Allen Craig hit his first career grand slam with two outs in the seventh inning, helping St. Louis rally to beat Cincinnati, 8-6, on Monday night.
Matt Holliday also had a long three-run homer as St. Louis moved into sole possession of first place in the NL Central for the first time since July 29. The Cardinals lead idle Pittsburgh by a half-game and Cincinnati by 3ﾽ games.
Rookie Carlos Martinez (1-1) pitched two innings for his first major league win, and Edward Mujica worked a perfect ninth for his 35th save.
Zack Cozart had two hits and three RBIs for the Reds, who dropped to 4-9 against St. Louis this season. Jay Bruce hit his 25th homer in the eighth.
Cozart and Todd Frazier both hit two-run triples off Tyler Lyons in the second, helping Cincinnati build a 4-0 lead. Holliday homered in the third.
The Cardinals went ahead to stay in the seventh. Jon Jay drove in a run with a bases-loaded grounder off Manny Parra (1-3). J.J. Hoover then walked Holliday, and Craig drove the next pitch over the wall in right for his 13th homer.
PHILLIES 2, METS 1: Philadelphia’s Cliff Lee outpitched Zack Wheeler, Cody Asche had a two-run triple, and the Phillies beat New York. Lee (11-3) gave a bullpen taxed by an 18-inning loss Saturday a much-needed rest. He allowed a run and five hits in eight innings to win for the first time in seven starts since July 5. Asche hit his first major league triple — with two outs in the fourth — as the Phillies improved to 7-4 under new manager Ryne Sandberg and won for the second time in 15 road games. The Mets lost their fifth straight and dropped into fourth place in the NL East. Jonathan Papelbon was perfect in the ninth for his 22nd save in 28 opportunities. Wheeler (6-3) worked 6 2-3 impressive innings in his 13th big league start.
DODGERS 6, CUBS 2: Zack Greinke came within one strike of his fifth career shutout, Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig homered, and the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Chicago Cubs, ending a two-game skid. The Cubs lost for the eighth straight time to the Dodgers, including a four-game sweep at Wrigley Field earlier this month. The Dodgers equaled their longest winning streak against the Cubs in franchise history, set from June 9, 1974 to May 19, 1975. Greinke (13-3) tied his season high with nine strikeouts and he walked two while improving to 5-0 this month. The right-hander has won 10 of 11 decisions since June 22. Greinke had a two-out hit in the fourth that scored the Dodgers’ first run. After giving up a single to Starlin Castro to open the game, Greinke retired the next 13 batters before Donnie Murphy singled in the fifth. Greinke got the first two outs of the ninth before running into trouble. Brian Bogusevic’s RBI double scored Chicago’s two runs. Brian Wilson came in to strike out Murphy for the final out. Jake Arrieta (1-1) gave up four runs and six hits in five-plus innings for the Cubs.
ROCKIES 6, GIANTS 1: Todd Helton homered to move within three hits of 2,500, and Colorado beat San Francisco. Juan Nicasio tossed six shutout innings and added an RBI single, and Charlie Blackmon also homered for the Rockies. Buster Posey singled and reached base for the 49th straight game against Colorado. The Rockies began a nine-game, 10-day homestand with a strong performance against lefty Barry Zito (4-10), who has struggled away from home this season. Zito allowed five runs and nine hits and struck out one in four innings in his second start since being put back into the rotation. He is 0-8 with a 9.61 ERA on the road this season. Nicasio (8-6) tied a season high with nine strikeouts and allowed four hits.
DIAMONDBACKS 6, PADRES 1: Brandon McCarthy turned in seven strong innings, and Paul Goldschmidt drove in two runs to lead Arizona over San Diego. After a shaky first inning, the 6-foot-7 McCarthy (3-8) allowed only four runners over his final six innings. It was his first win since he beat San Diego on May 28. His other victory was a shutout at Miami on May 18. Goldschmidt stretched his NL-leading RBI total to 103 with his first triple of the season and a ground out. He has the most RBIs for an Arizona hitter since Luis Gonzalez drove in 104 in 2003. Between the first inning and when he left the game, McCarthy allowed a one-out single in the third to Venable, a two-out single in the fourth to Chase Headley and a two-out single to opposing pitcher Tyson Ross (3-7) in the fifth.
BLUE JAYS 5, YANKEES 2: R.A. Dickey pitched into the seventh inning, Jose Reyes sparked Toronto’s offense and the Blue Jays snapped a 10-game losing streak against the New York Yankees. Alex Rodriguez hit his 650th home run, a leadoff drive in the fifth, but the Yankees lost for the ninth time in 13 road games this month. Rodriguez is 10 homers away from tying Willie Mays for fourth on the career list, which would secure a $6 million bonus for the third baseman. Derek Jeter went hitless in his return to New York’s lineup. Jeter, who had been out with a calf injury, finished 0-for-3 with a walk. Reyes walked and scored in the third, and doubled and scored in Toronto’s three-run fifth as the Blue Jays beat the Yankees for just the second time in 14 meetings this season. Dickey (10-12) allowed two runs, one earned, and six hits in 6 1-3 innings.
ATHLETICS 8, TIGERS 6: Coco Crisp and Daric Barton each drove in two runs, leading Oakland past Miguel Cabrera and Detroit. Cabrera hit his 43rd homer, bolstering his pursuit of another Triple Crown, but Barton had a tiebreaking RBI single in Oakland’s two-run sixth inning. Crisp also had a solo homer during his three-hit performance. A.J. Griffin (11-9) earned his first win since July 29 despite allowing four runs and seven hits in five-plus innings. The right-hander was 0-2 with a 3.47 ERA in his previous four starts. Omar Infante and Victor Martinez also homered for the AL Central-leading Tigers, who had won three in a row. Martinez went 4-for-5 and Torii Hunter had two hits. Barton’s tiebreaking single in the sixth came against Jose Alvarez (1-4). Grant Balfour allowed an unearned run in the ninth before finishing for his 33rd save.
ROYALS 11, RAYS 1: Jeremy Guthrie tossed five effective innings, helping Kansas City roll to the victory in the makeup of a snowed-out game from early May. Guthrie (13-10) allowed one run and six hits, struck out five and walked three. He fanned Kelly Johnson with two aboard to end the third inning, and then struck out David DeJesus on a called third strike to leave the bases loaded in the fourth. Jeremy Hellickson (10-8) allowed five runs in just 2 2-3 innings for Tampa Bay. It was the right-hander’s shortest start since June 30, 2012, when he went the same distance in a game against Detroit before getting pelted in the leg by a line drive. Salvador Perez hit a three-run homer and finished with four RBIs as the Royals won their second straight following a seven-game slide.
RANGERS 8, MARINERS 3: A.J. Pierzynski hit a three-run homer for Texas, and Mitch Moreland had a solo shot. Alex Rios had two hits and two RBIs as the Rangers picked up their fifth win in seven games. Elvis Andrus celebrated his 25th birthday with three hits and an RBI. Kyle Seager hit his 20th home run of the season for the Mariners, who have lost four in a row. Travis Blackley (2-1) earned his first win since being acquired in a trade with Houston on Aug. 14. Blackley, making his second start of the season, allowed three runs and five hits over six innings in his longest outing since Oct. 2, 2012. It was a much different night for Seattle starter Joe Saunders (10-13), who turned in another sluggish outing. The left-hander allowed seven runs and nine hits in seven inning to fall to 1-5 with a 7.71 ERA in his last seven starts.
ASTROS 10, WHITE SOX 8: Matt Dominguez hit a tiebreaking homer with two outs in the ninth inning and Chris Carter followed with his second homer of the game, powering Houston to the win. The Astros squandered a five-run lead and trailed 8-7 before Carter hit a tying RBI single in the seventh. White Sox reliever Addison Reed (5-2) struck out Jose Altuve and Jason Castro to open the ninth before Dominguez belted a drive to left for his 19th homer.