MLB

Athletics closing in on Rays in wild-card race

By Sports Desk July 04, 2019

The Oakland Athletics sealed a series win over the Minnesota Twins in MLB on Thursday.

Oakland defeated the Twins 7-2 to take two out of three games in the series from the American League (AL) Central leaders and move to 48-40 this season.

Marcus Semien hit a grand slam to lead the Athletics to the win and Oakland, all of a sudden, are just two games back of the Tampa Bay Rays for the first wild-card spot in the AL.

Tampa Bay lost to the New York Yankees 8-4 on Thursday and have now taken losses in 10 of their past 17 games.

Meanwhile, the Athletics have won five of their past six.

After starting the year 15-21, Oakland are on the precipice of getting home-field advantage in the wild-card game.

Ramirez homers twice

Jose Ramirez went two for five with two home runs in the Cleveland Indians' 8-4 win over the Kansas City Royals.

Matthew Boyd gave up nine hits and four runs, but he recorded 16 outs, 13 of which came via the strikeout in the Detroit Tigers' 11-5 win over the Chicago White Sox.

Kris Bryant went four for five, finishing a triple shy of the cycle in the Chicago Cubs' 11-3 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

 

Grandal goes hitless

Yasmani Grandal went 0 for four with two strikeouts in the Milwaukee Brewers' 1-0 loss to the Cincinnati Reds.

 

Gurriel brilliance

Lourdes Gurriel made a spectacular diving play on Mookie Betts.

Thursday's results

Washington Nationals 5-2 Miami Marlins
Cleveland Indians 8-4 Kansas City Royals
Detroit Tigers 11-5 Chicago White Sox
Cincinnati Reds 1-0 Milwaukee Brewers
Chicago Cubs 11-3 Pittsburgh Pirates
Oakland Athletics 7-2 Minnesota Twins
St Louis Cardinals 5-4 Seattle Mariners
New York Yankees 8-4 Tampa Bay Rays
Boston Red Sox 8-7 Toronto Blue Jays
Atlanta Braves 12-6 Philadelphia Phillies
Texas Rangers 9-3 Los Angeles Angels
Los Angeles Dodgers 5-1 San Diego Padres

 

Rockies at Diamondbacks

Both of these teams are in the National League (NL) wild-card race and this series, which is the last before the All-Star break, could go a long way in determining whether one, or both of these teams, are buyers or sellers at the trade deadline.

Related items

  • World Series MVP Strasburg agrees seven-year Nationals deal World Series MVP Strasburg agrees seven-year Nationals deal

    MLB World Series MVP Stephen Strasburg has agreed a seven-year contract to return to the Washington Nationals.

    The Nationals announced the news on Monday in what is reported to be a record deal for a pitcher, coming in at $245million.

    Strasburg was key to the Nationals' 4-3 victory over the Houston Astros in October, securing the franchise's first World Series title before entering free agency.

    A three-time All-Star and 2012 Silver Slugger, Strasburg started Games 2 and 6 of the World Series, going 2-0 with a 2.51 ERA, 14 strikeouts and two walks in 14.3 innings of work.

    "We are very excited to welcome Stephen Strasburg and his family back to the Washington Nationals," said Nationals managing principal Owner Mark D Lerner.

    "His tremendous talent, work ethic and leadership have been a staple of our organisation since the day we selected him in the 2009 MLB Draft.

    "We would not have won the 2019 World Series or accomplished everything we have these last 10 seasons if not for Stephen's many contributions."

    Strasburg is fifth on the all-time list for MLB strikeouts with 1,603.

  • Hamels signs one-year, $18m deal with Braves Hamels signs one-year, $18m deal with Braves

    Four-time All-Star Cole Hamels signed a one-year, $18million deal with the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday.

    Hamels, 35, joins the Braves after a season and a half with the Chicago Cubs, having previously played for the Philadelphia Phillies and Texas Rangers.

    An All-Star in 2007, 2011, 2012 and 2016, Hamels was the World Series MVP as the Phillies enjoyed their success in 2008.

    "When it came down to it, I wanted to play on a contender," the left-hander said.

    "I was very familiar with the Braves. I've watched them in the postseason and I've seen what they've been able to create.

    "I've always been following them in hopes of maybe being able to pitch with some of those guys, because they have such good young talent. I know at my stage of my career what I could provide could be beneficial."

    Hamels made 27 starts for the Cubs this year, posting a 3.81 ERA on his way to a 7-7 win-loss record.

    Atlanta, meanwhile, made the National League Division Series (NLDS) before falling to the St Louis Cardinals.

    The Braves have already signed reliever Will Smith and catcher Travis d'Arnaud this offseason.

  • Pirates hire Derek Shelton as manager Pirates hire Derek Shelton as manager

    The Pittsburgh Pirates appointed Derek Shelton as manager, the MLB franchise announced on Wednesday.

    Pittsburgh turned to Shelton after Clint Hurdle was sacked in September following the franchise's worst season (69-93) since 2010.

    Shelton arrives in Pittsburgh for his first managerial role, having spent the past two campaigns as the Minnesota Twins' bench coach.

    "My family and I are thrilled to have the opportunity to join the Pittsburgh community and are humbled to be a part of this storied franchise," said the 49-year-old, who also spent time working with the Cleveland Indians, Tampa Bay Rays and Toronto Blue Jays.

    "One of the most exciting things for me during the interview process was just how evident the passion for Pittsburgh and the desire to succeed was with everyone I interacted with.

    "I very much look forward to developing a strong partnership with [general manager] Ben [Cherington] and the baseball operations staff. It is going to be an exciting change of culture in our clubhouse. It is going to be a fun environment in which we will all be held accountable to each other.

    "It will be a player-centric culture built on strong communication and relationships with our players, our staff and the entire organisation. We will begin to establish those relationships this offseason prior to coming together as a team in Bradenton this February."

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.