The best record in Major League Baseball belongs to the Athletics. So does the longest winning streak.
Jesse Chavez allowed just three hits over seven scoreless innings and Coco Crisp hit a walkoff RBI single in the bottom of the 10th as Oakland defeated the visiting Red Sox 2-1 on Saturday afternoon at O.co Coliseum. It was the fifth victory in a row for the A’s, who are now 47-28 on the season with a shiny +136 run differential. The next-closest run differential in the big leagues belongs to the Giants at +46.
Chavez, who had started just four games before this season, owns a fantastic 2.71 ERA and 1.18 WHIP in 93 innings (15 starts). The 30-year-old right-hander opened the 2014 campaign with a 5.48 career ERA in 234 2/3 innings (mostly relief).
Your box scores and recaps from Saturday …
Orioles 6, Yankees 1
Mariners 2, Royals 1
White Sox 3, Twins 4
Red Sox 1, Athletics 2 (10 innings)
Blue Jays 1, Reds 11
Phillies 1, Cardinals 4
Brewers 9, Rockies 4
Mets 4, Marlins 0
Astros 0, Rays 8
Tigers 5, Indians 4 (10 innings)
Pirates 5, Cubs 3
Braves 0, Nationals 3
Rangers 2, Angels 3 (10 innings)
Dodgers 4, Padres 2
Giants 6, Diamondbacks 4
Robert Murray and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported earlier, respectively, that the Phillies signed pitcher Francisco Liriano and infielder Neil Walker to minor league contracts. If he makes the major league roster, Liriano will earn a salary of $1.5 million with an additional $1.25 million available through performance incentives. Walker’s contract information is not yet known.
Liriano, 36, struggled from 2016-18 but enjoyed a productive year out of the bullpen for the Pirates this past season. He posted a 3.47 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 35 walks over 70 innings. The lefty was quite effective against same-handed batters, limiting fellow lefties to a .659 OPS. That would figure to be a key component if Liriano makes the Phillies’ Opening Day roster.
Walker, 34, hit .261/.344/.395 with eight home runs and 38 RBI over 381 plate appearances with the Marlins last year. The veteran is versastile, having played first, second, and third base along with both corner outfield spots in recent seasons. Despite Walker’s versatility, it is tough to see room on the Phillies’ roster for him, barring injuries to other players. It never hurts to have depth.