Houston got within two batters of a combined no-no.
Last night, for the second time in three days, the Yankees and Red Sox were rained out in Boston. Just like when Monday’s game got canned, they’re set to make it up in a day/night doubleheader the next day, and the second twin bill of this series will go down later today.
However, just because the Yankees were out of action doesn’t mean there was no baseball yesterday. Here’s a look at what went down across the AL playoff race on Wednesday.
Tampa Bay Rays (90-57) 5, Minnesota Twins (76-70) 4
Randy Arozarena’s go-ahead home run in the top of the ninth lifted the Rays past the Twins for their 90th win of the season.
Early on, Tampa Bay jumped out to a nice lead, scoring three runs in the second inning and another in the third, as Minnesota starter Dallas Keuchel lasted just four innings. However, the Twins then began to work their way back into the game, tying it up on a Max Kepler triple in the fifth.
The game became a battle of the bullpen after that, and both teams held up for a while. Eventually, Arozarena demolished a Griffin Jax pitch, and that proved the difference in the game.
Seattle Mariners (81-65) 3, Los Angeles Angels (68-79) 2
A solid six innings from Luis Castillo and a crucial two-run fifth inning pushed the Mariners just past the Angels.
LA scored their two runs off Castillo early-ish, picking up one each in the third and fourth innings. Other than that, he was good, finishing the day with two runs on three hits and three walks, while striking out eight.
As for Seattle’s offense, they came from behind twice, before taking the lead for good in the bottom of the fifth. Cal Raleigh tied the game and Teoscar Hernández delivered the hit which would drive home the game-winning RBI.
St. Louis Cardinals (65-81) 1, Baltimore Orioles (91-54) 0
Drew Rom and the Cardinals bullpen combined to hold the Orioles to just three hits in a shutout win in the battle of the birds. The game’s lone run came in the fourth inning when Richie Palacios homered for St. Louis. Kyle Gibson and Baltimore pitching weren’t bad themselves, but the just got outdueled.
Cardinals’ starter Rom gave up the first two O’s hits, the first coming in the fifth after 4.2 no-hit innings. The second was a Anthony Santander double that knocked Rom out of the game after 5.2 innings.
The third and final Baltimore hit did provide some amount of last minute drama. With two outs in the ninth, Gunnar Henderson tripled, keeping the game alive and putting the tying run 90 feet away. However, former Yankee Aaron Hicks couldn’t capitalize, and popped up to end the game.
Texas Rangers (81-64) 10, Toronto Blue Jays (80-66) 0
The Rangers’ lineup and pitching was firing on all cylinders as they combined for a blowout win over the Blue Jays.
While Yusei Kikuchi held Texas in check for the first three innings, the Rangers broke out with four runs in the fourth and never looked back from there. All but two of their starters recorded a hit, as they combined for 12 as a team. Mitch Garver and Nathaniel Lowe led the way with three RBI each.
Texas’ pitching took a hit off the field on Wednesday with the news that Max Scherzer is likely out for the rest of the year. However, the rest of their staff held up on the field. Former Yankee Jordan Montgomery went seven strong, allowing four hits and a walk.
Houston Astros (83-64) 6, Oakland Athletics (46-100) 2
The Astros came very close to a combined no-hitter, as it took the A’s 8.1 innings before a Ryan Noda single got the goose egg out of that column. A couple runs came after that to ruin the shutout as well, but other than that, this was a fairly straightforward win for Houston.
Hunter Brown got the start for the Astros, and he dominated early, striking out seven in five innings. After that, Rafael Montero, Hector Neris, and Bryan Abreu all followed with scoreless frames, getting the ‘Stros within three outs of a combined no-hitter. Ryan Pressley couldn’t finish it off, eventually allowing two hits and two runs.
As for Houston’s offense in this game, they were led by Yordan Alvarez, who hit a three-run homer in the third that gave the Astros a lead that they wouldn’t surrender.