Pirates fight off Nationals


Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Francisco Liriano didn’t allow a hit until the sixth inning against a struggling and depleted Nationals lineup, and Pedro Alvarez homered off Stephen Strasburg to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates past Washington 4-2 on Wednesday night.

The Nationals fell to 0-6 since the All-Star break — scoring a total of 13 runs in that span — and have lost 11 of 13.

Liriano (10-4) walked the first batter he faced, then retired 11 in a row before another walk. Five more outs followed, before rookie Anthony Rendon reached on what was ruled an infield single with two away in the sixth.

The Nationals wasted an exceptional outing from Strasburg (5-8), who struck out 12 and didn’t walk anyone in eight innings. He gave up only one run and two hits, all in the second inning. It was Strasburg’s ninth career game with 10 or more strikeouts.

The Pirates tacked on three runs in the ninth against Drew Storen and Fernando Abad.

Mark Melancon got the last three outs to earn his third save.

BRAVES 8

METS 2

NEW YORK — Tim Hudson took a shutout into the eighth inning before getting spiked at first base and carted off the field during Atlanta’s victory over the New York Mets.

Hudson has a broken right ankle and will undergo surgery in Atlanta once the swelling goes down.

Evan Gattis, Dan Uggla and Andrelton Simmons all homered off an ineffective Jeremy Hefner to help the Braves’ bats break loose after scoring only four runs in their previous three games.

Hudson (8-7) was working on a four-hitter when Eric Young Jr. hit a grounder that was knocked down by first baseman Freddie Freeman. Hudson took Freeman’s toss at the bag just before Young arrived, and the speedy outfielder stepped on the back of Hudson’s lower right leg, near his Achilles, driving the pitcher’s right ankle awkwardly into the base.

The 38-year-old Hudson won his fourth straight start, striking out nine in 7 2-3 innings. Luis Avilan replaced him and gave up a two-run double to Daniel Murphy.

Hefner (4-8) compiled a 1.76 ERA in his final eight starts before the All-Star break, the best mark in the majors during that span. But he was tagged for a career-worst eight runs and 10 hits in two-plus innings last Friday against Philadelphia.

The right-hander allowed a career-high three homers to Atlanta in 4 1-3 innings.

CARDINALS 11

PHILLIES 3

ST. LOUIS — Jake Westbrook pitched seven solid innings and contributed offensively with his second career steal, leading St. Louis past Philadelphia.

Matt Adams had two hits and three RBIs, and Shane Robinson’s three-run triple in the fifth was his third hit of the game for the Cardinals (61-37), who are 4-1 since the All-Star break.

Allen Craig had two hits and a walk to give him 16 hits during a nine-game hitting streak. He is second in the NL in hitting at .337 behind teammate Yadier Molina (.339), who had three hits and an RBI.

Westbrook (7-4) had his first career three-hit game and helped knock out John Lannan (2-4) when he drew a two-out walk in the fourth, stole second and scored on Carpenter’s single for a 4-0 Cardinals lead.

BREWERS 3

PADRES 1

MILWAUKEE — Kyle Lohse pitched seven strong innings, and Carlos Gomez had four hits and drove in two runs to lead Milwaukee over San Diego.

It was the Brewers’ first win since left fielder Ryan Braun was suspended Monday for the remainder of the 2013 season for violating Major League Baseball’s drug policy.

Lohse (7-7) gave up five hits and struck out six. He is 6-1 over his last 11 starts with a 2.51 ERA. The Brewers were 2-8 in Lohse’s first 10 starts and 8-3 in his last 11 starts.

John Axford pitched a scoreless eighth inning, and Jim Henderson worked the ninth to record his 11th save in 14 opportunities.

Sean O’Sullivan (0-2), making just his second start and third appearance of the season for the Padres, pitched 6 1-3 innings, giving up three runs on seven hits. He started in place of Jason Marquis, who is scheduled for Tommy John surgery.

ROCKIES 2

MARLINS 1

DENVER — Jorge De La Rosa tossed six scoreless innings, Todd Helton doubled and scored a run, and Colorado held on to beat Miami.

Michael Cuddyer reached three times and Rex Brothers earned his sixth save in seven chances with a scoreless ninth.

Miami entered the series having not scored in 37 innings, but it is the Rockies who struggled for runs in the first three games. They managed one Monday, two against Jose Fernandez on Tuesday and two more against Jacob Turner on Wednesday.

De La Rosa (10-5) made sure the two runs would stand up with another strong performance, and Colorado snapped a two-game skid.

De La Rosa set down 13 of his last 15, yielding only two-out singles to Adeiny Hechavarria in the fifth and Placido Polanco in the sixth. He allowed six hits and struck out four to reach double-digit victories for the first time since winning 16 games for the Rockies in 2009.

Turner (3-3) was a hard-luck loser for the second straight outing. He allowed two runs and six hits, struck out four and walked two in six innings. It was the third straight start he allowed two runs.

RANGERS 3

YANKEES 1

ARLINGTON, Texas — Matt Garza pitched into the eighth inning of his Rangers debut, the only run he allowed unearned after his throwing error, and Texas beat the New York Yankees 3-1 on Wednesday night.

Garza (1-0) was 6-1 in his 11 starts this season for the Chicago Cubs before being traded Monday to the Rangers, who had long coveted the right-hander. He was 5-0 with a 1.24 ERA his last six starts for Chicago, winning the last five.

After giving up consecutive singles to start his first game in a Rangers jersey, Garza retired 15 of the next 16 batters before his throwing error on Brett Gardner’s comebacker leading off the sixth.

A.J. Pierzynski drove in two runs for Texas, including a tiebreaking solo homer in the bottom of the sixth off Andy Pettitte (7-8). David Murphy also homered, off reliever Shawn Kelley in the eighth.

RAYS 5

RED SOX 1

BOSTON — David Price pitched a five-hitter for his third complete game of the season, Wil Myers had a two-run single, and the surging Rays won for the 19th time in 22 games by beating the Red Sox.

James Loney had two hits and drove in a run for the Rays. Tampa Bay moved within a half-game of the AL East-leading Red Sox.

Mike Napoli homered for Boston, which lost for the fifth time in eight games.

Price (5-5) needed only 97 pitches for his seventh career complete game. He struck out four and didn’t walk a batter. Since returning from a 47-day stint on the disabled list because of a triceps strain, he is 4-1 with a 1.76 ERA in five starts.

Felix Doubront (7-4) gave up three runs and six hits and took the loss.

ATHLETICS 4

ASTROS 3

HOUSTON — Coco Crisp hit a two-run homer in Oakland’s three-run seventh inning to help the Athletics to a win over the Astros.

The A’s trailed by two before an RBI double by Eric Sogard with one out cut the lead to 3-2 and chased starter Bud Norris. Crisp launched his home run off Travis Blackley (1-1) to put Oakland on top.

John Jaso had a solo homer in the first inning for the A’s, who have won 11 of 12 against Houston this season.

A.J. Griffin (9-7) allowed six hits and three runs and tied a season-high with eight strikeouts in 6 1-3 innings for the win.

ANGELS 1

TWINS 0

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Jered Weaver outpitched Mike Pelfrey with eight innings of two-hit ball and Albert Pujols drove in the only run, leading the Angels to a victory over the Twins.

Weaver (5-5) struck out nine and walked one in his first home start against the Twins since his no-hitter on May 2, 2012. The three-time All-Star retired 19 consecutive batters during one stretch — just four days after teammate C.J. Wilson set down 18 in a row against Oakland.

Ernesto Frieri got three outs for his 25th save in 27 chances, less than 24 hours after giving up five runs including a grand slam by Chris Herrmann in the 10th inning of the Angels’ 10-3 loss.

Pelfrey (4-8) pitched six innings and allowed five hits, including Pujols’ run-scoring single in the first.

INDIANS 10

MARINERS 1

SEATTLE — Scott Kazmir allowed just one hit over his eight innings, Michael Bourn hit his first career grand slam and the Indians routed the Mariners.

The only hit Kazmir (6-4) gave up was a clean leadoff single to center by Justin Smoak in the fifth. Kazmir struck out seven, walked two and allowed an unearned run. He threw 103 pitches and was relieved by Vinnie Pestano in the ninth. Pestano allowed a hit.

Bourn blew the game open in the fifth with his slam on a full-count pitch from reliever Hector Noesi.

Asdrubal Cabrera had two hits, including his eighth home run. Carlos Santana had three hits, including a pair of RBI doubles.

Joe Saunders (9-9) took the loss. He lasted just 4 2-3 innings, allowing five earned runs on nine hits, walking three and striking out five.

TIGERS 6

WHITE SOX 2

CHICAGO — Prince Fielder, Austin Jackson and Torii Hunter homered, and Anibal Sanchez pitched six scoreless innings to help the Tigers overcome Miguel Cabrera’s absence in a win over the White Sox.

Cabrera, the reigning AL MVP and baseball’s first Triple Crown winner in 45 years last season, left Monday’s game in the bottom of the fifth inning with a left hip flexor injury. He hasn’t played since and might sit out Thursday, too, when the Tigers go for a four-game sweep.

Detroit has won four straight and 13 of 21.

Sanchez (8-7) earned his first win since July 6, allowing six hits and striking out five. The right-hander had only allowed five earned runs in his previous two starts, both losses.

John Danks (2-8) lost his second straight start and is winless since July 2.

ROYALS 4

ORIOLES 3

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Eric Hosmer hit two home runs and Alcides Escobar drove in the winning run in the ninth to lift the Royals to a victory over the Orioles.

David Lough singled and scored the game-ending run when Escobar doubled off the fence in left center with one out in the ninth.

Hosmer homered in the first and his two-run home run in the eighth tied the score at 3. It was Hosmer’s third multi-homer game and his second this season.

Darren O’Day (5-1) took the loss, while Luke Hochevar (3-1), picked up the victory after working a scoreless ninth.

INTERLEAGUE

DODGERS 8

BLUE JAYS 3, 10 innings

TORONTO — Mark Ellis hit a two-run homer to highlight Los Angeles’ five-run 10th inning as the Dodgers beat the Blue Jays to complete a three-game sweep.

Yasiel Puig also went deep in the 10th for the streaking Dodgers, who have won six straight and 23 of 28 to go from last in the NL West on June 21 to first place.

Los Angeles won its 10th straight road game, the franchise’s longest streak since the Brooklyn Dodgers won their first 11 away from home in 1955.

Brandon League (5-3) pitched two innings to beat his former team for the second straight game and Kenley Jansen finished for the Dodgers.

Juan Perez (1-2) gave up all five runs and four hits in the 10th inning for Toronto.

 

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