Around the Bases: Petit almost perfect, A's take over first place

Thearon W. Henderson

News and notes from Friday's MLB action, which included an almost-perfect game and a changing of the guard atop the AL West.

Giants 2, Diamondbacks 0: Yusmeiro Petit came one out away from a perfect game, but settled for a one-hit shutout against Arizona. The perfect game and no-hitter were broken with two outs in the ninth inning when pinch-hitter Eric Chavez lined a single just inches in front of a diving Hunter Pence. It would have been San Francisco's second no-hitter of the season, as Tim Lincecum performed the feat against San Diego on July 13. Petit pitched for the Diamondbacks from 2007 through 2009.

Athletics 7, Astros 5: Oakland moved into sole possession of first place in the AL West for the first time since Aug. 6 with a victory over Houston on Friday. The Astros took an early 3-1 lead, but the Athletics scored a pair of runs in the third, fourth and sixth innings to notch the come-from-behind win. Josh Donaldson homered and A.J. Griffin struck out nine batters in six innings of work, giving way to the bullpen combo of Sean Doolittle, Ryan Cook and Grant Balfour for the final three frames. Houston outfielder Brandon Barnes was ejected in sixth inning after arguing with home plate umpire Alan Porter. Barnes was hit by a pitch, but Porter ruled that he didn't make a reasonable effort to get out of the way and did not award 1st base to the hitter.

Angels 6, Rangers 5: Texas fell into second place in the AL West after losing to Los Angeles on Friday. Alex Rios put the Rangers in front 3-0 with a home run in the third, but the Angels got to starter Matt Garza with a five-run fourth, highlighted by Mark Trumbo's three-run home run. Garza has thrown only three quality starts in nine games since being acquired by Texas, but the Rangers have won six of those games; Garza is 3-3 with a 4.31 ERA as a Ranger. Elvis Andrus homered for Texas after missing the previous four games with a back injury.

Cardinals 12, Pirates 8: Pittsburgh has ensured at least a .500 record this year, but they'll have to wait another day to secure their first winning season since 1992. St. Louis scored five runs off of starter A.J. Burnett in the first three innings, and then used a seven-run seventh inning to put the game away. The Pirates threatened with seven runs of their own in the eighth and ninth innings combined, but it wasn't enough to erase the 11-run deficit that they faced. Yadier Molina homered, Carlos Beltran collected three hits and Joe Kelly provided the Cardinals with a quality start to earn the win. St. Louis is now just a half-game behind Pittsburgh in the NL Central.

Red Sox 12, Yankees 8: Mike Napoli hit a game-tying grand slam in the seventh inning, and Boston added four more runs in the eighth to defeat New York. Alfonso Soriano got the scoring started in the first with his 13th home run in only 39 games as a Yankee and New York built an 8-3 lead by the end of the fifth, but the bullpen failed to hold the lead for starter Andy PettittePhil Hughes allowed four runs, Boone Logan one, Preston Claiborne three and Joba Chamberlain one in a combined two innings of work. The two teams have already combined for 37 runs in the first two games of this four-game series. With the loss, the Yankees fell a half-game behind Cleveland and Baltimore in the Wild Card race.

Tigers 16, Royals 2: James Shields allowed 10 runs while recording only 11 outs, and Detroit clobbered Kansas City on Friday. The Tigers had a pair of five-run innings, and two batters -- Andy Dirks and Omar Infante -- turned in 5-for-5 performances. Infante also drove in six runs for the Tigers -- the five hits and six RBIs were both career-highs for Infante. Only six of Detroit's season-high 26 hits went for extra bases, and all six were doubles. The rout was quite a turnaround for the Tigers, as their last game was a 20-4 loss to Boston on Wednesday.

Indians 8, Mets 1: Scott Kazmir's comeback season has had its ups and downs, but Friday was definitely an up. The left-hander struck out a season-high 12 batters against the team which drafted him in the first round in 2002, and Cleveland kept pace in the Wild Card race with a victory over New York. Nick Swisher hit a grand slam in the eighth to put the game away for the Indians.

Orioles 4, White Sox 0: Baltimore kept itself in the thick of the Wild Card race with a victory over Chicago. Scott Feldman threw the first shutout of his MLB career, allowing just five singles and a walk on only 106 pitches. The Orioles relied mostly on the long ball for their offense -- Chris Davis hit his MLB-leading 48th home run, and was joined by Danny Valencia and Matt Wieters in the power department. All three home runs came off of White Sox starter John Danks.

Reds 3, Dodgers 2: Joey Votto entered Friday mired in a 4-for-37 slump, but he reached base in all four of his plate appearances against Los Angeles and hit a game-winning home run. The Dodgers took the lead in the top of the first on a two-run home run by Hanley Ramirez, but Votto's long ball put the Reds in front for good in the fifth. Aroldis Chapman struck out Yasiel Puig, Adrian Gonzalez and Ramirez in order in the ninth inning for his 35th save.

Phillies 2, Braves 1: Cliff Lee struck out 10 batters in eight innings of work, and Cody Asche provided the go-ahead two-run home run in the seventh off of Mike Minor. Despite the loss, Atlanta's magic number to clinch the NL East is down to nine games after Washington fell to Miami.

Mariners 6, Rays 4: Justin Smoak doubled to deep right in the eighth inning to break a 4-4 tie and give Seattle the win.

Marlins 7, Nationals 0: After splitting six games against the Mets and Phillies, the Nationals were shut out by Miami in the opener of a three-game series. Jose Fernandez carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning, and Logan Morrison and Giancarlo Stanton homered for the Marlins.

Rockies 4 Padres 3: San Diego's Chase Headley homered in the ninth inning off Rex Brothers and Jesus Guzman finished the deal, giving Colorado a walk-off victory at Petco.

Blue Jays 6, Twins 5: The first homer of Josmil Pinto's career was a walk-off against Toronto closer Casey Janssen. The rookie catcher is now 9-for-14 with a 1.667 OPS in the first four games of his major-league career.

Cubs 8, Brewers 5: Junior Lake hit his first career grand slam and Chicago's bullpen bailed out starter Chris Rusin to hold on for the victory over Milwaukee.

More from SB Nation MLB:

Giants’ Petit comes within a strike of perfection

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