Valdez throws 2-hitter, Álvarez homers twice, Astros top A’s

May 31, 2022 GMT
Houston Astros' Framber Valdez pitches against an Oakland Athletics batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Monday, May 30, 2022. (AP Photo/John Hefti)
Houston Astros' Framber Valdez pitches against an Oakland Athletics batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Monday, May 30, 2022. (AP Photo/John Hefti)
Houston Astros' Framber Valdez pitches against an Oakland Athletics batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Monday, May 30, 2022. (AP Photo/John Hefti)
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Houston Astros' Framber Valdez pitches against an Oakland Athletics batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Monday, May 30, 2022. (AP Photo/John Hefti)
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Houston Astros' Framber Valdez pitches against an Oakland Athletics batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Monday, May 30, 2022. (AP Photo/John Hefti)

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Yordan Álvarez hit a pair of no-doubt homers, Framber Valdez pitched a two-hitter for a rare complete game and the Houston Astros beat the Oakland Athletics 5-1 on Monday.

After being held to five runs the previous four games, the Astros’ bats woke up against Oakland ace Paul Blackburn (5-1).

Álvarez hit a 469-foot drive to give Houston its first run in the fourth inning against Blackburn and added a 444-foot shot to nearly the same spot in the eighth off A.J. Puk for his 14th homer of the season.

Jose Altuve also went deep with a two-run homer in the fifth that was the 174th of his career, tied with George Springer for fifth most by a Houston player.

That was more than enough support for Valdez (5-2), who threw just the seventh nine-inning complete game in the majors this season. He struck out seven, walked three and threw 114 pitches in the longest outing in his five-year career.

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The A’s have lost seven of 10 and trail the Astros by 12 games in the AL West, their biggest deficit in the division since being 12 back on June 16, 2019.

GIANTS 5, PHILLIES 4, 10 INNINGS

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Curt Casali hit a two-run homer in the 10th inning to put San Francisco over Philadelphia in a long-ball contest that extended the Phillies’ losing streak to four.

Wilmer Flores and Evan Longoria also homered for the Giants. Kyle Schwarber, Nick Castellanos and Rhys Hoskins went deep for the Phillies, who lost in extra innings for the second straight day.

Philadelphia has lost 11 of 15 games and at 21-28 is seven games under .500 for the first time since the final day of 2017.

Andrew Bellatti (1-1) got the loss. Dominic Leone (3-0) pitched a scoreless ninth for the Giants for the win and Camilo Doval was credited with the save.

ROCKIES 7, MARLINS 1

DENVER (AP) — Pinch-hitter Yonathan Daza doubled to drive in three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning, helping Colorado rally past Miami.

The game also included the longest home run of the season in the MLB, a 496-foot shot in the second inning from Miami’s Jesús Sánchez. It reached the third deck concourse at Coors Field.

Daza finished with four RBIs after adding a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the eighth. Garrett Hampson had a two-run triple, Brendan Rodgers singled in the bottom of the eighth inning to extend his career-long hitting streak to 17 games and Rockies first baseman Connor Joe reached base safely in his 26th straight game with a triple in the sixth inning.

Colorado starter Ryan Feltner (1-1) got his first big-league win, going seven innings and allowing four hits — including Sánchez’s towering drive — while striking out six and walking one.

Miami starter Pablo López kept the Rockies in check through six scoreless innings, and Cole Sulser (0-2) came on in relief to start the seventh.

TIGERS 7, TWINS 5

DETROIT (AP) — Jonathan Schoop became the third player from Curaçao with 1,000 major league hits and finished a home run shy of the cycle to help Detroit beat Minnesota in the opener of a five-game series.

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Schoop, a 30-year-old infielder in his 10th big league season, singled in the third inning, doubled in the fifth for his 1,000th hit and tripled leading off the seventh as part of a 3-for-5 afternoon. He joined Andruw Jones (1,933) and Andrelton Simmons (1,163 through Sunday) as players from Curaçao with 1,000 hits,

Rookie Spencer Torkelson, another slumping Tigers player, had his first three-hit game with two singled and a double. His seventh-inning RBI infield single off Joe Smith (0-1) put the Tigers ahead 5-4 and Willi Castro followed with another-run scoring single.

Gio Urshela cut the deficit with an RBI double in the eighth against Alex Lange, and Javier Báez had a run-scoring single in the bottom half to restore a two-run lead.

Detroit overcame a 3-1 deficit and scored more than four runs for the first time since May 15.

Joe Jiménez (2-0) pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings of one-hit relief. Gregory Soto got his ninth save in 10 chances.

CARDINALS 6, PADRES 3

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Nolan Gorman hit a go-ahead, two-run homer, rookie Andre Pallante got his first big league win in his 17th appearance and St. Louis beat San Diego.

Paul Goldschmidt also hit two-run homer for the Cardinals. He has a 21-game hitting streak and has reached base safely in a career-high 35 consecutive games, the longest streak in the major leagues this season.

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Gorman, a 22-year-old who was the 19th overall pick in the 2018 amateur draft, made his major-league debut on May 20 and hit his first home run Saturday off Milwaukee’s Adrian Houser. On Monday, Gorman homered on a changeup from Nick Martinez (2-3) for a 2-1 lead in the third inning, had his second three-hit game and is batting .387.

Pallante allowed one run and five hits over 3 1/3 innings with a career-high five strikeouts and no walks.

Martinez gave up three runs and seven hits in six innings.

RANGERS 9, RAYS 5

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Rangers center fielder Eli White made a sensational leaping catch to take away a three-run homer from Ji-Man Choi in the first inning, and later hit a long home run in Texas’ win over Tampa Bay.

White sprinted to the warning track in left-center and timed his jump perfectly. His upper body was well above the 6-foot wall fronting the Rays bullpen and his left arm fully extended above his head when he made the grab more than 400 feet from home plate.

Rookie right-hander Glenn Otto (3-2) exited with a 9-2 lead. Jonah Heim also homered and Kole Calhoun drove in three runs for Texas.

Rays starter Drew Rasmussen (5-2) walked the first three batters he faced.

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GUARDIANS 7, ROYALS 3

CLEVELAND (AP) — Andrés Giménez hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning off rookie Collin Snider, sending Cleveland over an injury-riddled Kansas City team.

Giménez’s shot to center field off Snider (3-2) scored pinch-runner Ernie Clement and rookie Oscar Gonzalez, who singled in the inning to make up for a gaffe earlier when he threw the ball into the stands with two outs.

José Ramírez hit his 13th homer and drove in three more runs for the Guardians, raising his major league-leading total to 51 RBIs.

Nick Sandlin (4-2) got the win in relief.

Emmanuel Rivera homered for the Royals, who rallied in the eighth but couldn’t stop from falling to 16-31 — the AL’s worst record.

PIRATES 6, DODGERS 5

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Michael Perez hit a tying single in the ninth inning and pinch-runner Michael Chavis scored the go-ahead run on Freddie Freeman’s error at first base to give Pittsburgh a wild win over Los Angeles.

The Dodgers scored twice in the eighth to take their only lead before the Pirates charged right back against closer Craig Kimbrel (0-1), handed his first blown save this season.

The Pirates have beaten the Dodgers in three of four games this month. Pittsburgh manager Derek Shelton earned his 100th career victory.

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David Bednar (2-1) struck out Will Smith with two on to end it. The loss snapped the Dodgers’ four-game winning streak.

Tucupita Marcano hit a three-run homer, his first in the majors, and Bryan Reynolds also connected off starter Walker Buehler to give Pittsburgh an early 4-0 lead.

Hanser Alberto and Mookie Betts launched back-to-back homers for the Dodgers.

DIAMONDBACKS 6, BRAVES 2

PHOENIX (AP) — Pavin Smith hit a three-run homer, Zac Gallen had another strong start on the mound and Arizona beat Atlanta.

Arizona took a 6-2 lead in the fifth, scoring three runs a few minutes after manager Torey Lovullo was thrown out of the game for arguing. Ketel Marte had a two-out, two-run double and David Peralta followed with an RBI single that brought home Marte.

All three runs scored after the Braves should have been out of the inning: Gold Glove first baseman Matt Olson dropped a throw that would have completed an inning-ending double play.

Gallen (4-0) gave up two runs over 5 2/3 innings, scattering seven hits and two walks while striking out six. The right-hander has a 2.32 ERA this season through nine starts.

Spencer Strider (1-2) made his first career start for the Braves after 13 career appearances out of the bullpen.

METS 13, NATIONALS 5

NEW YORK (AP) — Starling Marte and Nick Plummer each homered and finished with four RBIs as New York rode an early offensive outburst to rout Washington.

The top three batters in the Mets’ order — Luis Guillorme, Marte and Francisco Lindor — combined to reach base in their first nine plate appearances, all of which occurred in the first three innings against Nationals starter Erick Fedde (3-4) and reliever Andres Machado.

New York trailed 3-0 after a half-inning but led 12-4 after the fourth.

The Met piled up 16 hits and matched their season high for runs. Colin Holderman (2-0) earned the win with 1 1/3 innings of one-run ball in relief of David Peterson, who was pulled one out shy of qualifying for the win.

ORIOLES 10, RED SOX 0

BOSTON (AP) — Tyler Wells pitched six smooth innings of two-hit ball and Baltimore got early homers from Ryan Mountcastle and Ramón Urías to beat Boston.

Anthony Santander sealed Baltimore’s third win in the five-game series with a three-run homer in the ninth.

Wells (2-4) struck out three and matched his career best in innings, allowing only a single by Trevor Story in the second and Xander Bogaerts’ double in the fourth.

Wells outpitched Boston veteran Rich Hill (2-2), who was in trouble from the start. Hill threw 92 pitches in four-plus innings, allowing six earned runs on seven hits and two walks. He struck out five.

BREWERS 7, CUBS 6, GAME 1

BREWERS 3, CUBS 1, GAME 2

CHICAGO (AP) — Tyrone Taylor homered in both games, Aaron Ashby (1-3) struck out a career-high 12 in the nightcap and Milwaukee swept a doubleheader at Chicago.

Luis Urías lined three-run homer into the basket in left-center to break a seventh-inning tie in the opener. The Brewers trailed 4-2 before Taylor’s two-run homer in the sixth off Matt Swarmer, and Milwaukee led 2-1 in the second game when Taylor homered off left-hander Brandon Hughes in the eighth.

Victor Caratini hit a tiebreaking home run in the fifth inning against his former team, and the Brewers won their third in a row while getting just three hits in the nightcap. The Cubs extended their losing streak to three.

Ashby (1-3) allowed one run and five hits six-plus innings, giving up Willson Contreras’ home run. Josh Hader remained perfect in 18 save chances by getting his second of the day.

Chicago’s Drew Smyly pitched three hitless innings and left because of right oblique soreness at the start of the fourth. Anderson Espinoza (0-1), a 24-year-old right-hander making his major league debut, allowed two runs and two hits in four innings.

Miguel Sánchez (1-1) gave up one hit in two scoreless innings.

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