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And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Mariners 4, White Sox 3: On a day when a lot of bullpens woofed up a lot of leads, the David Robertson and the White Sox get the award for the biggest woof. Leading 3-0 heading into the bottom of the ninth, Robertson allowed three singles and a walk, making it 3-1 with two outs and two on. Then Adam Lind came in to pinch it. On the second pitch he saw he jacked a three-run homer. Ballgame. It was bad enough that Robertson blew the lead, but it also blew a game in which Chris Sale gave up only one hit in eight shutout innings. He was at 100 pitches even and was on nine days rest from actual work — a game in which he threw only 88 pitches — and five days rest from his one inning of work in the All-Star Game. He had thrown more than 100 pitches in 14 of his other 18 starts this season. I guess hindsight is 20/20 but I also guess that Sale could’ve brought this one home if Robin Ventura was inclined to allow it.

Royals 7, Indians 3: Corey Kluber pitched seven shutout innings. Then Cleveland relievers Bryan Shaw and Jeff Manship gave up seven runs in the eighth. This was the second worst train wreck to affect Cleveland last night. Jarrod Dyson‘s grand slam was the topper that inning. After that Dyson homer Melania Trump said “In a year that has been so improbable the impossible has happened!” She’s so eloquent.

Yankees 2, Orioles 1: An A-Rod homer and a Brian McCann sac fly should not be enough offense to hold up against the Orioles, but it was on this night. Ivan Nova allowed one run over six and the Betances/Miller/Chapman troika did what it was designed to do, tossing three shutout innings. Are they still calling them “No-Run DMC?” Did that ever really stick beyond the first month or so of the season? I don’t feel like your relief corps gets a nickname when two-thirds of it are on the trading block, but if they really want me to call them that I will.

Athletics 7, Astros 4Yonder Alonso drove in three runs, Khris Davis hit his fourth home run in his last three games, Kendall Graveman got his fifth straight win and the A’s won their third game in the past four. Hi, I’m Craig, and I invented the one-sentence game story. You may call it lazy and reductive, but since I call it a “disruptive sportswriting model” and have a Mountain View, California P.O. Box address, the company I formed to market it — SribeEx — is now valued at $3.4 billion. God, people are suckers.

Marlins 3, Phillies 2: The Phillies took a 2-0 lead into the top of the ninth before Christian Yelich doubled in a run and Marcel Ozuna singled in Yelich. In extras Martin Prado hit a 400-foot homer in the 11th and A.J. Ramos locked it down. The Marlins had been 0-40 when trailing after eight innings before this one. There’s still a lot of time to go in the season but they’re starting to take on the air of a ~frisky~ team that could be dangerous if they make the playoffs. BTW: Jose Fernandez struck out 14 in six an a third innings.

Cubs 5, Mets 1: Anthony Rizzo hit a three-run homer in the third, Jon Lester pitched one-run ball into the eighth and the Mets never really threatened. Steven Matz is 0-5 in his last nine starts.

Tigers 1, Twins 0: Justin Upton‘s homer was the only scoring here as Matt Boyd and three Tigers relievers combined for a shutout. The homer reminded me of a time several years ago when Upton started out hot with the Braves and someone decided to make a Twitter account that did nothing but tweet when Upton homered. After Upton cooled off he stopped doing it so someone else started it up. He gave up after 11 tweets and only got to tweet “yes” once:

That’s not any sort of commitment. That’s what’s wrong with the younger generation, really. They never finish what they

Reds 8, Braves 2: A five-run fourth inning powered by three homers was all the Reds really needed here. Joey Votto and Eugenio Suarez each hit two-run shots that frame and Zack Cozart hit a solo homer. Fun fact: Braves reliever Mauricio Cabrera threw a pitch 103.8 mph, according to MLB’s Statcast system. That’s the ninth-fastest pitch in the two-season history of Statcast. 1-8 are all Arolids Chapman pitches.

Cardinals 10, Padres 2: Mike Leake struck out 11 dudes in six innings and didn’t walk anybody. In his last start he struck out 10 dudes and didn’t walk anybody. “He’s able to make big pitches in big situations,” Mike Matheny said, continuing a streak of 10,000 straight player/manager quotes about “making pitches” that are basically completely unilluminating.

Rockies 7, Rays 4: The Rays have lost 11 in a row. Trevor Story hit his 22nd homer. The Rockies bullpen bent a good bit late but never broke.

Angels 9, Rangers 5: The Rangers had a 4-0 lead but the Angels steadily chipped back and took the lead. After the Rangers regained the lead, 5-4, the Angels chipped again, going ahead 6-5 in the seventh. Then Mike Trout provided some insurance with a three-run homer. The bad news: that 4-0 deficit came while Nick Tropeano was on the hill for the Angels. He was just activated from the disabled list July 4, but had to leave two innings and four runs in due to elbow soreness. He’ll undergo an MRI today.

Young Blue Jays say they aren’t intimidated by top seed Rays

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) When the Tampa Bay Rays and Toronto Blue Jays opened the pandemic-delayed season a little over two months ago, there was little to indicate the AL East rivals might meet again to begin the playoffs.

While the Rays launched the truncated 60-game schedule with expectations of making a strong bid for their first division title in a decade, the Blue Jays generally were viewed as an immensely talented young team still years away from postseason contention.

Tampa Bay didn’t disappoint, shrugging off a slow start to go a league-best 40-20 and claim the No. 1 seed in the AL playoffs that begin Tuesday.

Lefty Blake Snell, who’ll start Game 1 of the best-of-three wild-card series against Toronto at Tropicana Field, also isn’t surprised that the eighth-seeded Blue Jays earned a spot, too.

The Rays won six of 10 games between the teams during the regular season, but were outscored 48-44 and outhomered 17-11.

And while Toronto (32-28) lacks the playoff experience Tampa Bay gained last season when the Rays beat Oakland in the AL wild-card game before falling to Houston in the divisional round, the Blue Jays are building with exciting young players such as Cavan Biggio, Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

“They’ve got a lot of young guys who can ball over there,” Snell said. “It’s going to be fun to compete and see how we do.”

Rays defensive whiz Kevin Kiermaier said Tampa Bay, in the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the second time franchise history, will not take the Blue Jays lightly.

“We know we’re playing a real good team,” Kiermaier said. “It’s not going to be easy, regardless of what a team is seeded.”

The Blue Jays, who’ll start right-hander Matt Shoemaker, aren’t conceding anything.

Bichette said he and his teammates respect how good Tampa Bay is, but are not intimidated by facing the No. 1 seed.

“I would say that we didn’t care who we played. I would say that we didn’t mind playing Tampa, that’s for sure. We’re familiar with them. We’ve played them well,” Bichette said.

“I think we’re confident in our ability against them. Our talent matches up well,” Bichette added. “We think if we play well we’ve got a good chance.”

NO FANS

The stands at Tropicana Field will be empty, leaving players to wonder what the atmosphere will be like for the playoffs.

Tampa Bay routinely rank at or near the bottom of the majors in attendance, but usually pack the stands in the domed stadium during the postseason.

“It will be different,” Bichette said. “Normally when you think of your first postseason you think 40,000, you think about not being able to think it’s so loud, stuff like that.”

The Blue Jays open the playoffs near where they hold spring training in Dunedin, Florida. It’s been a winding road for Toronto, which played its home games in Buffalo, New York, at the site of its Triple-A affiliate after the Canadian government barred the Blue Jays from hosting games at their own stadium because of coronavirus concerns.

CONFIDENT RAYS

Tampa Bay’s five-game loss to Houston in last year’s divisional round was a source of motivation during the regular season.

“It definitely lit a fire under everybody. It really showed us we belong. … We gave them a tough series,” second baseman Brandon Lowe said.

“We won the wild-card game. We belong in the postseason. I think that did a lot for us to understand that we should be in the postseason and we can go a lot farther. We know what to expect this time around. I think everyone in our clubhouse expects to be playing until the end of October,” he said.

CLOSE FRIENDS

Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash has the Rays in the playoffs for the second time. His close friend and former Rays third base and bench coach Charlie Montoyo is in his second year as manager of the Blue Jays, who last made the playoffs in 2016.

“Pretty special,” Cash said of his relationship with Montoyo.

“I really learned a lot from him being around him. The way he carried himself. His hand print is throughout this organization,” Cash added. “A pretty big impact and a positive one. … When they clinched I talked to him, we face-timed at 1:30 in the morning. I’m so happy for him.”