MLB

Lowe grand slam as Diaz secures Rays walk-off victory for Rays, Tatis hits 27th homer

By Sports Desk July 06, 2021

The Tampa Bay Rays hit two runs in the ninth inning with Yandy Diaz securing a 9-8 walk-off victory in a thrilling clash against the Cleveland Indians in MLB on Monday.

Diaz hit a chopper down to right, with second baseman Cesar Hernandez sending a wild throw well wide of home plate, as Randy Arozarena crossed.

Earlier, Brandon Lowe launched a big grand slam deep to right-field off Logan Allen as the Rays raced to a 4-0 lead in the second inning.

Indians right-fielder Harold Ramirez pulled off two outstanding catches to end the fourth inning, before Cleveland reeled the Rays in with four runs in the fifth inning.

At the bottom of the ninth, wonderkid Wander Franco drove Brett Phillips home, before Diaz's chopper helped Arozarena finish it off.

The win sees the stuttering Rays – who had lost five of their past six games coming in – move to 49-36, while the Indians are 42-40.

 

Gausman denied, Tatis homers up

The St Louis Cardinals scored five runs in the final three innings to record a 5-3 win over the San Francisco Giants. San Francisco pitcher Kevin Gausman did not allow a hit through his first six innings before Nolan Arenado sparked a two-run rally for St Louis, with a two-run triple from Matt Carpenter, before Alex Reyes closed it out for the Cardinals.

Fernando Tatis Jr. became the fastest player aged 22 or younger to reach 27 home runs in a season (68 games) in the San Diego Padres' 7-5 loss to the Washington Nationals. Tatis also pulled off a miraculous catch at shortstop in the eighth inning from Ryan Zimmerman.

MLB's home run leader Shohei Ohtani had the chance to be the hero at-bat on his 27th birthday in the ninth inning but the Boston Red Sox held their nerve to win 5-4 over the Los Angeles Angels. Raphael Devers starred for the Red Sox with three RBIs.

Ben Gamel had two home runs with six RBIs as the Pittsburgh Pirates brought Atlanta Braves pitcher Max Fried back down to earth after Sunday's walk off following an 11-1 rout.

 

Cubs' losing run extends to 10

June 24 feels like a long time ago when the Chicago Cubs threw a no-hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers, with their 13-3 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies marking 10 straight defeats. Cubs manager David Ross blew up in frustration and was ejected.

 

Elite company for Pujols

Albert Pujols reached his 6,000th career base, becoming the fourth player to achieve the feat in MLB history as World Series champions the Dodgers lost 5-4 to the Miami Marlins. The other players to reach the mark are Hank Aaron, Stan Musial, and Willie Mays.

Jorge Alfaro's home run in the eighth inning won it for the Marlins, ending the Dodgers' nine-game win streak.

 

Monday's results

St Louis Cardinals 5-3 San Francisco Giants
Miami Marlins 5-4 Los Angeles Dodgers
Pittsburgh Pirates 11-1 Atlanta Braves
New York Mets 4-2 Milwaukee Brewers
Tampa Bay Rays 9-8 Cleveland Indians
Minnesota Twins 8-5 Chicago White Sox
Philadelphia Phillies 13-3 Chicago Cubs
Detroit Tigers 7-3 Texas Rangers
Cincinnati Reds 6-2 Kansas City Royals
Boston Red Sox 5-4 Los Angeles Angels
Washington Nationals 7-5 San Diego Padres

 

Brewers at Mets

The leaders in the National League (NL) East, the Mets (44-37), go again against the NL Central-leading Brewers (51-35).

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    Edmundo Sosa hit a three-run homer and Bryce Harper and J.T. Realmuto had solo shots as the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Texas Rangers 11-4 for the best 50-game start in franchise history on Wednesday.

    Realmuto finished with three RBIs and Alec Bohm had a two-run double to extend the lead to 10-3 in the sixth inning. He is tied for the National League lead with 46 RBIs.

    The major league-leading Phillies (36-14) are just the 26th team in NL history to win at least 36 of their first 50 games played. The 1988 Atlanta Braves were the last team to get off to such a start. Only 17 teams in AL history have reached that mark. The last was the 2001 Seattle Mariners, who went on to 116 wins.

    Philadelphia has won five straight and 17 of its last 20 games overall and 17 of 19 at home.

    Realmuto’s home run in the third snapped a 2-2 tie and his two-run single in the sixth made it 8-3.

    Corey Seager and Leody Taveras homered for the defending World Series champion Rangers, who have lost four straight and nine of 11 to drop two games under .500.

    Streaking Indians beat Mets

    Johnathan Rodriguez drove in the go-ahead run with his first major league hit and the Cleveland Guardians rallied for their sixth consecutive win, 6-3 over the New York Mets.

    Rodriguez, playing in his second game since being recalled from Triple-A Columbus two days earlier, snapped a 3-3 tie in the seventh inning with a grounder through the right side of the infield.

    Cleveland, which trailed 3-0 heading into the sixth, moved into a tie for the second-best record in the majors at 33-17.

    Jose Ramirez and Kyle Manzardo had RBI doubles in the eighth after Andres Gimenez hit a tying, three-run homer in the sixth off starter Jose Quintana.

    The Mets got home runs from Pete Alonso, Jeff McNeil and Harrison Bader but have lost eight of 10 to fall to a season-high seven games under .500 (21-28).

    Royals’ Ragans dominates Tigers

    Cole Ragans pitched one-hit ball over six innings and struck out a career-high 12 to lead the Kansas City Royals to their sixth straight win, 8-3 over the Detroit Tigers.

    Ragans walked three but held the Tigers hitless until Riley Greene’s two-out single in the sixth to win for the fourth time in five decisions.

    Freddy Fermin drove in three runs, Bobby Witt Jr. added two hits and two RBIs and Nelson Velazquez homered as the Royals won their first series against the Tigers since September 2002. It was Kansas City’s first sweep of Detroit since July 2021.

    Tarik Skubal allowed four runs on six hits over five innings to end his 14-game unbeaten streak dating to Aug. 29.

    Detroit has lost four straight to fall a season-worst three games under .500.

  • Europa League misery will not taint Alonso's Leverkusen pride Europa League misery will not taint Alonso's Leverkusen pride

    Xabi Alonso will not allow Bayer Leverkusen's Europa League final defeat against Atalanta to alter his pride, after their historic 51-game unbeaten run ended on Wednesday.

    The Bundesliga champions were eyeing an unlikely treble, with the DFB-Pokal final to come this weekend, but those plans came crashing down in a 3-0 loss to Atalanta.

    Ademola Lookman single-handedly powered Gian Piero Gasperini's side to their first title in 61 years, producing an individual performance for the ages with a decisive hat-trick.

    European heartbreak marked Leverkusen's first loss this season, with their last defeat coming to Bochum on the last day of the 2022-23 Bundesliga campaign, as Alonso's side were finally stopped.

    Yet the former Liverpool and Bayern Munich midfielder says nothing can take away from Leverkusen's memorable campaign.

    "For me the result today does not change one bit how I feel about my players or what we have been doing," the Leverkusen head coach told TNT Sports.

    "It hurts because we wanted to lift the trophy but you can't have everything. We lifted the Bundesliga and we have the chance to lift the DFB-Pokal on Saturday."

    Leverkusen are the first team to win the league title but lose the UEFA Cup/Europa League final in the same term since Benfica in 2013-14, and the first German side to do since Borussia Dortmund in 2001-02.

    "This season and achievements have surpassed all expectations," Alonso continued.

    "I was hoping and getting ready to maybe do something great but this has been so much more.

    "To achieve what we have for a club like Leverkusen is great. To be in the last week of the season having lifted the Bundesliga and then going for the Pokal too means a lot.

    "First year as a coach, it is going quite well!"

    A monumental occasion at the Aviva Stadium marked Atalanta's first-ever major European trophy as they became the 10th different Italian side to do so, second only to teams from England (13).

    Alonso was unsurprised by the excellence of Gasperini and his Atalanta side, however.

    "It is not something they have just done this year, they have been doing it for many years," the Spaniard said, acknowledging the work of 66-year-old Gasperini.

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    "We were not able to come back and get that back. It was not meant to be.

    "The unbeaten run has come to an end but congratulations to Atalanta, they deserve it, so nothing more to say."

  • 'We wrote history' – Gasperini and Lookman cherish Atalanta's Europa League glory 'We wrote history' – Gasperini and Lookman cherish Atalanta's Europa League glory

    Gian Piero Gasperini and Ademola Lookman both cherished creating Atalanta history after ending Bayer Leverkusen's unbeaten run and securing Europa League glory.

    Lookman produced a performance worthy of the most important European moment in Atalanta's history, securing the club's first-ever major trophy on the continent after his dazzling hat-trick.

    The Nigeria winger is just the sixth player to manage a treble in a major UEFA final and the first since Jupp Heynckes’ for Borussia Mönchengladbach against Twente in 1975.

    Lookman will be the toast of Bergamo when Gasperini's side head home, boasting their first trophy in 61 years – after the Coppa Italia – following a 3-0 triumph to end Leverkusen's 51-game unbeaten run.

    "One of the best nights of my life," the hat-trick hero told TNT Sports in Dublin.

    "Amazing performance from the team, we did it, we did it, we did it! I haven't got much else to say, but fantastic."

    Lookman is also just the second player to score a treble for an Italian side in the final of a major European competition, after Pierino Prati for Milan against Ajax in the 1969 European Cup

    Preparing to leave the Aviva Stadium with the Europa League trophy in hand, Lookman could not wait to celebrate a seismic moment in the club's history.

    "We've got to celebrate, we made history tonight," he added.

    Gasperini, aged 66 years and 117 days on Wednesday, is the oldest coach to win his debut major European final, and the second Italian coach to win the Europa League after Maurizio Sarri in 2019.

    The veteran Atalanta mastermind echoed Lookman's sentiment, after securing just a second trophy in the Italian club's history.

    "I think we wrote history, also for the way we won it," said Gasperini, speaking to UEFA's official media channels.

    "It was just extraordinary, we defeated Liverpool, Sporting who won the championship. When we faced Liverpool they were first in the Premier League... And now the German champions.

    "Incredible. The boys were extraordinary, a memorable performance."

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