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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:

Red Sox 7, Blue Jays 1: Chris Sale constructed his third-best outing of the year on Saturday — which, for a pitcher of Sale’s caliber, is saying something. He fanned 11 batters over seven shutout innings, tying Pedro Martinez’s 1999 record for most double-digit strikeout appearances by a Red Sox pitcher before the All-Star break (via MLB.com’s Ian Browne).

Tigers 7, Indians 4 (Game 1): Nicholas Castellanos led the charge during the Tigers’ seventh inning rally on Saturday, lining a triple into right field to start a pivotal three-run rally. Mikie Mahtook and James McCann did the rest, putting up two insurance runs with a sac fly and RBI base hit to pad the bullpen’s efforts in their first win of the day.

Indians 4, Tigers 1 (Game 2): The Indians got their revenge in the nightcap, splitting the doubleheader after a shutdown performance from Carlos Carrasco. Carrasco limited the Tigers to just four hits and one run over seven solid innings and took the lead on a four-run inning that was capped by Jose Ramirez’s 13th home run of the year.

Rangers 10, White Sox 4: Cole Hamels was sharp in his second start since coming off of the disabled list, striking out six of 23 batters and holding the White Sox to two runs over 6 2/3 innings. It was a welcome change for the Rangers, who snapped their three-game skid with 10 runs and three homers from Elvis Andrus, Mike Napoli and Rougned Odor.

Royals 11, Twins 6 (Game 1): Saturday’s second doubleheader featured double-digit performances from both the Royals and Twins, albeit not in the same game. The Royals were the first to strike, sparking an 11-run rally after rookie right-hander Luke Farrell (son of Red Sox manager John Farrell) was forced out in the third inning. Alcides Escobar did the most for the Royals, going 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBI to pad 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball from the bullpen and secure the Royals’ 40th win of the season.

Twins 10, Royals 5 (Game 2): In the evening, Jason Hammel hurled four scoreless frames before the Twins’ offense came to life, led by Jason Castro‘s RBI double and Miguel Sano‘s two-run shot in the fifth inning and ending with a run-scoring fielding error in the ninth. With the win, the Twins kept their heads above water in the AL Central, sitting two games behind the division-leading Indians and one game above the third-place Royals.

Rays 10, Orioles 3: Watch out, Aaron Judge: Logan Morrison is coming for you. The Rays’ hot-hitting first baseman mashed a pair of home runs on Saturday, coming within three homers of tying the league leader and building his case for inclusion in the upcoming Home Run Derby.

Giants 2, Pirates 1 (11 innings): This is the look of someone who does not yet realize they’ve spoiled a no-hitter with their third career home run:

The Giants won in 11 innings, scoring the go-ahead run when a wild pitch from Daniel Hudson ricocheted off the plate and bounced into the Pirates’ dugout.

Braves 4, Athletics 3: Neither the Braves nor the Athletics deserved the defensive highlight of the game on Saturday, instead outsourcing their slick defense and quick reflexes to this random baseball fan in the stands:

Mets 7, Phillies 6: Asdrubal Cabrera was not to be overshadowed on his own bobblehead day. His seventh-inning home run was the difference-maker on Saturday, giving the Mets their third consecutive series win.

Reds 5, Cubs 3: Jackson Stephens doesn’t know anything about first-time jitters. The rookie right-hander made his big league debut on Saturday, proving he can hang with the best of them as he dealt three runs and eight strikeouts over five strong innings. He was a force to be reckoned with at the plate, too, muscling a first-pitch, two-run single off of Eddie Butler to help pad the Reds’ one-run lead in the fourth inning.

Brewers 8, Marlins 4: It’s safe to say this was not the triumphant return to the rotation Tom Koehler had planned. The Marlins’ righty was forced out after just 1 2/3 innings, giving up seven runs during the Brewers’ explosive rally in the second inning. Fueled by his spontaneous snack break in the fourth inning, Orlando Arcia tacked on an eighth and final run with a solo shot in the fifth, his seventh blast of the season.

Cardinals 2, Nationals 1: Both Cardinals’ skipper Mike Matheny and starting pitcher Michael Wacha hit career milestones on Saturday: Matheny recorded his 500th managerial win, the second-fastest skipper to 500 wins in franchise history, while Wacha fanned his 500th batter to become the second-fastest Cardinals pitcher to reach 500 strikeouts since Steve Carlton did it in 1969.

The Nationals, meanwhile, couldn’t rally in time to take the lead in the ninth, and instead left their mark on the game after a five-star catch in foul territory sent Anthony Rendon and Stephen Drew tumbling into the stands:

Astros 7, Yankees 6: Yankees’ top prospect Clint Frazier got the call in time for Saturday’s set against the Astros, debuting with a leadoff double in the sixth inning and becoming the club’s first right fielder to hit a double in his big league debut since Doc Cook did it for the Yankees in 1913 (via Katie Sharp of River Ave Blues). He followed that up with a 339-foot blast in the seventh:

Despite Frazier’s heroics, four scoreless innings by rookie Jordan Montgomery and Didi Gregoriusfirst career grand slam, it was the Astros who had the last laugh, surging back from a three-run deficit to clinch their 55th win with a four-run outburst in the eighth and a stunning pick by Josh Reddick, Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel to retire the Yankees in the ninth:

Angels 4, Mariners 0: The Mariners couldn’t get things started against the Angels on Saturday, slipping back to two games below .500 after Ricky Nolasco hurled his first complete game shutout of the season. Nolasco kept a perfect game going through four innings, but lost it after inadvertently plunking Danny Valencia in the fifth inning and subsequently spoiled the no-hitter when Mitch Haniger poked a single to right field in the next at-bat.

Dodgers 8, Padres 0: With Dave Roberts serving a one-game suspension following Friday’s melee, the Dodgers’ fate was left in the hands of bench coach Bob Geren on Saturday. Geren steered the team to an 8-0 shutout, helped in large part by Rich Hill‘s seven-inning, 11-strikeout performance and Chris Taylor‘s seventh-inning grand slam.

Diamondbacks 6, Rockies 2: Zack Greinke was in fine form against the Rockies as he generated his first quality start in a month, allowing Trevor Story a two-run homer in the seventh inning for Colorado’s first and only RBI hit of the night. A three-run rally in the bottom of the seventh powered the D-backs’ lead, handing Greinke his 10th win of the season and snapping a three-game skid to bring them within four games of tying the Dodgers at the top of the NL West.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.