BASE­BALL In­di­ans equal AL record with 20th straight win


The Cleve­land In­di­ans share a record with a team cel­e­brated by Hol­ly­wood. “Money­ball” has its se­quel. Fol­low­ing a fa­mil­iar script of scor­ing first, play­ing strong de­fense and rid­ing dom­i­nant pitch­ing, the In­di­ans ex­tended their win­ning streak to 20 games and matched the AL mark held by the 2002 Oak­land Ath­let­ics, beat­ing the Detroit Tigers 2-0 on Tues­day night. Cleve­land’s streak, which be­gan on Aug. 24 in Bos­ton, is tied for the ma­jors’ sec­ond-long­est in 82 years - and the In­di­ans show no signs of stop­ping. Corey Klu­ber (16-4) strength­ened his Cy Young Award case with a four-hit­ter as Cleve­land joined the 2002 A’s, 1935 Chicago Cubs (21) and 1916 New York Gi­ants (26) as the only teams since 1900 to win at least 20 in a row. Francisco Lin­dor home­red lead­ing off the first in­ning against Matthew Boyd (5-10), and Klu­ber sealed win No. 20 - and Cleve­land’s sev­enth shutout dur­ing the streak - by get­ting Miguel Cabr­era on an easy grounder to third.

Clay­ton Ker­shaw pitched Los An­ge­les to its first win in nearly two weeks, help­ing the Dodgers clinch a play­off berth by beat­ing San Francisco to snap an 11-game los­ing streak that was the club’s worst since mov­ing to the West Coast in 1958. The Dodgers’ slide was their long­est in 25 years, top­ping 10-game skids in Los An­ge­les dur­ing the 1961 and 1992 sea­sons. The 1944 Brook­lyn team lost 16 straight games. De­spite the re­cent tail­spin, Los An­ge­les still owns the best record in the ma­jors at 93-52. The NL West lead­ers won for only the sec­ond time in 18 games and se­cured at least the sec­ond NL wild card, join­ing the NL East cham­pion Wash­ing­ton Na­tion­als as the only teams to punch their post­sea­son tick­ets so far. Ker­shaw (17-3) went six in­nings and tied Mil­wau­kee’s Zach Davies for the ma­jor league lead in wins. Ken­ley Jansen got four outs for his 37th save but al­lowed three straight sin­gles with one out in the ninth to face a bases-loaded jam. He struck out Buster Posey and Nick Hund­ley to end it. Justin Turner hit a key RBI dou­ble in the eighth and Chase Ut­ley home­red lead­ing off the fourth, splash­ing into the wa­ter of McCovey Cove be­yond the right-field wall for the first time in his ca­reer. Johnny Cueto (7-8) struck out eight over 3 2/3 in­nings for the Gi­ants. He al­lowed four runs and six hits with four walks in his third start since com­ing off the dis­abled list.

Eric Thames hit his 29th home run, Domingo San­tana went 3 for 4 with two RBIs and Mil­wau­kee beat Pitts­burgh. The Brew­ers pulled within two games of the NL Cen­tral-lead­ing Chicago Cubs who were play­ing the New York Mets. Ger­rit Cole (11-10) took his first loss in 10 road starts since the At­lanta Braves beat him 5-2 on May 22. He slipped to 8-1 away from PNC Park over that stretch af­ter al­low­ing five runs and seven hits in six in­nings. He tied his sea­son­high with 10 strike­outs in his fifth start against Mil­wau­kee this sea­son. Man­ager Craig Coun­sell turned to the bullpen to pro­tect the 5-2 lead. Jeremy Jef­fress, Oliver Drake, Jared Hughes, An­thony Swarzak and Josh Hader each turned in a score­less in­ning. Jef­fress (3 -0) was the pitcher of record. Corey Knebel pitched the ninth for his 35th save in 40 chances.

Mookie Betts hit two home runs and a tworun triple, and Bos­ton rolled past Oak­land. The Red Sox, win­ners of five of their last six, pushed their Amer­i­can League East lead back to four games over the Yan­kees fol­low­ing New York’s loss to 2-1 loss to Tampa Bay. Betts went 3 for 5 with six RBIs. He’s driven in three runs or more in a team-high 11 games. The loss snaps a fiveg­ame win streak for the A’s. They man­aged just one run and one hit off Ed­uardo Ro­driguez (5-5), who struck out nine over six in­nings. Sean Manaea (10-10) was pulled af­ter giv­ing up seven earned runs on 11 hits in 3 2/3 in­nings.

Fred­die Free­man hit a three-run home run off Gio Gon­za­lez and Julio Te­heran threw seven shutout in­nings as At­lanta cruised past Wash­ing­ton. Gon­za­lez (14-7) al­lowed five earned runs and seven hits in five in­nings and struck out eight. The left-han­der did guar­an­tee his $12 mil­lion op­tion for next sea­son with his first out of the game as he reached 180 in­nings this sea­son. The Na­tion­als, who clinched the di­vi­sion Sun­day when the Braves came back to beat the Mi­ami in ex­tra in­nings, lost for just the sec­ond time in eight games. This loss kept them from clos­ing the gap on the Los An­ge­les Dodgers for the best record in base­ball and home-field ad­van­tage through­out the play­offs. Te­heran (11-11) al­lowed seven hits, struck out five and walked two.

Richard Urena sin­gled home the win­ning run in the ninth in­ning and Toronto handed slump­ing Bal­ti­more its sixth straight loss. Fac­ing Ori­oles closer Zach Brit­ton (2-1), who had recorded the fi­nal out of the eighth, Kevin Pil­lar drew a lead­off walk in the ninth and went to third on Teoscar Her­nan­dez’s sin­gle. One out later, Pil­lar scored when Luke Maile sin­gled off the glove of third base­man Manny Machado. Urena fol­lowed with a sin­gle to cen­ter. Dar­win Bar­ney raced around from sec­ond and slid home safely ahead of the throw from Adam Jones. Blue Jays left-han­der Tim Mayza (1-0) got one out for his first ca­reer win. Tim Beck­ham home­red for the Ori­oles.

Adeiny Hechavar­ria hit a tiebreak­ing home run in the eighth in­ning off Sonny Gray and Tampa Bay, play­ing as the home team in a se­ries re­lo­cated to Citi Field be­cause of Hur­ri­cane Irma, beat the Yan­kees. Tampa Bay has split the first two games of the set held at the home of the New York Mets. The Rays will fly back to Florida im­me­di­ately af­ter Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon’s game for first­hand looks at the storm dam­age. No word yet from MLB if Bos­ton and Tampa Bay will play at Trop­i­cana Field on Fri­day night as sched­uled - the Rays ex­pect to host the three-game set, but it could be re­con­fig­ured to give them an ex­tra day off to han­dle per­sonal mat­ters. Tommy Hunter (3-5) pitched one in­ning to give Tampa Bay, on the fringe of the AL wild-card race, its sec­ond win in six games. Alex Colome closed for his 44th save in 49 chances. Gray (9-10) again pitched well but wound up with a loss. The Yan­kees, who hold the top AL wild-card spot, have dropped just three of their last 10.

Bran­don Moss hit a grand slam in the first in­ning for his third con­sec­u­tive game with a homer, pow­er­ing Kansas City past Chicago. Scott Alexan­der worked out of a ninth-in­ning jam for his fourth save in six chances. He yielded a dou­ble to Adam En­gel and a sin­gle to Yolmer Sanchez to lead off the ninth. He struck out Yoan Mon­cada, re­tired Jose Abreu on a pop to Whit Mer­ri­field and got pinch hit­ter Matt David­son on a grounder to end the game. White Sox rookie Dy­lan Covey (0-5) walked the bases loaded be­fore Moss drove a full-count fast­ball to right­cen­ter. It was Moss’s fourth ca­reer grand slam and his first since July 24, 2014. He has nine RBIs in his past three games. Sam Gav­iglio (4-5) picked up his first Roy­als vic­tory in his sec­ond start af­ter be­ing picked up on waivers Sept. 1 from Seat­tle.

Justin Ver­lan­der pitched eight in­nings of one­hit ball in a stel­lar sec­ond start for Hous­ton, and the Astros snapped their four-game skid. Yuli Gur­riel’s sec­ond-in­ning sin­gle drove in the only run for the Astros (87-57), who low­ered their magic num­ber for clinch­ing the AL West ti­tle to five by blank­ing the sec­ond-place An­gels (73-71). Ver­lan­der (12-8) struck out nine and walked one in an­other over­pow­er­ing per­for­mance for his new team. The star right-han­der held the An­gels with­out a hit af­ter Bran­don Phillips’ lead­off dou­ble in the first, al­low­ing only two more baserun­ners. Ver­lan­der pitched six in­nings of one-run ball in Seat­tle dur­ing his Astros de­but last week, and he looks ex­actly like the stop­per Hous­ton wanted for the pen­nant race. Bos­ton Yan­kees Tampa Bay Bal­ti­more Toronto

Nick Wil­liams hit a walk-off, two-out dou­ble in the bot­tom of the 15th in­ning, scor­ing Aaron Altherr as Philadel­phia ral­lied for the win. In­nings-wise, it was the long­est game of the sea­son for the Phillies and sec­ond-long­est for the Mar­lins. Wil­liams had three hits and reached base five times in the marathon game. He has 47 RBIs since be­ing called up the week be­fore the All-Star break. The Phillies cel­e­brated with Wil­liams, but thought they ac­tu­ally had a walkoff win in the bot­tom of the ninth on an RBI sin­gle by pinch-hit­ter Hyun-Soo Kim, but while the Phillies mobbed Kim at first base, rip­ping off his jersey and dous­ing him with wa­ter, Ga­torade and sun­flower seeds, the Mar­lins chal­lenged the play at the plate. Af­ter a lengthy re­view, it ap­peared catcher J.T. Real­muto’s glove nicked the fin­ger of a slid­ing Ce­sar Her­nan­dez an in­stant be­fore it touched the plate and the call on the field was over­turned, and af­ter the grounds crew had to clean up the mess around first base, Odubel Her­rera struck out, send­ing the game to ex­tra in­nings.

Jason Cas­tro home­red twice and Brian Dozier was a dou­ble from the cy­cle as Min­nesota routed San Diego. The Twins hit a sea­son-high seven home runs, set­ting a Tar­get Field record for most homers in a game, to back an­other strong start from Kyle Gib­son. Ac­cord­ing to the Elias Sports Bu­reau, the Twins set a ma­jor league record by home­r­ing in each of the first seven in­nings with Jorge Polanco, Ed­die Rosario, Ed­uardo Es­co­bar and Ken­nys Var­gas adding to the to­tal. Gib­son (10-10) pitched six in­nings with four hits and six strike­outs. He has al­lowed two runs or fewer in five straight starts for Min­nesota, which main­tained its hold on the sec­ond wild card spot in the Amer­i­can League.

Ben Gamel and Kyle Sea­ger both hit three­run homers to lead Seat­tle past Texas in a matchup of wild card hope­fuls. Texas (72-72) and Seat­tle (72-73) have split the first two games of their four-game se­ries.

The Rangers dropped three games be­hind Min­nesota for the Amer­i­can League’s sec­ond wild card, while the Mariners re­mained 3 1/2 back af­ter the Twins also won. Sea­ger’s homer in the third made it 7-1 and chased Miguel Gon­za­lez (7-11), who made his sec­ond start over­all and first at home for the Rangers since they ac­quired him in an Aug. 31 trade with the Chicago White Sox. Gon­za­lez al­lowed seven runs and seven hits while record­ing only seven outs. Marco Gon­za­les (1-1), traded from St. Louis to Seat­tle on July 21, got his first vic­tory in six starts for the Mariners. The lefty struck out six while al­low­ing three runs over five in­nings, his long­est out­ing this sea­son.

Paul DeJong home­red, Yadier Molina drove in three runs and streak­ing St Louis out­slugged Cincin­nati. The Car­di­nals have won four straight and six of their last seven to stay two games be­hind the first-place Chicago Cubs in the NL Cen­tral. Molina’s two-out, two-run dou­ble in the bot­tom of the first gave the Car­di­nals a 2-1 lead. He drove in his 10th run over his past three games with a sin­gle in the sixth. Molina leads the team with 75 RBIs. Matt Car­pen­ter walked a ca­reer-best four times, dou­bled in a run and scored twice. Lance Lynn (11-7) al­lowed four runs, three earned, on six hits in five in­nings. Robert Stephen­son (4-5) was pulled af­ter three in­nings, the short­est ca­reer out­ing for the Reds rookie. He al­lowed six runs, four earned, and all three of his walks scored.

Kris Bryant hit a three-run homer, Jose Quin­tana pitched seven ef­fec­tive in­nings and Chicago got a sorely needed vic­tory. Quin­tana (10-11) also helped him­self at the plate with a pair of sac­ri­fices, in­clud­ing a per­fectly placed safety squeeze that drove in Kyle Sch­war­ber in the fourth. Quin­tana got an­other bunt down in the sixth, send­ing Javier Baez to third ahead of Ben Zo­brist’s RBI sin­gle. Chicago had lost three in a row and six of eight, mak­ing for a crowded race at the top of the NL Cen­tral. St. Louis and Mil­wau­kee also won Tues­day night, so the Cubs re­mained two games ahead of the Car­di­nals and 2 1/2 games bet­ter than the third-place Brew­ers.

Car­los Gon­za­lez, heat­ing up for the stretch run af­ter a sub­par sea­son at the plate, home­red twice and Colorado won its sixth in a row. Gon­za­lez drove in all four Colorado runs in his first mul­ti­homer game since Aug. 16 last year and is bat­ting .451 (14 for 31) in Septem­ber. Jon Gray (8-4) gave up two runs and scat­tered seven hits over seven solid in­nings, strik­ing out 10 with no walks and a hit bat­ter for the Rock­ies, who won their eighth straight road game to pull within three games of Ari­zona for the first NL wild card. Gray matched the sea­son high for strike­outs he set in a win at Ari­zona on June 30. Chris Rusin got two outs for his sec­ond save. — AP

SAN FRANCISCO: Clay­ton Ker­shaw #22 of the Los An­ge­les Dodgers slides safely past Orlando Cal­ixte #46 of the San Francisco Gi­ants at third base on a ball hit by Chris Tay­lor #3 in the fourth in­ning at AT&T Park on Tues­day in San Francisco, Cal­i­for­nia. — AFP

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