Around the Bases: Pirates, Reds clinch; Alex Rios hits for the cycle

Brian Kersey

The National League officially has its playoff teams -- all that's left is to sort out the order they'll finish.

Pirates 2, Cubs 1: After Mark Melancon's latest poor outing resulted in another blown lead, Starling Marte responded with a go-ahead home run in the top of the ninth inning.

Pittsburgh appeared to be on its way to blowing another lead with Jason Grilli on the hill in the bottom half of the inning when Justin Morneau nabbed Nate Schierholtz at home on a relay throw to end the game. The Pirates celebrated a little bit on the field, then picked up the pace a few minutes later in the clubhouse when they found out they clinched their first postseason berth in 21 years.

Reds 3, Mets 2: Shin-Soo Choo hit a long walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th to propel Cincinnati to its third trip to the postseason in four years.

The Reds chose not to bust out the champagne, shortstop Zack Cozart told the Associated Press, and will instead turn their focus to winning the NL Central:

"That's not our goal. We're in the division hunt. We're not happy with a Wild Card."

Rangers 12, Astros 0: Texas gained a half-game on the Cleveland Indians in the AL Wild Card standings thanks to a huge performance from Alex Rios, who hit for the cycle for the first time in his career.

Cardinals 4, Nationals 3: Washington's loss in St. Louis ended its own postseason chances and allowed the Reds and Pirates to clinch playoff spots. The Cardinals remain two games ahead of Cincinnati and Pittsburgh in the NL Central.

Rays 5, Orioles 4: James Loney's walk-off home run gave the Rays a one-game lead over the Indians for the top AL Wild Card spot. The Orioles' loss was their fifth straight, dropping them to five games behind Cleveland with six to play. Worse, Baltimore lost Manny Machado to a serious leg injury:

Royals 6, Mariners 5: Four innings after a pair of Seattle home runs knotted the game in the eighth, Salvador Perez drove in a run in the 12th to put KC back up. The Mariners put a pair of baserunners on in the bottom half of the inning, but Royals closer Greg Holland struck out the final two batters to preserve the win.

Twins 4, Tigers 3: Brian Dozier hit a game-tying home run in the ninth, and Josmil Pinto added a walk-off single two innings later to prevent Detroit from clinching a postseason berth. Justin Verlander struck out 12 in six shutout innings for Detroit.

Brewers 5, Braves 0: Carlos Gomez, Jonathan Lucroy and Aramis Ramirez each went deep for Milwaukee, which got seven shutout innings from Marco Estrada.

Padres 4, Diamondbacks 1: Nick Hundley hit a three-run homer off of Brandon McCarthy in the sixth inning to break a 1-1 tie and give San Diego its 13th win in its past 20 games.

White Sox 3, Blue Jays 2: Marcus Semien hit his first big-league homer and Avisail Garcia added a long ball for Chicago.

Marlins 4, Phillies 0: Roy Halladay exited with one out in the first inning due to an arm injury. He allowed a run and a pair of walks. Nathan Eovaldi tossed 7⅔ shutout innings for Miami.

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