Major League Baseball
MLB News Wire
  • MLB roundup: Mets win on Granderson's walkoff homer
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    NEW YORK — Curtis Granderson hit a home run leading off the bottom of the ninth inning Friday night as the New York Mets beat the Los Angeles Dodgers, 6-5, at Citi Field.

    • It was the second walk-off homer ever for Granderson. The Mets (28-19) won for the sixth time in seven games to move into a tie for first place with the Washington Nationals in the National League East.

      The Dodgers tied it in the ninth against right-hander Jeurys Familia, who was pitching in a non-save situation with a four-run lead. But Adrian Gonzalez and Howie Kendrick opened the inning wiht singles, after which Familia struck out Joc Pederson. A single by Yasiel Puig loaded the bases before Yasmani Grandal coaxed a run-scoring walk.

      Yankees 4, Rays 1

      ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Alex Rodriguez hit a two-run homer and Masahiro Tanaka gave up two hits over seven innings to lead New York to a win against Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field.

      Rodriguez hit his sixth home run of the year off Rays starter Chris Archer on an 0-1 pitch in the top of the sixth inning to give the Yankees a 3-0 lead.

      The Yankees scored their first run in the inning thanks to some shaky defense by the Rays. After Brett Gardner drew a one-out walk in the inning, Archer made a pickoff throw to first baseman Logan Morrison that went over his glove and into the outfield allowing Gardner to advance to third.

      Cardinals 6, Nationals 2

      WASHINGTON -- Lefty starter Jaime Garcia allowed two runs in seven innings and Stephen Piscotty hit a grand slam as St. Louis, despite getting just four hits, beat Washington.

      Garcia (4-4), coming off a rough outing against Arizona, gave up seven hits and one walk with four strikeouts. The pitcher from Mexico, who was efficient with just 92 pitches, also began a third-inning rally with a one-out single.

      The Piscotty grand slam came against Max Scherzer (5-4), who has allowed 10 homers in his last five starts and a MLB-high 15 overall. He did not allow a hit in any inning except the third, when the Cardinals scored five runs on three hits and two walks.

      Cubs 6, Phillies 2

      CHICAGO -- Batterymates Jon Lester and David Ross combined for big games but in different ways on a rain-plagued afternoon at Wrigley Field.

      Lester (5-3) bounced back from two recent poor pitching outings with a strong 6 1/3-inning effort in Chicago's victory over Philadelphia.

      Ross clubbed his 100th career home run in the fourth inning -- a three-run blast that put some distance between the Cubs and the Phillies.

      Orioles 6, Indians 4

      CLEVELAND -- Manny Machado had four hits and Mark Trumbo's two-run home run capped a three-run seventh inning to lead Baltimore to a win over Cleveland at Progressive Field.

      The win snaps the Orioles' four-game losing streak.

      Adam Jones had three hits for the Orioles, and Dylan Bundy (1-1) pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief on one hit to earn his first major league win. Zach Britton pitched the ninth inning to pick up his 13th save.

      Blue Jays 7, Red Sox 5

      TORONTO -- Josh Donaldson hit two home runs and Toronto defeated Boston at SkyDome for its third consecutive win.

      Donaldson also had a double, single and four RBIs to lead the Blue Jays. His two-run homer in the eighth put the Jays back in front after they squandered a 5-2 lead.

      The Blue Jays now trail the American League East-leading Red Sox by five games.

      Braves 4, Marlins 2

      ATLANTA -- An overturned call and a clutch two-out hit with the bases loaded in the eighth inning proved to be the winning combination as Atlanta posted a victory over Miami to end its four-game losing streak.

      It appeared the threat ended when Atlanta catcher Tyler Flowers was called out at first base on what would have been an inning-ending double play. But the Braves appealed the call and the replay showed that Flowers beat the throw.

      Right fielder Nick Markakis, in the throes of a 1-for-22 slump, then hit an opposite-field liner that glanced off the glove of third baseman Martin Prado and rolled into left field, allowing two runs to score. The play, originally ruled an error, was changed to a hit and two RBIs.

  • Urias-mania to hit Dodgers?
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    NEW YORK -- As a Mexican-born teenager making his major league debut for the Los Angeles Dodgers, there is no way for Julio Urias to avoid being mentioned in the same breath as Fernando Valenzuela.

    • But the similarities are going to end there, at least on Friday night.

      Urias, who began the season as Baseball America's fourth-ranked prospect, became the youngest Dodgers player to appear in a game in 36 seasons Friday night, when he allowed three runs on five hits and four walks while striking out three over 2 2/3 innings against the New York Mets.

      The 19-year-old Urias, who grew up about 1,100 miles south of Los Angeles in Culiacan Rosales, Mexico, is the first teenager to play for the Dodgers since Valenzuela debuted as a 19-year-old on Sept. 15, 1980.

      Valenzuela went straight from Double-A to the Dodgers, for whom he made two appearances out of the bullpen in 1980 before setting off "Fernandomania" in 1981, when he won his first eight starts and won the NL Rookie of the Year and Cy Young Award for the eventual world champion Dodgers.

      "I was a little too young for The Beatles," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, who turns 44 on Tuesday. "Obviously on a smaller scale, but when you're looking at Los Angeles baseball, there was a craze with Fernando. There was a frenzy."

      There wasn't quite a frenzy surrounding Urias on Friday, but as a 21st century prospect, he was accompanied by a buzz that Valenzuela didn't begin building until he reached the majors.

      Valenzuela grew up less than 1,000 miles south of Los Angeles in the town of Navajoa. The local boy made good quickly captivated an entire nation during a season in which the season was literally cut in half by the player's strike.

      "What Fernando did, from Double-A to the big leagues, it took over everything," said Mets manager Terry Collins, who began his managerial career with the Dodgers' Single-A California League affiliate in 1981.

      Kids tried mimicking Valenzuela's delivery, during which he gazed to the sky. And pitchers of every age suddenly wanted to throw Valenzuela's screwball.

      "We had Jim Brewer (who) started going through the minor leagues and teaching the screwball because of Fernando," Collins said, referring to the former major league reliever who threw a screwball. "He was very dynamic."

      Valenzuela's award-winning campaign began with him winning his first eight starts and completing every single one. Even before he was chased in the third inning Friday, that was never going to be the case for Urias, a product of the pitch count era who has never exceeded 90 pitches in a start.

      "This is a different kid," Collins said. "This is a different kind of pitcher. This guy is not the same animal Fernando was."

      With his big league debut out of the way, the Dodgers can now focus on helping Urias -- who displayed a four-pitch arsenal Friday that included a 95 mph fastball and a slider that ranged from 77 to 83 mph -- craft the type of career Valenzuela enjoyed. Valenzuela, who is one of the Dodgers' Spanish-speaking broadcasters, won 173 games, posted a 3.54 ERA, racked up 2,034 strikeouts and made six All-Star teams while pitching in the majors until 1997.

      "I think naturally that's the comparison, but to compare anyone to Fernando -- what he did, after you look at the impact he made on the Mexican community as well as the Dodgers and baseball in general, is unfair," Roberts said. "Julio's Julio. I understand that comparison, but that's a tall order."

  • MLB notebook: Diamondbacks' Miller headed for disabled list
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    The Arizona Diamondbacks will place right-handed pitcher Shelby Miller on the 15-day disabled list on Friday, FOX Sports reported.

    • The Diamondbacks have not yet made a corresponding move and have not announced which pitcher would take Miller's place in the rotation.

      Miller, 25, has been bothered by an injury to his right index finger that he suffered while scraping his hand on the mound on his follow through. But he has struggled recently as well.

      In 45 2/3 innings over 10 starts this season, Miller has 1-6 record with a 7.09 earned average. He barely has more strikeouts (30) than walks (29).

      Miller, who is owed $4.35 million this year, went 6-17 last season with a 3.02 ERA for Atlanta, but went 15-9 and 10-9 for the St. Louis Cardinals in the two seasons before that.

      --Clay Buchholz, who has been a starting pitcher throughout his 10 seasons with the Boston Red Sox, has been moved to the bullpen, Red Sox manager John Farrell announced.

      Buchholz, 31, allowed six runs in five innings on Thursday in what was the latest of his poor outings this season. He is 2-5 with a 6.35 ERA in 10 starts this season, and his strikeout rate of 5.9 per nine innings is the lowest of his career.

      Eduardo Rodriguez will take Buchholz's place in the rotation when he comes off the disabled list.

      --Major League Baseball has elected to uphold Jose Bautista's one-game suspension and the Toronto Blue Jays outfielder will serve the suspension Friday against the Boston Red Sox.

      The penalty stems from a May 15 incident with the Texas Rangers when Bautista slid hard at the legs of Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor.

      Bautista had an appeals hearing on Thursday in New York, but his attempt to get the suspension lifted was unsuccessful.

      -- Blue Jays shortstop Troy Tulowitzki returned to the lineup after missing two games with a sore right quadriceps

      --St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Matt Adams, who left Thursday's game with back spasms in the fifth inning, was not in the starting lineup Friday.

      --Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony RIzzo had his first day off in 45 games on as manager Joe Maddon picked Thursday's off day and Friday's game for a two-day break.

  • Red Sox send Buchholz to bullpen
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    Clay Buchholz, who has been a starting pitcher throughout his 10 seasons with the Boston Red Sox, has been moved to the bullpen, manager John Farrell announced Friday.

    • Buchholz, 31, allowed six runs in five innings on Thursday in what was the latest of his poor outings this season. He is 2-5 with a 6.35 ERA in 10 starts, and his strikeout rate of 5.9 per nine innings is the lowest of his career.

      Last season, Buchholz was 7-7 with a 3.26 ERA. His best season came in 2013 when he was named to the All-Star squad and went 12-1 with a 1.74 ERA despite missing much of the season with a neck injury.

      Now he's likely to work in long relief for the time being. Buchholz has not come out of the bullpen since 2008, when he pitched one game in relief.

      Eduardo Rodriguez will take Buchholz's place in the rotation when he comes off the disabled list.

  • Diamondbacks RHP Miller headed to disabled list
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    The Arizona Diamondbacks will place right-handed pitcher Shelby Miller on the 15-day disabled list on Friday, FOX Sports reported.

    • The Diamondbacks have not yet made a corresponding move and have not announced which pitcher would take Miller's place in the rotation.

      Miller has been bothered by an injury to his right index finger that he suffered while scraping his hand on the mound on his follow through. But he has struggled recently as well.

      Miller, 25, was acquired from the Atlanta Braves in the offseason, hoping he and Zack Greinke would form an imposing combination at the top of the Diamondbacks' rotation.

      But in 45 2/3 innings over 10 starts this season, Miller has 1-6 record with a 7.09 earned average. He barely has more strikeouts (30) than walks (29).

      Miller, who is owed $4.35 million this year, went 6-17 last season with a 3.02 ERA for Atlanta, but went 15-9 and 10-9 for the St. Louis Cardinals in the two seasons before that.

      It is unclear when Miller is expected to return, with a stint on a rehab assignment not out of the question.

  • Bautista's one-game suspension is withheld
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    Major League Baseball has elected to withhold Jose Bautista's one-game suspension and the Toronto Blue Jays outfielder will serve the suspension Friday against the Boston Red Sox.

    • The penalty stems from a May 15 incident with the Texas Rangers when Bautista slid hard at the legs of Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor.

      Odor responded by punching Bautista in the face. Odor was originally suspended eight games before having it reduced to seven.

      Bautista had an appeals hearing on Thursday in New York, but his attempt to get the suspension lifted was unsuccessful.

      The incident with the Rangers began when Bautista was beaned in the ribs by reliever Matt Bush. The Blue Jays believed it was a purpose pitch in retaliation for Bautista's bat flip after a homer in Game 5 of last season's American League Division Series.

  • Astros ready to give Gattis more opportunities behind plate
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    HOUSTON -- Following two games of solid results, the Houston Astros appear ready to amp up catcher Evan Gattis' opportunities behind the plate.

    • After spending his first season in Houston playing multiple positions, none of which required him to sport catcher's gear, Gattis spent a brief stint with Double-A Corpus Christi earlier this month getting reacquainted with the position. Two games into his role as the backup to Jason Castro, Gattis appears to have settled into the job with ease.

      "He searches for perfection back there but he is so prepared and so into the game-calling to getting the most out of his pitchers," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said after Gattis caught right-hander Collin McHugh on Wednesday night. "This is the second time in a row that he's had McHugh going very, very well."

      McHugh pitched effectively in both of Gattis' starts behind the plate, racking up 18 strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings against the White Sox and Orioles. Gattis handled the challenge of blocking McHugh's biting curveballs well enough, not to mention catching relievers he's largely unfamiliar with, that Hinch announced Gattis will catch another starter in the near future. If his performance behind the plate didn't mark progress, his pending assignment does.

      "Good but just trying to get better," Gattis said. "Trying to take a positive from each game and a negative from each game and something I want to get better at. I'll get better handling the pitching staff just from seeing them more so I think that's going to be No. 1. Just experience and trying to get a better handle on these guys. A few more clinks than I'd like but I'll take the win."

  • O's hitters pile up K's in record-breaking manner
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    HOUSTON -- Given the ignominy of the record they set during their three-game series at Minute Maid Park, the Baltimore Orioles couldn't be blamed for wanting to leave hastily.

    • Blitzed by Houston pitching from the start of the series Tuesday night through its conclusion Thursday, the Orioles set a major league record for strikeouts in a three-game series with 52. Houston won all three games, though only by a total of four runs.

      Late last month, Washington pitchers recorded 47 strikeouts against the Minnesota Twins, a figure bloated by Nationals right-hander Tanner Roark and his career-high 15-strikeout performance and a 16-inning game that followed in which the Nationals recorded 20 strikeouts.

      The Orioles struck out 19 times in a 13-inning loss Tuesday before adding 18 strikeouts in just nine innings Wednesday. And even with Astros right-hander Lance McCullers struggling with his fastball command Thursday, the Orioles managed just one hit against him while striking out 10 times in his five innings. Three Astros relievers bumped the overall total to 15 for the game.

      "W's or L's is why we take the field every night, and how you get to them one way or the other may not look aesthetically pleasing; it's about do you score more runs than the other team after nine innings," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "When you do something that's a break from the norm, then it gets a lot of attention."

      There was plenty of whiffing to go around. Chris Davis struck out eight times during the series, while Adam Jones and Mark Trumbo punched out seven times apiece. Pedro Alvarez fanned six times without starting the finale.

      The Orioles aren't a particularly egregious strikeout team, as four American League clubs (including the Astros) owned a higher strikeout rate entering play Thursday. But when things went south with their swings and misses this series, it facilitated their collective desire to try their luck in Cleveland this weekend.

      "This hasn't been fun," Jones said. "I look up there and see that we set the record for strikeouts in a three-game series. Let's get the hell out of Houston."

  • Braves OF Olivera suspended through Aug. 1
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    ATLANTA -- The strange case of Hector Olivera took its latest twist on Thursday when the Cuban was suspended through Aug. 1 for violation of baseball's domestic violence policy.

    • The suspension is retroactive to April 30. Olivera was arrested on April 12 at the team's hotel in Arlington, Va., for allegedly assaulting a woman and placed on the restricted list.

      "Having reviewed all of the available evidence, I have concluded that Mr. Olivera violated the Policy and should be subject to discipline in the form of an unpaid suspension that will expire on August 1," commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. "Mr. Olivera has also agreed to make a significant charitable contribution to one or more charitable organizations focused on preventing and treating survivors of domestic violence."

      The MLB Players Association said in a statement that Olivera would not appeal the suspension and he would be fully reinstated.

      The Dodgers signed Olivera to a six-year, $62.5 million deal on May 19, 2015, but were willing to trade him two months later.

      Olivera was acquired by Atlanta in a much-criticized deal with the Dodgers on July 30, 2015 that sent left-handed starter Alex Wood, left-handed reliever Luis Avilan and infielder Jose Peraza, then considered the team's No. 1 prospect, to Los Angeles.

      The Braves were hoping that Olivera, 31, would provide a solid bat in the middle of the order and become a serviceable fielder. He arrived in Atlanta with a bad hamstring and was never really at full strength. He hit .253 with two homers in 24 games for Atlanta.

      Confidence was high this spring when Olivera hit .393 (24-for-61) and seemed to be making progress in his conversion to left field. In his first six games this season, Olivera was batting .211 (4-for-19) with a double and five strikeouts.

      Speculation now revolves around what the Braves plan to do with Olivera, whether they'll keep, try to trade him or release him in August.

      Atlanta officials aren't saying. The Braves released this official statement about the Olivera decision: "The Braves fully support Major League Baseball's decision regarding Hector Olivera. The club will have no further comment on the matter at this time."

  • OF Presley trying to find role with Brewers
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    ATLANTA -- After being the last outfielder cut in spring training, outfielder Alex Presley is trying to find a niche for himself as a reserve outfielder and a pinch hitter since being recalled by the Brewers.

    • Presley was sent to Triple-A Colorado Springs to start the season and hit .344 in nine games. That earned him a return to the trip to the major leagues, where he has been serviceable as an outfielder and as a pinch hitter.

      "I've learned to be really adaptable and that's helped me out," Presley said.

      In 28 games, Presley has started four games in left field, one game in center and 12 games in right.

      "I've played in all different situations," Presley said. "I've started games, come off the bench, pinch hit. ... I've done all of it at the major league level."

      In eight at-bats as a pinch hitter, he's batting .363, going 3-for-8 with a home run and three RBIs.

      "I try to simplify as much as I can," he said. "I just look for a good pitch to hit and attack it. You just have to be mentally ready to go."

      The Brewers have been looking for answers in the outfield since Domingo Santana went on the disabled list with right shoulder issues on May 20 and won't return until June 3. Presley, Ramon Flores and Kirk Nieuwenhuis have received starts in right field while Santana is sidelined.

      On the recently completed road trip, Presley went 2-for-15. He was 0-for-7 in the three-game series against the Braves, starting in right in the final game played at Turner Field.

  • Bradley aims to start new streak in Toronto
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    BOSTON -- Jackie Bradley Jr's hitless streak now stands at one game.

    • Bradley's major-league-leading, 29-game hitting streak ended with an 0-for-4 night Thursday in the Boston Red Sox's 8-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies, but the surging outfielder is taking it all in stride.

      "It was a fun ride. I had a lot of fun," he said. "I wouldn't say I'm disappointed. Obviously, you want to get a hit, but the pitchers are really good in this league."

      "If it's meant to be, it's meant to be. And tonight was the night that it was supposed to end."

      Bradley's attitude is encouraging for the Red Sox, who open a three-game weekend series at the American League East rival Toronto Blue Jays on Friday.

      As wild a ride as his streak was, the league is likely to learn more about the player Bradley has become now that it is over.

      Bradley remains the definition of a streaky hitter. He has had hot stretches before, although never any like this, only to follow them up with extremely cold spells.

      His true offensive progression will be revealed in the coming weeks, starting north of the border against a Blue Jays team with the eighth-best team ERA (3.68) in the majors.

      Boston's pitching has been solid lately, too -- with the exception of Clay Buchholz.

      Buchholz threw another stinker Thursday, coughing up six runs on seven hits in five innings, and it is causing the Red Sox to reassess his standing in the rotation.

      Red Sox manager John Farrell said he and president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski and pitching coach Carl Willis speak frequently about many players.

      "This will be no different," Farrell said. "But there's been no decision made as of right now."

      Buchholz's spot likely would be filled by young southpaw Eduardo Rodriguez, who could join the team as soon as next week following another rehab stint with Triple-A Pawtucket. Rodriguez hasn't pitched in the major leagues this season because of a knee injury.

      "I can't worry about that," Buchholz said. "I'm here to pitch. If I don't have a spot, that's part of it."

  • Offense on the rise as Rockies head home
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, May 27, 2016

    BOSTON -- The Colorado Rockies' bats are coming alive just in time for an important three-game series against the San Francisco Giants.

    • After being outscored by 12 runs in their first two games at Fenway Park, the Rockies pounded out 12 hits in an 8-2 win over the Boston Red Sox on Thursday night to avoid a three-game sweep.

      "I thought the offense woke up tonight," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said.

      The Rockies hope that their hot hitting will make the trip home with them to Coors Field, where they will face a Giants team with a 3.61 team ERA -- seventh best in the majors.

      Dustin Garneau -- who slugged one of three two-run homers for Colorado on Thursday -- believes they will.

      "We struggled the first two games here, but having this last game going into San Fran at home, it's huge for us," Garneau said. "That's a big division rival, and they're a hot team right now."

      San Francisco has won five games in a row and 13 of its last 14.

      One player who can help the Rockies break through against the Giants is Carlos Gonzalez.

      Gonzalez had a scorching series at Boston, batting .500 (8-for-16) and also hitting a two-run homer Thursday.

      "I look for his rhythm and his timing, that's what I look at with CarGo," Weiss said. "He's got some moving parts, but when he's on time and it flows, he's able to get his 'A' swing off. You know some damage is coming, and that's what I saw the last couple days."

      Although moving in the right direction, Gonzalez is a career .247 hitter with 16 home runs and 55 RBIs in 112 games against San Francisco.

      He is hitting .115 with only one RBI in his last 26 at-bats against the Giants' Friday starter, Matt Cain. The right-hander is 17-10 with a 3.58 ERA in 37 career starts -- his most against a single opponent -- versus Colorado.

      Fortunately, the Rockies have a few hitters who have gotten to Cain in the recent past.

      Charlie Blackmon has a .353 average in his past 17 at-bats against Cain, while DJ LeMahieu is batting .333 over his last 15 at-bats against him.

  • MLB roundup: Bradley hitting streak ends in Red Sox loss
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    BOSTON -- Carlos Gonzalez, Trevor Story and Dustin Garneau each hit two-run homers for Colorado, and the Rockies beat the Red Sox 8-2 Thursday night at Fenway Park.

    • Boston center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. went 0-for-4, snapping his 29-game hitting streak, which was the longest in the majors this year.

      Nolan Arenado and DJ LaMahieu also drove in a runs for Colorado, which pounded out 12 hits to halt a three-game skid. The Rockies (22-24) salvaged the finale of a three-game series.

      Rockies starter Jon Gray (2-2) won his first career start at Fenway Park, throwing 7 1/3 innings of two-run ball. He allowed five hits and three walks while striking out six.

      Boston (29-18) saw its four-game winning streak end.

      Nationals 2, Cardinals 1

      WASHINGTON -- Danny Espinosa, batting .199 at game time, hit a solo homer to right with one out in the last of the seventh to break a tie and Washington beat St. Louis.

      Bryce Harper, hitless in his previous 10 at-bats on the homestand, had tied the game at 1-1 with a long solo homer to right in the sixth. It was the 12th homer of the year for Harper but his first since May 13. One inning later, Espinosa went deep for his fourth homer and first since May 11.

      Both homers came off Reds starter Mike Leake (3-4), who gave up just the two runs in seven innings of work with one walk and five strikeouts.

      Pirates 8, Diamondbacks 3

      PITTSBURGH -- Right-hander Gerrit Cole hit a three-run homer and Pittsburgh broke the game open in the eighth inning for a victory and a series sweep against Arizona.

      Pittsburgh finished its homestand 8-2, winning for the fifth time in six games against Arizona this season. The Pirates have won each of the past five series between the clubs.

      Pinch-hitter Josh Harrison smacked a two-run double off the right-field wall in the sixth to break a 3-3 tie.

      Marlins 9, Rays 1

      ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Ace Jose Fernandez won in his old backyard for the first time, striking out 12 batters in seven innings as Miami cruised past Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field.

      Fernandez (7-2), a first-round pick out of Tampa's Alonso High School in 2011, had lost in two previous starts at the Trop, but got plenty of run support Thursday, earning a win for the sixth straight start.

      The Marlins took three of four games from their in-state rivals, while the Rays saw their bats held in check for the second day in a row.

      Blue Jays 3, Yankees 1

      NEW YORK -- J.A. Happ pitched seven sharp innings and Toronto scored two unearned runs in the third inning against CC Sabathia in a victory over New York.

      Edwin Encarnacion had a two-run single for the Blue Jays, who won for the fifth time in eight games and 10th time in their last 13 trips to New York. Devon Travis added insurance with an RBI single in the ninth off Aroldis Chapman.

      Happ's lone mistake was a 1-0 fastball to Starlin Castro with two outs in the first inning. Happ's eighth pitch of the game went into the right-center field seats, but the left-hander (6-2) did little else wrong.

      Astros 4, Orioles 2

      HOUSTON -- George Springer recorded his third career multi-home run game and Houston completed a series sweep of Baltimore with a victory at Minute Maid Park.

      Springer hit his 10th and 11th homers in support of right-hander Lance McCullers (1-1), who earned his first win on the season. McCullers and three relievers combined for 15 strikeouts, helping the Astros set a major league record for strikeouts in a three-game series with 52. Washington pitchers recorded 47 strikeouts of the Twins April 22-24.

      Luis Valbuena also homered off Orioles right-hander Kevin Gausman (0-2). Houston right-hander Ken Giles notched his first save with the Astros despite allowing an RBI single to Manny Machado with two outs in the ninth inning.

      Brewers 6, Braves 2

      ATLANTA -- Starter Wily Peralta contributed with his arm and his bat and helped Milwaukee beat Atlanta and sweep a series at Turner Field for the first time in their final visit to the facility.

      Peralta (3-5) allowed two runs on seven hits and two walks in 5 1/3 innings, with four strikeouts. It broke Peralta's two-game losing streak and provided the big right-hander's first win since May 1 against the Marlins. He also got his first hit of the season to drive in two runs.

      Reliever Jhan Marinez rescued Peralta, who left in the sixth inning with runners on second and third and one out. Marinez retired the final two outs and worked out of a bases-loaded jam for a scoreless seventh.

      White Sox-Royals postponed

      KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Heavy thunderstorms and an unfavorable weather forecast caused the Chicago White Sox-Kansas City Royals game to be postponed about an hour before the first pitch.

      The game has not been rescheduled, but it will not be made up during the four-game weekend series turned into three games by the rainout.

      Thursday's scheduled starters, White Sox right-hander Miguel Gonzalez and Royals left-hander Danny Duffy, will pitch Friday.

  • Marlins' offense strong without two key bats
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- With two key bats out of the lineup in Giancarlo Stanton and Christian Yelich, the Miami Marlins still came up with 28 hits in two days, an encouraging show of their offensive depth as they took three of four games from their in-state rivals against the Tampa Bay Rays.

    • "We look at our lineup and see a bunch of guys who can hit, from Yelly and Big G, but also Justin Bour, and Marcell (Ozuna) and Hechy (Adeiny Hechavarria) can hit, J.T. (Realmuto) can hit, (Martin) Prado can hit," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "We have a lot of guys who can give you good at-bats. We have shown that we can get a lot of hits. We just haven't been able to get those extra runs so far, but we are definitely capable of it."

      Miami had nine runs, one off their season high, and their 15 hits was their most since May 1 -- in four games against the Rays, they totaled 50 hits; the last time they had 50 hits in any four-game series was in 2008 at Colorado. That they could pull that off without their best bats is promising for the rest of their season.

      On Thursday alone, Hechavarria had three hits, including a two-run home run; Chris Johnson had two hits, including a two-run home run, and in all, six of the top seven hitters in the Marlins' lineup had at least two hits.

      That offense helped take a burden off starter Jose Fernandez, who won his sixth straight start while striking out 12. As they head to Atlanta for a three-game series they could easily sweep with similar production, the Marlins have their best momentum in the past month.

  • Diamondbacks searching for answers at home
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    PITTSBURGH -- Despite just being swept in three games by Pittsburgh, the Arizona Diamondbacks are 7-5 in their past 12 road games, 14-11 overall away from home.

    • They are 7-17 at Chase Field. It doesn't even much seem to matter whether the retractable roof is open (2-10) or closed (3-6) (some games the roof has been open for part of the game).

      So perhaps it is not ideal that they follow this six-game road trip with a five-game homestand against San Diego and Houston.

      How do the Diamondbacks play better at home?

      "I don't know," second baseman Jean Segura said. "As a team, we're working on it. We're going to get there. We just need to stay together and see how it's all going to work out."

      Friday's starter against the Padres, Robbie Ray, is 1-1 with a 6.30 ERA over 20 innings in four home starts. In three career starts against San Diego, he is 0-3 with a 4.96 ERA.

      Offensively, Paul Goldschmidt has reached base via hit or walk in 14 of his past 15 games vs. Padres at Chase Field.

  • Pirates will see familiar face in Texas
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates haven't played an interleague game at Texas since 2013, but there will be a certain familiarity when Pittsburgh opens a series there Friday. Second-year Rangers manager Jeff Banister spent 29 years with the Pirates as a player and coach, and was Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle's bench coach.

    • "Last time we were there, he was by my side," said Hurdle, who attended the award presentation last winter when Banister was recognized for being the American League manager of the year after leading Texas to the AL West title in his rookie managerial season.

      "We have games to play. It will be, 'Hi.' It's not going to be a kumbaya (moment)," Hurdle said. "I'm proud of him. Once the game starts, we'll let all that stuff go and play some baseball. They've got a fun club. He's having a blast, I'm sure."

      Pittsburgh is coming off of an 8-2 homestand, including a sweep of Arizona that concluded Wednesday with an 8-3 win.

      Pirates scheduled Friday starter Jonathon Niese is 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA in two career starts against Texas, both games coming when he was with the Mets.

      Pittsburgh is 12-10 in road games. The Rangers series starts a seven-game road trip that includes four games at Miami. Two of those games were scheduled to be played in Puerto Rico, but Major League Baseball moved them to Miami out of concerns over the zika virus.

  • Tulowitzki injury opens door for Blue Jays 2B Travis
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    NEW YORK -- Troy Tulowitzki's tight right quadricep created an opening for Devon Travis to be activated about a week earlier than anticipated.

    • It also will alter how the middle infield looks for the Blue Jays once Tulowitzki comes back.

      The new version of Toronto's starting middle infield could make its debut Friday against the Boston Red Sox at the same time the Toronto Raptors are facing the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals a few doors away in downtown Toronto.

      Travis spent 10 months rehabbing from two shoulder injuries and the recovery would have continued a little more. Then Tulowitzki injured his quad stealing second Tuesday and the Blue Jays figured nine rehab games was enough, especially since Travis batted .306 (11-for-36) in those games.

      So far, so good for Travis. He legged out an infield single in Wednesday's 8-4 win at New York and scored on a two-run double by Ryan Goins.

      A day later, it was even better for Travis. He reached on an error by shortstop Didi Gregorius, scored on Edwin Encarnacion's bases-loaded double and poked an RBI single into right field during the ninth inning in Thursday's 3-1 win at New York.

      If getting the insurance run wasn't enough, how about the fact it came off an Aroldis Chapman fastball clocked at 102 mph?

      "I think pretty similar nerves, your heart's beating through your chest, Travis said. "The guy's throwing 102, you better do your best to slow it down. I just did my best to fight and put it into play and thankfully it found a hole.

      Eventually the Blue Jays hope a healthy Tulowitzki combined with a semblance of the player who posted a .859 OPS in 62 games can add some firepower to the middle infield.

      Even if Travis doesn't have the same OPS, it figures to get better. Before Travis was activated, Toronto second basemen had the worst OPS in the American League.

      "Hopefully he looks good and is swinging it because he's got a chance to be a good hitter in this league for a while, at least from what we saw last year," Toronto manager John Gibbons said Wednesday.

      Assuming Travis gets through the rest of the year healthy, it could mean a trip to Triple-A Buffalo for Goins. When Travis scored on the double Wednesday, it ended an 0-for-15 stretch for Goins, who also has gone hitless in stretches of 18 and 21 at-bats. Overall, he has nine hits in his last 99 at-bats and is batting .151 (18-for-119).

      Goins would seem likely to be the odd man out in the middle infield because of Darwin Barney's presence. Barney started at shortstop for Tulowitzki Thursday and is batting .301 (22-for-73) in 28 games.

  • Royals' Moustakas has torn ACL
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Mike Moustakas likely won't play again this season for the Kansas City Royals.

    • A MRI detected Moustakas has a torn right anterior cruciate ligament and was placed on the disabled list Thursday.

      The Royals-Chicago White Sox game was rained out Thursday night with no makeup date announced.

      Moustakas suffered the injury in a collision with teammate Alex Gordon on Sunday while both were chasing a foul ball in Chicago.

      Gordon suffered a broken right wrist, while the original diagnosis by Royals trainer Nick Kenney was Moustakas had a knee contusion. A MRI detected the ACL tear, which is likely season ending.

      "Yeah, probably," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "You never want to see a play that takes out two of your All-Star players: one for the month and the other for the rest of the season. It happens, you have to deal with it and you've got to move on."

      When the Royals tested Moustakas' knee during drills in Minnesota, warning bells sounded.

      "He started doing side-to-side agility stuff and it (knee) was very, very unstable," Yost said. "Nick then took him for a MRI (in Minnesota) and it showed a defect in his ACL, but it was still puzzling the doctors because it wasn't completely loose."

      The Royals decided to have team physician Dr. Vincent Key do a MRI when the club returned to Kansas City.

      "Dr. Key (Vincent Key, head Royals physician) examined him late last night and said that it is definitely something that needs to be taken care of," Yost said.

      "That" would be surgery.

      "He's going to go for a second opinion, which is normal for everything we do now days on surgical procedure type stuff," Yost said.

      Surgery, however, is the likeliest avenue.

      "Obviously, it's looking more like that, but you hate to jump the gun on that," Royals general manager Dayton Moore said. "You need to just let it take its course, get second opinions go from there and see what happens."

      Moustakas, a 2015 All-Star, had just come off the disabled list Saturday, missing three weeks with a fractured left thumb. He hit .240 with seven home runs and 13 RBIs in 27 games.

      "It's disappointing," Moustakas said. "It's just one of those things that happen in sports. You can't control everything. Me and Gordo (Gordon) are going out trying to make a play and unfortunately we both got hurt. That's just part of sports.

      "I didn't feel too good when I got up. I think I was a little more concerned about Gordo than myself. Gordo hit his head pretty good on that tarp. I thought I just clicked my knee with his and just a little bit of bruise. I thought I'd be OK. And then I end up getting the MRI and got some pretty bad news."

      Cheslor Cuthbert, who is hitting .237 with three doubles, one home run and three RBIs in 15 games, will get the lion's share of playing time at third base in Moustakas' absence.

      "Moose is going to come back fine from this," Yost said. "He's going to be strong. It's going to give Cheslor a chance. You just deal with it. As a group we've got to find ways to pick up Moose's production. I'm confident we can do that."

      Outfielder Brett Eibner, a 2010 second-round pick out of Arkansas, was called up from Triple-A Omaha to take Moustakas' roster spot. Eibner, 27, hit .309 with 10 home runs and a .948 OPS in 41 games in the Pacific Coast League.

      With Gordon and Moustakas out, the defending World Series champion Royals have two huge holes to fill. While they hope to do that internally, no doubt Moore will be looking outside to see what is available.

      "It's very challenging to replace not only the production of Alex Gordon and Mike Moustakas, but also the presence in our lineup, offensively, defensively, in the clubhouse," Moore said "They are a crucial part of this team. They have been very impactful in a positive way for our success.

      "But we also are excited and energized that we have players like Cheslor Cuthbert, Whit Merrifield and Brett Eibner, who has been performing very well in Triple-A. We're looking forward to them coming up and being productive."

  • Rangers' Odor
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    Texas Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor will have to sit out one fewer game after Major League Baseball reduced his eight-game suspension to seven on Thursday.

    • Odor had punched Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista on the jaw after Bautista slid hard at second base trying to break up a double play during a May 15 game.

      Both teams rushed the field and 14 players and staff members were subject to disciplinary action as a result of the eighth-inning melee. Eight were ejected.

      The 22-year-old Odor appealed the suspension to MLB executive vice president McHale on Tuesday.

      "I think it's over. It's in the past," Odor said.

      Blue Jays manager John Gibbons served a three-game suspension and Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus was suspended for one game.

  • Royals-White Sox washed out
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Heavy thunderstorms and an unfavorable weather forecast caused the Chicago White Sox-Kansas City Royals game to be postponed Thursday night about an hour before the first pitch.

    • The game has not been rescheduled, but it will not be made up during the four-game weekend series turned into three games by the rainout.

      Thursday's scheduled starters, White Sox right-hander Miguel Gonzalez and Royals left-hander Danny Duffy, will pitch Friday.

      It will be Duffy's third start this year. His pitch count will be 80 after beginning the season in the bullpen.

  • MLB notebook: Braves OF Olivera draws 82-game suspension
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    Atlanta Braves outfielder Hector Olivera was suspended for 82 games on Thursday by Major League Baseball after violating its domestic violence policy.

    • Olivera was the third player punished under MLB's policy and received the longest suspension by far. He was arrested in April after an incident involving a woman in Arlington, Va., near where the Braves were playing the Washington Nationals.

      There will be no appeal from Olivera. The suspension extends through Aug. 1 without pay.

      Baseball's previous suspensions under its domestic violence policy included 30 games for New York Yankees reliever Aroldis Chapman and 51 games for Colorado Rockies shortstop Jose Reyes at the start of the 2016 season.

      The 31-year-old Olivera has not played since April while on paid administrative leave after he was charged with misdemeanor assault and battery for his alleged actions at a hotel.

      --The Kansas City Royals placed third baseman Mike Moustakas on the 15-day disabled list with a torn ACL in his right knee that could end his season.

      Outfielder Brett Eibner was recalled from Triple-A Omaha to take his roster spot.

      Moustakas injured the knee on Sunday during a collision with outfielder Alex Gordon while trying to catch a foul popup in a game against the Chicago White Sox. He had missed the last three games before going on the DL.

      Gordon broke a bone in his right wrist on the same play and was placed on the DL on Monday. He could be sidelined for three to four weeks.

      --The New York Yankees activated designated hitter Alex Rodriguez from the 15-day disabled list before Thursday's game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Yankee Stadium.

      Rodriguez, who was batting fifth in the lineup, had been on a minor league rehab assignment while rehabbing from a hamstring injury. He hit a home run Wednesday night for Trenton and was 3-for-6 in two games with the Thunder.

      In other moves, the Yankees placed left-hander Chasen Shreve on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained AC joint in his left shoulder and optioned infielder Rob Refsnyder to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The team also signed left-hander Richard Bleier to a major league contract and elevated him to the 25-man roster from Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

      --Dodgers left-hander Julio Urias, one of baseball's top prospects, will be in the big leagues Friday.

      The 19-year-old Urias -- ranked the No. 2 overall prospect according to MLB.com -- more than earned the promotion with his production for the Dodgers' Triple-A affiliate in Oklahoma City, where he is 4-1 with a 1.10 ERA and 44 strikeouts in 41 innings.

      Urias, a starter by trade, would be the first 19-year-old to start a game since the Mariners handed Felix Hernandez the ball for his first career start in 2005. Urias is expected to start Friday night against the New York Mets.

      --St. Louis Cardinals infielder Matt Carpenter was placed on the paternity list and the team recalled utility infielder Greg Garcia from Triple-A Memphis

      Carpenter and his wife are expecting their first child. He can be replaced on the roster for up to three days.

      Carpenter, 30, is batting .250 with nine home runs, 11 doubles and 32 RBIs.

      --Major League Baseball ruled Thursday that the San Diego Padres didn't have "malicious intentions" in a recent incident in which the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus was unable to sing the national anthem.

      The chorus group was slated to sing the anthem prior to a May 21 contest. But a recording mix-up led to a voice of a woman signing the anthem instead of the men's group.

      MLB stated that the Padres' attempts to remedy the situation -- including inviting the group to perform again -- "are appropriate." The Padres have previously apologized publicly for the mistake.

  • Knee injury could be season-ending for Royals' Moustakas
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    The Kansas City Royals placed third baseman Mike Moustakas on the 15-day disabled list Thursday with a torn ACL in his right knee that could end his season.

    • Outfielder Brett Eibner was recalled from Triple-A Omaha to take his roster spot.

      Moustakas injured the knee on Sunday during a collision with outfielder Alex Gordon while trying to catch a foul popup in a game against the Chicago White Sox. He had missed the last three games before going on the DL.

      Gordon broke a bone in his right wrist on the same play and was placed on the DL on Monday. He could be sidelined for three to four weeks.

      Moustakas had just returned from a stay on the 15-day disabled list after recovering from a small fracture in his left thumb. He is hitting .240 with seven home runs and 13 RBIs this season.

  • Braves' Olivera draws 82-game suspension
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    Atlanta Braves outfielder Hector Olivera was suspended for 82 games on Thursday by Major League Baseball after violating its domestic violence policy.

    • Olivera was the third player punished under MLB's policy and received the longest suspension by far. He was arrested in April after an incident involving a woman in Arlington, Va., near where the Braves were playing the Washington Nationals.

      There will be no appeal from Olivera. The suspension extends through Aug. 1 without pay.

      Baseball's previous suspensions under its domestic violence policy included 30 games for New York Yankees reliever Aroldis Chapman and 51 games for Colorado Rockies shortstop Jose Reyes at the start of the 2016 season.

      "My office has completed its investigation into the allegation that Hector Olivera violated Major League Baseball's Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Policy on April 13, 2016," commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. "Having reviewed all of the available evidence, I have concluded that Mr. Olivera violated the policy and should be subject to discipline in the form of an unpaid suspension that will expire on August 1.

      "Mr. Olivera has also agreed to make a significant charitable contribution to one or more organizations focused on preventing and treating survivors of domestic violence."

      The 31-year-old Olivera has not played since April while on paid administrative leave after he was charged with misdemeanor assault and battery for his alleged actions at a hotel.

      "The Braves fully support Major League Baseball's decision regarding Hector Olivera," the team said in a statement. "The club will have no further comment on the matter at this time."

      Olivera was expected to be the Braves' regular left fielder this season but played in only five games before the incident. He is in the second year of a six-year, $62.5 million contract.

  • MLB backs Padres in anthem controversy
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    Major League Baseball ruled Thursday that the San Diego Padres didn't have "malicious intentions" in a recent incident in which the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus was unable to sing the national anthem.

    • The chorus group was slated to sing the anthem prior to a May 21 contest. But a recording mix-up led to a voice of a woman signing the anthem instead of the men's group.

      "The Department of Investigations has concluded that the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus has performed the Star-Spangled Banner multiple times before a Padres game," MLB said in a statement. "That Saturday's regrettable situation was a product of human error; that the situation was exacerbated by the fact that the lead entertainment supervisor was involved in a car accident on Friday night and thus was unable to work on Saturday and handle his typical responsibilities; that employees involved in the matter were handling new duties with which they were insufficiently familiar; and that the employees involved had no malicious intentions and, in fact, universally relayed contrition for how the incident unfolded and the adverse impression that it created."

      MLB stated that the Padres' attempts to remedy the situation -- including inviting the group to perform again -- "are appropriate."

      The Padres have previously apologized publicly for the mistake.

  • Yankees get DH Rodriguez back
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, May 26, 2016

    The New York Yankees activated designated hitter Alex Rodriguez from the 15-day disabled list before Thursday's game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Yankee Stadium.

    • Rodriguez, who was batting fifth in the lineup, had been on a minor league rehab assignment while rehabbing from a hamstring injury. He hit a home run Wednesday night for Trenton and was 3-for-6 in two games with the Thunder.

      In other moves, the Yankees placed left-hander Chasen Shreve on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained AC joint in his left shoulder and optioned infielder Rob Refsnyder to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The team also signed left-hander Richard Bleier to a major league contract and elevated him to the 25-man roster from Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

      Shrove, who experienced recent shoulder soreness, has a 1-1 record with a 5.19 ERA in 19 outings this year. He worked the eighth inning in the Yankees' 8-4 loss to Toronto on Wednesday night, giving up two homers and three runs.

      Refsnyder played in one game was with the Yankees and had a two-run double last Saturday in Oakland against the Athletics.

      Bleier reached the major leagues for the first time in a ninth-year professional career. He is 2-2 with a 2.57 ERA this season in six games with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.