And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

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Tigers 4, Blue Jays 2: Jhonny Peralta had an RBI triple that ended up being the game winner, but this game really belonged to Jim Leyland, who had one of the better arguments with an ump this year, mocking his change-of-call in grand gestures, thereby entertaining the hometown fans on the way to his ejection. And entertainment aside, the ump got the call right I think, so the fact that Leyland really had no argument made it even better. No, we shouldn’t find this unprofessional kind of thing amusing, but sorry, I do. And to keep the comedy going, I hope he pays his inevitable fine in pennies. Preferably of this type.

Dodgers 15, Twins 0: Twenty-five hits for L.A., with every starter not only getting a hit, but getting multiple hits.  Gee, if hits were dollars …

Cubs 7, Rockies 3: Carlos Pena and Aramis Ramirez each hit two homers. Carlos Gonzalez did too, but since his team lost, no glory for him.

Reds 5, Rays 0: Mike Leake threw six shutout innings and Brandon Phillips went 4 for 5 with a couple of RBI, no doubt motivated by being passed up by Rickie Weeks in the All-Star balloting. Wait: I’m guessing these guys don’t care too much and would rather have the days off at this point, so like, never mind.

Braves 3, Mariners 1: I’ll be damned. I had a bet with a friend that this game would go 25 innings with neither team scoring. Perhaps I was being unfair. Brian McCann and Freddie Freeman with homers. Jason Heyward hit leadoff, which is kind of interesting.

Angels 4, Nationals 3: Fire Davey Johnson! Oh, wait, first game. Let’s cut him some slack. Maicer Izturis with a the bases-loaded single in the 10th. It’s nice that L.A. won, but Jordan Walden blew his third straight save, sending this one to extras, so that’s a problem.

Padres 4, Royals 3: Mat Latos didn’t pitch fabulously, but he won. He also reached on a double, didn’t run the bases fabulously — he should have scored from third on a groundout but froze — but he ended up scoring anyway on a wild pitch. Sometimes you’re given a margin of error in life.

Indians 5, Diamondbacks 4: Orlando Cabrera hit a homer with two outs in the top of the ninth to give Cleveland the win. He is a man who has never accepted the creed that others have the right to stop him.

Astros push ALCS to Game 7 with 7-1 stunner against Yankees

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There’s just something about playing in your home ballpark. The Astros decimated the Yankees at Minute Maid Park on Friday, riding seven scoreless innings from Justin Verlander and a pair of big runs from Jose Altuve to win 7-1 and force a Game 7 in the American League Championship Series.

Through the first four innings, however, the teams looked equally matched. Luis Severino no-hit the Astros through 3 2/3 innings, losing his bid on Carlos Correa‘s line drive single in the fourth. The Astros returned in the fifth to do some real damage, drawing two walks and plating the first run of the night with Brian McCann‘s ground-rule double off of the right field wall. Things didn’t get any easier for Severino. Jose Altuve lined a two-RBI base hit into left field, upping Houston’s advantage to three runs.

Verlander, meanwhile, muted the Yankees’ offense with seven innings of five-hit, eight-strikeout ball. While he didn’t come close to matching his complete game effort in Game 2, he was still plenty dominant against a struggling New York lineup. No player reached past first base until the sixth inning, when a pair of base hits from Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius gave the Yankees their first runner in scoring position. That didn’t last long, though, as Gary Sanchez grounded out on a 3-0 slider to end the inning.

In the seventh, Houston’s ace got into another spot of trouble. He walked Greg Bird on six pitches to start the inning, then plunked Starlin Castro on the wrist. Aaron Hicks struck out, in part thanks to a questionable call by home plate umpire Jim Reynolds, but it was Todd Frazier who presented the biggest threat after returning an 0-1 fastball for a 403-foot fly out to left field. Luckily for Verlander, George Springer was there to bail him out with a leaping catch at the wall.

The Yankees kept things exciting in the eighth, too. Aaron Judge ripped his third postseason home run off of Brad Peacock, taking a 425-footer out to the train in left field to spoil the Astros’ shutout. That was the only real break the Yankees got, however, as Altuve, Alex Bregman and Evan Gattis returned in the bottom of the inning to tack on another four runs, including Altuve’s solo shot off of David Robertson:

Ken Giles handled the ninth, expending 23 pitches and giving up a base hit and a walk before retiring Frazier and Headley to end the game. Thanks to Houston’s winning efforts, the two teams will compete in their first seven-game Championship Series since 2004 — and this time, at least one of them is guaranteed to come away with a win.

Game 7 of the ALCS is set for Saturday at 8:00 PM ET. Houston right-hander Charlie Morton (14-7, 3.62 ERA) is scheduled to face southpaw CC Sabathia (14-5, 3.69 ERA).