SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Barry Zito came through in one of the most important outings in his San Francisco tenure, pitching the NL West-leading Giants past the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-0 on Sunday night to extend their division lead to 5½ games.
Hunter Pence hit a two-run double in the first inning that held up and Buster Posey homered in San Francisco’s fifth win in the last six meetings of the rivalry.
Marco Scutaro added a sacrifice fly to back an impressive performance by Zito (11-8), who allowed four hits in 6 1-3 scoreless innings to win his third straight decision. He combined with five relievers on the five-hit shutout
Joe Blanton (1-4) took the loss for Los Angeles (74-67), which dropped 1½ games back of St. Louis for the second NL wild card.
Angel Pagan matched his career high with an 11th triple, leaving him one shy of the San Francisco record. Hall of Famer Willie Mays hit 12 in 1960 and Steve Finley did so in 2006.
MARLINS 8, NATIONALS 0
WASHINGTON (AP) — Ricky Nolasco tossed a four-hitter to shut out Washington for the second time in two weeks and Giancarlo Stanton homered for the third straight day to lead Miami.
Nolasco also doubled in two runs and Greg Dobbs added three singles for Miami.
The Marlins won two of three games in the weekend series against the NL East-leading Nationals (86-54), whose division lead slipped to 5½ games over Atlanta.
Nolasco (12-12), who won his third straight and notched his fourth career shutout, struck out six and walked one, stifling a team that had scored 43 runs in its five previous games.
Washington’s Edwin Jackson (9-10) gave up six earned runs on nine hits in 4 2-3 innings.
REDS 5, ASTROS 1
CINCINNATI (AP) — Matt Dominguez hit a three-run homer and Tyler Greene added a solo shot to help Houston slow Cincinnati’s run to the NL Central title.
Edgar Gonzalez allowed two hits and one run in five innings against the Reds, who came in with a magic number of 14 for eliminating second-place St. Louis. Gonzalez (2-0) walked one and struck out six as the Astros won a road series for the first time since early June.
Houston relievers Wesley Wright, Mickey Storey and Wilton Lopez combined for eight strikeouts over four shutout innings.
Johnny Cueto (17-8) allowed four runs on nine hits with six strikeouts in four innings.
BRAVES 3, METS 2, 10 INNINGS
NEW YORK (AP) — Brian McCann homered and drove in the go-ahead run in the 10th inning to lift Atlanta over New York for its fifth straight win.
Martin Prado led off the 10th with a single against Bobby Parnell (4-4). After Jason Heyward grounded out, Freddie Freeman was intentionally walked. Dan Uggla worked a walk base on balls before McCann hit a sacrifice fly.
Peter Moylan pitched the bottom half of the inning for his first save of the season. Craig Kimbrel (1-1) pitched a scoreless ninth for the NL wild-card leaders.
McCann led off the sixth with his 20th home run for a 2-1 lead.
CARDINALS 5, BREWERS 4, 10 INNINGS
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Allen Craig hit an RBI single in the 10th inning and St. Louis beat Milwaukee to avoid a three-game sweep and hold its slim lead for the second NL wild-card spot
The Brewers tied it in the ninth on Norichika Aoki’s two-out, two-run homer off closer Jason Motte. The two-strike drive barely cleared the right-field wall.
Matt Carpenter singled with one out in the St. Louis 10th off Kameron Loe (6-5) and moved up on a wild pitch. Craig singled and Carpenter made a nifty slide to score.
Lance Lynn (14-7) picked up the win with one inning of scoreless relief.
Matt Holliday hit his 26th homer and Carlos Beltran his 29th for the Cardinals.
PHILLIES 3, ROCKIES 2, GAME 1; PHILLIES 7, ROCKIES 4, GAME 2
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Ryan Howard drove in two runs and seven pitchers combined to help Philadelphia beat Colorado in Game 2 to complete a doubleheader sweep.
John Mayberry Jr. hit an RBI single in the ninth inning of the first game to lift the Phillies to a 3-2 win.
The Phillies trailed 4-1 in the second game before scoring two runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings for their fourth straight win. They have forced their way into the NL wild-card race and play their next seven games against cellar dwellers Miami and Houston.
B.J. Rosenberg (1-2) struck out two in a scoreless sixth for the win. Josh Roenicke (4-2) took the loss.
Jonathan Papelbon tossed a scoreless ninth for his 32nd save.
In the opener, Mayberry hit a bases-loaded single against Matt Belisle (3-6) for the win. Rockies left fielder Carlos Gonzalez sprinted toward Mayberry’s low liner and appeared to make a diving catch, but the ball popped out when his glove hit the ground. There was brief confusion before the umpire ruled it was a hit.
Papelbon (5-6) picked up the win with a scoreless ninth.
CUBS 4, PIRATES 2
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Alfonso Soriano hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning to help Chicago complete a three-game sweep of Pittsburgh.
Soriano followed Anthony Rizzo’s leadoff single in the eighth with his second homer in as many days and 28th of the season, sending the first pitch from Jason Grilli (1-6) into the Cubs bullpen in left-center.
Josh Vitters and Anthony Recker each hit solo home runs for the Cubs in the fourth.
Chris Rusin allowed one run in five innings and left with a chance for his first win, but the Pirates tied it in the seventh when Brock Holt scored on a balk by James Russell (7-1).
PADRES 8, DIAMONDBACKS 2
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Chase Headley hit a grand slam to extend his career bests to 27 homers and an NL-high 102 RBIs, and Carlos Quentin followed with a homer for San Diego’s first back-to-back shots this season in a win over Arizona.
Arizona, the defending NL West champions, dropped 6½ games behind St. Louis for the second NL wild-card spot, with three teams in between them.
Rookie Andrew Werner (2-1), making his fourth career start, allowed one run and four hits in 6 1-3 innings, struck out six and walked three.
Arizona rookie Patrick Corbin (5-7) allowed three runs and six hits in 5 1-3 innings.