MLB Wrap: Acuña becomes first 40-70 player as Braves beat Cubs 6-5 in 10 innings
ATLANTA (AP) — Ronald Acuña Jr. established the 40-70 club, Ozzie Albies walked him off with a 10th-inning single and the Atlanta Braves dealt the Chicago Cubs another devastating setback by clinching home-field advantage throughout the NL playoffs with a 6-5 victory Wednesday night.
Acuña delivered a run-scoring single that tied the game at 5, then immediately took off for second to swipe his second base of the night and 70th this season. He has 41 homers, extending a historic season that already saw him become the first 40-50 and 40-60 player.
Marcell Ozuna hit a tying homer in the ninth before Acuña and Albies drove home the tying and winning runs in the 10th off Daniel Palencia (5-3).
Albies also homered for the Braves. Jesse Chavez (1-0) earned the win.
Darius Vines made his second big league start for the injury plagued Braves, who are down two starting pitchers in the final days of the regular season. He went six innings, surrendering four hits and two earned runs.
ORIOLES 5, NATIONALS 1
BALTIMORE (AP) — Adley Rutschman homered and drove in three runs, Grayson Rodriguez pitched into the sixth inning and the Baltimore Orioles lowered their magic number to one in the AL East with a 5-1 victory over the Washington Nationals on Wednesday night.
The Orioles would have clinched the division with a victory and a loss by second-place Tampa Bay, but the Rays won 5-0 in Boston. Baltimore will try for its first AL East crown since 2014 on Thursday night.
Rutchman hit a two-run homer in the third to open the scoring, and Rodriguez (7-4) allowed a run and six hits in 5 2/3 innings. Baltimore swept the four-game season series against the Nationals, outscoring them 11-1.
Patrick Corbin (10-15) allowed four runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings.
RAYS 5, RED SOX 0
BOSTON (AP) — Tyler Glasnow pitched five scoreless innings in his final start before the postseason, combining with four relievers on a three-hitter and leading Tampa Bay over Boston.
Josh Lowe had three hits, including a home run, and Isaac Paredes also homered for Tampa Bay, which has clinched a wild-card berth.
Glasnow (10-7) allowed two hits, walked one and struck out nine while throwing just 70 pitches to snap a personal two-game losing streak. It was his first scoreless outing since August, and just his second of the season. Andrew Kittredge, Jake Diekman, Chris Devenski and Robert Stephenson each pitched a scoreless inning.
Red Sox starter Brayan Bello (12-11) allowed five runs on nine hits and two walks, striking out three in six innings.
PHILLIES 7, PIRATES 6
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Bryce Harper hit a go-ahead solo homer in the seventh inning as one of the few regulars in Philadelphia’s lineup in a win over Pittsburgh, a day after the Phillies clinched the NL’s top wild-card spot.
Rookie reliever Orion Kerkering struck out two in a scoreless inning of relief and earned the win. Gregory Soto struck out the side in the ninth for this third save.
Connor Joe had four hits for the Pirates.
Phillies designated hitter Kyle Schwarber, third baseman Alec Bohm, catcher J.T. Realmuto and right fielder Nick Castellanos all took the night off.
YANKEES 6, BLUE JAYS 0
TORONTO (AP) — Gerrit Cole pitched a two-hitter to near his second AL ERA title, Aaron Judge homered twice and New York blanked Toronto to ensure they won’t finish with a losing record.
Cole (15-4) faced two batters over minimum, allowing a single and double to Brandon Belt. He struck out five and walked none, throwing 72 of 105 pitches for strikes. Cole finished his season with 222 strikeouts in 209 innings.
Toronto was shut out by the Yankees for the second straight night.
Back in the lineup after a day off Tuesday, Judge hit his 36th and 37th home runs. The reigning AL MVP homered to right field off José Berríos (11-12) in the fourth, then hit a second-deck drive to left off Trevor Richards in the seventh.
TWINS 6, ATHLETICS 4
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Pinch-hitter Trevor Larnach broke an eighth-inning tie with an RBI double and Minnesota rallied to send Oakland to its 110th loss of the season.
After Max Kepler opened the eighth with his fourth hit of the game, Larnach sent a 1-1 pitch from Dany Jiménez off the wall in right field that evaded a leaping Esteury Ruiz. Pinch-runner Andrew Stevenson scored from first. Designated hitter Ryan Jeffers, who hit a tying two-run homer in the sixth, followed with a sacrifice fly that scored Larnach and Minnesota won for the sixth time in seven games.
It was the 41st come-from-behind win of the season for the AL Central-champion Twins (85-73).
The loss dropped the Athletics to 48-110, and Oakland became the first team to lose 110 games since Baltimore and Arizona in 2021. Also, it is the highest number of losses for the A’s since the 1916 Philadelphia A’s set a franchise record by going 36-117.
Minnesota’s Dallas Keuchel (2-1) worked 1 2/3 innings of relief and earned the win. Griffin Jax earned the save.
Jiménez (0-2) allowed two runs on two hits in his inning of work for Oakland, which has lost 11 of 13 games.
DIAMONDBACKS 3, WHITE SOX 0
CHICAGO (AP) — Rookie Brandon Pfaadt pitched shutout ball for the second time in three starts, and Arizona moved closer to an NL wild-card berth by beating Chicago for its eighth win in 10 games.
Corbin Carroll hit a two-run double in a three-run third, giving the rookie 76 RBIs, and Tommy Pham had an RBI single for the Diamondbacks, who were outhit 8-4.
Pfaadt (3-9) scattered five hits, struck out eight and walked none in 5 2/3 innings, and Luis Frias Andrew Saalfrank, Ryan Thompson and Paul Sewald completed the Diamondbacks’ 11th shutout this season. Sewald worked around Lenyn Sosa’s double in the ninth for his 34th save in 39 chances.
In his first start with the White Sox, Luis Patiño (0-1) allowed three runs. three hits and two walks in 2 1/3 innings. The 23-year-old right-hander, acquired from Tampa Bay on Aug. 1, retired his first seven hitters, then allowed the next five to reach base. Chicago was blanked for the 13th time.
METS 11, MARLINS 2 (GAME 1)
MARLINS 4, METS 2 (GAME 2)
NEW YORK (AP) — Jon Berti hit a leadoff homer to complete his cycle for the day and Miami pulled even in the race for the final National League playoff spot, beating New York for a doubleheader split.
Pete Alonso was 4 for 4 with a homer, Francisco Lindor also went deep and drove in four runs, and New York pounded playoff-chasing Miami in the first game of a doubleheader.
Alonso barely missed a tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning of the nightcap when his two-out double caromed off the top of the left-field wall. After an intentional walk to Lindor, left-hander Matt Moore (5-1) retired DJ Stewart on a popup.
Miami loaded the bases against Adam Ottavino (1-7) with nobody out in the ninth on two singles and an intentional walk. Xavier Edwards scored the go-ahead run when Brett Baty flubbed a grounder by pinch-hitter Yuli Gurriel.
Andrew Nardi got three outs for his third save.
In the opener, Alonso scored four times for the first time in his career and finished a triple short of the cycle in busting out of a 5-for-45 slump. He also was hit by a pitch in the eighth.
Braxton Garrett (9-7) was tagged early in a costly loss for the Marlins.
Lindor, Alonso and Mark Vientos each launched a two-run homer to help the Mets build a 6-0 lead for Joey Lucchesi (4-0), who took a shutout into the seventh inning.
GUARDIANS 4, REDS 3
CLEVELAND (AP) — Shane Bieber shut down Cincinnati for six innings and Cleveland sent manager Terry Francona off with a victory in his final home game.
Bieber (6-6) limited the Reds to one run and five hits in just his second start since July 15 — and maybe his last for Cleveland. Cleveland’s Emmanuel Clase worked the ninth for his MLB-best 43rd save.
The Guardians strung together five straight hits in the second inning off Reds starter Andrew Abbott (8-6), who didn’t get out of the third inning. Tyler Freeman and rookie Brayan Rocchio had RBI singles in Cleveland’s second.
Francona was honored before the game with a touching video tribute chronicling his long tenure in Cleveland, a run that actually began in his boyhood as his dad, Tito, played six seasons as an outfielder with the Indians.
The 64-year-old Francona has been slowed by major health issues in recent years, and said he made the decision to step away after a tough, two-month stretch earlier this season.