Jered Weaver picked up his 19th win of the season Sunday as the Angels completed a three-game sweep of the reeling White Sox.
Weaver allowed one run in 6 1/3 innings in the 4-1 victory. The game was scoreless until the sixth, when Albert Pujols delivered a two-run double and Kendrys Morales hit a two-run homer to give the Angels all of the runs they’d need. The White Sox came back with one in the seventh, but they could do no additional damage.
The White Sox have now lost five in a row, but they’re still ahead of the Tigers at the moment after Detroit lost the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader against the Twins. The Tigers could move back into a tie for first place in the AL Central by winning the nightcap.
The Angels are 2 1/2 games back of the A’s for the second wild card. They get Monday off before finishing with three games at home against the Mariners and then road series in Texas and Seattle. Oakland has the same opponents. The A’s have four games in Texas beginning Monday and then three games at home against both the Mariners and Rangers.
With his Astros trailing the Tigers 2-1, catcher Robinson Chirinos began his at-bat in the bottom of the ninth a triple shy of the cycle. He doubled in the second inning, singled in the fourth, and hit a solo homer in the seventh. Yordan Álvarez and Yuli Gurriel both struck out, leaving the Astros’ fate in the hands of Chirinos against Joe Jiménez. After working the count to 2-1, Chirinos slapped an 85 MPH slider to the gap in right-center field. A diving Travis Demeritte could not come up with the ball, but center fielder Harold Castro fired the ball back in to Gordon Beckham, who then made a perfect throw to Dawel Lugo at third base. Chirinos was tagged out for the final out of the game. No triple, no cycle. The Astros lost 2-1.
Chirinos was attempting to become the first Astro to hit for the cycle since Brandon Barnes on July 19, 2013 against the Mariners.
The Astros entered Wednesday’s game as the largest favorite in 15 seasons, according to ESPN’s David Purdum. The Astros were -500 per Caesars Sportsbook. Other sportsbooks had them at -550. So the Tigers’ win was quite the upset.
Justin Verlander went the distance in the loss. The only blemishes on his line were solo homers to Ronny Rodríguez in the fifth and John Hicks in the ninth. They were the only hits he allowed while walking none and striking out 11.