MAJOR LEAGUE ROUNDUP: Nationals sweep doubleheader
September 18, 2013 10:35 AM

Tanner Roark threw seven shutout innings, and the Washington Nationals beat the Atlanta Braves 4-0 to sweep a day-night doubleheader Tuesday, ensuring the Braves leave Washington without the NL East title.

Roark (7-0) allowed just two hits, struck out six and retired the final 13 batters he faced.

Ryan Zimmerman hit a home run, Ian Desmond an RBI double and Adam LaRoche an RBI single in the eighth inning. Steve Lomardozzi had a second-inning RBI single off Freddy Garcia (1-2).

Washington entered the nightcap, which followed the Nationals’ 6-5 win in the makeup of a series opener postponed by a shooting rampage a day earlier at the nearby Navy Yard, within 4½ games of Cincinnati for the NL’s second wild-card berth. The Nationals, who have won 10 of 11, have 11 games remaining.

 

CARDINALS 11, ROCKIES 4: Matt Holliday had four hits, including a two-run homer, to help St. Louis take over sole possession of the NL Central lead.

The Cardinals reduced their magic number for clinching a playoff spot to five with 11 games remaining.

Joe Kelly (9-4) allowed three hits over five sharp innings before turning a 10-0 lead over to the bullpen.

Juan Nicasio (8-8) lasted just 2 2-3 innings and allowing eight runs, which tied a career high.

Holliday led an 18-hit night by the Cardinals, who had seven players with at least two hits. Holliday finished 4-for-4 with a walk, double and two-run homer against his former team. He drove in three runs and scored twice.

 

DODGERS 9, DIAMONDBACKS 3: Juan Uribe and Adrian Gonzalez homered and Zack Greinke pitched six strong innings as Los Angeles inched closer to clinching the NL West title.

One day after coming off the disabled list, Matt Kemp went 4-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs.

The Dodgers, who once languished in last place 9½ games out, snapped a four-game skid and can clinch the division title by beating Arizona on Wednesday night.

Greinke (15-3) allowed two runs and six hits in six innings to improve to 7-0 in his last nine starts.

 

PHILLIES 6, MARLINS 4: Chase Utley hit a three-run homer and drove in four runs and Roy Halladay tossed six effective innings for Philadelphia.

Halladay (4-4) allowed one run and four hits in his fifth start after returning from right shoulder surgery. The two-time Cy Young Award winner didn’t top 88 mph and relied on guile to get outs.

The top three hitters in Philadelphia’s lineup — Cesar Hernandez, Jimmy Rollins and Utley — were 8-for-12 with four RBIs and six runs.

Jonathan Papelbon allowed an RBI single to Giancarlo Stanton before finishing for his 28th save in 35 chances.

Marlins starter Brian Flynn (0-2) gave up six runs and 11 hits in six innings.

 

GIANTS 8, METS 5: San Francisco’s Angel Pagan homered, tripled and drove in three runs on a perfect night at the plate against his former team.

Pagan went 3-for-3 with two walks and scored twice from the leadoff spot for the Giants, who have won four straight and seven of nine. His tiebreaking homer in the seventh inning made a winner of Yusmeiro Petit (4-0) in his second start since nearly pitching a perfect game.

It was his first home run since an inside-the-park shot on May 25.

Hunter Pence of the Giants singled home a run in the ninth for his 20th RBI in his last seven games.

 

BREWERS 4, CUBS 3: Pinch-hitter Logan Schafer dropped a suicide squeeze bunt with the bases loaded in the ninth to give Milwaukee the win.

Aramis Ramirez walked to open the inning off Justin Grimm (0-2), who came on to start the ninth.

Jeff Bianchi pinch-ran for Ramirez and advanced on Carlos Gomez’s single to center. Grimm then mishandled Scooter Gennett’s sacrifice bunt for an error to load the bases.

Jim Henderson (5-5) allowed a leadoff double in the top of the ninth, but retired three straight for the win.

 

AMERICAN LEAGUE

RANGERS 7, RAYS 1: Ian Kinsler and Elvis Andrus homered and drove in three runs each and Texas snapped a seven-game losing streak.

The Rangers pulled even with the Rays at the top of the AL wild-card race.

The Rangers, who held the No. 1 wild-card spot or the AL West lead for most of the summer, won for only the fourth time in 17 games.

Kinsler hit Jeremy Hellickson’s first pitch for his 12th home run, breaking a streak of seven homerless games for the Rangers, their longest in 23 years.

 

ORIOLES 3, RED SOX 2: Danny Valencia tripled to stop closer Koji Uehara’s streak of 37 consecutive outs and pinch-runner Alexi Casilla scored on Matt Wieters’ sacrifice fly in the ninth inning to lift Baltimore over Boston.

The Orioles overcame a 2-0 deficit on Brian Roberts’ run-scoring groundout in the fifth and Chris Davis’ 51st homer of the season in the sixth that tied the score 2-2. Davis broke the club record set by Brady Anderson in 1996.

Uehara (4-1) fell four outs short of Bobby Jenks’ major league record for a reliever of 41 consecutive retired batters set in 2007 and Mark Buehrle’s mark for all pitchers of 45 in 2009.

 

TIGERS 6, MARINERS 2: Miguel Cabrera homered, Austin Jackson hit a two-run single and Detroit held off Seattle despite a short-handed bullpen.

The AL Central-leading Tigers were ahead 3-2 when they escaped a bases-loaded jam in the eighth while playing without closer Joaquin Benoit and left-handed reliever Drew Smyly. They were both given the night off.

Anibal Sanchez struck out 10 in 6 1-3 innings, but the Mariners tied it at 2 against him in the seventh, forcing Detroit’s relievers into action.

 

BLUE JAYS 2, YANKEES 0: R.A. Dickey pitched seven innings to win his fourth straight decision, Colby Rasmus and Rajai Davis homered and Toronto handed slumping New York its fourth straight loss.

The Yankees came in 2 1/2 games behind Texas in the AL wild card race and lost for the eighth time in 12 games. The Yankees have 11 games remaining.

Dickey (13-12) allowed four hits, walked two and struck out eight. The knuckleballer retired the final 11 batters he faced and 15 of the last 16.

 

INDIANS 5, ROYALS 3: Asdrubal Cabrera drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, and Cleveland rallied against Kansas City’s stingy bullpen to remain a half-game behind Texas and Tampa Bay in the AL wild-card race.

The Indians were shut out until the sixth by Yordano Ventura, who made an electric major league debut. They tied the game 3-all in the seventh off reliever Kelvin Herrera, and Cabrera’s double off Wade Davis (7-11) in the eighth scored Drew Stubbs and gave Cleveland the lead.

Michael Bourn added a homer in the ninth to provide a cushion.

The Royals are 3½ games adrift in the wild-card race.

 

ATHLETICS 2, ANGELS 1: Josh Donaldson hit a game-winning, bases-loaded single with two outs in the ninth inning and Oakland beat Los Angeles to decrease its magic number to clinch another AL West title to six.

Donaldson delivered his third career game-ending hit — all this season — in Oakland’s eighth walkoff victory this year.

Grant Balfour (1-3) struck out the side in order in the ninth for the win.

 

WHITE SOX 4, TWINS 3: Dayan Viciedo had three hits and drove in two runs and Jose Quintana pitched six effective innings to lead Chicago over Minnesota.

Quintana (8-6) won for the first time since he last faced the Twins, on Aug. 16. He allowed one run while scattering eight hits with five strikeouts and two walks. After a 2-15 stretch, the White Sox won the first two games of the series against the Twins for their first series victory since Aug. 27-29 against the Astros. They have won five straight against the Twins.

 

INTERLEAGUE

REDS 10, ASTROS 0: Jay Bruce hit a grand slam and had five RBIs, Mike Leake pitched eight scoreless innings and Cincinnati handed Houston its 100th loss.

Cincinnati is 4½ games ahead of Washington for second NL wild card.

The Astros are the first major league team to lose at least 100 games in three straight seasons since Kansas City from 2004-06.

The Reds got to work early, with Zack Cozart driving in two runs in a four-run first inning.

Cincinnati was up by five in the fourth before Bruce’s towering slam to the Crawford Boxes in left field pushed the lead to 9-0.

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