NEW YORK (AP) — Relief pitcher Adam Ottavino sailed a 30-foot throw home on Albert Pujols’ tiebreaking chopper, and the sloppy New York Yankees lost to the Los Angeles Angels 3-2 Wednesday night with a chance to clinch the AL East.
New York still would have locked down the division title with a Tampa Bay loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers later in the night. But with the Yankees waiting around in their clubhouse for a potential bubbly celebration, the Rays rallied for an 8-7 victory in 11 innings that ended nearly three hours after New York’s game finished.
The Yankees would have been assured a playoff spot if Cleveland had lost, but the Indians beat Detroit 2-1 in 10 innings.
Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton stung the ball in his return from injury and CC Sabathia got an emotional send-off in his final regular-season start in the Bronx, yet New York dropped to 99-54 after entering the night tied with Houston for the majors’ best record.
DODGERS 8, RAYS 7, 11 INNINGS
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Austin Meadows homered leading off the 11th inning, sending Tampa Bay to a victory over Los Angeles that helped the Rays keep pace in the AL wild-card race and prevented the New York Yankees from clinching the AL East title.
Tampa Bay remained two games behind Oakland for the top wild card and a half-game ahead of Cleveland for the second spot.
Meadows slugged his 32nd homer off Josh Sborz (0-1), and Ji-Man Choi’s sacrifice fly tacked on an insurance run after the Rays had rallied for two runs off closer Kenley Jansen in the ninth.
CARDINALS 5, NATIONALS 1
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Adam Wainwright outpitched Max Scherzer, Dexter Fowler made a sensational catch and NL Central-leading St. Louis beat Washington.
Wainwright (13-9) limited the Nationals to an unearned run in seven innings. He gave up eight hits, struck out three and walked one.
Trailing by four, and with two on with one out in the eighth. The Nats’ Asdrúbal Cabrera hit a drive off Andrew Miller that had the distance to leave the park, but Fowler jumped and reached far over the wall to make the grab.
HOUSTON (AP) — Gerrit Cole struck out 10 batters, including his 300th of the season, in eight strong innings, Yuli Gurriel and Jose Altuve homered and Houston beat Texas to lock up a postseason berth.
Houston won its fifth straight and 100th game of the season, becoming one of six teams in major league history to win at least 100 games in three straight seasons.
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Dinelson Lamet struck out a career-high 14 and Kirby Yates fanned pinch-hitter Ryan Braun with a runner on second base to close out San Diego’S over playoff-contending Milwaukee.
The Brewers, who had won four in a row, began the day tied with the Cubs for the second NL wild-card spot.
METS 7, ROCKIES 4
DENVER (AP) — Pete Alonso hit his major league-leading 49th homer and drew a bases-loaded walk during a four-run rally in the ninth inning that sent New York over Colorado.
New York closed to three games behind the Cubs and Brewers for the second NL wild card when both teams lost later in the day. After winning two of three at Coors Field, the Mets have 10 games left this season starting with a three-game series in Cincinnati that opens Friday.
INDIANS 2, TIGERS 1, 10TH INNING
CLEVELAND (AP) — Yasiel Puig hit an RBI single off the top of the right field wall with two outs in the 10th inning and Cleveland kept up its playoff push, beating Detroit.
The Indians are four games behind the Twins in the AL Central and remained one-half game behind Tampa Bay for the second AL wild-card spot. Cleveland is two games behind wild-card leader Oakland.
ATLANTA (AP) — Bryce Harper hit a two-run homer, Zach Eflin pitched seven solid innings and Philadelphia won its second straight game over Atlanta.
Atlanta has lost three in a row for the first time since July 16-18, but still leads the division by nine games. With nine games left in the regular season, the Braves can clinch their second consecutive NL East title with either two wins, two Washington losses or a combination of one each.
WHITE SOX 3,
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Held without a hit until the sixth inning, Minnesota managed only three in the loss to Chicago.
In the AL Central, Minnesota is four games ahead of Cleveland after the Indians beat Detroit 2-1 in 10 innings. The surprising Twins still have a magic number of seven to clinch their first division title since 2010.
MARINERS 4, PIRATES 1
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Kyle Lewis hit his fifth home run since debuting Sept. 10, Tom Murphy homered and Seattle beat Pittsburgh for its fourth straight win.
Dario Agrazal (4-5) allowed the four runs and six hits while striking out six in five innings.
DIAMONDBACKS 5, MARLINS 4
PHOENIX (AP) — Mike Leake worked effectively into the seventh inning, Domingo Leyba had two RBIs and Arizona beat Miami.
Arizona is 4 ½ games behind the Cubs abd Brewers in the race for the NL’s second wild card.
BLUE JAYS 11,
BALTIMORE (AP) — Randal Grichuk hit a grand slam with two outs in the ninth inning, and Toronto rebounded from an ineffective start by Clay Buchholz to rally past Baltimore.
Grichuk’s 30th home run highlighted a six-run ninth that began with Toronto trailing 9-5. The shot came off Miguel Castro (1-3), who was charged with all six runs.
REDS 3, CUBS 2,
CHICAGO (AP) — José Iglesias had an RBI double in the 10th inning and five Cincinnati pitchers combined for a four-hitter as the Reds recorded their second straight win over the playoff-contending Chicago.
The Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers trail the NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals by three games. Chicago and Milwaukee are tied for the second NL wild-card spot, 1½ games behind the Washington Nationals, who hold the first wild card.