Baseball roundup: Max Scherzer stars as Nationals sweep Diamondbacks
Max Scherzer struck out 11 in eight innings and delivered a two-run single to help his cause in the Washington Nationals’ 8-3 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday in Phoenix.
Washington earned its fourth road series sweep of the season and first since May 30-June 1 at Philadelphia. Arizona lost its fourth straight and sixth in seven games. The Diamondbacks are winless in nine Wednesday games at home this season.
Scherzer (12-6) allowed three runs on four hits, giving up two homers, and walked one. He is 3-0 in four starts against his former team, which drafted the four-time All-Star and former Cy Young Award winner No. 11 overall in 2006.
Daniel Murphy’s sixth-inning solo home run broke a 1-1 tie before Scherzer bounced a single up the middle with the bases loaded and two outs, driving in Anthony Rendon and Danny Espinosa.
TWINS 13, INDIANS 5 (at Cleveland) — Joe Mauer had four hits and four RBI, Brian Dozier hit a three-run homer and Minnesota continued its mastery over Cleveland.
AL Central-leading Cleveland fell to 4-8 against last-place Minnesota. The Twins have outscored the Indians 35-16 in winning the first three games of the series. The Indians’ lead over Detroit in the AL Central lead has shrunk to two games.
BRAVES 8, PIRATES 4 (at Atlanta) — Ender Inciarte broke a tie with an RBI single in the fifth inning and offensively challenged Atlanta had 15 hits.
BLUE JAYS 3, ASTROS 1 (at Houston) — Josh Donaldson hit two home runs, and Marco Estrada threw seven solid innings in Toronto’s victory.
Jose Bautista hit his second home run in two nights in the sixth as he and Donaldson went back-to-back.
ORIOLES 3, RANGERS 2 (at Baltimore) — Kevin Gausman outpitched Cole Hamels, and Baltimore rode a three-run first inning to victory.
Matt Wieters had two RBI for the AL East-leading Orioles, whose 39-16 record at home is the best in the majors. Baltimore will seek to complete a three-game sweep today in a series between first-place teams.
CUBS 5, MARLINS 4 (at Chicago) — Chicago rallied for three runs in the bottom of the ninth inning — capped by a bases-loaded walk for a tie and a wild pitch to score the winning run — for a victory over Miami.
Ben Zobrist drew a bases-loaded walk with two out to tie the score. With Willson Contreras at the plate, Marlins closer A.J. Ramos (1-1) threw a wild pitch to allow Matt Szczur to score the winning run from third base.
It was Ramos’ second blown save of the season in 33 chances.
Ichiro Suzuki lined out softly to shortstop as a pinch hitter in the seventh inning against Lackey. He remains at 2,998 career hits, two shy of becoming the 30th player to reach the 3,000-hit milestone.
TIGERS 2, WHITE SOX 1 (at Detroit) — J.D. Martinez broke an eighth-inning tie with a pinch homer on the first pitch he had faced since June and Detroit beat Chicago for its eighth straight victory.
Playing for the first time since fracturing his elbow June 16, Martinez received a long standing ovation on his way to the plate to hit for James McCann leading off the inning.
The cheers got a lot louder when Martinez launched Sale’s first pitch into the shrubs above the center field fence. Martinez took a curtain call after the inning, much to the crowd’s delight.
RAYS 12, ROYALS 0 (at St. Petersburg, Fla.) — Jake Odorizzi had his third consecutive scoreless start, Steven Souza Jr. homered for the first time in two months and Tampa Bay beat Kansas City.
Brad Miller and Kevin Kiermaier also homered for the Rays, who are 7-25 against the Royals since the start of the 2012 season.
CARDINALS 5, REDS 4 (at Cincinnati) — Brandon Moss singled home a pair of runs during St. Louis’ four-run first inning, extending his season-long streak against the Reds.
PADRES 12, BREWERS 3 (at San Diego) — Edwin Jackson pitched seven scoreless innings and had an RBI double, and Jabari Blash hit his first major league home run in San Diego’s win.
Jackson (2-2) retired the first 11 batters he faced, and the Brewers didn’t put a runner in scoring position until Kirk Nieuwenhuis doubled in the fifth.
Jackson signed a minor-league contract with the Padres in June after starting the season in Miami’s bullpen. He gave up three runs — two on Ryan Braun’s homer — on eight hits and struck out five over eight innings.
TROASTS IN NATIONAL TOURNAMENT: The Hackensack Troasts, who won the National Amateur Baseball Federation Northeast Regional tournament last week, are off to Battle Creek, Mich. to play for the national title. This will be the Troasts’ fourth trip to the NABF’s final round, and according to Dumont’s John DiGirolamo, “it’s the best team Hackensack has ever put on the field. I like our chances.”
The Troasts open with a doubleheader today against the New Rochelle Robins and Muskegon (Mich.) Blue Jays, followed by a single game against the Beecher (Ill.) Muskies on Friday. Tournament play continues through the weekend.