Red Sox's Ortiz celebrates his two run home run against the New York Yankees with teammate Youkilis during the first inning of American League MLB baseball action at Yankee Stadium

And That Happened: Wednesday’s scores and highlights


Red Sox 11, Yankees 6: The Bosox once again jump all over the Yankees, this time giving A.J. Burnett his worst night of the year. Notably, no Red Sox players were plunked in this one — And David Ortiz hit another homer — so I’m sure the tabloids that were calling for retribution for the Ortiz bat flip on Tuesday night are going to be up in arms this morning. The Red Sox are alone in first place.

Pirates 3, Diamondbacks 2: Andrew McCutchen walked off with a homer in the bottom of the 12th. He also scored a run to tie it in the bottom of the 10th following a double. He also drove in a run on a sacrifice in the third. You could say that it was his night.

Brewers 7, Mets 6:  Nyjer Morgan hit a walkoff double, though he didn’t realize it because he thought it was the eighth inning. Seriously. Two homers for Prince Fielder including the two-run job that tied it in the eighth. That second one put Fielder past Gorman Thomas for third on the Brewers’ all-time home run list with 209.

Braves 3, Marlins 2: Derek Lowe deserved better than a no-decision after taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning. But, as usual, the Braves don’t score a lot and Fredi Gonzalez uses the same three relievers he uses every single game. One of them — Craig Kimbrel — is so obviously being overused that someone ought to call closer protective services for a home visit. Kimbrel blows the save but Freddie Freeman salvages the win for him — hey! Kimbrel knows how to win! — with an RBI single in the 10th.

Astros 4, Cardinals 1: Bud Norris had a no-hitter going into the seventh as well, but the Astros’ old friend Lance Berkman broke it up with a homer. It would be the only hit that Norris gave up in his eight innings of work, however.

Twins 3, Indians 2: The Twins blew a 2-1 lead in the ninth when bona fide closer Matt Capps gave up a homer, but Ben Revere drove in a run in the bottom of the tenth.  The Tribe went 1-6 on the homestand. They’re crashing like Skylab. Let us hope that The Shire of Esperance, Western Australia, doesn’t fine the Indians $400 for littering after impact.

Giants 3, Nationals 1: Matt Cain was the man, tossing a five-hit complete game with 11Ks. He also doubled in the first run of the game — all together now — helping his own cause.

Cubs 4, Reds 1: The eight-game losing streak is history as the Cubbies beat the Reds on a hot, hot afternoon. Carlos Pena and Aramis Ramirez went back-to-back in the fourth inning.  Ryan Dempster went six strong innings despite having hip problems before the game and being unable to get loose. Tight works too, I suppose.

Rockies 5, Padres 3: The Rockies score more than three runs for the first time in a good long while, the final two on a Troy Tulowitzki double in the ninth to break the 3-3 tie. Tulo had an RBI single in the fifth too.

Phillies 2, Dodgers 0: Cole Hamels with eight shutout innings and nine strikeouts. Not much else to say about that, really.

Orioles 3, Athletics 2: And this is all anyone needs to hear about the Athletics’ losing streak.

Rangers 7, Tigers 3: Alexi Ogando moves to 7-0 as he helps the Rangers avoid the sweep. Three hits for Elvis Andrus. A homer for Adrian Beltre. A bad night for Phil Coke.

Blue Jays 9, Royals 8:  In the sixth, Ned Yost chose to intentionally walk Jose Bautista, loading the bases, to get to Adam Lind. Two pitches later, Lind hit a grand slam. Maybe it was a good decision, but good decisions != good outcomes.

Mariners 7, White Sox 4: Miguel Olivo has been kind of hot ever since we mocked him last week. So hey, you’re welcome, M’s fans. Seattle’s most indispensible player drove in three, including a two-run double in the 10th.

Rays 4, Angels 3: The Rays blew a 3-0 lead for James Shields in the eighth, but salvaged it with some small ball — Reid Brignac’s RBI bunt — in the tenth. A sweep for Tampa Bay.

Rougned Odor steals the show to send Rangers to 2-0 ALDS lead over the Blue Jays

Rougned Odor
AP Photo

The Rangers outlasted the Blue Jays in 14 innings to take the second game of the ALDS on Friday 6-4, moving to a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series. Second baseman Rougned Odor‘s star shone brightest, as he used his speed to set up the go-ahead run in the top of the 14th.

With LaTroy Hawkins on the mound and the Jays employing an infield shift, Odor slapped a weak ground ball towards Josh Donaldson, positioned where the shortstop would normally play. Donaldson’s momentum took his momentum away from first base, so he had to make an off-balance throw. Odor then moved to second base on Chris Jimenez’s single to right field — narrowly making it back to the second base bag after rounding too far, a play which required replay review. Odor scored the go-ahead run, breaking a 4-4 tie, when Hanser Alberto (Adrian Beltre‘s replacement at third base) lined a single to center field.

Center fielder Delino DeShields had three hits with an RBI and two runs scored in seven at-bats. The RBI padded the Rangers’ lead to 6-4 in the 14th, as he beat out an infield single against Liam Hendriks. Starter Cole Hamels was strong over seven innings, allowing four runs (only two earned) on six hits with no walks and six strikeouts. The Rangers’ bullpen pitched seven scoreless innings of relief, including Ross Ohlendorf‘s 14th inning in which he recorded all three outs on strikeouts.

On the Jays’ side of things, Josh Donaldson hit a home run and helped instigate a benches-clearing argument with Rangers reliever Keone Kela. Donaldson had smoked a Kela offering home run distance was foul, then repeatedly swore at Kela because he felt the right-hander was quick-pitching him, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Jays starter Marcus Stroman was shaky early, coughing up three runs in the first two innings, but was able to settle down. He ultimately allowed four runs (three earned) on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts in seven innings. The Jays’ bullpen allowed only four base runners on two hits and two walks through the 13th, before Hawkins and Hendriks relented.

The two teams will have an off-day on Saturday as they travel to Texas to continue the ALDS. Game 3 starts on Sunday at 8:00 PM EDT, featuring Marco Estrada starting for the Jays and Martin Perez for the Rangers. The Blue Jays are still in search of their first playoff victory since Joe Carter’s walk-off home run in Game 6 of the 1993 World Series.

NLDS, Game 1: Cubs vs. Cardinals lineups

Jon Lester
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Here are the Cubs and Cardinals lineups for Game 1 of the NLDS in St. Louis:

CF Dexter Fowler
RF Kyle Schwarber
3B Kris Bryant
1B Anthony Rizzo
2B Starlin Castro
LF Chris Coghlan
SS Addison Russell
C David Ross
SP Jon Lester

Jon Lester’s personal catcher David Ross takes the place of Miguel Montero behind the plate. Kris Bryant shifts back to third base after playing left field in Game 1, with Chris Coghlan coming off the bench to get a start in the outfield against a right-hander. Addison Russell bats seventh, which he did just 10 times during the regular season.

3B Matt Carpenter
1B Stephen Piscotty
LF Matt Holliday
CF Jason Heyward
SS Jhonny Peralta
RF Randal Grichuk
C Yadier Molina
2B Kolten Wong
SP John Lackey

Mike Matheny’s lineup for Game 1 is an interesting one. Jason Heyward is batting cleanup and playing center field, where he started just eight games all season. Stephen Piscotty plays first base, where he started just nine games. Yadier Molina is behind the plate, toughing his way through a significant thumb injury that’s sidelined him since September 20 and leaves him at much less than 100 percent now. Brandon Moss, Mark Reynolds, and Jon Jay are all on the bench.

Steven Matz is on the Mets’ playoff roster, set for Game 4 start

New York Mets starting pitcher Steven Matz (32) works during the first inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves on Friday, Sept. 11, 2015, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Rookie left-hander Steven Matz hasn’t pitched since September 24 because of a back injury, but he’s on the Mets’ playoff roster for the NLDS and looks likely to start Game 4 against the Dodgers.

Matz prepped for a potential start by throwing 80 pitches in a simulated game Thursday and apparently experienced no issues. Even setting aside the health question mark Matz has started just six games in the majors, but he’s 4-0 with a 2.27 ERA and 34/10 K/BB ratio in 35.2 innings.

Matz is one of 11 pitchers on the NLDS roster, along with 14 position players. No big surprises.