Justin Verlander loses bid to match Vander Meer in the sixth

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8:32 p.m. EDT: Melky Cabrera broke up the bid with two outs in the sixth.  After Alcides Escobar walked with one out, Chris Getz hit a grounder that likely would have been an inning-ending double-play ball, except for that Escobar was off with the pitch.

Verlander then left a changeup up to Cabrera, who pounded into the gap to score Escobar.  It broke up an 0-for-49 string for the league against the right-hander.

9:35 p.m. EDT: Verlander ended up allowing two hits over eight innings in a 3-1 victory.  Jose Valverde cleaned up in the ninth.  Verlander struck out seven in a 105-pitch outing.  He improved to 4-3 with a 2.91 ERA.

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Justin Verlander, bidding to become just the second pitcher ever to throw back-to-back no-hitters, is through five hitless in his start against the Royals.

Verlander has struck out three and walked one.  He’s thrown 61 pitches with the Tigers up 3-0 and retired 12 straight after walking Billy Butler to begin the second inning.

Angels’ Pujols passes Mays for 5th on homer list with No. 661

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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Los Angeles Angels slugger Albert Pujols passed Willie Mays for fifth place on the career home run list, hitting No. 661 on Friday night against Texas.

The 40-year-old Pujols connected for a solo homer with two outs in the fifth inning. He sent Wes Benjamin‘s fastball on a 1-2 count over the wall in left field.

Pujols has hit five homers this season. He tied Mays last Sunday at Colorado.

It is only Pujols’ second home run since Aug. 4. He now trails only Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755), Babe Ruth (714) and Alex Rodriguez (696).

Pujols has one more season left on his contract with the Angels after this year.

Benjamin was the 428th different pitcher Pujols homered against in his career. Only Bonds has homered against more pitchers (449).