Sunday's American League Capsules
Monday, September 24, 2012
NEW YORK (AP) — Cliff Pennington hit a go-ahead single in the sixth inning after a key error by backup shortstop Eduardo Nunez and the Oakland Athletics bounced back to avoid a sweep, edging New York 5-4 Sunday and stopping the Yankees' seven-game winning streak.
A day after their stunning 14-inning loss, the A's held on to at least maintain their 2½-game lead for the second AL wild-card spot over the Angels, who played later.
The Yankees kept their one-game lead in the AL East because Baltimore lost in Boston. Despite the defeat, the Yankees have to like their chances to win the division — their final 10 games are against three teams with records below .500.
RED SOX 2, ORIOLES 1
BOSTON (AP) — Cody Ross doubled in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, Andrew Bailey escaped a bases-loaded jam in the ninth and the Red Sox ended Baltimore's six-game winning streak.
The Orioles began the day one game behind the first-place New York Yankees in the AL East and two games ahead of Oakland for the top wild-card spot in the league.
Boston stopped its four-game losing streak after Dustin Pedroia led off the eighth with a double against Luis Ayala (5-5) and Ross followed with his tiebreaking hit.
A double by Jim Thome helped Baltimore load the bases with one out in the ninth. But Bailey got Manny Machado on a forceout at home and struck out pinch-hitter Ryan Flaherty to finish it.
ANGELS 4, WHITE SOX 1
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Jered Weaver kept the Angels within striking distance in the AL wild-card chase, posting his league-leading 19th victory with a decision over the struggling White Sox.
The White Sox lost their fifth in a row and led Detroit by a half-game in the AL Central. The Tigers lost the opener of their day-night doubleheader against Minnesota.
Albert Pujols reached the 100-RBI mark for the 11th time in 12 big league seasons with a two-run double as the Angels remained 2½ games behind Oakland for the second wild-card spot.
Kendrys Morales hit a two-run homer that helped the Angels complete a three-game sweep.
Weaver (19-4) established a career high for wins.
TWINS 10, TIGERS 4 GAME 1
TWINS 2, TIGERS 1, 10 innings GAME 2
DETROIT (AP) — Jamey Carroll hit an RBI single in the 10th inning and the Twins beat Detroit, winning both games of a doubleheader to prevent the Tigers from at least tying the Chicago White Sox atop the AL Central.
Chicago still has a one-game lead in the division despite extending its losing streak to five with a 4-1 loss earlier in the day against the Los Angeles Angels.
Detroit closer Jose Valverde (3-4) allowed pinch-hitter Denard Span to lead off the extra inning with a single and gave up a one-out, fall-behind single to Carroll.
Jared Burton (2-1) got the win and Glen Perkins pitched a perfect 10th for his 14th save in 17 chances.
INDIANS 15, ROYALS 4
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Carlos Santana hit two homers and drove in five runs as the Indians routed Kansas City in their highest-scoring game of the season.
Santana connected for a two-run shot in the sixth inning off Jake Odorizzi, who lost in his major league debut. Santana added his team-leading 18th homer, a three-run drive during a seven-run ninth.
The loss officially eliminated the Royals from playoff contention and assured them of another losing record. Kansas City has not made the postseason since winning the 1985 World Series, the longest active playoff drought in the majors.
RAYS 3, BLUE JAYS 0
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — B.J. Upton hit his eighth home run in 14 games and Jeremy Hellickson won for the first time in more than a month to help the Rays beat the Blue Jays.
It was the fifth straight win for the Rays, who remained 3½ games behind the Oakland Athletics in the race for the AL's second wild-card spot.
Hellickson (9-10) pitched 5 2-3 innings, giving up five hits and two walks while striking out six. The right-hander has given up only 16 runs in his last eight starts, but has won only two of them. Sunday marked his first win since Aug. 20.
Fernando Rodney pitched the ninth for his 44th save.
Upton's 26th home run came in the first inning off Chad Jenkins, who was making his first major league start.
RANGERS 3, MARINERS 2
SEATTLE (AP) — Ryan Dempster allowed two runs and six hits over six-plus innings and Mike Napoli and Geovany Soto homered to lead the Rangers over the Mariners and preserve a four-game lead over the Oakland A's in the AL West.
With Oakland's 5-4 win over the New York Yankees earlier Sunday, the Rangers were looking to avoid a sweep by the scuffling Mariners in order to keep their distance over the Athletics with a pivotal four-game series against them beginning in Texas on Monday.
Solo homers by Eric Thames and Brendan Ryan off Dempster (12-7) in the seventh inning were the only blemishes to a strong outing. Dempster went 6 2-3 innings allowing one walk while striking out eight. Joe Nathan earned his 35th save.
The Rangers were again without Josh Hamilton, who has missed the last five games with a sinus issue that's affected his vision.