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And That Happened: Thursday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Red Sox 6, Orioles 2: Price was mediocre in his return to the rotation last Saturday after being diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome. He was magnificent on Thursday, tossing a complete game. The only blemish came on a two-run home run from Manny Machado in the top of the ninth, spoiling Price’s bid for a shutout. He gave up the two runs on five hits with no walks and eight strikeouts on 95 pitches. J.D. Martinez continues to scorch the baseball, homering again — that’s eight May home runs and we’re barely past the midway point in the month. He ended up leaving the game early with a stomach illness. Xander Bogaerts also homered, giving him a three-run home run in each of his last two games. He’s already at six home runs after hitting 10 all of last season.

Dodgers 7, Marlins 0: This win must’ve felt amazing for the last-place Dodgers, who had dropped six games in a row and were on the verge of consecutive series sweeps at the hands of the Reds and Marlins. Kenta Maeda was the stopper, firing eight shutout innings on two hits with no walks and eight strikeouts. Kenley Jansen allowed a couple of hits but struck out three to finish out the game. Yasiel Puig homered off of reliever Junichi Tazawa, who was designated for assignment after the game. Justin Turner went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and five RBI.

Pirates 5, Padres 4: Padres third baseman Christian Villanueva got off to a blazing hot start, but then the calendar flipped to May and he stopped hitting. He entered Thursday’s action batting .091 in 46 plate appearances this month. He didn’t start Thursday, but pinch-hit and stayed in the game, going 0-for-2 on the night. He committed a costly error in the bottom of the seventh, allowing the Pirates to score the go-ahead and eventual game-winning run. Villanueva is ready for June already.

Athletics 10, Blue Jays 5: The A’s put on an offensive clinic, pounding out 10 runs on 14 hits, three of which were homers. Khris Davis, Matt Olson, and Matt Chapman all went yard. Get used to hearing that sentence. Aaron Sanchez lasted only four innings, giving up four runs on five hits and four walks with eight strikeouts.

Phillies 6, Cardinals 2: Another win for the Phillies. That’s seven wins in their last eight ballgames. The Cubs/Braves game was postponed, so the Phils are only a half-game out of first place in the NL East. Vince Velasquez was outstanding, pitching 6 1/3 scoreless frames, yielding five hits and two walks with five strikeouts. Luke Weaver was nearly as good, giving up a lone run on four hits and a walk with six strikeouts in seven innings. The bullpen was the Cardinals’ downfall, serving up five runs in the game’s final two innings. Carlos Santana and Pedro Florimon both homered. Meanwhile, Odubel Herrera extended his on-base streak to 43 consecutive games.

White Sox 4, Rangers 2: Doug Fister was masterful for the Rangers; Jose Leclerc was not. Fister tossed seven shutout innings on six hits with no walks and four strikeouts. Leclerk forked over four unearned runs on a hit and three walks while recording only two outs in the eighth. The unearned runs scored as a result of Leclerc’s own throwing error. Yikes. James Shields pitched a good ballgame, yielding a lone run on three hits and three walks with eight punch-outs in 7 1/3 innings.

Rays 7, Angels 1: The Angels’ bullpen imploded, ruining what was otherwise a solid night for starter Tyler Skaggs. He gave up one run, but Jim Johnson and Felix Pena came in after him and surrendered six more. C.J. Cron stayed hot, homering for the Rays. Johnny Field and Denard Span also went deep. Shohei Ohtani went deep in the ninth, salvaging the Angels from getting shut out. He has a .977 OPS on the year. And a 3.58 ERA.

Tigers 3, Mariners 2: The Tigers rallied late, plating a pair of runs in the top of the eighth on a Jose Iglesias single, taking a 3-2 lead. On the Mariners’ side, Guillermo Heredia was the only Mariner to rack up multiple hits, adding three to his ledger. Tigers starter Matt Boyd gave up just two runs in six innings and now carries a 3.19 ERA on the year.

Rockies 5, Giants 3 (12 innings): Carlos Gonzalez broke through with a two-run single in the top of the 12th to seal the deal. Brandon Crawford and manager Bruce Bochy were ejected in the bottom half of the 12th arguing an egregious called strike three. The umpires and the Giants haven’t gotten along much lately. Brandon Belt hit his 10th homer in the contest.

Cubs @ Braves: Postponed due to inclement weather. It has been rescheduled for Thursday, August 30 at 7:35 PM ET.

Marlins clinch 1st playoff berth since 2003, beat Yanks 4-3

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK (AP) Forced from the field by COVID-19, the Miami Marlins returned with enough force to reach the playoffs for the first time since their 2003 championship.

An NL-worst 57-105 a year ago, they sealed the improbable berth on the field of the team that Miami CEO Derek Jeter and manager Don Mattingly once captained.

“I think this is a good lesson for everyone. It really goes back to the players believing,” Mattingly said Friday night after a 4-3, 10-inning win over the New York Yankees.

Miami will start the playoffs on the road Wednesday, its first postseason game since winning the 2003 World Series as the Florida Marlins, capped by a Game 6 victory in the Bronx over Jeter and his New York teammates at the previous version of Yankee Stadium.

“We play loose. We got nothing to lose. We’re playing with house money.,” said Brandon Kintzler, who got DJ LeMahieu to ground into a game-ending double play with the bases loaded after Jesus Aguilar hit a sacrifice fly in the top of the 10th. “We are a dangerous team. And we really don’t care if anyone says we’re overachievers.”

Miami (30-28), second behind Atlanta in the NL East, became the first team to make the playoffs in the year following a 100-loss season. The Marlins achieved the feat despite being beset by a virus outbreak early this season that prevented them from playing for more than a week.

After the final out, Marlins players ran onto the field, formed a line and exchanged non socially-distant hugs, then posed for photos across the mound.

“I can’t contain the tears, because it’s a lot of grind, a lot of passion,” shortstop Miguel Rojas said. “It wasn’t just the virus. Last year we lost 100 games. But we came out this year with the hope everything was going to be better. When we had the outbreak, the guys who got an opportunity to help the organization, thank you for everything you did.”

Miami was one of baseball’s great doubts at the start of the most shortened season since 1878, forced off the field when 18 players tested positive for COVID-19 following the opening series in Philadelphia.

“Yeah, we’ve been through a lot. Other teams have been through a lot, too,” Mattingly said “This just not a been a great situation. It’s just good to be able to put the game back on the map.”

New York (32-26) had already wrapped up a playoff spot but has lost four of five following a 10-game winning streak and is assured of starting the playoffs on the road. Toronto clinched a berth by beating the Yankees on Thursday.

“I don’t like any time somebody celebrates on our field or if we’re at somebody else’s place and they celebrate on their field,” Yankees star Aaron Judge said. “I’m seeing that too much.”

Mattingly captained the Yankees from 1991-95 and is in his fifth season managing the Marlins, Jeter captained the Yankees from 2003-14 as part of a career that included five World Series titles in 20 seasons and is part of the group headed by Bruce Sherman that bought the Marlins in October 2017.

Garrett Cooper, traded to the Marlins by the Yankees after the 2017 season, hit a three-run homer in the first inning off J.A. Happ.

After the Yankees tied it on Aaron Hicks‘ two-run double off Sandy Alcantara in the third and Judge’s RBI single off Yimi Garcia in the eighth following an error by the pitcher on a pickoff throw, the Marlins regained the lead with an unearned run in the 10th against Chad Green (3-3).

Jon Berti sacrificed pinch-runner Monte Harrison to third and, with the infield in, Starling Marte grounded to shortstop. Gleyber Torres ran at Harrison and threw to the plate, and catcher Kyle Higashioka‘s throw to third hit Harrison in the back, giving the Yankees a four-error night for the second time in three games.

With runners at second and third, Aguilar hit a sacrifice fly.

Brad Boxberger (1-0) walked his leadoff batter in the ninth but got Luke Voit to ground into a double play, and Kintzler held on for his 12th save in 14 chances.

Miami ended the second-longest postseason drought in the majors – the Seattle Mariners have been absent since 2001.

Miami returned Aug. 4 following an eight-day layoff with reinforcements from its alternate training site, the trade market and the waiver wire to replace the 18 players on the injured list and won its first five games.

“We’re just starting,” said Alcantara, who handed a 3-2 lead to his bullpen in the eighth. “We’ve got to keep doing what we’re doing.”

TOSSED

Yankees manager Aaron Boone was ejected for arguing from the dugout in the first inning. Plate umpire John Tumpane called out Judge on a full-count slider that appeared to drop well below the knees and Boone argued during the next pitch, to Hicks, then was ejected. Television microphones caught several of Boone’s profane shouts.

“Reacting to a terrible call and then following it up,” Boone said. “Obviously, we see Aaron get called a lot on some bad ones down.”

ODD

Pinch-runner Michael Tauchman stole second base in the eighth following a leadoff single by Gary Sanchez but was sent back to first because Tumpane interfered with the throw by catcher Chad Wallach. Clint Frazier struck out on the next pitch and snapped his bat over a leg.

SLOPPY

New York took the major league lead with 47 errors. Sanchez was called for catcher’s interference for the third time in five days and fourth time this month.

REMEMBERING

Mattingly thought of Jose Fernandez, the former Marlins All-Star pitcher who died four years earlier to the night at age 24 while piloting a boat that crashed. An investigation found he was legally drunk and had cocaine in his system. The night also marked the sixth anniversary of Jeter’s final game at Yankee Stadium.

UP NEXT

RHP Deivi Garcia (2-2, 4.88) starts Saturday for the Yankees and LHP Trevor Rogers (1-2, 6.84) for the Marlins. Garcia will be making the sixth start of his rookie season.