snapped a two-game skid and won for only the third time in the past 13 games.

      Todd Frazier and Tim Anderson each homered for the White Sox, who scored four runs in the ninth inning and left the tying run on second base to end the game. Chicago has lost four games in a row and seven of eight.

      Cubs 5, Nationals 4

      WASHINGTON -- Starter Eddie Butler and the Chicago bullpen combined to hold off Washington until the ninth inning, and Willson Contreras led off the game with a homer as the Cubs beat the Nationals.

      Washington scored four runs in the ninth before Chicago closer Wade Davis recorded the last two outs, getting Ryan Zimmerman on strikes for the last out with runners on second and third.

      Butler (4-2) went five scoreless innings before he was lifted for pinch hitter Addison Russell in the top of the sixth. Russell struck out with two runners on base to end the inning with the Cubs ahead 1-0, and the score remained that way into the eighth inning.

      Angels 4, Dodgers 0

      LOS ANGELES -- Ricky Nolasco broke a long personal streak of losses and the Dodgers' 10-game winning streak in the Angels' shutout win over their crosstown rival.

      Nolasco (3-9) pitched 6 1/3 shutout innings as the Angels won the first game of their inter-league series against the Dodgers.

      Nolasco had lost seven straight starts, tying the Angels' franchise record. The Angels had lost 10 straight of his starts before Monday's effort. They were 3-12 in his 15 starts this season.

      Giants 9, Rockies 2

      SAN FRANCISCO -- Buster Posey went 3-for-4 and drove in three runs as San Francisco routed Colorado.

      Posey, Joe Panik and Denard Span were a combined 7-for-13 as the Giants snapped a nine-game losing streak to the Rockies. Jeff Samardzija allowed two runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings.

      Trevor Story and Tony Wolters drove in the runs for the Rockies, who lost their sixth straight game.

      Cardinals 8, Reds 2

      ST. LOUIS -- Randal Grichuk and Jedd Gyorko each homered and knocked in three runs as St. Louis walloped Cincinnati in a makeup game.

      Both went deep to key three-run rallies. Gyorko cracked a two-run shot off Brandon Finnegan (1-1) in the bottom of the first inning for a 3-0 lead. Grichuk skied a two-run blast off reliever Austin Brice in the fourth to cap St. Louis' second three-spot of the day, making it 6-1.

      Given plenty of run support, Michael Wacha (4-3) delivered one of his best outings of the season. Wacha allowed five hits and a run in six innings with a walk and five strikeouts in his second win over Cincinnati this year.

      Diamondbacks 6, Phillies 1

      PHOENIX -- Chris Herrmann homered and drove in two runs, and Daniel Descalso had three RBIs as Arizona extended its franchise-record start with a victory over Philadelphia.

      Herrmann homered to lead off the last of the first inning in his first career start in the leadoff spot. Descalso had an RBI single in a two-run second inning and a two-run single in a three-run third.

      Zack Greinke (9-4) gave up one run and three hits in five innings as the Diamondbacks (48-28) won for the 15th time in their last 18 games. They are three games ahead of the record pace set by the Randy Johnson/Luis Gonzalez 2001 team.

  • MLB notebook: Rays acquire Hechavarria from Marlins
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    The Tampa Bay Rays acquired shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria from the Miami Marlins for two minor leaguers on Monday.

    • Outfielder Braxton Lee and right-hander Ethan Clark were included in the deal and sent to Miami, Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said.

      Hechavarria has been on the disabled list since May 10 with an oblique injury. The 28-year-old Cuban signed with Toronto as a free agent in 2010 and has batted .255 over parts of six seasons with the Blue Jays and Marlins.

      Lee, who was batting .318 with two homers and 12 stolen bases for Double-A Montgomery, is a former 12th-round pick in the 2014 draft out of Ole Miss.

      Clark, who was a 15th-round selection in 2015, owns a 3-2 mark with a 3.11 ERA for Bowling Green in the Class A Midwest League.

      -- Cincinnati Reds starter Brandon Finnegan's first game since April 15 ended abruptly in the bottom of the fourth inning when he left the game after throwing a 1-1 pitch outside to St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Paul DeJong.

      After the pitch, Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco trotted out to the mound, urgently waving for manager Bryan Price and pitching coach Mack Jenkins. After trainer Steve Baumann examined Finnegan for a couple of minutes, Price removed him.

      Austin Brice relieved Finnegan, who was activated off the 60-day disabled list Monday after missing more than two months with left shoulder soreness. In three innings, Finnegan allowed three hits and three runs, walking four and fanning two.

      The exact nature of Finnegan's injury wasn't immediately known.

      --The Texas Rangers activated left-hander Cole Hamels from the 10-day disabled list ahead of the team's game against the Cleveland Indians.

      To make room on the roster, the Rangers optioned infielder/outfielder Drew Robinson to Triple-A Round Rock.

      Hamels, 33, has been out for eight weeks with a right oblique muscle strain. He was placed on the disabled list May 3 (retroactive to April 30) after sustaining the injury while warming up for his start on May 2 at Houston. He was 1-0 with a 1.04 ERA in two rehab starts with Double-A Frisco.

      Hamels is 2-0 with a 3.03 ERA in 32 2/3 innings in five starts with Texas this season.

      --Chicago Cubs infielder Addison Russell was not in the starting lineup against the Washington Nationals, one day after he left a game with a sore shoulder in Miami against the Marlins.

      "He is not serious, but I don't want to push it," Chicago manager Joe Maddon said after talking to team athletic trainer P.J. Mainville. "We just have to get him on a steady diet of rehab. We will play it a little bit cautious."

      Russell is hitting .232 with seven homers and 29 RBIs in 228 at-bats in 68 games this season. Last year, he made the All-Star team and helped the Cubs win the World Series as he hit .238 with 21 homers and 95 RBIs.

      Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward (left hand abrasion), who went on the disabled list June 22, took indoor batting practice Monday.

  • Cubs' Russell sits out with sore shoulder
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    WASHINGTON -- Chicago Cubs infielder Addison Russell was not in the starting lineup against the Washington Nationals on Monday, one day after he left a game with a sore shoulder in Miami against the Marlins.

    • "He is not serious, but I don't want to push it," Chicago manager Joe Maddon said Monday after talking to team athletic trainer P.J. Mainville. "We just have to get him on a steady diet of rehab. We will play it a little bit cautious."

      Russell is hitting .232 with seven homers and 29 RBIs in 228 at-bats in 68 games this season. Last year, he made the All-Star team and helped the Cubs win the World Series as he hit .238 with 21 homers and 95 RBIs.

      Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward (left hand abrasion), who went on the disabled list June 22, took indoor batting practice Monday.

      "It is getting better every day. It is healing. We will see what happens," Heyward said. He is hitting .258 with six homers and 29 RBIs.

      Maddon said, "I know he is not 100 percent."

      Infielder-outfielder Ben Zobrist (left wrist inflammation) continues to make progress. "No setbacks," Maddon said after Zobrist worked out Monday.

      Chicago catcher Willson Contreras (.248) was in the starting lineup as the leadoff hitter Monday. He said it was the first time he had hit leadoff at any level of pro baseball.

      Washington manager Dusty Baker said left fielder Jayson Werth, who has been on the disabled list since June 5 with a left foot contusion, may not return until after the All-Star break.

      "I'm doing a lot better," Werth said. "It's kind of getting going, looking at a schedule, maybe playing some rehab assignment. I'm not quite there, but definitely improving. It was something I knew was going to take some time. I had something similar in the past but nothing this bad.

      "This time was way worse, the MRI showed quite a bit of bone edema and we knew it was going to be four to six weeks."

      Werth is hitting .262 with eight homers and 18 RBIs. He still can't put weight on the foot, Baker said.

      "When it's ready, I’ll be ready to go play, and it's just a matter of getting my legs in shape. It's nice definitely the team having a nice lead and all that, but I want to be on the field," Werth said. "You hate to put a date on it or a timeline on it. But we're getting close to getting on the field and running. It's progressing, it's coming along. It's just taking time."

      The first-place Nationals entered Monday at 45-30 and the second-place Cubs were 38-37.

  • Rays acquire SS Hechavarria from Marlins
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    The Tampa Bay Rays acquired shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria from the Miami Marlins for two minor leaguers on Monday.

    • Outfielder Braxton Lee and right-hander Ethan Clark were included in the deal and sent to Miami, Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said.

      Hechavarria has been on the disabled list since May 10 with an oblique injury. The 28-year-old Cuban signed with Toronto as a free agent in 2010 and has batted .255 over parts of six seasons with the Blue Jays and Marlins.

      Rookie J.T. Riddle has played at short for Miami in the absence of Hechavarria, who is a two-time finalist for the National League Gold Glove Award.

      Matt Duffy was expected to be Tampa Bay's shortstop this season, but has yet to play due to his recovery from left heel surgery. He had another procedure to remove a calcium deposit from the area last week.

      Tim Beckham has made 67 starts at shortstop this season for the Rays. He has provided some offensive pop by batting .278 with 10 homers and 31 RBIs, but has also committed nine errors.

      Lee, who was batting .318 with two homers and 12 stolen bases for Double-A Montgomery, is a former 12th-round pick in the 2014 draft out of Ole Miss.

      Clark, who was a 15th-round selection in 2015, owns a 3-2 mark with a 3.11 ERA for Bowling Green in the Class A Midwest League.

  • Rangers activate LHP Hamels to start vs. Indians
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    The Texas Rangers activated left-hander Cole Hamels from the 10-day disabled list ahead of Monday night's start against the Cleveland Indians.

    • To make room on the roster, the Rangers optioned infielder/outfielder Drew Robinson to Triple-A Round Rock.

      Hamels, 33, has been out for eight weeks with a right oblique muscle strain. He was placed on the disabled list on May 3 (retroactive to April 30) after sustaining the injury while warming up for his start on May 2 at Houston. He was 1-0 with a 1.04 ERA in a pair of rehab starts with Double-A Frisco.

      Hamels is 2-0 with a 3.03 ERA over 32 2/3 innings in five starts with Texas this season.

      Robinson is 2-for-6 (.333) with a home run and one RBI in two games over three stints with the Rangers this season. He had his first two major league hits, a home run and double, in a start at second base on Sunday at Yankee Stadium in the Rangers' 7-6 win.

      The Rangers also announced infielder Joey Gallo had his sore left hamstring examined by their assistant team physician, Dr. Shane Seroyer, on Sunday in Arlington. The exam determined no structural damage.

      Gallo received an injection and rejoined the Rangers in Cleveland, and he will be in the lineup for Monday night's game.

  • Reds LHP Finnegan returns from injury, suffers another
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, June 26, 2017

    ST. LOUIS -- Cincinnati Reds starter Brandon Finnegan's first game since April 15 ended abruptly in the bottom of the fourth inning when he left the game after throwing a 1-1 pitch outside to St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Paul DeJong.

    • After the pitch, Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco trotted out to the mound, urgently waving manager Bryan Price and pitching coach Mack Jenkins to the mound. After trainer Steve Baumann examined Finnegan for a couple of minutes, Price removed him.

      Austin Brice relieved Finnegan, who was activated off the 60-day disabled list Monday after missing more than two months with left shoulder soreness. In three innings, Finnegan allowed three hits and three runs, walking four and fanning two.

      The exact nature of Finnegan's injury wasn't immediately known.

      Finnegan missed more than two months due to left shoulder issues. He allowed four runs over five innings Wednesday night in a rehab start for Triple-A Louisville, and he produced a 3.00 ERA in three rehab outings.

      To make room on the roster, the Reds optioned right-hander Lisalverto Bonilla to Triple-A Louisville and also transferred right-hander Bronson Arroyo (right shoulder) to the 60-day disabled list.

      The 24-year-old Finnegan suffered the first major injury of his career in his third start of the season on April 15.

      Finnegan was 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA over 10 innings in his first three starts this season. He was acquired from Kansas City at the 2015 trade deadline.

      Bonilla, 27, is 1-3 with a 7.59 ERA over 32 innings in eight appearances (four starts) with the Reds this season.

      The 40-year-old Arroyo told reporters last week his 16-year major league career might be over as he deals with a strained right shoulder.

  • MLB roundup: Twins finish sweep of Indians
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, June 25, 2017

    CLEVELAND -- Eddie Rosario had three hits, including a home run, and Ervin Santana pitched six scoreless innings as the Minnesota Twins completed a three-game sweep of the Cleveland Indians with a 4-0 victory on Sunday.

    • The Twins, who were swept by Cleveland in a four-game series in Minnesota last weekend, returned the favor this weekend in Cleveland. They shut out the Indians in two of the three games and outscored them 13-2.

      Santana (10-4) gave up nine hits, with seven strikeouts and no walks. Cleveland starter Josh Tomlin (4-9) pitched 5 2/3 innings, giving up four runs on nine hits with five strikeouts and a season-high three walks.

      Reds 6, Nationals 2

      WASHINGTON -- Scooter Gennett went 4-for-5, including a homer, and drove in two runs, and Tucker Barnhart was 2-for-4 with two RBIs as Cincinnati beat first-place Washington, salvaging the finale of the three-game series and breaking a four-game skid.

      Gennett was 8-for-13 in the series with three RBIs. It was the second four-hit game for Gennett in less than a month, as he had five hits (four home runs) on June 6 against the St. Louis Cardinals.

      Reds starter Scott Feldman (6-5) gave up two runs in seven innings as last-place Cincinnati won for just the second time in 15 games. Washington starter Tanner Roark (6-5) gave up nine hits and six runs in six innings.

      Marlins 4, Cubs 2

      MIAMI -- Edinson Volquez maintained his perfect record against Chicago as Miami defeated the defending World Series champions.

      Giancarlo Stanton hit a solo home run, his 20th long ball of the season, and Martin Prado added a two-run double to lead the Marlins, who split their four-game series against the Cubs. Volquez (4-8) is 8-0 with a 3.12 ERA against the Cubs in 13 career appearances.

      Cubs left-hander Mike Montgomery (1-4) allowed four hits, two walks, three runs (none earned) in six innings. Chicago scored its runs on two sacrifice flies -- by Anthony Rizzo in the fourth and Tommy La Stella in the fifth.

      Rangers 7, Yankees 6

      NEW YORK -- Adrian Beltre and Shin-Soo Choo homered in the first two innings as Texas took a seven-run lead and held on for the victory over New York.

      Beltre hit a two-run homer and Choo added a three-run shot off Michael Pineda (7-4). Drew Robinson also homered as Texas won for the 11th time in 16 games.

      Gary Sanchez hit a three-run homer and Ronald Torreyes hit a solo homer for the Yankees. New York was unable to complete the comeback as Matt Bush ended his ninth save by striking out Sanchez with Aaron Judge on first base.

      Brewers 7, Braves 0

      ATLANTA -- Davies bounced back from his worst outing with one of his best, and the Milwaukee offense awoke from its slumber as the Brewers beat Atlanta.

      Davies (8-4) allowed a career-high eight runs in his previous start, but he fired seven shutout innings against Atlanta to help the Brewers salvage one game in the three-game series. Davies scattered four hits and walked one batter, retired the last eight men he faced and silencing an Atlanta team that had scored 128 runs in June, the second most in the major leagues.

      Atlanta starter Julio Teheran (6-6) continued to struggle at home. He lasted only three innings and allowed seven runs and seven hits, two of them homers, and two walks. In nine starts at SunTrust Park, Teheran is 1-6 with a 7.58 ERA. He is 5-0 with a 2.89 ERA on road games.

      Orioles 8, Rays 5

      ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Baltimore rallied to tie the game in the eighth, then won it with three in the ninth to take a three-game series against Tampa Bay.

      In a tie game in the ninth, Rays closer Alex Colome (1-3) gave up an RBI double to Joey Rickard, then after loading the bases with an intentional walk, he hit Jonathan Schoop to bring in a second run. Rickard scored on a sacrifice fly by Adam Jones.

      The Rays had been 35-3 this season when leading after seven innings, and the Orioles had been 3-34 when trailing after seven. Tampa Bay starter Jake Odorizzi served up a homer in his 11th straight appearance, matching the franchise mark set by Wilson Alvarez (1998).

      Angels 4, Red Sox 2

      BOSTON -- Los Angeles spoiled the Boston debut of Doug Fister.

      Fister went six innings, giving up three runs on seven hits with three walks and six strikeouts. He was recently waived by the Angels after three minor league outings, and the Red Sox claimed him on Friday.

      Angels rookie right-hander Parker Bridwell (2-0) went 6 2/3 innings, giving up two runs on seven hits with no walks, four strikeouts and a hit batter. Juan Graterol contributed a two-run single for Los Angeles.

      Athletics 5, White Sox 3

      CHICAGO -- Yonder Alonso and Khris Davis drove in runs in the eighth inning as Oakland rallied past Chicago to complete a three-game sweep.

      The Athletics swept a three-game series at Guaranteed Rate Field for the first time since July 2005. They also won their first road series since April 10-13 at Kansas City.

      Adam Rosales and Matt Joyce homered for two insurance runs in the ninth -- the fourth time this season Oakland has hit back-to-back home runs. Melky Cabrera homered in the ninth for the White Sox, who have lost six of seven.

      Blue Jays 8, Royals 2

      KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Francisco Liriano pitched six-plus sharp innings, Jose Bautista drove in four runs, and Toronto rolled past Kansas City.

      Liriano (4-3) picked up first victory since June 2 and only his second since April 29 as he stymied the Royals on six hits and two runs. The Blue Jays took control by pushing across five runs in the sixth inning.

      Bautista homered with Ryan Goins aboard in the fifth to tie the score at 2. Bautista got the green light on a 3-0 Jason Hammel pitch and hammered it an estimated 450 feet to the left-field grass.

      Astros 8, Mariners 2

      SEATTLE -- Houston hit three tape-measure home runs and got a solid performance from its bullpen in a victory over Seattle.

      Four Houston relievers -- Michael Feliz, Chris Devenski, Will Harris and Luke Gregerson -- combined for seven scoreless innings of three-hit relief as the Astros won the final two games of the series.

      George Springer and Yuli Gurriel both homered in a four-run fourth inning against Seattle starter Ariel Miranda. Springer hit his 22nd home run, a 456-foot blast to straightaway center field, and Gurriel hit his eighth homer, a two-run shot into the upper deck in left field that was estimated at 420 feet.

      Evan Gattis hit a two-run shot into the upper deck in left field in the ninth off Mariners reliever James Pazos.

      Dodgers 12, Rockies 6

      LOS ANGELES -- Cody Bellinger hit two home runs to give him a league-leading 24, and Los Angeles scored five runs on four wild pitches by Colorado reliever Adam Ottavino in the seventh and eighth innings, helping the Dodgers to their 10th straight win.

      The Dodgers trailed 6-4 but had the bases loaded when Ottavino (1-2) threw a hard cutter past catcher Tony Wolters, allowing a run to score. The right-hander's next pitch hit the same spot and it bounced past Wolters all the way to the backstop, allowing Forsythe and Barnes to score for a 7-6 lead.

      In the eighth, Ottavino threw two more wild pitches with runners on third, pushing the lead to 9-6.

      Tigers 7, Padres 5

      SAN DIEGO -- Mikie Mahtook grounded a tiebreaking, two-run, two-out, ninth-inning single to right off Brandon Maurer to give the Detroit the win over San Diego.

      The victory snapped an eight-game losing streak for the Tigers and halted a three-game winning streak for the Padres.

      The Tigers rallied from deficits of 3-0 and 5-3 to get the win. Right-hander Bruce Rondon (1-1) was credited with the win, with Justin Wilson earning his sixth save.

      Mets 8, Giants 2

      SAN FRANCISCO -- Rene Rivera hit two home runs to help New York complete a three-game sweep of San Francisco.

      Rafael Montero limited the Giants to one run in 5 2/3 innings for his second career win, helping the Mets record their second road sweep of the season and first in San Francisco since 2013.

      Rivera, who began the day with just three homers, smacked a two-run shot in the second inning and a solo blast in the fourth, both off Giants left-hander Matt Moore. Jay Bruce added a two-run homer in the eighth inning and Curtis Granderson hit a solo shot in the ninth, increasing the Mets' total of road home runs this season to a major-league-best 68.

      Diamondbacks 2, Phillies 1 (11 innings)

      PHOENIX -- Daniel Descalso singled home the winning run with two outs in the 11th inning, and Arizona extended its best start in franchise history with the win over Philadelphia.

      Paul Goldschmidt singled to center with two outs in the 11th off Edubray Ramos (0-7) before Chris Owings walked on a 12-pitch at-bat. Descalso hit the first pitch he saw to right field for the D-backs' fourth walk-off victory of the season.

      Arizona (48-28) is 20 games over .500 for the first time this season and is two games ahead of the pace set by the 2001 team. Philadelphia has lost 15 of 18.

      Cardinals 8, Pirates 4

      ST. LOUIS -- Catcher Yadier Molina's RBI single in the bottom of the seventh snapped a tie and helped St. Louis avoid a series sweep at the hands of Pittsburgh.

      The Cardinals halted a three-game losing streak, banging out 11 hits and taking advantage of two walks, a hit batter and an error in a four-run seventh that saw them manage only two hits. The other hit was a two-run single through a drawn-in infield by Paul DeJong, plating Molina and Aledmys Diaz to cap the inning.

      The Cardinals trailed 4-2 in the sixth when Randal Grichuk blasted a 478-foot solo homer into the third deck in left field, the second-longest homer in Busch Stadium III history. Pinch hitter Jedd Gyorko tied the game with a two-out, RBI ground-rule double to right-center.

  • MLB notebook: Mets to promote Tebow
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, June 25, 2017

    The New York Mets will promote former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow from Class A Columbia to Class A Advanced St. Lucie on Sunday.

    • St. Lucie is the Mets' third-highest ranked minor league affiliate.

      The 29-year-old Tebow is batting .222 with three home runs, 23 RBIs, a .311 on-base percentage and a .340 slugging percentage in 63 games for the Columbia Fireflies. He has 69 strikeouts and 23 walks in 212 at-bats.

      Tebow was scheduled to play in his final game Sunday for Columbia, before reporting to St. Lucie on Tuesday.

      "It's not like he's tearing up the league, but at the same time all of the indications are positive in terms of various things we look at -- chase rates and exit velocity," Mets general manager Sandy Alderson told reporters Sunday. "The bottom line is the average isn't there, but he's improving."

      --The Milwaukee Brewers claimed catcher Stephen Vogt off waivers after he was designated for assignment by the Oakland Athletics.

      Vogt, 32, was batting .217 with four home runs and 20 RBIs in 54 games with the A's this season when was designated for assignment on Thursday.

      Vogt was a two-time American League All-Star with the Athletics (2015-16), hitting .261 with 18 home runs and 71 RBIs in 2015 and .251 with 14 homers and 56 RBIs in 2016.

      --The Los Angeles Dodgers placed outfielder Franklin Gutierrez on the 10-day disabled list with an episode of ankylosis spondylitis, the team announced.

      Gutierrez's gastrointestinal/autoimmune and arthritic condition has affected his hips and lower body that cost him the 2014 season. Gutierrez, 34, is batting .232 with one home run and eight RBIs in 35 games in his first season with the Dodgers this season.

      The Dodgers also recalled up infielder/outfielder Mike Freeman from Triple-A Oklahoma City to take the roster spot.

      --Chicago White Sox left-hander Carlos Rodon has rejoined the team and appears ready to make his first start of the season this week after being sidelined due to left biceps bursitis.

      Manager Rick Renteria said a return date is not set but Rodon likely will start on the current homestand. The White Sox open a four-game series against the New York Yankees on Monday.

      Rodon is 18-16 with a 3.90 ERA in 54 games (51 starts) over two seasons major league seasons.

  • Mets to promote Tebow
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, June 25, 2017

    The New York Mets will promote former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow from Class A Columbia to Class A Advanced St. Lucie on Sunday.

    • St. Lucie is the Mets' third-highest ranked minor league affiliate.

      The 29-year-old Tebow is batting .222 with three home runs, 23 RBIs, a .311 on-base percentage and a .340 slugging percentage in 63 games for the Columbia Fireflies. He has 69 strikeouts and 23 walks in 212 at-bats.

      Tebow was scheduled to play in his final game Sunday for Columbia, before reporting to St. Lucie on Tuesday.

      "It's not like he's tearing up the league, but at the same time all of the indications are positive in terms of various things we look at -- chase rates and exit velocity," Mets general manager Sandy Alderson told reporters Sunday. "The bottom line is the average isn't there, but he's improving.

      "His recent last three weeks are actually trending pretty well. Given all the other circumstances, age and so forth, we thought this was the right time to promote him."

      Tebow signed with the Mets in September and spent time in the Florida Instructional League and the Arizona Fall League.

      Tebow captured the 2007 Heisman Trophy as part of a stellar college football career at the University of Florida, leading the Gators to two national championships.

      The Broncos made him a first-round draft pick in 2010, and he led Denver to an overtime playoff victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers in his second season. He spent one season with the New York Jets and played in 35 NFL games. He also spent time in training camps with the New England Patriots (2013) and Philadelphia Eagles (2015).

  • Brewers claim former All-Star C Vogt off waivers
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, June 25, 2017

    The Milwaukee Brewers claimed catcher Stephen Vogt off waivers on Sunday after he was designated for assignment by the Oakland Athletics.

    • Vogt was batting .217 with four home runs and 20 RBIs in 54 games with the A's this season when was designated for assignment on Thursday.

      The 32-year-old left-handed hitter made 42 of his 43 starts (36 at catcher, seven at designated hitter) in games started by a right-handed pitcher and batted .229 against righties compared to .077 against lefties.

      Vogt was a two-time American League All-Star with the Athletics (2015-16), hitting .261 with 18 home runs and 71 RBIs in 2015 and .251 with 14 homers and 56 RBIs in 2016.

      Vogt started all five games at catcher for the A's in the 2013 American League Division Series against the Detroit Tigers and had a walk-off single to win Game 2 in Oakland. He made his major league debut with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2012 and spent all or parts of the last five seasons with Oakland. He is a .251 career hitter with 49 home runs and 198 RBIs in 476 games.

  • Dodgers place OF Gutierrez on DL
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, June 25, 2017

    The Los Angeles Dodgers placed outfielder Franklin Gutierrez on the 10-day disabled list with an episode of ankylosis spondylitis, the team announced Sunday.

    • Gutierrez's gastrointestinal/autoimmune and arthritic condition has affected his hips and lower body that cost him the 2014 season.

      Gutierrez, 34, is batting .232 with one home run and eight RBIs in 35 games in his first season with the Dodgers this season.

      The Dodgers also recalled up infielder/outfielder Mike Freeman from Triple-A Oklahoma City to take the roster spot.

      Freeman, 29, will make his first stint with the Dodgers after being claimed by the team on May 26 from the Seattle Mariners. In 20 games with Oklahoma City, he is hitting .295 with four RBIs and three stolen bases. He also appeared in 16 games with the Mariners this season, going 2-for-30 (.067) and hitting his first career major league home run on April 12 against the Houston Astros. He appeared in three games (two starts) at first base, three games (two starts) at second base and two starts at third base with Seattle.

      In 37 major league games in two seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Mariners, Freeman is batting .135 with one home run and two RBIs. He has a .292 career batting average with 132 steals, 19 home runs and 279 RBIs in 757 minor league games.

  • White Sox LHP Rodon close to return
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, June 25, 2017

    Chicago White Sox left-hander Carlos Rodon has rejoined the team and appears ready to make his first start of the season this week after being sidelined due to left biceps bursitis.

    • Manager Rick Renteria said a return date is not set but Rondon likely will start on the current homestand.

      The White Sox open a four-game series against the New York Yankees on Monday followed by a weekend series starting Friday against the Texas Rangers at Guaranteed Rate Field.

      The 24-year-old Rodon made his fourth rehab start Friday and third with Triple-A Charlotte, getting up to 91 pitches while giving up seven runs in 4 1/3 innings.

      "He felt good, pain-free, we're very happy with that," Renteria said Saturday. "According to the reports, the slider was working very well. He's on track to come on back."

      Renteria was not concerned about Rodon's runs allowed in his rehab outings, instead looking at pitch count and velocity.

      "I think that a lot of those guys who have been here a while, once you get back here and into the arena it kind of heightens their ability with the adrenaline a little bit," Renteria said. "Hopefully he comes back and he's ready to go. The biggest concern we had was extending him and bringing him back healthy."

      Rodon is 18-16 with a 3.90 ERA in 54 games (51 starts) over two seasons major league seasons. Chicago's starters ranked 23rd in the majors in ERA entering Sunday's game against the Oakland Athletics.

  • MLB roundup: Dodgers' Kershaw wins 11th game
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    LOS ANGELES -- Clayton Kershaw threw six shutout innings for his 11th win of 2017 and Joc Pederson homered to extend Los Angeles' streak of games with a home run to 16 as the Dodgers beat the Colorado Rockies 4-0 on Saturday night.

    • Kershaw (11-2) improved to 21-6 all-time in 36 starts with a 3.04 ERA against Colorado, the most wins against any team he's faced. He has a career 1.46 ERA covering 17 starts against the Rockies at Dodger Stadium.

      Los Angeles extended its winning streak to nine straight and has won 15 of its last 16. It was also their 10th straight win at home and improved their major league-leading home record to 31-10.

      The win clinched the series for the Dodgers and will mark the first time this season that Colorado has lost consecutive series. The Rockies have also lost a season-high four straight.

      Rangers 8, Yankees 1

      NEW YORK -- Austin Bibens-Dirkx pitched seven effective innings and Texas scored four times in the ninth inning in its victory over New York.

      Bibens-Dirx (3-0), a little over a month after being the oldest pitcher in Rangers history to make his first major league start, allowed one run and five hits and tied a career high by pitching seven innings. The 32-year-old right-hander, who waited 12 seasons to make his major league debut May 17, struck out three, walked one and threw 93 pitches.

      Bibens-Dirkx made one mistake and it was a 1-1 fastball that Aaron Judge hit 439 feet over the left-center field fence for his major-league-leading 26th homer with one out in the sixth.

      Athletics 10, White Sox 2

      CHICAGO -- Rookies Franklin Barreto, Matt Olson and Jaycob Brugman hit their first career home runs -- marking the first time three teammates have accomplished the feat in a game in more than 100 years -- to lead Oakland to a rout of Chicago.

      The trio are the second set of three teammates to hit their first major league home runs in a game since the Federal League Kansas City Packers' John Potts, Duke Kenworthy and Art Kruger did so April 26, 1914, according to STATS and SABR HR Log.

      Olson hit a two-run shot in the first, Brugman connected for a solo shot in the second and Barreto drove a two-run shot in the third after he was called up from Triple-A Nashville earlier in the day -- all off James Shields (1-1).

      Nationals 18, Reds 3

      WASHINGTON -- Michael A. Taylor matched a career high with four hits, including two homers, Trea Turner went a career-best 5-for-5 with a walk and Daniel Murphy drove in four runs as Washington had 19 hits to pummel struggling Cincinnati.

      The Nationals' Joe Ross (4-3), in his 10th start of the year, gave up one run and six hits in seven innings. He received a major league-record 62 runs of support in his first four starts of the year.

      That trend continued against the last-place Reds, who entered the game with a league-worst ERA for starters at 6.08. That theme also moved forward as Homer Bailey (0-1), in his first start this season, gave up six hits and eight runs in 1 2/3 innings.

      Angels 6, Red Sox 3

      BOSTON -- JC Ramirez tossed six one-run innings in winning his fifth consecutive road start and five Angels batters drove in one run apiece as Los Angeles beat Boston.

      Ramirez (7-5) allowed four hits and no walks while striking out five. Martin Maldonado, Eric Young Jr., Luis Valbuena, Cameron Maybin and Kole Calhoun each had an RBI as the Angels bounced back from a 9-4 loss in Friday's series opener.

      Mitch Moreland slugged a solo home run, his 10th of the season, and Hanley Ramirez had an RBI for the Red Sox, who have lost three of their last five games. Boston's David Price (2-2) allowed three runs (two earned) and six hits in six innings.

      Astros 5, Mariners 2

      SEATTLE -- Lance McCullers Jr. pitched five strong innings and Josh Reddick hit a two-run homer as Houston defeated Seattle.

      McCullers (7-1), who was activated from the 10-day disabled list before the game, opened with four perfect innings. The right-hander, who had been out with lower back discomfort, allowed one run, four hits and struck out eight in five-plus frames.

      Brian McCann added a three-run double for the American League West-leading Astros, who won for the fifth time in six games and snapped the second-place Mariners' season-high winning streak at six.

      Diamondbacks 9, Mariners 2

      PHOENIX -- Jake Lamb homered to start the first of successive three-run innings and light-hitting Chris Herrmann drove in three runs as Arizona won for the 10th time in its last 12 games.

      Robbie Ray (8-3) contributed a double to his own effective pitching while limiting Philadelphia to two runs in 6 1/3 innings -- both on opposing pitcher Ben Lively's two-run homer -- to improve to 6-0 in his last seven starts, all of them Diamondbacks wins.

      Herrmann, a .183 hitter who often catches for Ray, added a run-scoring single following Lamb's 17th homer leading off the three-run sixth, and had a two-run double in the seventh as Arizona broke the game open. Brandon Drury and David Peralta also drove in two runs apiece for the Diamondbacks.

      Cubs 5, Marlins 3

      MIAMI -- Javier Baez drove in three runs and Jon Lester completed his list of at least one win over all National League clubs as Chicago defeated Miami.

      Baez, who led all Cubs hitters with a .302 batting average in May, delivered a tiebreaking, two-run double in the sixth inning. Lester (5-4) has defeated 29 of the 30 teams in the majors. The only exception is the Boston Red Sox, a team with which he used to play and has never faced.

      Lester, facing the Marlins for the fifth time, pitched seven innings and allowed three runs on four hits with one walk as the Cubs took a 2-1 lead in this weekend's series, which concludes Sunday.

      Twins 4, Indians 2

      CLEVELAND -- Brian Dozier's home run leading off the eighth inning broke a tie, and Chris Gimenez added a solo shot in the ninth as Minnesota beat Cleveland.

      Dozier's homer, his 13th, came on a 3-2 pitch from the Indians closer Cody Allen (0-3). Gimenez's homer, his fourth, came off Zach McAllister in the ninth.

      Cleveland starter Corey Kluber was sensational, striking out 13 in seven innings, allowing two unearned runs, three hits and two walks. He has not allowed an earned run in his last 21 innings.

      Braves 4, Brewers 1

      ATLANTA -- Brandon Phillips homered for the third straight game and R.A. Dickey pitched seven strong innings to help Atlanta extend its winning streak to four by beating Milwaukee.

      Phillips was 2-for-4 and scored two runs, but it was his long two-run homer in the third inning that was the decider. The Braves have won seven of its last eight and pulled within two games of .500 for the first time since April 29.

      Dickey (6-5) gave up his only run in the first inning but settled down to complete seven innings, allowing five hits and one walk with six strikeouts. He retired the minimum from the second through fifth innings.

      Pirates 7, Cardinals 3

      ST. LOUIS -- Jordy Mercer and Josh Harrison each homered while Gerrit Cole pitched six solid innings as Pittsburgh dumped St. Louis.

      After giving up a homer to the first batter he faced, Cole (6-6) kept the Cardinals off the board for the rest of his outing. He permitted one run and five hits, walking two and fanning five.

      Mercer and Harrison each contributed an RBI to a three-run sixth which saw the Pirates manage one hit. Mercer's infield out scored David Freese to make it 5-1. John Brebbia gave Pittsburgh its last two runs, plunking Adam Frazier and Harrison in succession with the bases loaded.

      Mets 5, Giants 2

      SAN FRANCISCO -- Jay Bruce broke a tie with an RBI single in the eighth inning and Wilmer Flores capped a two-run uprising with a double that scored Asdrubal Cabrera to lift New York over San Francisco.

      Jacob deGrom completed eight innings for a third consecutive start, as the Mets won their second straight at AT&T Park after having opened a 10-game trip with four consecutive losses against the Los Angeles Dodgers. DeGrom (7-3) limited the Giants to four hits in eight innings, walking one and striking out seven.

      The loss was the Giants' 50th of the year, making them the first team to reach the half-century mark this season.

      Royals 3, Blue Jays 2

      KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Jason Vargas worked seven strong innings and Alcides Escobar had three hits and scored two runs as Kansas City edged Toronto to move above .500 for the first time this year.

      Vargas (11-3), who leads the majors in victories, gave up two runs on eight hits. He walked none and struck out two. Kelvin Herrera picked up his 18th save.

      Troy Tulowitzki homered off former Long Beach State teammate Vargas to give the Blue Jays a 1-0 lead in the second. It was his third home run of the season and gave him seven RBIs in 24 games since coming off the disabled list.

      Orioles 8, Rays 3

      ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Baltimore finally held a team to fewer than five runs and victimized Tampa Bay's bullpen in the victory.

      The Rays had bounced back from a 3-0 deficit to tie the game, but the Orioles rallied with two outs in the seventh for four runs to break it open. Baltimore had allowed at least five runs in 20 straight games, matching the 1924 Philadelphia Phillies.

      Tampa Bay reliever Jumbo Diaz was a strike away from getting out of what had been a two-on, no-out jam, but that strike didn't come. Instead, Mark Trumbo hit a two-run double and the next pitch was a two-run homer by Trey Mancini to make it 7-3.

      Padres 7, Tigers 3

      SAN DIEGO -- Hector Sanchez hit a two-run, go-ahead, pinch-hit homer off Shane Greene to trigger a five-run eighth inning and lead San Diego past Detroit.

      The Padres were trailing 3-2 when pinch-hitter Erick Aybar drew a walk to open the eighth. Sanchez drove an 0-1 pitch 403 feet into the right-field stands. San Diego's second straight victory over the Tigers was San Diego's third straight win.

      Andrew Romine finished 2-for-4 with a double, two RBIs and a run scored while Justin Upton was 1-for-3 with a walk and two runs scored for Detroit, which has lost eight straight -- the Tigers longest losing streak since 2015.

  • MLB notebook: Jays' Osuna battles anxiety problem
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    Toronto Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuna said Saturday that he is dealing with an anxiety issue, feeling "a little bit lost right now."

    • Osuna told reporters he is unsure when he will be available to pitch again as he tries to work through his issues. He did not pitch in a save situation for the Blue Jays on Friday night against the Kansas City Royals.

      "This has nothing to do with me being on the field," he said. "I feel great out there. It's just when I'm out of baseball, when I'm not on the field, that I feel just weird and a little bit lost."

      The 22-year-old has 19 saves and a 2.48 ERA in 31 appearances this season.

      --The Texas Rangers placed left-hander Martin Perez on the 10-day disabled list with a fracture and laceration at the tip of his right thumb.

      Perez sustained the injury when he caught his thumb in the hinge section of a hotel room door on Thursday night in New York. He tore the nail off his thumb and a team trainer took him to a hospital, where the nail was reattached and X-rays showed a small fracture. The DL move is retroactive to Friday.

      Perez, 26, is 4-6 with a 4.70 ERA in 15 starts with the Rangers this season. The Rangers recalled infielder/outfielder Drew Robinson from Triple-A Round Rock to take the roster spot. He was in uniform for Saturday's game against the New York Yankees.

      --The Oakland Athletics placed infielder Chad Pinder on the 10-day disabled list with a left hamstring strain after he was removed from Friday night's game against the Chicago White Sox in the sixth inning because of the injury.

      Pinder, 25, has started 39 games for the A's this season at five different positions. He hit safely in six of his last eight games, going 9-for-31 (.290). For the season, Pinder is hitting .234 with nine home runs and 25 RBIs in 47 games.

      The A's also recalled infielder Franklin Barreto from Triple-A Nashville to take the roster spot. His first appearance with Oakland will mark his major league debut.

  • Blue Jays closer Osuna dealing with anxiety
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    Toronto Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuna said Saturday he is dealing with an anxiety issue, feeling "a little bit lost right now."

    • Osuna told reporters he is unsure when he will be available to pitch again as he tries to work through his issues. He did not pitch in a save situation for the Blue Jays on Friday night against the Kansas City Royals.

      "I really don't know how to explain it. I just feel anxious. I feel like I'm lost a little bit right now," the hard-throwing right-hander, who is from Mexico, said through a translator. "I'm just a little bit lost right now.

      "This has nothing to do with me being on the field. I feel great out there. It's just when I'm out of baseball, when I'm not on the field, that I feel just weird and a little bit lost."

      The 22-year-old Osuna has 19 saves and a 2.48 ERA in 31 appearances over 29 innings this season.

      Osuna's absence was noticeable Friday night as the Royals rallied to score four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning for a 5-4 victory. Blue Jays manager John Gibbons would only say after the game that Osuna was unavailable because he wasn't feeling well enough to pitch.

      Osuna made it clear Saturday that his problem was not physical.

      "I wish I knew how to get out of this, but we're working on it, trying to find ways to see what can make me feel better," Osuna said. "But, to be honest, I just don't know."

  • Rangers place LHP Perez (thumb) on 10-day DL
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    The Texas Rangers placed left-hander Martin Perez on the 10-day disabled list Saturday with a fracture and laceration at the tip of his right thumb.

    • Perez sustained the injury when he caught his thumb in the hinge section of a hotel room door on Thursday night in New York. He tore the nail off his thumb and a team trainer took him to a hospital where the nail was reattached and X-rays showed a small fracture. The DL move is retroactive to Friday.

      Perez, 26, is 4-6 with a 4.70 ERA in 15 starts with the Rangers this season. He becomes the fourth Rangers' starter currently on the disabled list, joining Andrew Cashner, A.J. Griffin and Cole Hamels.

      The Rangers also recalled infielder/outfielder Drew Robinson from Triple-A Round Rock of the Pacific Coast League to take the roster spot. He was in uniform for Saturday's game against the New York Yankees.

      Robinson is hitting .273 with 11 home runs and 35 RBIs in 58 games with Round Rock this season. He has started at second base, at third base and in the outfield.

      This will be Robinson's third stint of the season with Texas. He opened the season with the club and went 0-for-2 in his major league debut on April 5 in his only action before being optioned to Round Rock on April 12. He was recalled on May 28 but returned to Triple-A the following day.

  • Athletics place INF Pinder (hamstring) on 10-day DL
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    The Oakland Athletics placed infielder Chad Pinder on the 10-day disabled list Saturday with a left hamstring strain.

    • Pinder was removed from Friday night's game against the Chicago White Sox in the sixth inning because of the injury.

      Pinder, 25, has started 39 games for the A's this season at five different positions (17 at shortstop, nine at second base, seven at designated hitter, five in right field and one in left field). He hit safely in six of his last eight games, going 9-for-31 (.290) with three doubles, a home run, and seven RBIs during that stretch.

      For the season, Pinder is hitting .234 with nine home runs and 25 RBIs in 47 games.

      The A's also recalled infielder Franklin Barreto from Triple-A Nashville to take the roster spot. His first appearance with Oakland will mark his major league debut.

      Barreto, 21, is the Athletics' top prospect according to Baseball America. He is batting .281 with eight home runs and 32 RBIs in 68 games with Nashville, and has seven multi-hit games over his last 12 contests (17-for-48, .354). Barreto has seen the majority of his playing time at shortstop in Triple-A.

  • With look of contender, Royals may go for broke
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    The Kansas City Royals did it again on Friday night. They staged another heart-pounding comeback, this one a 5-4 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays at Kauffman Stadium. The Royals couldn't get it going for a long time but, with two on and two out in the ninth, they finally put it together and rallied from a 4-1 deficit.

    • The last three Kansas City at-bats produced run-scoring hits. Alcides Escobar singled to bring in one. Alex Gordon singled to bring in another. And Whit Merrifield gave them the win with a walk-off two-run double. Down by two runs in the eighth in Boston on Wednesday, Sal Perez lifted the Royals to a 6-4 win with a grand slam.

      With this triumph, the Royals climbed back to .500 at 36-36 and became something fascinating to watch for the next five weeks. At the start of the month, Kansas City was dead last in the AL Central and plans were being laid for a serious sell-off. It is a major league-best 14-6 in the month of June now.

      At three games back of Cleveland in the division and two games off the pace for the second AL wild card, the Royals can't be thinking of themselves as sellers right now.

      You win when you can and the Royals have a group of players that have demonstrated it can win. The foundation of position players for the 2014 American League champions and 2015 World Series champions is still intact: Perez at catcher, Eric Hosmer at first base, Escobar at shortstop, Mike Moustakas at third base, Lorenzo Cain in center field and Alex Gordon in left field.

      That doesn't mean some tough calls don't remain for general manager Dayton Moore.

      Things looked so simple a month ago when the club was nine games under .500 and 7 1/2 games back in the division. Escobar, Gordon and designated hitter Brandon Moss were hitting under .200 and none of the regulars aside from Perez had an OPS over .800.

      Hosmer, Cain, Escobar, Moustakas and suddenly phenomenal starter Jason Vargas will all be free agents at the end of the season. Dealing them away to contenders was an open door to a fast rebuild as each would be worthy of bringing back at least one player of substance in trade.

      Now nothing is simple. The Royals could still stick to a rebuild plan, make trades and lay groundwork for the future of the club. Or they could try to ride a group of proven winners and deal away the remaining prospects in the organization to bolster them in their quest for another World Series title. They don't have the budget to retain all of those free agents to-be, so Kansas City would be a greatly diminished team.

      How the Royals play in the weeks leading up to the non-waiver trade deadline is now must-watch. For so many teams, the decisions will be clear. Heck, the Oakland A's this week punted on the 2017 season and ushered up the best of their prospects. But what if the Royals play well during the rest of June and July?

      Vargas, back from Tommy John surgery, is a surprise 10-game winner. Moustakas has 19 home runs and is on pace for the club record of 36 by Steve Balboni. Cain has hit .320 with a 1.000 OPS in the past month. The lineup is averaging 5.5 runs per game in June.

      The feeling here is they'd have to take a go-for-it stance.

      When Kansas City reached the 2014 World Series, it was making its first postseason appearance since winning it all in 1985. A passionate fan base, long suffering, became inspired. And that team was so close to beating the San Francisco Giants for the crown. When the Royals won it the next year, an entire community celebrated.

      Royals fans are sharp enough to know exactly where the franchise is and -- if you put it to a vote -- they'd surely take a couple more years of suffering for another World Series win.

      "We're playing like we know we can and we're moving in the right direction," Merrifield, the second baseman, said on Wednesday, "and hopefully we can keep that up and keep making progress."

  • Mets aim for second second straight win over Giants
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Right-handers Jacob deGrom and Johnny Cueto go head-to-head for the first time since the 2015 World Series when the New York Mets and San Francisco Giants continue their three-game series Saturday night.

    • The Mets won the series opener 11-4 on Friday behind a season best-tying 20 hits, snapping a four-game losing streak.

      "We have our work cut out for us," Mets manager Terry Collins said of the club's big picture, which showed his team a season-worst 10 games under .500 at the start of play Friday. "They know what they have to do. Our backs are to the wall. This was the first step."

      Pitching then for the Kansas City Royals, Cueto got the better of deGrom in Game 2 of the 2015 World Series, throwing a complete-game two-hitter in a 7-1 victory.

      The Royals went on to win the best-of-seven series 4-1.

      Signed as a high-priced free agent by the Giants last season, Cueto has not retained his championship form in 2017. He's won just once in his last nine starts, allowing a 4.13 ERA over that stretch.

      Cueto will take the mound with a 5-7 record, the first time he's had a losing slate this late in the season since he was a rookie in 2008.

      He was 11-1 for the Giants on this date last season.

      Cueto has faced the Mets once since the World Series duel and was nearly as effective in an 8-1 Giants home win last August. He allowed one run on eight hits over seven innings in that game, outdueling Seth Lugo.

      He has a 4-4 record and 3.75 ERA in 12 career starts against the Mets.

      Cueto might have the recent history, but the Mets will employ the hot pitcher Saturday in deGrom. He has been dominant in each of his last two starts, beating the Chicago Cubs 6-1 with a complete-game five-hitter, then silencing the Washington Nationals over eight innings, allowing just an unearned run in a 5-1 win.

      In earning National League Player of the Week honors, deGrom (6-3, 3.94 ERA) became the first Mets pitcher since Bartolo Colon in 2015 to throw eight or more innings in back-to-back starts. He'd never done it previously in his career.

      An All-Star in 2015, deGrom was roughed up for six hits and four runs in the World Series loss to Cueto and the Royals.

      The Mets complained about umpire Mark Carlson's strike zone that night, and Saturday they'll have another potential issue with the guy behind the plate. Cueto has never lost with Marvin Hudson calling the balls and strikes, going 4-0 with a 2.45 ERA in five starts.

      Striking out 38 batters in 32 1/3 innings along the way, deGrom has a 3-1 record and 3.62 ERA in five career starts against the Giants.

      On a night that began with second baseman Asdrubal Cabrera claiming he planned to request a trade from the Mets, it was the Giants who walked off the field Friday in a bit of disarray.

      "We scored four runs," Giants manager Bruce Bochy demanded when asked if Thursday's rain-delayed late start at Atlanta and cross-country flight could be used as an excuse for Friday's lackluster effort. "Those guys (the Mets) had to play at night (in Los Angeles), too."

  • Royals aim to go above .500; Blue Jays trying to get there
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, June 24, 2017

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Royals will try to climb above .500 for the first time this season when they take on the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.

    • The Royals (36-36) are 10-2 in the past dozen games to reach .500 for the first time since April.

      "We had a good road trip to California and we're just trying to keep that momentum going at home," said rookie right-hander Jake Junis, who got a no-decision Friday, giving up two runs in 6 1/3 innings.

      The Royals won seven of their final eight games on their West Coast trip. They are 4-1 on this homestand.

      "We've said all year we have a team that is definitely capable of making a run," Royals designated hitter Brandon Moss said. "Early on, we had some unbelievable pitching, but we didn't have any offense going. Now the rest of the lineup is starting to at least contribute.

      "Once you make that lineup deeper, we're able to score some more runs and keep us in the ballgame. Less pressure on the pitching staff, too."

      The Royals' rally prevented the Blue Jays from moving within a game of .500. Nine times this season Toronto has been within a game of .500 but lost all nine.

      Josh Donaldson returned to third base after being scratched Thursday with a sore knee. Outfielder Steve Pearce, however, sat out his second successive game with a bruised knee.

      Manager John Gibbons is tinkering with a new batting order, moving Jose Bautista, who had three hits Friday, to the leadoff spot. But the knee injuries to Donaldson and Pearce have prevented him from getting his regular lineup on the field at the same time.

      "I think it'll be good, but until we get them all in there ... and hopefully it won't be long until we get them all in there," Gibbons said.

      Gibbons said he does not recall a season with so many injuries.

      "Yeah, there's been a lot, but there's no crying in baseball," Gibbons said.

      The Royals will start left-hander Jason Vargas in the middle game of the series. Vargas is tied for the major league lead with 10 victories. He is 10-3 with a 2.27 ERA in 14 starts and 5-0 with a 2.20 ERA in his past five starts. His 1.81 ERA at home tops the American League.

      Vargas is 2-3 with a 5.32 ERA in eight career starts against the Blue Jays. He last faced them on May 30, 2014, in a 6-1 win at the Rogers Centre.

      The Blue Jays will counter with right-hander Marco Estrada, who like Vargas went to Long Beach State. Estrada is 4-5 with a 4.98 ERA in 15 starts. He is averaging 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings and has an 8-11 career record with a 6.13 ERA in June.

      This will be his third career start against Kansas City and the first since July 10, 2015, at Kauffman Stadium. He lost that one 3-0, giving up two runs and hits in 6 2/3 innings.

      Estrada is 1-1 with a 2.92 ERA in his first two starts against the Royals, holding them to a .245 batting average and .306 slugging percentage.

      Eric Hosmer is 4-for-5 against Estrada and Alcides Escobar is 0-for-7. No Royal has more than seven at-bats against Estrada.