Soler homers in 5th straight game, Marlins beat Angels 8-5 in 10 innings

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Although the Miami Marlins survived Shohei Ohtani's latest start and traded the lead with Los Angeles down the stretch, they were pretty much out of relief pitchers when they headed into the 10th inning.

Thanks to two big hits and two bad defensive plays by the Angels, the Marlins had just enough pitching to keep up their recent road surge.

Jorge Soler homered in his fifth consecutive game, and pinch-hitter Garrett Cooper had a tiebreaking double during the Marlins' four-run 10th Saturday night in their 8-5 victory over Ohtani and the Angels.

Cooper hit a long fly to left-center off Jaime Barria (1-2), and Mickey Moniak couldn't make the tough catch after sprinting to get under it. Miami scored another run when video review determined catcher Matt Thaiss hadn't touched home plate while turning an inning-ending double play, and Garrett Hampson added a two-run single to punctuate the Marlins' third win in four games.

“It's a testament to what we've been preaching all year,” Cooper said. “We're never out of games. It's a different dynamic this year. It's a different feel.”

Dylan Floro (3-2) pitched the ninth, and Bryan Hoeing finished it despite allowing a run in the 10th for the Marlins, who have beaten the Angels in consecutive games for the first time ever. Floro pitched in his third straight game, and Hoeing appeared in his fourth in a row.

“We were going to be in trouble, honestly, if it got past that inning,” Marlins manager Skip Schumaker said. “I don't know what we would have done.”

Soler’s go-ahead, two-run homer in the seventh was his 17th of the season — second-most in the majors — and 12th in May, tying Miami’s team record for the month. He is one game shy of Giancarlo Stanton’s franchise record of six consecutive games with a homer, set in 2017.

“It's like Barry Bonds right now,” Cooper said. “If I was a betting man, I'd be putting a lot of bets on this guy.”

Gio Urshela hit a tying solo homer in the eighth and added an RBI double and an RBI single for the Angels, who have lost two straight after winning six of seven. Ohtani struck out 10 and gave up one earned run in six innings, but finished May with one victory in five starts.

Angels manager Phil Nevin lamented his team's mistakes, but not Moniak's drop in deep left-center with Mike Trout right next to him.

“Those are two of the best outfielders in the game, so I'm not going to beat on that one," Nevin said. "We made plenty other mistakes that cost us tonight ... and we didn't score enough runs in regulation to get there.”

Ohtani had his fourth 10-strikeout start of the season while yielding six hits, all singles, but the two-way star still struggled with his control at key moments, yielding three walks. He also made a throwing error in the first inning that led to a run.

“He was great,” Nevin said. “Uncharacteristically threw the ball way in the first inning. ... Once in a while, some things are going to happen. I thought he rebounded and he threw the ball very well.”

Ohtani went 0 for 4 at the plate with a walk and his seventh stolen base of the season.

Edward Cabrera pitched four-hit ball into the sixth inning for Miami, but walked four.


Nevin revealed after the game that he didn’t use Matt Moore because the reliever strained an oblique muscle Friday. He is headed to the injured list. The Angels are recalling 22-year-old Ben Joyce — a 6-foot-5 reliever who set a college baseball record last year by throwing a 105-mph fastball — for his major league debut.


Marlins: LHP A.J. Puk threw a 20-pitch bullpen in Anaheim for his next step back from a left elbow injury. He's been out since May 10.

Angels: 3B Anthony Rendon ran sprints to test his injured groin, which has sidelined him for two weeks. He will travel on Los Angeles' upcoming road trip.


Patrick Sandoval (3-3, 3.47 ERA) takes the mound Sunday for Los Angeles in the series finale. Miami's 20-year-old Eury Pérez (1-1, 2.79), the 6-foot-8 rookie, makes his fourth career start after taking his first loss Tuesday in Colorado.


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McMahon's go-ahead homer in 7th lifts Rockies over Mets 10-7

DENVER (AP) — Ryan McMahon hit a go-ahead homer in the seventh inning and the Colorado Rockies outslugged the New York Mets 10-7 on Saturday night after blowing an early six-run lead.

Charlie Blackmon's two-run double in a five-run second helped the Rockies race out to a 6-0 advantage against Justin Verlander after three innings.

Pete Alonso's major league-high 20th homer started New York's comeback in the fourth, and the Mets tied it 6-all when rookie Francisco Álvarez capped a five-run sixth with a three-run homer off reliever Jake Bird.

Starling Marte's two-out RBI single in the seventh put New York in front, but Elias Díaz doubled leading off the bottom half against Jeff Brigham (0-1) and McMahon followed with a two-run shot to right field that traveled a projected 439 feet.

“I felt like I threw my best pitch in a decent spot and I thought McMahon put a good swing on it," Brigham said. "I’m not going to chalk it up to Coors Field. I’m just bummed that the guys fought back and got us a lead and I gave it right back.”

It was McMahon's second home run in two nights. He had gone the previous 27 games without a homer, tied for the third-longest drought of his career.

“After feeling like you haven’t been coming through for the team a lot lately, it’s indescribable coming through for the guys," McMahon said. "That feeling, it’s a really good feeling.”

Jurickson Profar added an RBI triple in the eighth, extending his MLB-best on-base streak to 34 games. He scored on Díaz's single to make it 10-7.

Justin Lawrence (2-2) worked 1 1/3 scoreless innings and Pierce Johnson got three quick outs on six pitches for his 11th save as the teams played through rain late in the game.

“You keep playing, right?” Rockies manager Bud Black said. “You saw the Mets turn the tables on us and then we turned the tables back on them. That was a game a lot of us have seen here. You’ve just got to hang in there, which we did.”

The victory moved Black into a tie with Don Baylor for the second-most wins by a manager in franchise history.

Nolan Jones had two hits and two RBIs in his second game with Colorado since being called up from Triple-A Albuquerque on Friday.

Alonso has homered in seven of his past 11 games. Álvarez also doubled and is batting .478 over his last seven games.

Four of the Mets’ runs were charged to Rockies reliever Brent Suter, who got only two outs after allowing just three earned runs in 31 innings prior to Saturday.

“After we took the lead, the emotions were high, super high,” Álvarez said. “Even when we went back down, the emotions and the momentum still felt high. We felt we could win the game. But it just turned out that we came up a little short.”


Rockies: 1B C.J. Cron (back spasms) fielded grounders and has hit in the batting cage the past two days. He was placed on the 15-day injured list May 15. “He’s getting closer,” Black said. … RHP Nick Mears (left oblique strain) threw a bullpen and will throw again Monday in Arizona.


Mets RHP Tylor Megill (5-3, 4.32 ERA) faces LHP Austin Gomber (4-4, 6.48) in the rubber match of the three-game series Sunday.


Donovan scores on passed ball in 10th, Cardinals beat Guardians 2-1

CLEVELAND (AP) — Brendan Donovan scored on a passed ball in the 10th inning after homering in the second, lifting the St. Louis Cardinals — who had just two hits — to a 2-1 victory over the Cleveland Guardians on Saturday night.

Donovan began the 10th on second as the automatic runner, stole third base and came home when third-string catcher David Fry mishandled a pitch by Nick Sandlin (2-2) to Oscar Mercado.

“Nick made a good pitch, threw a sinker, and I thought I had my glove right there on the dirt,” said Fry, who entered in the eighth after starter Cam Gallagher was lifted for a pinch-hitter. “Unfortunately, it went right under my glove to the backstop.”

St. Louis won for the 14th time in its last 20 games despite managing only two hits against Guardians starter Tanner Bibee and four relievers. The Cardinals didn't get a hit after Alec Burleson singled in the third.

It was only the third time Cleveland lost while allowing two or fewer hits in an extra-inning game. The others were in 1901 and 1977.

Ryan Helsley (3-3) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win and Giovanny Gallegos earned his sixth save with a scoreless 10th. Jack Flaherty matched his longest start of the year with seven innings of one-run ball, striking out four.

Donovan homered to right in the second to put St. Louis ahead 1-0. It was his second home run in four games and the Cardinals’ 41st of the month, four shy of their May franchise record set in 2000.

“You can put Brendan anywhere on the field and he’s going to make plays,” right-hander Flaherty said. “What he did in the 10th inning, he’s special. I love that the guy is on my team. It doesn’t matter what situation you put him in, he’s ready to go at all times.”

The Guardians tied it in the third when Steven Kwan walked, advanced on a wild pitch and came home on a single by José Ramírez. Amed Rosario doubled twice and Josh Naylor and Ramírez had two singles apiece.

Defending AL Central champion Cleveland is 4-4 in extra-inning games, matching Toronto for the most in the majors, and is 13-23 overall since April 16. The Guardians played their league-leading 24th one-run contest, losing for the 15th time.

“When you score one run, I’m not sure I want to sit up here and flex our muscles, but we’re always looking for a reason to be positive,” Cleveland manager Terry Francona said. “But there are things that we did tonight, like allowing a stolen base, when we can’t.”

Bibee went six innings in his sixth big league start, allowing one run on two hits while striking out a season-high nine. The right-hander was victorious in his April 26 debut against Colorado, but is winless with one loss since.

“Obviously, it’s a dream to play in the major leagues, so it’s been good,” Bibee said.

St. Louis loaded the bases in the seventh when James Karinchak entered and walked Nolan Arenado, Willson Contreras and Donovan. Sam Hentges replaced Karinchak and retired the next three batters to keep the game deadlocked.

Cleveland failed to score in the eighth after Ramírez singled and Naylor walked with no outs, but relievers Andre Pallante and Helsley escaped unscathed.

“They’re going to put the ball in play, that’s the type of team Cleveland is, but our defense played well and we made some key pitches,” Flaherty said.

Cardinals designated hitter Nolan Gorman went 0 for 4, ending his on-base streak at 17 games.

The paid attendance of 32,224 was the second largest of the season in Cleveland, trailing the opening day crowd of 34,821 against Seattle on April 7.


Cardinals LHP Steven Matz, who is 0-6 with a 5.72 ERA through 10 starts, will work out of the bullpen until at least next weekend. Matz allowed six runs and a season-high 11 hits over four innings Wednesday at Cincinnati.

“It’s been a grind for me this year,” he acknowledged. “I love starting and I love the routine, but I’ll do whatever I can to help the team. But I want to start.”

Matz has only made 10 relief appearances in his nine-year career, starting 156 games.


Cardinals: OF Tyler O’Neill (lower back strain) has been shut down from baseball activities for the second time since being placed on the injured list on May 5. O’Neill had been expected to begin a minor league rehab assignment late this month.

Guardians: RHP Triston McKenzie (right upper back strain) will make what could be his final rehab start Tuesday for Triple-A Columbus at Iowa. McKenzie has not appeared in a major league game since Oct. 15, 2022 against the Yankees.


Cardinals LHP Jordan Montgomery (2-6, 4.55 ERA) faces Guardians RHP Hunter Gaddis (1-1, 5.26 ERA) in the three-game series finale.


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McGuire's safety squeeze with bases loaded lifts Red Sox over Diamondbacks 2-1

PHOENIX (AP) — The Boston Red Sox pulled out a win on Saturday thanks to a little unorthodox baseball strategy.

Manager Alex Cora enjoyed it, even if he couldn't take credit for it.

Reese McGuire's safety squeeze with the bases loaded brought home Triston Casas, which proved to be the difference as the Red Sox beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 2-1.

“You're going to have to ask Reese — ballplayers making plays," Cora said. “Sometimes they don't feel right, they feel like that's the only way they can drive them in, and they do.”

Boston has won the first two games of the series and will go for a three-game sweep on Sunday.

Kiké Hernández had an RBI single for the Red Sox in the fourth, and their small-ball strategy later in the inning took just about everyone by surprise — including Cora. Batting ninth in the lineup, McGuire came to the plate with the bases loaded and one out, but instead of trying for a big swing that might break the game open, the catcher dropped a nifty sacrifice bunt down the first-base line.

The only play for Diamondbacks lefty Kyle Nelson was to get McGuire at first, with Casas scoring easily for a 2-1 lead.

McGuire said after he fell into an 0-1 hole, he felt his best chance to get a run home was bunting.

“I feel if I can get it down, it's a tough play for the pitcher, especially being left-handed, going to his left and then having to throw across his body,” McGuire said. “It was a good situation.”

Arizona jumped ahead 1-0 in the first on Ketel Marte’s homer down the right-field line. It was his seventh of the season.

Both teams were using a starting pitcher who just came off the injured list. Diamondbacks right-hander Zach Davies (0-1) hadn't appeared in a big league game since April 8 and looked rusty, lasting just 3 1/3 innings. He gave up two runs on five hits and two walks while striking out three.

Boston's Garrett Whitlock (2-2) had been out since April 22. The right-hander fared better than his counterpart, allowing one run and two hits over five innings.

“Garrett was good — changing speeds,” Cora said. “Some swing-and-miss stuff. His cutter was magnificent.”

The Red Sox bullpen was stellar behind Whitlock, throwing four scoreless innings between Kutter Crawford, Chris Martin and Kenley Jansen, who earned his 11th save this season and No. 402 of his career.

The Diamondbacks had just three hits — one after the first inning. Red Sox pitchers didn't allow a walk, retiring 25 of their final 26 batters.

“Couldn't get anything going offensively,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. “It looked like it was going to be a good day at the plate when Ketel hits a solo home run. You feel you're going to bunch together some hits, some runs, and end up running out and winning the ballgame. But their starting pitcher went on lockdown.”


Crawford was taken out of the game after he made a great defensive play in the eighth.

D-backs catcher Gabriel Moreno hit a hard grounder back up the middle that hit Crawford's right ankle and bounced toward the first-base line. Crawford hustled to the ball, picking it up while avoiding Moreno, who was sprinting toward the bag.

Crawford managed to grab the ball and flipped it to Casas at first base for the out.

Crawford was shaken up after the play and after a few warmup pitches, Cora decided to bring in Martin. The Red Sox announced Crawford left with a bruised right ankle, but Cora said postgame that the pitcher shouldn't miss any additional time.


Red Sox: 3B Rafael Devers (calf) was out of the lineup for a second straight game. ... Whitlock was added to the roster from the injured list, and LHP Brennan Bernardino was sent to Triple-A.

Diamondbacks: Davies and RHP Drey Jameson were added to the roster, while RHPs Brandon Pfaadt and Luis Frías were demoted to Triple-A.


The teams wrap up their three-game set on Sunday. The D-backs send RHP Merrill Kelly (5-3, 2.98 ERA) to the mound against RHP Tanner Houck (3-3, 4.99).


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Jonathan India homers twice as Cincinnati Reds beat Chicago Cubs 8-5

CHICAGO (AP) — Jonathan India homered twice and drove in five runs, helping the Cincinnati Reds beat the struggling Chicago Cubs 8-5 on Saturday night.

TJ Friedl and rookie Matt McLain each had two hits and scored two runs as Cincinnati won for the fourth time in six games. Tyler Stephenson also had two hits.

Buck Farmer (1-3) got five outs for the win, and Alexis Díaz worked a shaky ninth for his 11th save. Farmer, Ian Gibaut, Alex Young and Díaz combined for 4 2/3 innings of one-run ball in relief of Brandon Williamson.

“It was really a matter of if we really believed if we could keep it right there after they got out to a lead, that we could chip away at it,” Reds manager David Bell said. “Brandon did a really nice job after giving up some runs in the first two innings of keeping it right there while he was still in.”

Dansby Swanson and Ian Happ each had two RBIs for Chicago, which blew a 4-1 lead. Jameson Taillon was charged with four runs and six hits in 4 2/3 innings in a no-decision.

The Cubs have lost three in a row and 10 of 13 overall to fall seven games below .500 at 22-29. They put runners on second and third with two out in the ninth, but Díaz struck out Happ for the final out.

Swanson’s two-run single with two out in the second lifted the Cubs to a 4-1 lead. But India singled in Friedl in the third, and the Reds added three more runs with two out in the fifth.

McLain chased Taillon with an RBI single, and India greeted Michael Fulmer (0-4) with a two-run shot to right for a 5-4 lead.

“I’m healthy this year (and) it’s a big part of my success,” India said. “It’s good baseball this year, we have a good team and it’s just fun to play with these guys. The momentum carries and I feed off everyone.”

Taillon said he was “probably a closer version” of himself in his fifth start since returning from a groin injury.

“Not so much results-wise, but more just like pitch package stuff, conviction, aggression in the strike zone,” Taillon said.

Casali hit a run-scoring single for the Reds in the sixth, and India connected for another two-run homer in the seventh against Jeremiah Estrada. India matched a career best with five RBIs.

Williamson was charged with four runs and six hits in 4 1/3 innings in his third major league start.


Manager David Ross said the Cubs are “not where we want to be” as a 12-7 start fades into distant memory and the calendar rolls toward June.

“We had some success early on and kind of hit a little bit of a rut this last month and we haven’t really gotten on any kind of roll,” Ross said. "You can point to a lot of different areas where we can be better."


Reds right-hander Silvino Bracho cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Louisville.


Cubs: RF Seiya Suzuki, 3B Patrick Wisdom and C Yan Gomes returned to the lineup after scheduled days off Friday.


LHP Drew Smyly (5-1, 2.93 ERA) starts Sunday for the Cubs against Reds RHP Graham Ashcraft (2-3, 5.57 ERA).


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Abrams, Dickerson spark rally in Nationals' 4-2 win over Royals

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — CJ Abrams hit a two-run double in Washington's four-run sixth inning, Corey Dickerson got his 1,000th career hit and the Washington Nationals defeated the Kansas City Royals 4-2 on Saturday.

Dickerson sparked the Nationals’ big inning with his milestone hit on an RBI double. He became the 12th player to reach the milestone in a Nationals uniform and the first since Brian Dozier in 2019.

“With how much failure there is in this game, getting 1,000 is cool,” Dickerson said. “We just keep grinding as a team and trust each other which helped us rally like we did.”

After Josiah Gray gave up two runs and four hits in four innings, Mason Thompson (3-2), Carl Edwards Jr., Hunter Harvey and Kyle Finnegan held the Royals scoreless — with Finnegan earning his 11th save of the season.

The Nationals have scored a combined 12 runs in the sixth inning through the first two games of the three-game series.

“The sixth inning in this series has been good for us,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. “We got a big hit by (Dickerson) to break the ice, and then we started hitting the ball and staying in the middle of the field.”

Washington's Lane Thomas hit a double in the fifth to extend his on-base streak to a career-high 23 straight games.

Brady Singer tossed five innings and gave up two runs and four hits with six strikeouts and three walks. He was sent out for the sixth with the Royals holding a 2-0 lead, but gave up back-to-back hits, including Dickerson's RBI double. Josh Taylor (1-3) came in and allowed two runs and three hits with a walk without recording an out.

?(Singer) was good, but he battled his command a little bit,” Royals manager Matt Quatraro said. “He was pretty efficient in the early going when he worked around those walks, but he gave us five solid innings. ... I thought Brady was in control (in the sixth inning). He had the weapons to get their hitters out.”

Salvador Perez hit a first-pitch slider 382 feet in the third for his 12th home run of the season to give Kansas City a 2-0 lead after Nick Pratto scored from third on a wild pitch in the first.

Kansas City dropped to a 3-14-0 in series this season and fell to 1-8-0 at Kauffman Stadium.


Royals: Kansas City requested the unconditional release waivers on INF/OF Hunter Dozier. The 31-year-old was designated for assignment on May 22.


LHP MacKenzie Gore (3-3, 3.88 ERA) will take the mound for the Nationals on Sunday. LHP Daniel Lynch will make season debut for Kansas City.

Freeman extends hitting streak to 16 games, Dodgers beat Rays 6-5

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — In a tense and tight matchup of division leaders, Freddie Freeman and the Los Angeles Dodgers came out on top.

Freeman extended his hitting streak to 16 games, Max Muncy and Miguel Vargas homered, and the NL West-leading Dodgers beat the MLB-best Tampa Bay Rays 6-5 on Saturday.

Freeman finished 2 for 3 with two walks and is hitting .444 (28 for 63) with 18 RBIs during his streak.

Mookie Betts had an RBI single and Freeman followed with a run-scoring double off Colin Poche (3-1) as Los Angeles took a 5-4 lead in the seventh inning. Vargas added a solo shot in the eighth.

“That was a gritty win,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “So much respect for this Tampa team, the way they play. They don't give you anything. And for us to get a lead and lose it and come back and fight back, it was just overall just a good win — and now we have a chance to win a series.”

Harold Ramírez hit the Rays' major league-leading 100th homer, but Tampa Bay dropped to 25-6 at home. Tampa Bay reached 100 home runs in 54 games, fifth-fastest of any team since 1901.

Los Angeles has 84 home runs, which is second in the National League.

Neither starting pitcher, Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw nor Tampa Bay right-hander Tyler Glasnow, made it past the fifth inning.

Yency Almonte (3-0) worked a perfect sixth. Caleb Ferguson gave up Wander Franco's RBI single before getting his second save.

“This is such a great team win. ... I didn’t have anything to do with it, unfortunately,” Kershaw said. “The bullpen pitched four solid innings. Freddie, guys had clutch hits.”

Ferguson entered with one out in the ninth and allowed Taylor Walls' double. After striking out Jose Siri and walking Yandy Díaz, the left-hander permitted Franco's single to center field before getting a game-ending grounder from Ramírez.

Díaz, hitting .325 with a .429 on-base percentage, hit a ball with home run distance just foul down the right-field line before drawing his walk.

“That was scary,” Roberts said. “He's a scary hitter. I don't like him coming up to bat.”

Glasnow went 4 1/3 innings in his season debut after being sidelined by a strained left oblique. He allowed three runs and five hits while striking out eight in an 83-pitch outing. The 6-foot-8 righty was limited to 39 games from 2019-22 due to injuries.

“I wasn't perfect, but definitely liked coming back for the first one,” Glasnow said. “I'm happy with it.”

Kershaw went on the bereavement list Monday following the death of his mother. He was activated Friday and gave up four runs on six hits over five innings.

“Personally, it's frustrating,” said Kershaw, winless over his last three starts. “I had some good rhythm, good momentum going the first few innings. Just kind of lost it there. My command became very inconsistent.”

Kershaw beat Glasnow twice in the 2020 World Series as the Dodgers defeated Tampa Bay in six games. The lefty had also won his two prior regular-season starts against the Rays, posting a 1.88 ERA.

Manuel Margot had a two-run single in the fourth, and Ramírez put the Rays ahead 4-3 with his two-run homer to right.

Muncy, hitless in his previous 10 at-bats, connected on his 16th homer leading off the second. He hit an RBI double in the fourth and scored on a wild pitch to make it 3-0.


To make room for Glasnow on the roster, RHP Cooper Criswell was optioned to Triple-A Durham one day after getting his first big league win.


Dodgers LHP Julio Urías (left hamstring) had his scheduled Saturday bullpen session pushed back to Tuesday after experiencing some soreness throwing Friday.


Rays LHP Josh Fleming (1-0) will start or follow an opener against Dodgers rookie RHP Gavin Stone (0-0) in Sunday's game that starts at 11:35 a.m. EDT, which is 8:35 a.m. Los Angeles time.

“I was thinking about sleeping here. I've never stayed in the stadium,” Roberts joked.


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Luis Castillo strikes out 10 as Seattle Mariners beat Pittsburgh Pirates 5-0

SEATTLE (AP) — Luis Castillo struck out 10 in six crisp innings, and the Seattle Mariners beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-0 on Saturday.

Castillo allowed one hit — Tucupita Marcano’s double on the game’s first pitch — and walked two. The right-hander earned his second straight win since dropping consecutive starts.

Gabe Speier, Matt Brash, Trevor Gott and Justin Topa then combined for three innings of one-hit ball for Seattle.

It was a sharp contrast from Friday night, when Pittsburgh slugged seven homers in a series-opening win.

“I saw they came out aggressive,” Castillo said. “So in my mind, I said, ‘OK, I just gotta throw a variety of different pitches.’ And that’s what I did.”

Castillo’s 10 strikeouts matched his most since he was acquired in a trade with Cincinnati in July.

“I can’t say enough about what he means to our pitching staff and what he’s done since he’s been here,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said.

The Mariners backed Castillo (4-2) with three runs in the first and one in the second. Ty France hit an RBI double and scored on Eugenio Suárez’s check-swing bloop single. Julio Rodríguez added a run-scoring double in the second.

Pittsburgh right-hander Vince Velasquez (4-4) departed after two innings due to discomfort in his pitching elbow. He allowed seven hits and walked one.

The 30-year-old Velasquez also exited with elbow discomfort in his previous start on May 4, when he lasted just three innings against Tampa Bay. He was on the 15-day injured list prior to being activated for Saturday’s start.

“Just watching him at the end of the second, he just didn’t look like he was comfortable,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said.

“Having a conversation with him, it just didn’t feel like he was in the best spot, so we decided to take him out.”

J.P. Crawford, France and Rodríguez each had two hits for Seattle. It was Rodríguez’s fifth multihit performance in the past six games.

“Julio is starting to heat up as the weather is heating up, which is really good sign,” Servais said.


Pittsburgh designated right-hander Duane Underwood Jr. for assignment to make room for Velasquez. Underwood posted a 5.18 ERA in 24 1/3 innings across 20 relief appearances this season. He had a strong April, but struggled to an 8.44 ERA in May.


Pirates: RHP Luis Ortiz (1-2, 4.02 ERA) makes his fourth start of the season on Sunday after opening the year in Triple-A Indianapolis. He pitched 7 2/3 strong innings against Texas in his last outing, allowing just two runs and five hits.

Mariners: LHP Marco Gonzales (4-1, 5.68 ERA) takes the mound. He tossed six innings of two-run ball against Oakland in his last start, rebounding from a May 17 outing in Boston that was among the worst of his career.


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Peña homers in return to Astros lineup, Houston beats struggling Oakland 6-3

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Astros’ shortstop Jeremy Peña hit a two-run home run in his first at-bat since getting a planned day off, backing another solid outing from Framber Valdez as Houston sent the Oakland Athletics to their 10th consecutive loss with a 6-3 win Saturday.

Alex Bregman had three hits and three RBI for Houston, which has won 13 of 16.

The Astros (30-21) are a season-high nine games over .500 after opening the season 3-6.

“We’ve known we had a great team from the jump,” Peña said. “It’s just the flows of the season. We know that. Now it’s just a matter of showing up and doing that every day.”

The victory was the 2,123rd of Astros manager Dusty Baker’s career, two shy of Hall of Famer Joe McCarthy for eighth on the all-time list.

Valdez, who six days earlier pitched his second career shutout against the A’s, was almost as dominant this time, too, despite three walks.

The 2022 All-Star allowed one run and four hits in six innings with five strikeouts to win back-to-back starts for the first time this season.

“They definitely made some adjustments but the key for me was just trying to throw the same game I’ve thrown, just trying to attack the strike zone and throw my pitches,” Valdez said through a translator. “

Four Astros relievers combined to two-hit the A’s over the final three innings. Ryan Pressly retired three hitters for his 10th save.

The A’s, off to a historically bad start at 10-44, are on pace for 132 losses – two shy of the major league record held by the 1899 Cleveland Spiders.

Oakland was managed by bench coach Darren Bush while Mark Kotsay attended his daughter’s high school graduation.

The A's scored twice in the eighth on Shea Langeliers’ two-out single off Hector Neris to pull within 6-3 before Tony Kemp grounded out.

“We were hitting the ball hard. We didn’t get any love where they were falling in but we hit the ball hard,” Bush said. “We put together better at-bats against (Valdez) this time than we did last time, which is good.”

Peña, who had been in a 3-for-24 slump before the day off Friday, hit his seventh homer on the third pitch of the game and the first he saw from A’s opener Austin Pruitt (1-2). Jose Altuve, who singled leading off the game, scored.

Peña doubled off the wall in left in the eighth and scored on Bregman’s three-run double.

“You always want to be out there but it’s for my best interests,” Peña said of his day off. “It’s a long season. Dusty knows that and does a great time managing our health and energy.”

Valdez (5-4) also made a terrific defensive play after the A’s loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth.

Oakland’s Seth Brown hit a sharp grounder that first baseman José Abreu bobbled into foul territory. Abreu chased the ball then flipped it backward to Valdez, who was covering first.

The play saved at least one run and could have swung momentum in the A’s favor had it not been for Valdez’s hustle.

“We’re all proud of him how he fielded his position covering first ,” Baker said. “That was a real big play.”


Athletics: RHP Adrián Martínez was optioned to Las Vegas to make room for reliever Hogan Harris. Martinez had a 2.84 ERA in five outings since coming off from the Injured List on May 15.


Astros’ RHP Cristian Javier (5-1, 3.07 ERA) makes his 12th career appearance against the A’s in Sunday’s season-finale. Javier has faced only one team, Texas, more. RHP Luis Medina (0-3, 6.45), winless in three starts since being called up from the minors May 11, goes for Oakland.


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Wheeler strikes out 12 as Philadelphia Phillies top Atlanta Braves 2-1

ATLANTA (AP) — Zack Wheeler struck out 12 in eight shutout innings, and the Philadelphia Phillies beat Charlie Morton and the Atlanta Braves 2-1 on Saturday.

Wheeler (4-4) allowed three hits, walked one and hit a batter in his first win since April 29. The right-hander went 0-3 with a 4.44 ERA in four previous May starts.

Wheeler said manager Rob Thomson asked him how he was feeling after the seventh.

"(Thomson) told me if I got the first two guys in the eighth, I would get a chance to get through it,” said Wheeler, who then struck out the first two batters before retiring Matt Olson on a bouncer to first. “I worked really hard this past bullpen working up and hitting my spots.”

Wheeler felt it was his best outing of the season.

“That was a very well-pitched game against us,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “I felt like he probably could've thrown out there all day long.”

Philadelphia scored two runs in the fifth against Morton (5-5). Bryson Stott drove in Brandon Marsh with a sacrifice fly, and Trea Turner added a run-scoring double.

“When we got those two runs, we knew that was big,” Turner said. “Charlie is really good and we knew it would be tough.”

Morton struck out nine in 5 1/3 innings. He allowed seven hits and walked four.

Sean Murphy homered against Philadelphia closer Craig Kimbrel with one out in the ninth. But Kimbrel then struck out Marcell Ozuna and Eddie Rosario.

It was Kimbrel's seventh save of the season and No. 401 for his career.

Murphy had two of Atlanta's four hits. The Braves went 0 for 4 with runners in scoring position.

Turner, who has struggled in his first season in Philadelphia, had two hits and stole a base. Kody Clemens had two hits and scored a run.

The Phillies went 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position and left 12 runners on base.

Philadelphia's Alec Bohm made the game's top defensive play in the third. The third baseman made a diving stop of an Ozuna grounder with a runner on second, and threw Ozuna out from his knees. Wheeler got Rosario to pop out to end the inning.

“That was a huge play,” Thomson said. “He had the presence to stay down and throw because he knew he had the time. That was a big play for us.”


The Braves recalled right-hander Dereck Rodriguez, son of Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez, and sent left-hander Dylan Dodd to Triple-A Gwinnett. Rodriguez was claimed off waivers on May 15 and sent to Triple-A, where he made two relief appearances. Rodriguez will pitch out of the Braves' bullpen.


Phillies: LHP José Alvarado was scheduled to throw a bullpen session but threw off flat ground instead after feeling stiffness. Thomson did not feel it was a setback. Alvarado, who had five saves in 14 appearances before going on the injured list on May 8, is expected to return mid-June.

Braves: Left-handed reliever Dylan Lee has not started a throwing program since being placed on the IL on May 17 with shoulder inflammation.


The home run allowed by Kimbrel was the fifth he has given up in 20 innings this season. ... Braves CF Michael Harris II, who has battled multiple injuries this season, was hit by a pitch in the right leg below the knee in the third. He got up quickly and headed to first base. ... The Braves are 1-3 in their City Connect uniforms, which they wear for Saturday home games. ... Morton joined Clayton Kershaw (6-4 in 10 starts) as the only two pitchers with at least 10 starts this season to have a decision in every game.


Braves right-hander Spencer Strider (4-2, 2.97 ERA) faces right-hander Dylan Covey (0-0, 3.00 ERA) in the finale of the four-game series on Sunday.


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Heaney pitches 7 solid innings to help streaking Rangers beat Orioles 5-3

BALTIMORE (AP) — Andrew Heaney pitched seven innings of four-hit ball, Marcus Semien extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a pivotal two-run single and the Texas Rangers beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3 Saturday.

Robbie Grossman and Jonah Heim each had an RBI single for the Rangers, who have won 10 of 13. Their 33-18 record is best in Rangers history after 51 games, and they passed Baltimore (33-19) for second-best in the majors behind Tampa Bay.

“It's a start. Just tell yourself that,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “But these guys are playing so well right now. Starting pitching, Andrew goes out there and throws a beautiful game. We're just getting it done.”

After outscoring the Orioles 17-5 in the first two games of this three-game set, Texas is assured of winning a fifth straight road series for the first time since 2016.

“It's good to hit the road like this, but you have to keep pushing,” Bochy said.

Austin Hays homered for the Orioles, who disappointed a crowd of 37,939 with a lackluster performance at the plate for the second consecutive game. Baltimore failed to score until Hays connected in the seventh and trailed 5-1 before an uprising in the ninth was blunted with the potential tying run at the plate.

Heaney (4-3) extended an impressive stretch that began after he gave up seven runs in his first start of the season, at home against Baltimore. The left-hander has since gone 4-2 with a 2.75 ERA over his last nine starts.

“I threw a lot of changeups today,” Heaney said. “They've given me a real hard time in the past. I tried to beat a lot of those guys with heaters, and they have some guys who can get to those heaters at the top of the zone. So, I was trying to take their aggressiveness away.”

Heaney outpitched Dean Kremer (5-2), who allowed three runs and five hits in 6 1/3 innings.

“I thought he really battled. He threw well,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. "The fastball command was really good, ton of life to his heater. Good cutter again. It’s a tough lineup to pitch to and he did a great job.”

After Grossman hit a run-scoring single in the second and Heim did the same in the fourth, Kremer was lifted in the seventh after issuing a one-out walk. Leody Taveras followed with a double off Bryan Baker, and Semien came through with a two-run single for a 4-0 lead.


Orioles: Optioned struggling rookie right-hander Grayson Rodriguez to Triple-A Norfolk and recalled reliever Keegan Akin from the same minor league club. Rodriguez, a 2018 first-round draft pick, has a 7.35 ERA in 10 starts and yielded nine runs (eight earned) in 3 1/3 innings on Friday night. “Not everyone comes up here and sets the world on fire," Hyde said. “Just kind of want to give him a reset.”

Rangers: Placed RHP Dane Dunning on the MLB paternity leave list and recalled LHP Cody Bradford from Triple-A Round Rock.


Rangers: Placed INF/OF Ezequiel Duran on the 10-day injured list, retroactive to Wednesday, with mild right oblique discomfort. Texas also activated OF Travis Jankowski (right hamstring strain) from the IL. ... RHP Jacob deGrom (right elbow inflammation) awaits the next step in his bid to come off the IL after throwing 31 pitches in a bullpen session Friday. “I don't know when he's going to throw again, to be honest with you,” Bochy said.


Rangers: Dunning was slated to start the series finale. Now that the right-hander is on paternity leave, Bochy said after the game that he will use Bradford as his starter on Sunday instead.

Orioles: RHP Kyle Bradish (2-1, 4.34 ERA) makes his ninth start of the season, the second against Texas.


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Castro hits 2 homers as Twins topple Jays 9-7

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Willi Castro had his first career multihomer game, Matt Wallner homered among his career-high four hits, and the Minnesota Twins held off the Toronto Blue Jays 9-7 on Saturday.

Edouard Julien also homered as part of a three-hit day, and Alex Kirilloff and Kyle Farmer each had two of Minnesota’s 14 hits.

All but Castro have spent time in Triple-A St. Paul this season, although Farmer’s was only a four-game rehab assignment.

“When you call guys up, you’re looking for them to help you win a game and then they just take over the game and it’s a bonus,” said manager Rocco Baldelli. "We knew we’re gonna rely on them at some point in the year and that time’s now.”

Bo Bichette had three hits, including a home run for the second straight game, but the Blue Jays lost for the 10th time in 13 games. Daulton Varsho also went deep.

Castro and Wallner went back-to-back for Minnesota in the fifth, both clearing the fence by inches for a 7-4 lead.

On Castro’s home run to centre field, Varsho raced back, leapt, and as he hit the wall, the ball bounced out of his glove, off the top of the padding and over for a two-run home run.

Two pitches later, Wallner’s blast was headed toward the bullpens in left-centre. Racing over, Varsho leapt and reached over the wall to momentarily catch the ball with the webbing of his glove. However, the impact knocked the ball free as Varsho fell back to the warning track.

“It’s just one of those things where it’s an all-or-nothing play. It was in my glove and then I hit the wall and it bounced out. Both times. It’s one of those things where you live and die by it,” Varsho said.

It was the first home run this season for Wallner, who entered the game with one hit in 13 at-bats. Castro also homered in the seventh.

“Everyone’s here because we have the talent to perform and help the team, and it’s fun when you see everyone just doing their thing and helping the team win,” said Minnesota starter Pablo López (3-3). He allowed four earned runs in 5 2/3 innings before Jovani Moran and Jhoan Duran allowed one hit in 2 1/3 innings.

Jorge López allowed Varsho’s two-run homer as part of a three-run Blue Jays’ ninth, but Brock Stewart retired three of final four hitters for his first save since June 20, 2017.

Chris Bassitt (5-4) allowed seven earned runs in four-plus innings for Toronto, his worst start since allowing nine earned runs to St. Louis in 3 1/3 innings April 2.

A two-run single by Wallner helped stake the Twins to a 3-1 first-inning lead on a sun-drenched afternoon, but Bichette — who homered in the first — had a two-run triple in the third before Cavan Biggio tied it 4-4 in the fourth with a solo shot.


Julien, a Quebec native who represented Canada at the World Baseball Classic, homered in the eighth inning for Minnesota.

“To see all these flags in the stands and play against the team I grew up watching and dreamed of playing for, now to play against them and beat them is a pretty cool feeling,” he said.


Bichette has an MLB-leading 22 multi-hit games this season. He entered the day tied with the Dodgers’ Freddie Freeman for most in the majors. His 76 hits are also best in the big leagues.


For the seventh time in 11 starts, Pablo López did not get through the first inning unscathed, allowing Bichette’s home run. Ten of his 30 earned runs allowed this year have come in the opening frame. His first-inning ERA is 8.18; 3.29 in other innings.


Blue Jays: CF Kevin Kiermaier left after two innings with right lower back discomfort.

Twins: With a day game after a night game, SS Carlos Correa was given the day off. He is dealing with plantar fasciitis in his left foot.


Former Twins’ ace RHP José Berríos (4-4, 4.22) is to take the mound for Toronto in Sunday’s series finale. RHP Bailey Ober (3-1, 2.55) is the scheduled Minnesota starter.


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