The Cleveland Guardians have won the Lucas Giolito sweepstakes.

The Guardians claimed the right-hander off waivers on Thursday, two days after the Los Angeles Angels opted to put six players on waivers with their season spiraling downward.

Cleveland also claimed relievers Matt Moore and Reynaldo Lopez, who was traded with Giolito from the Chicago White Sox to the Angels on July 26.

The Angels made a number of moves at the deadline in hopes of making the playoffs for the first time since 2014 - as well as convincing superstar Shohei Ohtani to re-sign. Since the calendar flipped to August, however, Los Angeles is an AL-worst 8-19 and is 11 1/2 games out of the league's final wild-card spot.

The Guardians are on the fringe of the playoff conversation - sitting five games back of the first-place Minnesota Twins in the AL Central - but the front office is showing it is committed to making a postseason push.

The Angels, meanwhile, conceded their playoff chances on Tuesday, placing Giolito, Lopez, Moore, as well as reliever Dominic Leone, and outfielders Hunter Renfroe and Randal Grichuk on waivers.

Giolito struggled in his short time with the Angels, but has a proven track record and is familiar with the AL Central.

An All-Star in 2019, the 29-year-old threw a no-hitter in 2020, and has gone 47-41 with a 3.99 ERA over the last five seasons. Since 2019, his 868 strikeouts rank second among all AL pitchers.

In 21 starts for the White Sox this season, he went 6-6 with a 3.79 ERA before going 1-5 with a 6.89 ERA in six outings for the Angels.

He will take the spot in the starting rotation that belonged to Noah Syndergaard, who was released on Wednesday.

Moore and Lopez will join a Cleveland bullpen that has recorded a 3.48 ERA - the fifth best in MLB.

Moore had a 2.66 ERA in 41 relief appearances for Los Angeles this season, while Lopez posted a 2.77 ERA in 13 games with the Angels.


Cody Bellinger’s infield single in the eighth inning scored the go-ahead run and lifted the Chicago Cubs to a 3-2 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday in a key NL Central matchup.

The Cubs won the final two games of the series after dropping Monday’s opener to get back within three games of the Central-leading Brewers.

Chicago moved a season-high nine games over .500 and is three games behind Philadelphia, which owns the top wild card.

The Cubs sacrificed runners to second and third in the eighth, but Christopher Morel was thrown out at home on Ian Happ’s fielder’s choice for the second out.

Mike Tauchman moved to third and scored when Bellinger’s sharply hit ball up the middle glanced off the right ankle of reliever Joel Payamps and to third baseman Andruw Monasterio, whose throw to first was late.

Kyle Hendricks allowed only an unearned run and four hits over six innings while striking out six and walking two.

Adbert Alzolay hit Mark Canha with the bases loaded in the eighth to force in the tying run but worked a hitless ninth to earn the win.


Mariners close out red-hot August

J.P. Crawford delivered a two-run single in the seventh inning and the Seattle Mariners rallied for a 5-4 win over the Oakland Athletics for their franchise-record 21st win in August.

Seattle rallied from 3-0 and 4-3 deficits to finish 21-6 in August, surpassing the previous franchise record of 20 victories in a month.

The Mariners have won 13 of 15 and will head into September tied with Houston for the AL West lead. The last time Seattle entered September with a share of first place was in 2001, the last time it won the division.

Teoscar Hernandez hit a three-run homer in the third inning to forge a 3-3 tie.

The Mariners pushed across two runs in the seventh against reliever Kirby Snead.

Dominic Canzone doubled before Mike Ford singled and Dylan Moore walked to load the bases. After a strikeout, Crawford dropped a soft liner into left field to make it 5-4.


Astros complete first sweep at Fenway

Framber Valdez took a shutout into the sixth inning and the Houston Astros won their fifth straight game, 7-4 over the Boston Red Sox.

Michael Brantley had two hits and two RBIs and Alex Bregman, Jeremy Pena and Martin Maldonado each added two hits and one RBI as Houston earned its first-ever sweep at Fenway Park.

The Astros are tied with Seattle atop the AL West as they seek their sixth division title in seven years. Houston has won two World Series since 2017, added another two AL pennants and twice lost in the AL Championship Series.

Boston lost for the fifth time in six games and dropped 6 ½ games behind the final wild-card spot.

Alex Cobb had his bid for a no-hitter broken up with two outs in the ninth inning, but the right-hander pitched a gem of a complete game to lead the San Francisco Giants to a 6-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds Tuesday.

Spencer Steer ended Cobb’s chase for history with a double to right field that scored Nick Senzel, who had walked with one out in the ninth and advanced to second on defensive indifference.

Cobb struck out the next batter, Elly De La Cruz, to end his fourth career complete game and earn his first win since July 5. The right-hander struck out eight while throwing a career-high 131 pitches.

Entering the ninth inning, the only base-runner Cobb had allowed was Senzel, who reached on an error in the third inning. The official scorer had initially ruled the play a hit but later reversed his decision.

Cobb’s performance came at a crucial time for the Giants (69-63), who pulled two games ahead of the Reds (68-66) in the race for the final wild card spot in the NL.

Catcher Patrick Bailey paced the San Francsico offence with a two-run homer in the third inning. He finished 2 for 4 with two runs scored. Leadoff man Austin Slater reached base three times and scored twice.


Steele gets 15th win, Cubs halt Brewers’ streak

Justin Steele struck out eight in six effective innings to lead the Chicago Cubs to a 1-0 win and help end the Milwaukee Brewers’ winning streak at nine games.

Steele (15-3) worked around six hits—all singles—and a walk to become the second pitcher in the majors to reach 15 wins this season. Atlanta Braves right-hander Spencer Strider got his 15th win on Friday.

Steele, a first-time All-Star this season, is 6-0 over his last eight starts and dropped his season ERA to 2.69.

After suffering a 6-2 loss Monday in the series opener, Tuesday’s win moved the Cubs (70-62) back to within four games of the Brewers (74-58) in the NL Central.

Chicago were 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position and plated their only run on a first-inning groundout by Cody Bellinger.

Corbin Burnes allowed one run and eight hits in seven strong innings for the Brewers but was saddled with the loss.


Mariners lose to lowly A’s as AL West race tightens

Seth Brown and Shea Langeliers went deep, and the MLB-worst Oakland Athletics beat the Seattle Mariners 3-1, knocking the M’s out of sole possession of first place in the AL West.

Seattle had won 12 of their previous 13 games and entered the night with a one-game division lead. The loss dropped the Mariners (75-57) into a tie atop the division with the Texas Rangers (75-57), who beat the New York Mets 2-1 on Tuesday, and the Houston Astros (76-58), who took down the Boston Red Sox 6-2.

The Mariners were without star outfielder Julio Rodriguez, who was scratched with a pinched nerve in his left foot. Pitcher George Kirby was also scratched from his start due to illness and was replaced by Luke Weaver.

Seattle batters managed just four hits but drew six walks. The Mariners were 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position.

Christian Yelich hit a leadoff home run and Mark Canha added a two-run shot in the first inning as the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Chicago Cubs, 6-2, Monday to extend their season-high winning streak to nine games. 

The Brewers tagged Cubs starter Jameson Taillon for four first-inning runs en route to taking the opener of this key three-game series between National League Central rivals. Milwaukee increased its lead over second-place Chicago to five games. 

Milwaukee starter Wade Miley, who pitched for the Cubs last season, allowed solo home runs to Ian Happ and Patrick Wisdom but gave up only four hits in six innings to improve to 7-3 on the season.

Elvis Peguero, Joel Payamps and Hoby Milner allowed only one hit the rest of the way as the Brewers improved to 5-3 this season against Chicago.

The Brewers are now 25-12 against NL Central teams and have won 11 of their last 15 division games.

The Cubs entered the series having won seven of nine overall to take the lead in the race for the NL's second wild card. Chicago remains a half-game ahead of the Arizona Diamondbacks for that spot. 


Altuve hits for cycle to lead Astros' rout of Red Sox

Jose Altuve recorded the first cycle by a Houston Astros player in 10 years to lead the defending World Series champions to a 13-5 rout of the Boston Red Sox.

After producing a double in the third inning, a single in the fifth and a two-run triple in the sixth, Altuve launched a two-run homer over Fenway Park's Green Monster in the eighth to register the ninth cyle in Astros history and first since Brandon Barnes on July 19, 2013.

Yordan Alvarez also had four RBIs and four hits, including a three-run homer during a big sixth inning in which Houston scored six times to erase a 4-3 deficit. 

Jose Abreu added a solo homer and finished 2 for 4 with two RBIs in Houston's third straight win. The Astros remained a game back of Seattle for first place in the American League West after the Mariners defeated the Oakland Athletics, 7-0, on Monday.

Masataka Yoshida went 3 for 5 with three runs scored for Boston, which had taken a 4-3 lead on Adam Duvall's two-run homer in the fifth. 

The Red Sox have lost two straight and now trail the Astros and Texas Rangers by 5 1/2 games for the AL"s final two wild card spots. 


Rookie Harrison dominant in Giants' win over Reds

Rookie Kyle Harrison struck out 11 over 6 1/3 scoreless innings to earn his first major league victory and lead the San Francisco Giants to a 4-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds in the opener of an important three-game series between NL playoff contenders.

Making just his second career major league start and first at home, Harrison yielded just three hits and two walks to help the Giants gain ground in the NL wild card race. San Francisco now trails Arizona by only a half-game for the league's final playoff spot after the Diamondbacks were dealt a 7-4 loss by the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday.

Wilmer Flores' RBI double in the first inning staked Harrison to a 1-0 lead and the Giants scored twice more in third, highlighted by Patrick Bailey's run-scoring double.

All three early runs came off Cincinnati starter Andrew Abbott, who lasted just 3 1/3 innings and allowed five hits and three walks despite striking out six. 

The Reds have now lost four of five and remain 1 1/2 games back of Arizona for the final wild card spot. 

Luis Castillo allowed one hit over seven scoreless innings and the Seattle Mariners held on for a 3-2 win over the Kansas City Royals on Sunday to take sole possession of the American League West lead.

Sunday's victory coupled with the Texas Rangers' 13-inning loss to the Minnesota Twins moved the resurgent Mariners one game ahead of slumping Texas and the Houston Astros atop the division. 

Seattle trailed the Rangers by 7 1/2 games in the standings on Aug. 15, but has now won 11 of its last 12 while Texas has lost nine of 10. The Mariners are an MLB-best 24-6 since July 25.

Castillo permitted just two baserunners in winning his fourth consecutive start and was supported by two home runs, a solo shot from Teoscar Hernandez in the second inning and a two-run blast from Julio Rodriguez in the fifth. 

Nelson Velazquez's two-run homer off reliever Gabe Speier in the eighth brought Kansas City within 3-2, but Andres Munoz struck out the side in order in the ninth to finish off the Mariners' sweep of the three-game series. 

Royals starter Alec Marsh struck out nine over 5 2/3 innings but allowed both Seattle homers to fall to 0-7 in 11 appearances (seven starts) this season.


Twins rally from five runs down to top reeling Rangers in 13 innings

The spiraling Rangers lost their share of the AL West lead after blowing a five-run cushion in a wild, 7-6 loss to the AL Central-leading Minnesota Twins in 13 innings.

Minnesota trailed 5-0 after five innings before rallying to tie the game in the ninth, then took advantage of three walks by Rangers reliever Jonathan Hernandez in the 13th to push home the winning run.

Hernandez struck out the first two batters he faced in the bottom of the 13th before walking Joey Gallo, Matt Wallner and Michael A. Taylor in succession to gift Minnesota its third victory of the four-game series.

Texas pitchers issued a season-high 10 walks on the afternoon, including one to Taylor by closer Aroldis Chapman with the Rangers clinging to a 5-4 lead with one out in the bottom of the ninth. Chapman was then called for a balk to send Taylor to second before surrendering a single to Donovan Solano that tied the game.

Royce Lewis began Minnesota's comeback with a grand slam off reliever Chris Stratton in the sixth that pulled the Twins within a run.

Jonah Heim had a grand slam off Twins starter Bailey Ober in the fourth inning that staked Texas to a 5-0 lead. The Rangers opened the scoring on J.P. Martinez's solo homer in the second.

Dylan Floro earned the win by stranding two Texas runners after coming on in the top of the 13th, while Dallas Keuchel tossed five scoreless innings after relieving Ober to start the fifth.


Brewers blast Padres to extend winning streak to eight games

The National League's hottest team resides in Milwaukee, where the Brewers used a seven-run sixth inning to rally to a 10-6 victory over the San Diego Padres and extend their season-high winning streak to eight games.

William Contreras went 2 for 4 with a homer and two RBIs, while Sal Frelick drove in three runs as the NL Central-leading Brewers completed a three-game sweep heading into an important three-game road series with the division-rival Chicago Cubs.

Milwaukee owns a four-game lead on second-place Chicago, which kept pace with Sunday's 10-1 rout of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Brewers trailed 4-2 before loading the bases with one out in the sixth in front of Rowdy Tellez's pinch-hit, two-run double off Steven Wilson, who later walked Carlos Santana with the bases full to force in the go-ahead run.

Frelick followed with a two-run double off Nick Martinez to stretch the lead to 7-4 before Mark Canha capped the big inning with a two-run single.

Bryse Wilson recorded the win with four scoreless innings in relief of Brewers starter Adrian Houser, who lasted just two innings and allowed four runs.

Gary Sanchez went 2 for 4 with a two-run homer to lead San Diego, which dropped to a season-high nine games under .500 at 61-70.



Teoscar Hernandez hit two of the Seattle Mariners’ franchise record-tying seven home runs in a 15-2 drubbing of the Kansas City Royals.

Hernandez hit a grand slam as part of a seven-run third inning and belted a 446-foot shot off infielder Matt Duffy in the eighth.

Josh Rojas, Mike Ford, Julio Rodriguez, Cal Raleigh and Cade Marlowe also homered as the Mariners improved to 10-1 in their last 11 games and remained tied with Texas atop the AL West.

Seattle hit seven home runs in a game for the fifth time, also done in 2002, 1999, 1996 and 1985.

Logan Gilbert didn’t need all the offense as he limited the Royals to one run and two hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out seven to win his sixth straight decision.

The Mariners broke open the game with three home runs and seven run off 15-game loser Jordan Lyles in the third inning.

Rojas led off with a home run, Hernandez connected for his third career grand slam and Ford’s two-run blast made it 7-0.

Rodgriguez’s fifth-inning solo homer made him just the second player in history with at least 50 home runs and 50 stolen bases in his first two seasons.

The other is Atlanta Braves outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr., who totaled 67 homers and 53 steals over his first two seasons in 2018 and 2019.


Reds get help from balk to cool Diamondbacks

TJ Friedl scored the go-ahead run in the 11th inning on a balk and the Cincinnati Reds pulled out a wild 8-7 win to end the Arizona Diamondbacks’ six-game winning streak.

Arizona trailed 7-4 in the 10th but rallied for three runs, helped by an error from Reds second baseman Matt McLain. Christian Walker’s sacrifice fly tied it at 7.

Cincinnati closer Alexis Diaz suffered just his second blown save of the season, though all three runs were unearned.

Arizona’s Paul Sewald failed to protect a 4-2 lead in the ninth, as Tyler Stephenson doubled home a run before Friedl singled and McLain knocked in the tying run with a soft groundout.


Brewers edge Padres for seventh straight win

William Contreras delivered a two-run double in a five-run fifth inning as the Milwaukee Brewers held off the San Diego Padres, 5-4 for their seventh consecutive victory.

Mark Canha, Brice Turang and Andruw Monasterio opened the fifth with three straight singles.

With one run already home, the Brewers pulled off a double steal and an errant throw by catcher Luis Campusano produced another run. After Christian Yelich walked, Contreras doubled down the left-field line to make it 4-1.

Freddy Peralta struck out nine in 5 1/3 innings and allowed two runs to improve to 5-0 in five starts this month.

Matt Wallner had a three-run triple in the first inning and the Minnesota Twins rolled to a 12-2 rout of the reeling Texas Rangers on Friday in a game that saw the benches clear.

Rangers starter Dane Dunning walked three of the first four batters and eventually walked the bases loaded before Wallner cleared them to put the Twins up 3-0.

Jeffers capped the four-run first with an RBI single and was later hit by Dunning in the third inning.

Minnesota starter Sonny Gray hit former Twin Mitch Garver in the fourth and players from both teams and bullpens convened around home plate and the pitcher’s mound before order was restored.

The Twins essentially sealed the win with a six-run seventh.

Carlos Correa began the inning with a home run and Donovan Solano had an RBI single before Edouard Julien crushed a 435-foot, three-run homer to make it 10-1.

Max Kepler hit a home run off Texas catcher Austin Hedges in the eighth.

Gray allowed one run and six hits over seven innings.

The Rangers walked eight and hit three batters in their eighth straight loss, dropping them into a tie with Seattle for the AL West lead.


Diamonbacks stay hot despite Pham’s lost home run

Tommy Pham lost a home run on a bizarre fan interference, but Jace Peterson drove in three runs and the Arizona Diamondbacks won their sixth straight, 10-8 over the Cincinnati Reds.

With Arizona leading 8-4 in the seventh inning, Pham sent a towering shot to the wall in left that Reds outfielder Spencer Steer caught as he reached over the wall. But a kid in the stands reached into Steer’s glove and pulled the ball out.

The home run was negated after the review.

Arizona has won eight of nine to move a one-half game ahead of the Cubs for the second NL wild card.

Nick Martini hit his first two home runs of the year and Will Benson had a ninth-inning grand slam for the Reds, who dropped a game behind the Cubs in the wild-card race.


Bautista’s injury overshadows Orioles’ win

Rookie Gunnar Henderson hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning and the Baltimore Orioles rallied to beat the Colorado Rockies 5-4 in a win that was marred by an apparent injury to All-Star closer Felix Bautista.

Bautista retired the first two batters in the ninth but slipped awkwardly off the mound after delivering a pitch to Michael Toglia.

Manager Brandon Hyde said Bautista left with “arm discomfort” and was “still being checked out.”

Ryan Mountcastle and Austin Hays also homered as Baltimore won its 80th game and moved three games ahead of second-place Tampa Bay in the AL East.

Shohei Ohtani was listed second on the Los Angeles Angels’ lineup card and slotted as the designated hitter Friday against the New York Mets despite his serious elbow injury.

Ohtani was removed from the mound in Wednesday’s start against the Cincinnati Reds after 26 pitches, and the Angels announced after the game that he will not pitch again this season due to a torn ligament in his right elbow.

Ohtani previously had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow after the 2018 season. The two-way superstar will seek a second medical opinion before making a decision regarding another potential surgery that would surely affect his upcoming free agency this offseason.

Until Ohtani’s recovery plan is set, the major-league home run leader plans to continue playing as a designated hitter.

“He’s going to play. So, as far as a second opinion goes, they’re still working on that,” general manager Perry Minasian told reporters. “Him and his representation are going to come up with a plan but as we sit here today, he’s going to play until he tells us he’s not.”

Ohtani finishes the year as a pitcher with a 10-5 record and an ERA of 3.14 with 167 strikeouts in 132 innings.

Ohtani is batting .304 with a 1.069 OPS, and his 44 home runs are two shy of his career high.

Star teammate Mike Trout returned to the injured list Friday as he continues to recover from a fractured bone in his left wrist.

Trout returned from a 38-game absence to go 1 for 4 on Tuesday but has not played since due to lingering soreness.

Corbin Carroll hit a go-ahead, two-run homer in the eighth inning to lift the Arizona Diamondbacks to their fifth straight win, 3-2 over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday.

After the Reds scored twice in the top of the eighth to take the lead, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. led off the bottom half with a walk. Alex Young got Evan Longoria to fly out before Carroll followed with his 22nd home run of the season for a 3-2 lead.

Miguel Castro got the final out of the eighth for the win and Paul Sewald worked around a one-out walk in the ninth for his seventh save since joining the Diamondbacks.

Arizona has won eight of nine to move past Cincinnati and San Francisco into sole possession of the third and final NL wild-card spot.

Merrill Kelly had a stellar start for Arizona, allowing one hit over seven scoreless innings while matching a career high with 12 strikeouts before leaving with an undisclosed injury. 

He was warming up in the eighth but grimaced after throwing a pitch. Kelly walked around the mound for a few seconds before leaving the field with Arizona’s medical staff.

Rookie Brandon Williamson was almost as good for Cincinnati, yielding six hits in six shutout innings with one walk and six strikeouts.

Nick Senzel had a pinch-hit home run in the eighth for the Reds, who had a three-game overall winning streak snapped and fell to 0-4 this season against the Diamondbacks.


Jeffers hits late HR as Twins extend Rangers’ slump

Pinch-hitter Ryan Jeffers hit a tie-breaking home run in the eighth inning, Michael A. Taylor went deep twice and the Minnesota Twins beat the Texas Rangers 7-5 Thursday, handing the Rangers their seventh straight loss.

The Twins entered the eighth trailing by a run but tied the game when Matt Wallner scored from first on a Carlos Correa double. With two outs, Jeffers pitch hit for Edouard Julien and hit the go-ahead blast off Will Smith.

Royce Lewis and Kyle Farmer also went deep for Minnesota, while Texas came up short despite home runs from Marcus Semien, Corey Seager and Leody Tavares.

Twins Reliever Josh Winder held the Rangers hitless in three innings to keep the game close, and Griffin Jax induced a game-ending double play for his second save of the season.

Minnesota expanded its lead in the AL Central to six games with the win, while Texas failed to expand on its one-game lead in the AL West.


Verdugo, Abreu help Red Sox rip Astros

Alex Verdugo and rookie Wilyer Abreu each had four hits and a home run to lead the Boston Red Sox to a 17-1 rout over the Houston Astros.

Verdugo led off the game with his home run and finished 4 for 7, while Abreu was 4 for 5 with a walk.

Every player in Boston’s starting lineup had at least one hit and at least one RBI as the Red Sox had the highest-scoring game of their season.

Red Sox starter Brayan Bello earned his 10th win, working around nine hits and three walks to allow one run in seven innings.

Boston has won 10 of its last 15 games but still trails Houston and Seattle by 3 ½ games in the chase for the AL’s final wild card spot.

Stephen Strasburg's star-crossed MLB career is coming to an end.

The three-time All-Star and 2019 World Series MVP reportedly plans to retire at age 35.

The news was first reported by The Washington Post on Thursday.

When healthy, Strasburg was one of the top pitchers in baseball, but since signing a seven-year, $245million contract just after leading the Nationals to the franchise's first championship, injuries have derailed his career, limiting him to eight starts in the last four seasons.

The first overall pick of the 2009 MLB draft, Strasburg broke onto the scene as a 21-year-old a year later, striking out 14 over seven innings in his MLB debut on June 8, 2010.

From 2012-2019, he went 106-54 with a 3.21 ERA and 1,579 strikeouts - the fifth most in MLB over that span. His 242 strikeouts in 2014 led the NL.

He won a league-best and career-high 18 games in 2019, and shined in the playoffs, going 5-0 with a 1.98 ERA with 47 strikeouts over 36 1/3 innings across six games.

Fresh off a World Series title, the Nationals rewarded him with a massive payday, but he's endured a number of arm injuries, and has managed to pitch just 31 1/3 innings.

In 2021, he underwent surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome, a procedure that included the removal of a rib and two neck muscles. Since then, he has been unable to return to full strength.

He missed almost all of the 2011 season after having Tommy John surgery, and the Nationals were extremely cautious with his health upon his return, monitoring his innings.

They famously shut him down in September 2012, and kept him from pitching in the playoffs, despite the fact he earned his first All-Star Game selection and won 15 games with a 3.16 ERA for the NL East champions. The decision to take the ball away from their ace was highly scrutinized and possibly cost the team a chance at a championship, as Washington lost to the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Division Series.

Seven years later, the Nationals finally were vindicated for shutting down their best pitcher, with Strasburg winning both of his starts against the Houston Astros in the World Series.

He last pitched June 9, 2022 - his lone appearance last year - permitting seven runs in 4 2/3 innings in a loss to the Miami Marlins.

In 247 career starts, he went 113-62 with a 3.24 ERA and 1,723 strikeouts in 1,470 innings.

Among pitchers with a minimum of 1,000 innings, his strikeout rate of 10.55 ranks seventh in MLB history.


Shohei Ohtani’s likely MVP season took a major hit Wednesday night, when it was revealed that the two-way superstar has a tear in his elbow ligament that will prevent him from pitching the rest of the season.

Angels general manager Perry Minasian said the team didn’t know yet whether Ohtani will need surgery to repair the UCL ligament.

Ohtani left the mound in the middle of an at-bat during the second inning Wednesday in a doubleheader opener because of arm fatigue.

He served as the designated hitter in the nightcap and went 1 for 5 with a run scored. Ohtani has missed only two games all season, none since May 2.

Ohtani didn’t speak to the media after the game because he was getting further evaluation, but manager Phil Nevin said Ohtani told him that his pitching arm “just didn’t feel right.”

“He told me he didn’t feel any pain,” Nevin said after the Angels’ 9-4 loss in the opener. “It was just more of the same thing he’s been feeling for the last couple of weeks.”

Ohtani hit major league-leading 44th homer in the first inning of the opener, a two-run shot.

The superstar has struggled with blisters, cramps and other minor injuries to his pitching hand, but he was able to pitch through them while continuing to play every day at DH.

Ohtani is almost certain to win his second AL MVP award in three seasons. He entered the day 10-5 with a 3.17 ERA on the mound and his home run gave him 91 RBIs.

Aaron Judge had the first three-homer game of his career, and the New York Yankees snapped their first nine-game losing streak in 41 years with a 9-1 rout of the Washington Nationals on Wednesday.

Judge took starter MacKenzie Gore over the Yankees bullpen in right-centre in he first inning and opened a 6-0 lead the following inning with his fifth career grand slam.

He combined with DJ LeMahieu for back-to-back homers in the seventh with a shot over the right-field wall just inside the foul pole.

Judge, who notched his 32nd career multihomer game, drove in six runs for the third time in his career.

The reigning AL MVP is batting .279 with 27 home runs and 54 RBIs in 72 games. He missed nearly eight weeks because of a sprained right toe before returning late last month.

Last-place New York avoided what would have been its first 10-game losing streak since 1913.

Luis Severino allowed one hit over 6 2/3 scoreless innings, ending an 0-4 stretch since he beat Kansas City on July 23.

Ian Hamilton pitched 1 1/3 innings and Wandy Peralta gave up a home run to Dominic Smith in the ninth to spoil the shutout.


Ohtani hits 44th homer, then exits mound early as Reds sweep

The day began splendidly for Shohei Ohtani, with the two-way superstar hitting his major league-leading 44th homer in the first inning of the Los Angeles Angels’ first game of a doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds.

One inning later, however, he left the mound due to arm fatigue and the Reds went on to win 9-4 behind Elly De La Cruz’s career-high six RBIs.

Ohtani threw 26 pitches before he departed with a 2-2 count against Christian Encarnacion-Strand, following a discussion with trainers.

Angels manager Phil Nevin said after the game that Ohtani said his pitching arm “just didn’t feel right.”

The Reds took a 4-3 lead on De La Cruz’s three-run home run in the fifth inning, his 11th of the season. Two innings later, the 21-year-old rookie shortstop hit a bases-clearing triple.

His six RBIs were one shy of the single-game rookie franchise record, established by Robin Jennings against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Aug. 31, 2001.

Ohtani served as the Angels’ designated hitter in Game 2 and went 1 for 5 with a run scored.

Tyler Stephenson and Matt McLain each hit two-run homers to lift the Reds to a 7-3 win in Game 2. They swept the three-game series and moved into sole possession of the third and final NL wild-card spot.


DeJong has memorable debut with Giants

Just one day after signing with the San Francisco Giants, Paul DeJong hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning and had a two-run single in the 10th in an 8-6 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.

Giants closer Camilo Doval blew a three-run lead in the ninth inning on Bryce Harper’s three-run home run that rang off the foul pole in right field.

That set the stage for DeJong, who singled with the bases loaded in the 10th to put San Francisco back on top, 7-5.

He signed with the Giants on Tuesday one day after he was released by Toronto.

Thairo Estrada added a sacrifice fly and Ryan Walker retired Trea Turner with a man on second for the save.

Josh Rojas hit a two-run homer and the Seattle Mariners matched a season high with their eighth straight win, 6-3 over the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday.

The eight-game streak is the second this month for the Mariners, who moved a season-high 16 games over .500 by improving to 33-13 since July 1.  

They moved within one game of AL West-leading Texas and remained one game ahead of Toronto in the race for the third and final wild-card spot.

Rookie Bryan Woo allowed one run and three hits over four innings after he was reinstated from the injured list earlier in the day.

Six relievers followed with Justin Topa getting four outs for the win and Andres Munoz striking out Luis Robert Jr. for his eighth save.

Seattle went ahead to stay on RBI singles by Mike Ford and J.P. Crawford in the second inning, and Rojas homered after Ford drew an eight-pitch walk in the fourth.

The Mariners again played without star center fielder Julio Rodriguez, who was scratched because of an illness after he missed Monday’s win for rest.

Before their eighth loss in 10 games, the White Sox fired executive vice president Ken Williams and general manager Rick Hahn, cutting ties with their baseball leadership amid a hugely disappointing season.


Nationals keep Yankees reeling

Josiah Gray pitched six strong innings, CJ Abrams hit a go-ahead home run in the eighth inning and the Washington Nationals beat the New York Yankees 2-1, extending their longest losing streak in over 40 years.

The last-place Yankees dropped their ninth straight game for the first time since 1982 and fell 10 ½ games back of the final AL wild card spot.

New York had just two hits – both by rookie Ben Rortvedt – and scored their only run on his third-inning home run.

Gray allowed one hit and one run in six innings while walking five and striking out four.


Turner’s walk-off hit lifts Phillies

Trea Turner delivered a two-run single in the ninth inning to lift the Philadelphia Phillies to a 4-3 win over the struggling San Francisco Giants.

Giants closer Camilo Doval was called on to protect a 3-2 lead in the ninth but hit leadoff batter Bryson Stott and gave up a one-out single to Brandon Marsh, putting runners on the corners.

After Marsh stole second and Kyle Schwarber was intentionally walked, Turner lined a shot off Doval’s glove and into center field to score the tying and winning runs.

The Giants have lost 12 of 16 to fall behind the Cubs and Arizona into a tie with Cincinnati for fourth in the wild-card race.

The Chicago White Sox fired front office executives Ken Williams and Rick Hahn Tuesday, moving on from the longtime leadership pairing amid another disappointing season.

Williams had been Chicago’s executive vice president for 11 seasons after previously serving as the club’s general manager for 12 years. Hanh took over the GM role when Williams was promoted in October 2012.

The club announced the change in leadership by releasing a statement on social media, ending a disappointing era for the White Sox, who entered play Tuesday in fourth place in the AL Central with a 49-76 record.

The White Sox have not won a postseason series since their World Series title in 2005 and have made just three playoff appearances in that span.

“This is an incredibly difficult decision for me to make,” White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said in a statement. “Ken is like a son to me, and I will always consider him a member of my family.

“I want to personally thank Ken and Rick for all they have done for the Chicago White Sox, winning the 2005 World Series and reaching the postseason multiple times during their tenures.”

The club said in the statement that the search for a new head of baseball operations will begin immediately, and the White Sox hope to fill the position before the end of the season.

Jeremy Haber and Chris Getz served as assistant general managers under Hahn, but the White Sox did not say if internal candidates would be considered for promotion.

Chicago snapped an 11-year playoff drought in 2020 and followed by winning the Central with a 93-69 record in 2021.

Several key contributors from that 2021 squad moved on to other teams, while others – such as Tim Anderson and Yoan Moncada – have since regressed.

The result was an 81-81 season last year and a disastrous 2023 season that is on pace for 98 losses.

This year’s team got out to a 7-21 start – including a 10-game April losing streak – and never made a serious run to get back into playoff contention.

The Los Angeles Angels need a miracle to make the playoffs.

They'll turn to a familiar face in hopes of making an improbable postseason push.

The Angels activated Mike Trout from the injured list ahead of their game against the visiting Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday.

The three-time AL MVP had missed 38 games with a broken right hand sustained on a swing while fouling off a pitch in a game against the San Diego Padres on July 3.


The 32-year-old had surgery a few days later to remove a fractured hamate bone, and was initially projected to miss anywhere from four-to-eight weeks.

In 81 games this season, Trout is batting .263 with 18 home runs, 44 RBIs and has an .862 OPS.

His OPS is his lowest since his 2011 rookie season, but he still ranked fifth in the AL among all batters with a minimum of 325 plate appearances at the time of his injury.

Just prior to getting hurt, Trout was selected as a starter in the All-Star Game for a 10th consecutive time.

Los Angeles was two games out of a playoff spot through games on July 2, but has gone just 16-23 since to drop nine games behind the Seattle Mariners for the AL's final wild-card spot.

The Angels last made the playoffs in 2015, and their eight-season drought without a postseason berth is tied with the Detroit Tigers for the longest active streak in MLB.

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