Around the Bases: Indians vault into second spot in AL Wild Card race

John Gress

Cleveland finally broke through and captured one of the spots in the crazy AL Wild Card race.

Indians 2, Astros 1: Zach McAllister allowed a run on four hits in five frames and Bryan Shaw struck out three in 1⅓ relief innings to lead the Tribe to a rain-shortened victory over Houston.

Mike Aviles doubled and accounted for the Indians' only run batted in. Cleveland finally gained ultimate ground, moving into the second spot in the Wild Card standings after spending several days at a half-game behind the leaders.

Royals 2, Rangers 1: Alcides Escobar drew a bases-loaded walk against Neftali Feliz in the bottom of the eighth inning to put Kansas City ahead, and Greg Holland slammed the door the following inning with a pair of strikeouts.

The Royals moved to two games behind the Rangers and Rays. Ervin Santana helped the cause by tossing 7⅓  innings of one-run ball. Texas dropped to 4-14 in September.

Rays 5, Orioles 4 (18): The longest game of the night ended in the 18th inning when David DeJesus singled to right field off Bud Norris to drive home Desmond Jennings to keep Tampa Bay atop the Wild Card standings. The teams combined to use 21 pitchers in the marathon.

Red Sox 6, Blue Jays 3: One day after clinching a playoff spot, the Red Sox won the AL East behind Jon Lester, who struck out eight in seven innings of work. Dustin Pedroia finished with three hits and Mike Carp added three RBI.

Jays outfielder Colby Rasmus left the game prior to the bottom of the first inning after being hit in the head with an errant warm-up throw.

Reds 6, Pirates 5: Cincinnati scored three times in the top of the ninth and added the go-ahead run on Joey Votto's solo home run an inning later. Billy Hamilton provided a spark for the Reds, scoring from second base on an infield single after stealing his 10th bag in nine games.

The Reds and Pirates are tied atop the NL Wild Card standings.

Cardinals 7, Brewers 6: Carlos Beltran's sacrifice fly in the 10th inning gave the Cards a two-game lead in the NL Central. Matt Adams hit a go-ahead, two-run homer in the ninth inning but Edward Mujica allowed a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning to send the game into extras.

Yankees 5, Giants 1: Alex Rodriguez hit his 24th career grand slam, surpassing Yankees legend Lou Gehrig for the most in MLB history. New York stayed relevant in the AL Wild Card race with the win, climbing to within 2½ games of the Rays and Rangers.

Tigers 12, White Sox 6: Max Scherzer secured his 20th victory of the season, becoming the second Tigers pitcher -- along with Justin Verlander -- to accomplish the feat in the last 20 years.

Detroit remains six games ahead of Cleveland with eight to play.

Nationals 8, Marlins 0: The Nats kept their playoff hopes alive on the back of Jordan Zimmermann, who racked up nine strikeouts and allowed two hits in a complete-game shutout. Washington remains five back in the Wild Card race.

Braves 9, Cubs 5: Chris Johnson had three hits, including a home run, to move into a first-place tie with Michael Cuddyer in the NL batting race. The Braves reduced their magic number to clinch the NL East to one.

Mets 6, Phillies 4: David Wright hit a two-run homer in the first inning against Cole Hamels, who struck out eight but allowed six runs on 10 hits.

Rockies 9, Diamondbacks 4: Jhoulys Chacin tossed a quality start and helped his cause with his first career home run, a two-run shot in the third inning.

Athletics 11, Twins 0: The A's got home runs from Yoenis Cespedes and Josh Donaldson en route to extending their lead over the Rangers in the AL West to 7½ games with eight left on the schedule.

Padres 2, Dodgers 0: Jedd Gyorko homered, Robbie Erlin tossed 7⅔ shutout innings and Huston Street struck out L.A.'s mighty pinch-hitting duo of Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp with runners on the corners in the ninth.

Angels 3, Mariners 2 (11): Chris Iannetta hit a walk-off single in the 11th for the Angels, who are 13-6 in September.

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