Morton, Rays beat Tigers; Braves fall to Pirates

Published 10:55 pm Wednesday, June 5, 2019

DETROIT (AP) — Charlie Morton allowed five hits in seven innings, extending his unbeaten streak to 20 starts and leading the Tampa Bay Rays to a 4-0 win over the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night.
Morton (7-0) hasn’t lost since Aug. 11, and only Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers, at 21 starts, has a longer active unbeaten streak. Morton struck out eight with no walks and needed just 83 pitches to complete seven innings.
Austin Meadows tripled and scored on a throwing error in the third to open the scoring. Tampa Bay scored two more runs in the fifth and snapped its four-game losing streak.
Spencer Turnbull (3-5) allowed three runs in five innings.

Musgrove pitches into 9th, Pirates top Braves 7-4
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Joe Musgrove gave Pittsburgh’s beleaguered bullpen a welcome break, pitching into the ninth inning for the first time in his career as the Pirates beat the Atlanta Braves 7-4 in a game delayed more than two hours by rain Wednesday night.
Musgrove (4-6) bounced back from a pair of bumpy starts to overwhelm the Braves and help Pittsburgh end a three-game skid. The right-hander retired 14 straight and struck out six without issuing a walk.
He took the mound in the ninth looking for his first complete game, but was pulled for closer Felipe Vázquez after giving up back-to-back home runs to Ronald Acuña Jr. and Dansby Swanson.
Vázquez allowed an RBI double to Nick Markakis but avoided major damage as the Pirates won for just the fifth time in 16 games.
Elias Diaz hit his first home run of the season for Pittsburgh. Colin Moran added his seventh for the Pirates, who jumped on Atlanta starter Kevin Gausman to give Musgrove plenty of wiggle room.
Diaz sent a two-run shot to the left field bleachers in the second and Moran drilled one into the Atlanta bullpen just beyond the center field wall in the fifth.
Gregory Polanco went 3 for 4. Starling Marte added three hits and Josh Bell returned from his first day off this season to deliver an RBI double for Pittsburgh, which touched Gausman (2-5) for seven runs.
Atlanta rookie left fielder Austin Riley produced his 26th RBI in his 19th career game, a sharp single in the second, but otherwise the Braves did little against Musgrove.
The start was held up 2 hours, 4 minutes, due to rain, though the grounds crew didn’t even have the tarp on the field when the delay began and the precipitation was only moderate at best.
Not that the Pirates were complaining. Better wait out any potential rain than have Musgrove start, then have the rain come and force a delay, potentially ending his night early.
When the skies cleared, the Pirates wasted little time getting to Gausman. A week removed from giving up eight runs in just one inning of a loss to Washington, Gausman again ran into trouble early.
Polanco singled with one out in the second and the deluge began. Diaz — making his 15th start in the last 20 games while catcher Francisco Cervelli deals with concussion-like symptoms — ripped a liner to the seats in left for his first home run since last September.
Musgrove, Kevin Newman, Bryan Reynolds and Marte followed with singles. Bell sliced a ball down the left field line to score Reynolds. The barrage would have continued if Marte hadn’t tried to score from first on the play, only to be thrown out by 20 feet.
When Gausman slowly made his way to the dugout, the Braves trailed 5-1. He hung around for five innings to help save Atlanta’s bullpen a night after the relievers worked five innings in a 12-5 comeback win.
There would be no rally this time. When Moran’s home run in the fifth sailed over the fence, the Pirates led by six and Musgrove was cruising.
The Pirates are shuffling their injury-ravaged starting rotation ahead of a weekend series in Milwaukee. Rookie Davis will get his first start since 2017 on Friday. Davis, who has appeared in four games as a reliever since being called up from Triple-A Indianapolis last month, went 1-3 with an 8.59 ERA in six starts for the Reds in 2017. Davis replaces Nick Kingham, who posted an 11.05 ERA in six appearances since May 3.
NEW YORK (AP) — Jason Vargas pitched his first shutout in two years, Amed Rosario hit a three-run homer and New York won despite losing Robinson Canó hours after his return from the injured list.
Michael Conforto and Adeiny Hechavarría each had a solo homer for the Mets, who ended a three-game skid with their second win in seven games.
Canó played for the first time since straining his left quadriceps May 22 but was pulled at the start of the fifth inning with tightness in the muscle. He favored the leg running to first base on a rally-killing double play in the third.
Vargas (2-3) has allowed one run or fewer in seven of his past eight starts. The 36-year-old lefty struck out a season-best eight, allowed five hits and a walk, and threw 117 pitches.
Tyler Beede (0-2) allowed six runs (five earned) in five innings for the Giants, who had won three straight.
PHOENIX (AP) — Jarrod Dyson hit a tying double in the eighth inning with the help of Chase Field’s new artificial turf, David Peralta had a winning single in the 11th, and Arizona avoided a three-game sweep.
The two-time defending NL champion Dodgers entered with a season-high, seven-game winning streak and began the day 10 1/2 games ahead of second-place Colorado in the NL West and 13 games in front of the Diamondbacks. The Dodgers, an NL-best 43-20, lost for just the second time in 13 games.
Eduardo Escobar tripled off Scott Alexander (3-2) leading off the 11th, Ketel Marte was intentionally walked, and Peralta lined his first pitch to right.
Zack Godley (2-4) pitched a perfect 11th for the Diamondbacks, who were outhit 7-5.
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Adam Haseley drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning with his first big league hit, and Philadelphia rallied from a three-run deficit.
The 23-year-old Haseley made his major league debut Tuesday as the center fielder for the NL East-leading Phillies, who are scrambling to reconfigure their outfield.
Craig Stammen (4-2) walked Scott Kingery with two outs in the eighth, and Haseley sliced a sinker for an opposite-field double down the left-field line. Pinch-hitter Andrew Knapp followed with an RBI single for Philadelphia, which won its second straight after a season-high five-game losing streak.
Jay Bruce hit a solo homer in the fourth, his third with the Phillies and 17th this season.
Juan Nicasio (1-2) retired Wil Myers on a comebacker that ended the seventh. Neris got five outs for his 12th save in 14 chances.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Trea Turner homered off Alex Colomé in the ninth inning, and Washington won its season-high fourth straight.
The Nationals led 4-1 in the eighth before another meltdown by a bullpen that has a 6.68 ERA — no other team is above 6.00.
Leury Garcia singled with one out in the eighth off Kyle Barraclough, and José Abreu hit his 16th homer one out later. Wander Suero relieved and Welington Castillo homered on his first pitch.
Washington’s 12th blown save tied Pittsburgh for second-most behind the New York Mets’ 14.
Colomé (2-1) entered in the bottom of the ninth and walked Brian Dozier on four pitches. He fell behind Turner 2-0, and Turner drove a high full-count fastball into the left-field bullpen for his third game-ending home run, his second this season.
Sean Doolittle (4-1) pitched out of two-on, one-out trouble in the ninth, striking out Garcia and Moncada.
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