Rocky Start for Cardinals...Cashner Shuts Down Bucs...Rays Drop Rangers...Tigers Win 9/17/13
There's still a two-way tie for first in the National League Central, thanks to a pair of also-rans from the NL West.
The Pirates remain deadlocked with St. Louis following Pittsburgh's 2-0 loss to Andrew Cashner and the San Diego Padres. Cashner had a perfect game until Jose Tabata (TA'-bah-tah) singled leading off the bottom of the seventh. Tabata was the only base-runner allowed by Cashner, who faced the minimum 27 hitters and settled for a complete-game shutout.
Colorado prevented the Cardinals from taking a one-game division lead. Wilin Rosario sparked a four-run eighth by supplying the tiebreaking, RBI single in the Rockies' 6-2 win over the Redbirds. Charlie Blackmon had three hits and two RBIs, and Chad Bettis picked up his first major league win despite giving up the tying run in the top of the eighth.
Cincinnati is 2.5 games off the NL Central pace after Johnny Cueto (KWAY'-toh) gave the Reds a boost. Cueto made his first start since June 28, allowing five hits in five shutout innings of the Reds' 6-1 win at Houston. Zach Cozart homered and had four RBIs for the Reds, who lead Washington by five games in the battle for the final NL wild-card berth.
Tampa Bay has won a battle of the AL wild-card leaders, knocking off Texas 6-2. Will Myers hit a solo homer and later doubled home a pair to cap the Rays' four-run fifth. Alex Cobb struck out 10 over eight innings as the Rays moved one game ahead of the Rangers for the first wild-card berth.
The Rangers suffered their seventh consecutive loss, keeping them a half-game ahead of Cleveland for the final AL wild-card slot.
The Indians were 7-1 losers at Kansas City, allowing the Royals to climb within 2.5 games of the Rangers. James Shields struck out 10 while limiting the Indians to a run and six hits in six innings. Salvador Perez was 3-for-4 with a triple and an RBI single for the winners.
Also in the majors, the Dodgers still have a magic number of four for winning the NL West after Los Angeles wasted an outstanding performance by Hyun-Jin Ryu in a 2-1 loss at Arizona. Ryu went the distance on a two-hitter and blanked the Diamondbacks after Paul Goldschmidt's two-run homer in the bottom of the first. The Dodgers managed just four hits themselves, but they opened the ninth with back-to-back singles and had two runners in scoring position when Brad Ziegler struck out Matt Kemp to end the game.
Oakland's magic number for claiming the AL West crown remains seven after Mike Trout and Mark Trumbo each hit two-run homers and collected three RBIs in the Angels' 12-1 romp over the Athletics. Kole Calhoun provided three hits and three ribbies to back C.J. Wilson, who held the A's to a run and four hits in seven innings.
Torii Hunter and Omar Infante (ihn-FAHN'-tay) each went 2-for-4 with an RBI single in Detroit's 4-2 win over Seattle. Rick Porcello allowed one run while striking out 10 in six innings for his 13th victory, helping the Tigers cut their magic number for clinching the AL Central to seven.
Cliff Lee struck out 14 while scattering eight hits in eight innings of Philadelphia's 12-2 laugher against Miami. Lee also went 3-for-4 with four RBIs as the plate, while Chase Utley added a three-run homer and four RBIs.
Caleb Gindl came within a double of the cycle, hitting a two-run homer and an RBI triple in Milwaukee's 6-1 downing of the Chicago Cubs. Wily (WIH'-lee) Peralta allowed no earned runs and five hits in six innings.
Erik Johnson notched his first big league win by tossing six shutout innings as the Chicago White Sox pounded Minnesota 12-1. Alexei Ramirez was 4-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs for the White Sox, who ended a six-game skid and won for only the third time in 18 games.
The game between the Washington Nationals and visiting Atlanta Braves has been postponed due to Monday's shootings at nearby Navy Yard. The game will be made up as part of a day-night doubleheader on Tuesday.