A’s beat Rangers to again tie up lead in AL West
OAKLAND, California (AP) — Oakland’s Jarrod Parker pitched his way into the club record books and helped the Athletics to an 11-4 win over Texas on Wednesday that once again tied the two teams together atop the American League West division.
With 23 regular-season games to go, there is nothing to separate the two teams as the surging A’s refuse to give way in the season-long fight.
In other key AL games, Boston’s David Ortiz brought up a personal milestone as the Red Sox piled on an extraordinary 20 runs to rout Central leader Detroit, Cleveland beat Baltimore in a clash of two teams whose playoff hopes are going in opposite directions, and Tampa Bay helped its postseason chances by beating the Los Angeles Angels.
In the National League, St. Louis won a 16-inning epic against Cincinnati to open a gap in the tight Central race, with leader Pittsburgh losing to Milwaukee, while runaway East and West leaders Atlanta and the Los Angeles Dodgers both suffered defeats.
Oakland’s Parker (11-6) allowed two runs in six innings to extend his unbeaten streak to 18 straight starts, eclipsing Catfish Hunter’s Oakland mark set in 1973.
Brandon Moss, Daric Barton and Coco Crisp each hit two-run homers and Josh Donaldson added a three-run drive for Oakland.
Boston’s David Ortiz hit two of Boston’s club-record-equaling eight homers and also doubled to bring up his 2,000th career hit as the Red Sox romped to a 20-4 win over Detroit.
Will Middlebrooks hit a grand slam, Ortiz had an RBI double to reach the milestone and Daniel Nava added a two-run homer when Boston pulled away with an eight-run sixth inning.
Ortiz homered again in the five-run seventh — the 427th of his career to move past Billy Williams and into 47th on baseball’s all-time home run list.
AL East-leading Boston has won nine of 11, taking two out of three from the Central-leading Tigers to hold onto the best record in the league.
Cleveland edged within 6-1/2 games of Detroit by beating Baltimore 6-4, leaving the Orioles a fading 9-1/2 games off Boston and four games off the second wild-card berth, half a game behind the Indians.
The Indians were helped in their cause by a good-luck chicken which was taken onto the field for batting practice.
Aside from the propitious poultry, Cleveland was helped by a pair of RBIs from both Yan Gomes and Ryan Raburn.
Tampa Bay rookie Wil Myers hit two homers to power the Rays to a 3-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels, keeping pace in the AL wild-card race.
Myers had never faced Jered Weaver (9-8), but he homered on the first pitch he saw from the Angels’ longtime ace in the second inning. He homered again in the seventh on Weaver’s first pitch after a mound visit, driving a two-run shot beyond left field.
St. Louis’ Matt Adams hit his second homer of the game to give the Cardinals a 5-4 win over Cincinnati in 16 innings, protecting the Cardinals’ hold on second place in the NL Central.
Adams broke an 0-for-17 slump by connecting in the 14th. After St. Louis let that lead get away, he homered again off Logan Ondrusek (3-1), ending the Reds’ longest game of the season.
The Cardinals had dropped the first two games in the series, letting the Reds get within a game and a half for second place but now pushed that out to 2-1/2 games with the series closer on Thursday.
St. Louis also closed within a game of division leader Pittsburgh, which was beaten 9-3 by Milwaukee.
Pirates ace Francisco Liriano (15-7), who had allowed just five earned runs in his previous four starts, was rocked for seven runs in his three innings, with two walks and two costly wild pitches.
The Brewers tagged Liriano for five runs on five hits in the third inning to open a 7-2 lead.
Pittsburgh twice left the bases loaded and stranded 12 runners.
Colorado ended the Los Angeles Dodgers’ six-game winning streak with a 7-5 victory.
Jorge De La Rosa (16-6) allowed two runs in six innings to match his career high for wins in a season and tying Washington’s Jordan Zimmermann for most in the National League.
Veteran Todd Helton homered for the Rockies.
New York’s Lucas Duda had three hits, including a home run, and Andrew Brown added a towering two-run shot to lead the Mets to a 5-2 win over Atlanta.
Mets starter Dillon Gee (11-9) cruised after he was given a 5-0 lead in the third, and allowed one run in seven innings.
Seattle’s Kendrys Morales hit a two-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning to give the Mariners a 6-4 win over Kansas City.
Arizona’s Willie Bloomquist lined his third hit for a run-scoring single in the 10th inning which lifted the Diamondbacks to a 4-3 win over Toronto, avoiding a sweep.
Washington’s Jordan Zimmermann became the National League’s first 16-game winner, pitching seven solid innings to lead the Nationals past Philadelphia 3-2.
New York’s struggling ace C.C. Sabathia pitched effectively into the eighth inning. steering the Yankees to a 6-5 win over the Chicago White Sox.
San Francisco’s Pablo Sandoval hit three homers and drove in six runs, leading a rare power show by the Giants in a 13-5 win over San Diego.
Chicago’s Donnie Murphy homered to cap a four-run rally in the seventh inning which boosted the Cubs to a 9-7 victory over Miami.
Houston’s Trevor Crowe hit an RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning that gave the Astros a 6-5 win over Minnesota.