Bucs Stretch Lead...Reds Blank Cardinals 9/4/13
Travis Snider's blast has allowed the Pittsburgh Pirates to double their lead in the National League Central and clinch their first non-losing season since 1992.
Snider came off the bench to deliver a tiebreaking solo homer in the ninth inning to lift the Bucs past the Brewers 4-3 in Milwaukee. Andrew McCutchen opened the scoring with his 100th career homer and Marlon Byrd drove in a pair of runs before Snider's round-tripper gave the Pirates a two-game lead over St. Louis.
The Cardinals were 1-0 losers at Cincinnati as Homer Bailey held the Redbirds to two outs while striking out eight in seven innings. Bailey allowed just two runners after Matt Carpenter led off the game with a single and Carlos Beltran walked one batter later.
The game was scoreless until Todd Frazier's RBI double in the seventh allowed the Reds to beat the Cardinals for the second straight day.
The Reds cut their magic number to 17 for clinching a playoff spot and stayed within 3.5 games of Pittsburgh. They also own a 7.5-game lead over Washington for the final NL wild-card berth.
The Texas Rangers are alone atop the AL West following a 5-1 victory over the second-place Athletics in Oakland. Martin Perez is 9-3 after holding the A's to one run over seven innings. Mitch Moreland and Alex Rios hit solo homers for the Rangers, who scored three times in the fifth to go up 4-1.
Also in the majors, Atlanta reduced its magic number for clinching the NL East to 10 by beating the New York Mets 3-1. The Mets led 1-0 in the seventh before Evan Gattis (GAT'-his) hit a solo homer and Andrelton Simmons added a two-run shot two batters later.
The Los Angeles Dodgers also trimmed their magic number to 12 for an NL West title as Carl Crawford furnished three hits and two RBIs in a 7-4 triumph at Colorado. Nick Punto went 4-for-5 to help the Dodgers win their sixth in a row and improve to 36-8 since the All-Star break.
Rajai Davis, Brett Lawrie and Moises Sierra belted two-run shots and Edwin Encarnacion (ehn-kar-nah-see-OHN') smacked his 36th homer of the season as Toronto ripped Arizona 10-4. Adam Lind added a solo blast and Sierra finished with three RBIs.
Ubaldo Jimenez (oo-BAHL'-doh hih-MEH'-nehz) worked six shutout innings and Yan Gomes (gohmz) hit a two-run double as Cleveland held off Baltimore 4-3. Asdrubal (as-DROO'-bul) Cabrera lifted a pair of sacrifice flies for the Indians, who blanked the Orioles until Nate McLouth (mih-KLOWTH') hit a three-run homer off Chris Perez in the ninth.
Detroit's lead in the AL Central is down to 7.5 games over Cleveland after Jon Lester held the Tigers to one run while striking out nine in seven innings of Boston's 2-1 victory. Will Middlebrooks hit a two-run single in the fifth off Max Scherzer, who was denied his 20th victory despite yielding just five hits in seven innings.
Tampa Bay stayed within 5 ½ games of the AL East-leading Red Sox while maintaining a 2 ½-game lead over the New York Yankees for the league's final wild-card berth. Fifteen-game winner Matt Moore pitched into the sixth inning and the Rays ended a five-game skid by whipping the Angels 7-1. Desmond Jennings and Yunel Escobar (yoo-NEHL' EHS'-koh-bahr) hit solo homers for the Rays, who also got two RBIs from Ben Zobrist.
The Yankees put together a five-run eighth to turn a 4-1 deficit into a 6-4 win over the Chicago White Sox. Alfonso Soriano sparked the comeback with a two-run single and Curtis Granderson singled home the tying run before Eduardo Nunez lined a two-run double.
Kansas City blew a 3-0 lead before Salvador Perez singled home the tiebreaking run in the eighth inning to push Kansas City past Seattle 4-3. Perez also homered and finished with three hits as the Royals won their third in a row.
Wilson Ramos (RAH'-mohs) hit a three-run homer and had four RBIs as Washington downed Philadelphia 9-6. Corey Brown added a solo homer for the Nationals, who also scored on a wild pitch and a pair of bases-loaded walks.
Miami's bullpen combined for 4 2/3 hitless innings of relief in a 6-2 win over the Chicago Cubs. Donovan Solano and Christian Yelich each had three hits and two RBIs.
Houston's Brandon Barnes capped his five-RBI night by hitting a three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth, but Minnesota regrouped and beat the Astros 9-6 in 12 innings. The tiebreaking run scored on a wild pitch by Kevin Chapman before Darin Mastroianni added a two-run double.
Chris Denorfia supplied the tiebreaking single in the seventh inning of San Diego's 3-2 verdict over San Francisco. Nick Hundley was 2-for-2 with an RBI double and two runs scored as the Padres dropped the defending World Series champs into the NL West cellar.