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And That Happened: Saturday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the rest of Saturday’s scores and highlights:

Yankees 7, Blue Jays 0: The Yankees made franchise history during the eighth inning of Saturday’s 7-0 shutout, going deep with four solo shots against Blue Jays’ reliever Jason Grilli. Brett Gardner struck first on a 380-foot ball to left field, giving Grilli some time to settle down and collect the first two outs of the inning before Matt Holliday, Starlin Castro and Didi Gregorius went back-to-back-to-back. The four blasts tied a team record that was established back in 1977 by Cliff Johnson, Lou Piniella and Thurman Munson.

Royals 12, Indians 5: It was a somber day for the Royals, who posted a tribute to Yordano Ventura prior to their matinee against the Indians. Ventura was killed in a car accident in January, just four and a half months shy of his 26th birthday on June 3.

The Royals honored their former pitcher the best way they knew how, coasting to their 24th win of the year on 6 2/3 quality innings from Jason Hammel and a season-high 12 runs.

Cubs 5, Cardinals 3: Jon Lester wasn’t the only one turning heads on Saturday. Kyle Schwarber went deep for his ninth home run of the year and his first career grand slam, besting Cardinals’ right-hander Mike Leake on a first-pitch sinker in the seventh inning to put the Cubs ahead 5-3.

Schwarber’s slam was one of seven on Saturday, setting an all-time record for the most grand slams hit in MLB in a single day.

Marlins 3, Diamondbacks 0: A no-hitter is a rare and beautiful thing, and Saturday’s no-no was made all the more poignant by the meaning it held for Edinson Volquez. The hurler set down nine pristine innings of no-hit ball with 10 strikeouts and 98 pitches, and later told reporters that he wanted to dedicate the feat to former pitchers Yordano Ventura and Jose Fernandez, both of whom died in unrelated incidents over the offseason.

Phillies 5, Giants 3: It’s impossible to predict the trajectory of a major leaguer’s career based solely on their first start, but the Phillies’ Ben Lively appears to be off to a good start so far. The rookie right-hander allowed one run, four hits and three walks during his big league debut on Saturday, restraining the Giants until the bullpen arrived to cap the win. Lively became the first Phillies’ starter to earn a win without striking out any batters in 2017, a feat that was most recently completed by former Phillies’ righty Alec Asher last September.

Athletics 10, Nationals 4: Every good thing comes to an end, and on Saturday, that thing was the Nationals’ four-game winning streak. The culprit? Washington hurler Joe Ross, who stumbled in yet another start after giving up seven runs, six hits and two home runs through three innings. The A’s capitalized on Ross’s mistakes whenever possible, building a four-run lead in the first inning and returning in the seventh to antagonize the bullpen with back-to-back homers from Yonder Alonso and Ryon Healy.

Braves 6, Reds 5 (12 innings): The Braves saw the best and worst outcomes on the field during Saturday’s extra-inning contest, losing outfielders Billy Hamilton and Scott Schebler to left shoulder strains and watching a breakout performance from newly-acquired first baseman Matt Adams.

In Atlanta, Adams’ batting line has looked downright frigid this year. Entering Saturday’s contest, he was batting just .222/.255/.467 with two home runs through his first 47 PA. Not only did he bring the heat with his first career grand slam, but he capped the Braves’ 12th-inning marathon with game-winning long ball, going yard for his fourth blast of the year.

Tigers 10, White Sox 1: If you haven’t been keeping track, the Tigers have scored 31 runs in their last three games, 25 of which have come against the White Sox. Their dominant streak was cemented with a 10-run effort on Saturday, backed by six stellar innings from right-hander Jordan Zimmerman.

The real hero of the game, however, was this unexpected participant:

Rockies 10, Padres 1: Ian Desmond joined the ranks of grand slam sluggers on Saturday, clearing the bases with a first-pitch home run off of the Padres’ Jose Torres.

He padded the Rockies’ seven-run lead in the seventh inning, giving Tyler Chatwood the cushion he needed to deliver eight solid innings of one-run, eight-strikeout ball.

Red Sox 5, Orioles 2: David Price is looking more and more like the ace the Red Sox need him to be. The left-hander went seven strong innings in his second start of the season, limiting the Orioles to one run, three hits and one walk and striking out seven of 25 batters. It’s as good an outing as the Red Sox have seen from Price since last August, and just the kind of production they’ll need from him if they want to remain competitive in the AL East.

Astros 6, Rangers 5: The Astros plowed through the Rangers’ lineup on Saturday, collecting six runs to furnish their 40th win of the season. Lance McCullers Jr. was chased out of the fifth inning after giving up four runs, but Houston’s bullpen rose to the occasion, setting down three scoreless innings and quashing the Rangers’ ninth-inning rally with a decisive, game-ending strikeout from closer Ken Giles. With the win, the Astros extended their streak to nine games, the longest win streak they’ve sustained since April 2015.

Mets 4, Pirates 2: The Mets hosted a mock Home Run Derby this weekend, teeing off against the Pirates for a combined five home runs during Saturday’s win. Neil Walker kicked things off in the first inning, hammering a two-run shot to right field to get the Mets on the board. Josh Bell followed suit in the second with a 414-foot shot, while Jay Bruce and Wilmer Flores added solo shots of their own in the third and fourth innings, respectively.

Mariners 9, Rays 2: The Mariners have a respectable 27-30 record after going 6-1 in their last seven games, thanks in part to Mike Zunino‘s grand slam off of Alex Cobb this weekend. Up 5-1 in the fifth inning, Zunino hit one out of the park for his first career slam:

It’s not a bad look for a catcher who entered Saturday’s game with a .184/.254/.291 batting line through his first 33 games of the season. He collected seven RBI in the Mariners’ 9-2 win, the highest single-game total by a Mariners’ hitter since Nelson Cruz did it for the club last July.

Angels 7, Twins 2: Albert Pujols slammed his way into history late Saturday night, smashing home run No. 600 off of the Twins’ Ervin Santana and boosting the Angels to a six-run lead in the fourth inning.

The only person happier than Pujols? The guy who caught his home run ball:

Jonny Venters is still pitching

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Lefty reliever Jonny Venters was among a handful of players the Rays signed to minor league contracts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.

Venters, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012 and has logged just 27 2/3 innings in the minors in the meantime due to a continuous battle with his elbow. According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Venters has undergone four — four! — Tommy John surgeries.

When he was healthy, Venters was a fearsome late-game option for the Braves. He posted a 1.95 ERA with 93 strikeouts in 83 innings in 2010, and a 1.84 ERA with 96 strikeouts in 88 innings in 2011. His first-half performance in 2011 earned him a spot on the National League All-Star roster.

Venters has spent the last two years in the Rays’ system and he’ll try to make it a third.