MLB Roundup: Red Sox complete sweep, close gap on AL East-leading Rays

Published 11:56 pm Sunday, April 21, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Christian Vazquez hit a sacrifice fly in the 11th inning, and the Boston Red Sox completed an uplifting three-game sweep of the AL East-leading Tampa Bay Rays with a 4-3 victory Sunday.
Rafael Devers singled off Jose Alvarado (0-2) to start the 11th and went to second when Michael Chavis walked.
Both runners moved up a base on Jackie Bradley’s sacrifice bunt and Vazquez followed with his fly that Kevin Kiermaier ran down in center field.
Marcus Walden (3-0) allowed an infield hit over two scoreless innings and Ryan Brasier worked the 11th to get his sixth save.
After starting the season by losing eight of 10, the defending World Series champions are 7-5 over the last 12 games and went from eight to five games behind the Rays.

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Cody Bellinger reached over the right field wall to rob Christian Yelich in the eighth inning of yet another home run, then hit a solo drive off Josh Hader with two outs in the ninth to lift Los Angeles over Milwaukee.
Bellinger connected for his 11th home run. On Friday night, the hard-throwing Hader (0-2) gave up a three-run homer to Enrique Hernandez in the eighth that led Los Angeles to a 5-3 win.
Joc Pederson hit two home runs, including a drive to begin the game, and tied a career high with four hits. He scored three times as the Dodgers won for the seventh time in eight games. They took three of four games at Miller Park.
Pinch hitter Eric Thames launched a three-run homer off Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen (2-0) with two outs in the eighth that made it 5-all.

NEW YORK (AP) — Austin Romine drove in the winning run in the 10th inning with his third RBI single, and New York overcame a bullpen collapse that followed another scoreless start by James Paxton to beat Kansas City.
After adding All-Star slugger Aaron Judge to their ever-growing injury list, the Yankees escaped a couple late jams and got back over .500.
Jake Diekman (0-1) walked Mike Tauchman and Gio Urshela leading off the bottom of the 10th, and 23-year-old Thairo Estrada made his big league debut as a pinch hitter and sacrificed against Ian Kennedy.
Romine drove a fly that bounced on the center-field warning track for his first career walk-off hit.
Paxton allowed three hits and became only the second Yankees pitcher to strike out 12 or more in consecutive starts. He left with a 5-0 lead but the Royals went ahead with a surprising six-run eighth.

CLEVELAND (AP) — Josh Donaldson had two homers and four RBIs, Freddie Freeman added three hits and Atlanta pounded Cleveland’s pitching for the second straight night.
Atlanta outscored Cleveland 19-5 over the final 14 innings of the three-game series. The Indians won the first game and led 7-0 after two innings in Game Two, but the Braves rallied for an 8-7 win.
Max Fried (3-0) allowed two runs in 6 1/3 innings. The left-hander walked the bases loaded in the first but retired Jason Kipnis on a flyball to end the inning.
Indians starter Shane Bieber (2-1) was charged with seven runs (five earned) in 2 1/3 innings.

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Joey Gallo had the first sacrifice fly of his career in his 1,337th plate appearance and matched his best with five RBIs, helping Shelby Miller get his first major league victory in two years as Texas held on to beat Houston.
The Astros hit five solo home runs after falling behind 10-1, including a pair from Carlos Correa and Josh Reddick in the eighth inning to get within three.
George Springer led off the ninth with the fifth Houston homer, this one off Texas closer Jose Leclerc, who was pulled after forcing in another run with four walks, capped by Jose Altuve as a pinch-hitter.
Shawn Kelley helped the Rangers avoid a complete collapse by striking out former Texas catcher Robinson Chirinos for his first save since 2017.
Miller (1-1) allowed homers on consecutive pitches to Alex Bregman and Michael Brantley in Houston’s five-run sixth inning. The right-hander gave up five hits and four runs — three earned — in 5 1/3 innings.
Pence and Logan Forsythe homered on consecutive pitches in the third off Collin McHugh. The Houston right-hander (3-2) gave up 10 runs — nine earned — in 3 1/3 innings.

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Justin Smoak got thrown out on a wild sequence that began with another sensational play by Oakland center fielder Ramon Laureano, but wound up with four hits in Toronto’s victory.
Smoak homered to help Toronto post its first road sweep of at least three games since 2015 and cap a 6-1 trip for manager Charlie Montoyo’s club. The Blue Jays went 1-5 on their first trip earlier this season.
Toronto’s Aaron Sanchez was pulled after four innings because of a broken fingernail, a problem that has plagued him in the past.
A’s starter Brett Anderson (3-1) sprained his left ankle coming off the mound trying to field Randal Grichuk’s single in the third. Oakland was swept at home by Toronto for the first time since 1993 after winning all seven games against the Blue Jays last season.
Daniel Hudson (1-1) retired five batters. Ken Giles got four outs for his seventh save.

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Paul Goldschmidt drove in two runs and Noah Syndergaard had better luck at the plate than on the mound, hitting a homer with Dexter Fowler’s help as St. Louis beat New York.
Syndergaard (1-2) allowed six runs, four earned, on eight hits in five innings, but his most memorable play came while batting in the fourth. He hit a deep flyball to center that Fowler leaped for on the warning track even though it was well below the fence. The ball deflected off Fowler’s glove and over the fence for Syndergaard’s fifth career homer and first since Aug. 16, 2016, at Arizona.
It was one of four homers on the day for the Mets, but that wasn’t enough for Syndergaard, who has allowed at least five runs in his last two starts.
Dakota Hudson (1-1) allowed three runs on five hits in five innings, striking out five, for his first career victory as a starter.

DENVER (AP) — Jon Gray pitched six scoreless innings, Tony Wolters had a two-run double and Colorado beat Philadelphia for its sixth win in seven games.
Trevor Story and Ian Desmond also had RBI singles for the Rockies, who won three of four against the Phillies for their second series win of the season and first at home.
Bryce Harper drew a leadoff walk in the Washington eighth and has reached base safely in all 21 games to start the season.
Gray (2-3) allowed one hit in six innings — a double by Maikel Franco in the fourth. He struck out five and walked four in winning his second in a row after losing his first three decisions.
Jerad Eickhoff (0-1), making his first start of the season, allowed four runs on seven hits in six innings.

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Austin Hedges homered and Wil Myers hit a go-ahead, two-run double in the four-run third inning for San Diego, which beat Cincinnati to snap a six-game losing streak.
Myers’ double to left off Tyler Mahle gave the Padres their first lead in a week. They hadn’t led since taking a 1-0 advantage in the first inning at Arizona on April 14 in a game they’d lose 8-4. They returned home and lost two to Colorado before dropping the first three games of this series.
The losing streak dropped the Padres from a three-game lead atop the NL West to second place, 2½ games behind Los Angeles.
Left-hander Joey Lucchesi (3-2) stopped the steak by holding the Reds to one run and five hits in 5 2/3 innings. He struck out eight and walked two. Kirby Yates pitched the ninth for his 10th save in as many chances.
Mahle (0-2) allowed four runs and seven hits in six innings, struck out nine and walked none.

CHICAGO (AP) — David Bote hit a game-ending RBI single in the ninth inning, and Chicago used a terrific performance by Tyler Chatwood to beat Arizona.
Led by Chatwood’s six sparkling innings, Chicago carried a 1-0 lead into the ninth. But Jarrod Dyson hit a drive to right off Pedro Strop (1-1) with one out, tying it at 1.
The Cubs then got right to work against Archie Bradley (1-2) in the bottom half. Javier Báez led off with a double up the first base line and went to third when Adam Jones fumbled the ball in right.
After Willson Contreras was hit by a pitch, Bote hit a liner back up the middle for his fourth career game-ending RBI.
Chatwood allowed two hits in his first outing in 11 days.
Robbie Ray (0-2) was almost as good as Chatwood, allowing four hits in six innings in perhaps his best start so far this year.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Tommy La Stella hit two home runs and Los Angeles held on against Seattle to end a six-game losing streak.
Kevan Smith and Brian Goodwin also homered and Mike Trout hit two doubles for the Angels, who avoided a four-game sweep in the series with the Mariners. Jaime Barria (2-1) gave up one run in five innings.
Seattle lost for the second time in 13 road games to start the season, with Mike Leake (2-2) giving up four runs on three homers in six innings.
The Mariners created tension in the ninth inning when Tom Murphy cracked a two-run homer with one out, Dee Gordon immediately followed it up with a solo home run to right, and Mitch Haniger hit a two-run homer with two outs. Cody Allen walked Domingo Santana to bring Edwin Encarnacion up as the potential tying run before Luis Garcia got him to pop up to end the game.

BALTIMORE (AP) — Kyle Gibson pitched six sharp innings, Willians Astudillo drove in two runs and Minnesota held off Baltimore for a three-game sweep.
After hitting 11 home runs in a doubleheader Saturday, the Twins used a different approach to secure their ninth straight victory over Baltimore. Minnesota failed to go deep, Nelson Cruz scored after being hit by a pitch and a botched fly ball led to a pair of unearned runs.
With closer Blake Parker ailing, Taylor Rogers gave up an RBI double to Jonathan Villar in the bottom of the ninth before securing his third save.
Gibson (1-0) gave up two runs and five hits, walked none and struck out six. The right-hander retired the last eight batters he faced.
Baltimore starter Dylan Bundy (0-3) allowed four runs, two earned, and seven hits in six innings.

DETROIT (AP) — Daniel Norris struck out six batters in five innings to earn his first win in two years and help Detroit beat Chicago.
Norris (1-0) allowed two hits and walked one, earning his first victory since Sept. 28, 2017, and Gordon Beckham homered against his former team as the Tigers won two of three in the series.
Shane Greene had a perfect ninth inning to earn his 10th save in 10 tries for Detroit.
In his Tigers debut, first baseman Brandon Dixon had an RBI single in the second inning, scoring Jeimer Candelario, who tripled.
White Sox right-hander Reynaldo Lopez (1-3) had eight strikeouts in six innings, but allowed seven hits and two earned runs.

MIAMI (AP) — Stephen Strasburg dominated his favorite foil, striking out 11 and allowing two hits in eight innings to help Washington avert a series sweep.
Ryan Zimmerman hit two solo home runs, and Brian Dozier also had a solo homer.
Strasburg (2-1) improved to 18-7 in 32 career starts versus the Marlins. He has won his past nine decisions against them, and has more victories over Miami than against any other team.
The Marlins were shut out for the sixth time. They loaded the bases in the ninth thanks to two walks and an infield single before Sean Doolittle retired Miguel Rojas to complete a three-hitter.
Trevor Richards (0-3) allowed three runs in 6 1/3 innings and was a bit unlucky. Homers by Zimmerman and Dozier were pulled down the left field line and barely cleared the fence.

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Buster Posey snapped the longest homerless drought of his career with a three-run shot and tagged out Pittsburgh’s Jung Ho Kang at the plate for the final out.
Posey sent a fastball from Chris Archer (1-1) just over the fence in center field with one out in the fifth to give the Giants the lead. The home run was the first for the six-time All-Star catcher since he went deep against the Miami Marlins on June 19, 2018, a span of 237 at-bats.
Posey’s homer was just enough for San Francisco to end Pittsburgh’s five-game winning streak. Derek Rodriguez (3-2) allowed two runs on three hits in 5 2/3 innings to win his second straight start, striking out four and walking one.
Will Smith earned his fifth save of the season with some help from his defense. Kang was on first with two outs after reaching on a fielder’s choice when Bryan Reynolds laced a double to the right-field corner. Third base coach Joey Cora waved Kang home, but the relay throw from second baseman Joe Panik to Posey beat Kang by a good two steps.
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