Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:
Indians 5, Twins 2: Carlos Carrasco had no trouble with the Twins’ hangover lineup, striking out 14 in eight and a third shutout innings. Two-run homers from Jason Kipnis and Roberto Perez, and a solo shot from Jay Bruce, provided all the offense needed.
Cubs 2, Cardinals 1: Like the Twins, the Cubs trotted out a hangover lineup, absent several regulars a day after clinching the division. Unlike them they won, and they eliminated the Cardinals from playoff contention as well. The Cubs took the lead in the top of the 11th on a Taylor Davis RBI double and the game — and the contending portion of the Cardinals’ season ended — when Leonys Martin leaped at the center-field fence to rob Paul DeJong of a would-be tying home run.
Brewers 4, Reds 3: Milwaukee closes to within two games of the Rockies for the second Wild Card with three left to play in what is, basically, the only playoff race drama left. The game was moved to mid-afternoon to avoid a conflict with the Green Bay Packers-Chicago Bears game, which was played 120 miles away. I can’t think of any other place where they’d move a Major League Baseball game for a competing football game that did not have, like, a shared parking lot situation or some other concrete logistical issue.
Rays 9, Yankees 6: Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner , Greg Bird and Aaron Hicks all homers for the Yankees, who had a 4-1 lead at one point, but the Rays feasted on Sonny Gray and the Yankees bullpen for seven runs in the fifth to keep the Yankees from gaining a game on the Red Sox. One of the runs that inning came on a wild pitch, another on a passed ball. Two came on a Wilson Ramos two-run homer and two on a Peter Bourjos RBI triple.
Nationals 5, Pirates 4: Sean Doolittle blew the save in the top of the ninth, allowing the Pirates to score two runs on a Josh Bell two-run homer to tie things up, but the Nats came back in the bottom half with Anthony Rendon and Daniel Murphy singles which set up a walkoff RBI single from Alejandro De Aza. De Aza had entered as a replacement for Howie Kendrick, who had shaken himself up a bit on a diving catch in the third inning and ended up going 2-for-3 with two RBI.
Astros 12, Red Sox 2: This was Game One of at least seven straight and possibly nine straight between these two clubs. Advantage: Houston. Jose Altuve had three of Houston’s 17 hits. Carlos Correa and Marwin Gonzalez each drove in three and Alex Bregman knocked in two. Correa, Bregman and Brian McCann each homered. The Red Sox will likely clinch the division during this series. I wonder if they’ll have to do it while scoreboard watching for a Yankees loss.
Marlins 7, Braves 1: Giancarlo Stanton hit two homers to get him to 59 on the year. One was a solo home run in the fourth, the other a two-run drive in the eighth. Back in July Stanton was eliminated in the first round of the Home Run Derby. He has hit 33 in games that count since.
Athletics 4, Rangers 1: Sean Manaea allowed one run, unearned, in six and two-thirds and Ryon Healy hit a tiebreaking two-run single in the sixth to put the A’s over the petering-out Rangers. He was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double but it didn’t matter to anything but the back of his baseball card. Bruce Maxwell took a knee in the bullpen during the National Anthem — the first time he’s done it on the road — and got some scattered boos from the Rangers crowd. Guess that’s just part of his life now.
White Sox 5, Angels 4: Rob Brantly hit the game-tying home run in the eighth and then Tim Anderson hauled butt all the way from first base on a Rymer Liriano single to put the White Sox up for good two batters later. The Angels started Bud Norris again, because they seem hell-bent on saving $500,000 they’d have to give him if he made 60 relief appearances. How petty.
Tigers 4, Royals 1: Daniel Norris tossed five scoreless innings and the Tigers scored all four of their runs in the fifth to snap their nine-game winning streak. Three of them scored on a Nicholas Castellanos RBI double. He and Miguel Cabrera, assuming he doesn’t require a back-ectomy this offseason, are gonna be the only two dudes worth seeing in Detroit next year.