Tanaka fans 15 as Yankees shut out Jays
NEW YORK — Masahiro Tanaka struck out 15 over seven innings, his highest total since coming to the major leagues, and the playoffbound New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-0 Friday to remain on the edge of contention in the AL East.
New York, already assured no worse than hosting a wild card game against Minnesota, began the day three games behind AL Eastleading Boston with three games left.
The Yankees could take the division only by beating the Blue Jays both Saturday and Sunday, having Boston lose three in a row to Houston and then defeating the Red Sox in a tiebreaker game Monday at Yankee Stadium.
Astros 3, Red Sox 2: Boston once again failed to clinch the AL East title as Alex Bregman homered and drove in three runs, giving visiting Houston a victory.
The Red Sox’s magic number remained at 1 to close out the New York Yankees. Boston leads the Yankees by two games — both teams have two games left and already are assured playoff spots.
The AL West champion Astros won their fifth straight game and posted their 100th victory of the season.
Indians 10, White Sox 1: Edwin Encarnacion had a three-run double, and Jay Bruce and Jose Ramirez drove in two runs apiece, leading AL Central champion Cleveland over visiting Chicago.
Cleveland maintained its one-game lead — and owns the tiebreaker — over Houston for the best record in the AL with two games remaining. The top seed will play the winner of the wild card game between the Yankees and Twins in the division series.
The Indians’ 101 victories are the second most in franchise history.
Cubs 5, Reds 4: Ian Happ hit a three-run homer with two outs in the eighth inning, and Chicago won for the 14th time in 17 games, beating visiting Cincinnati.
With a second straight NL Central title in hand and their sights set on another World Series championship, the Cubs held sluggers Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant out of the lineup.
Nationals 6, Pirates 1: Stephen Strasburg pitched 7ª shutout innings and Ryan Zimmerman (U.Va.) homered twice to help Washington beat visiting Pittsburgh.
Strasburg gave up two hits and two walks while striking out eight. He’s 5-1 with a 0.84 ERA since returning from the disabled list on Aug. 19. Strasburg (15-4) retired the first 14 batters.
Rays 7, Orioles 0: Evan Longoria and Logan Morrison homered and Tampa Bay clinched third place in the AL East with a victory over visiting Baltimore.
Longoria led off the fifth with his 20th homer off Baltimore starter Wade Miley, marking Longoria’s fifth straight 20-homer season and the ninth of his 10-year career.