And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

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  • Latest Standings
  • Latest Wild Card Standings
  • Yankees 5, Rays 4: Chris Young broke up Alex Cobb’s no hitter in the eighth and then hit a walkoff homer to win the dang thing. A three-run shot with the Yankees down by two. Martin Prado’s two-run homer came right after the no-no was broke up. A game not many people thought the Yankees had a chance to win but, bam, there it is. It’s the sort of thing that is going to keep people saying crazy things like the Yankees have a shot to make the playoffs, even.

    Brewers 4, Marlins 2: A win for Milwaukee, but all of it is overshadowed by the awful pitch to the face of Giancarlo Stanton. Everyone pretty much lost it after that happened and it’s not surprising that they did. Here’s hoping the Iron Giant is OK.

    Indians 2, Twins 0; Indians 8, Twins 2 : Corey Kluber wins his 15th in game one, getting back on track after some shaky outings. T.J. House takes care of things in the nightcap, tossing seven shutout innings. Carlos Santana homered in both ends of the doubleheader, driving in the only runs in game two.

    Nationals 6, Mets 2: Adam LaRoche and Anthony Rendon had two-run homers and Bartolo Colon decided he needed to hit the batters after each of them, leading to his ejection. You been around this game a long time Bartolo: get guys out and cut that crap out.

    White Sox 1, Athletics 0: Chris Sale, man. His season has been positively ridiculous. Here he tossed eight shutout innings and lowered his ERA to 1.99. On the year he’s 12-3 with a 192/32 K/BB ratio in 163 innings. He may not get the kind of Cy Young consideration Felix Hernandez gets because he’s played on a losing team and missed some time, but what he’s done while he’s been there has been crazy.

    Reds 1, Cardinals 0: Same story applies to Johnny Cueto. He has less of a Cy Young case because, well, there is no argument that makes him better than Clayton Kershaw. But he’s been incredible. Eight shutout innings here, lowering his ERA to 2.15 ERA in a league-leading 222 innings. The Reds take three of four from the Cardinals.

    Pirates 4, Phillies 1: Another fantastic pitching performance, this from Francisco Liriano, who struck out 12 in eight shutout innings. Seven of eight for the Pirates, who are separating themselves from the pretenders.

    Giants 6, Diamondbacks 2: And those Pirates seem to be on a collision course with the Giants for the wild card game. That is, if the Giants don’t catch the Dodgers. If they played the corpse that is the Arizona Diamonbacks every game they’d be assured of it, because they’d never lose again. Jake Peavy, who has come on like gangbusters, stuck out eight in five and two-thirds. Hunter Pence had a silly RBI single. What a late season surge for the Giants.

    Red Sox 6, Royals 3: Liam Hendriks made a spot start for Danny Duffy which is less than ideal. It’s even less ideal than that when the Royals commit three errors behind him in the first four innings of the game.

    Angels 7, Rangers 3: Mike Scioscia’s bullpen game-a-week has been interesting. Eight pitches used here may seem nuts, but it’s better than exposing any one pitcher who probably doesn’t have any business pitching a lot of innings, you know, pitch a lot of innings. Indeed, the Angels have given up fewer runs a game since Garrett Richards went down than they were giving up before he did. So someone is doing something right.

     

     

     

Phillies down Astros for 1st playoff berth since 2011

Philadelphia Phillies v Houston Astros
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HOUSTON – Aaron Nola took a perfect game into the seventh inning and Kyle Schwarber homered twice as the Philadelphia Phillies clinched their first playoff berth in 11 years with a 3-0 win over the Houston Astros on Monday night.

After Brandon Marsh caught Mauricio Dubon’s fly ball in center for for the game’s final out, players jumped and cheered in jubilation before meeting at the mound where they hugged and bounced around some more.

The video board at Minute Maid Park displayed the team’s logo and the words: “Congratulations Philadelphia” as the Phillies celebrated.

A small but vocal group of Philadelphia fans congregated near the team’s dugout and chanted: “Let’s go Phillies,” in the bottom of the ninth inning.

The Phillies clinched at the same ballpark where they secured their last postseason trip on Sept. 14, 2011. That game was a 1-0 victory over the Astros highlighted by a complete game shutout by Hall of Famer Roy Halladay.

Philadelphia’s postseason drought was the longest active one in the majors after the Seattle Mariners clinched their first playoff berth in 21 years Friday night.

The Phillies entered the opener of the final regular season series of the year needing a win or a loss by the Brewers to get a National League Wild Card spot. The Brewers rallied to beat the Diamondbacks 6-5 in 10 innings a few minutes before Philadelphia wrapped up the victory.

Nola (11-13) struck out nine and didn’t allow a baserunner until Yordan Alvarez singled with two outs in the seventh. David Hensley followed with a single and Nola was replaced by Jose Alvarado, who struck out Kyle Tucker to end the inning.

Zach Eflin pitched a scoreless ninth to complete the shutout and get his first save in 11 years of pro ball.

Schwarber got things going for the Phillies in their first visit to Houston since Sept. 16, 2012, with a leadoff homer off Lance McCullers (4-2)

Philadelphia added some insurance when Bryson Stott and Schwarber hit back-to-back solo shots off Jose Urquidy to start the eighth inning.

It is the eighth multi-home run game this season for Schwarber, who leads the NL with a career-high 46 home runs, and gives him 199 homers in his career.

The Phillies have three players who will appear in the postseason for the first time after playing more than 600 career games. Jean Segura leads the group with 1,327, J.T. Realmuto has 1,004 and Rhys Hoskins is at 666.

McCullers allowed six hits and one run with five strikeouts in six innings.

Manager Dusty Baker replaced Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Jeremy Pena with Aledmys Diaz, Dubon and Hensley for the seventh inning.

He said before the game that he planned to get some of his starters out early to rest since Houston has already clinched the best record in the American League.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Phillies: LHP Brad Hand (elbow tendinitis) threw a bullpen session Monday in Houston and could throw live batting practice Wednesday. If that goes well, he could be ready to return for the postseason.

UP NEXT

Houston Justin Verlander, whose 1.80 ERA leads the majors, will try for his 18th win when the series continues Tuesday against Ranger Suarez (10-6, 3.37).