Patrick Bailey hit a go-ahead grand slam and third baseman Matt Chapman made a game-saving defensive gem as the San Francisco Giants overcame another big deficit to beat the reeling New York Mets, 8-7 on Friday.

The Giants rallied from a 6-2 hole in the eighth to join the 1932 St. Louis Cardinals as the only teams since 1900 to win three straight road games in which they trailed by at least four runs.

Just two other teams have accomplished the feat at home: the 1999 Florida Marlins and the 1961 Boston Red Sox.

Jorge Soler and Mike Yastrzemski also homered for the Giants, who have won seven of eight to reach .500 for the first time since they were 2-2 on March 31.

Thairo Estrada’s RBI double with two outs in the eighth drew San Francisco within 6-3 and Chapman walked to load the bases before Bailey took Reed Garrett deep for his first career grand slam.

The Mets rallied in the bottom of the ninth trailing 8-6 and got an RBI single from Francisco Lindor before loading the bases with one out. But J.D. Martinez struck out and Chapman fielded Mark Vientos’ grounder barehanded on a do-or-die play and fired off balance to first, where LaMonte Wade Jr. made a difficult pick of an in-between hop for the final out.

The Mets have lost 11 of 14 to drop to 21-29, their worst 50-game start since 2013.

Lugo wins again as Royals stay hot

Seth Lugo became the American League’s first eight-game winner and Bobby Witt Jr. and Michael Massey homered to lead the Kansas City Royals to their seventh straight win, 8-1 over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Lugo limited the Rays to one run on four hits to lower his AL-best ERA from 1.79 to 1.74. Philadelphia’s Ranger Suarez leads the majors with nine victories.

The Royals (33-19) moved a season-best 14 games over .500. They were 15-37 after 52 games last season and didn’t reach 33 wins until Aug. 1.

Tampa Bay has scored 10 runs during a season-high five-game losing streak.

Massey’s three-run shot off Tyler Alexander in the fifth gave Kansas City a 5-1 lead, but he left an inning later with lower back tightness.

Streaking Guardians hit 3 straight home runs

Jose Ramirez went deep twice and started a run of three consecutive homers in the fourth inning as the Cleveland Guardians pushed their winning streak to seven with a 10-4 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.

Ramirez belted two-run shots in the third and fourth innings for his 24th multihomer game and first since July 30 against the White Sox. Ramirez’s four RBIs gave him a major league-leading 49.

Josh Naylor and David Fry also went deep in the fourth as the Guardians became the first team this season to go back-to-back-to-back.

Luis Rengifo, Jo Adell and Logan O’Hoppe homered for the Angels, who dropped to 6-17 at home.

For the second straight day, the Minnesota Twins roughed up the Los Angeles Angles.

The latest rout helped the defending AL Central champions move over .500 for the first time since the first week of the season.

The Twins again racked up 17 hits in an 11-5 victory over the Angels on Sunday to extend their winning streak to seven games.

Minnesota is now 14-13, moving back over .500 for the first time since it was 3-2 on April 3.

The Twins have notched at least 10 hits in each game of the win streak, the first time they've won at least seven consecutive games while tallying 10 or more hits in each since an eight-game run from July 14-21, 2006.

Minnesota completed the weekend sweep as Ryan Jeffers, Jose Miranda, Christian Vázquez and Willi Castro each had three hits, while Austin Martin and Alex Kiriloff drove in two runs apiece.

The Twins pounded out a season-high six doubles one day after recording four doubles as part of a 17-hit attack in a 16-5 rout.

This is the first time Minnesota has totaled 17 or more hits in consecutive games since July 2010, when it did it in three games in a row.

While the Twins are on a roll, the Angels (10-18) have lost four straight games and nine of 10.

 

 

Blue Jays end Dodgers' six-game win streak

Kevin Gausman earned his first victory of the season, throwing seven innings of one-run ball in the Toronto Blue Jays' 3-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Gausman, who won 12 games for the Blue Jays last year, struck out five and allowed five hits without a walk to help the Blue Jays (14-15) end a five-game losing streak.

The NL West-leading Dodgers (18-12) had won six straight games before going 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position in the series finale.

Los Angeles' lone run came on a Freddie Freeman home run - just his second of the season and first since March 28.

Freeman is batting .444 with 11 RBIs during an eight-game hitting streak.

Toronto's Alejandro Kirk hit his first homer of the season and finished with three hits after entering the day mired in an 0-for-11 slump.

 

 

Yankees break out bats in rout of Brewers

Aaron Judge, Anthony Rizzo and Anthony Volpe all homered in the New York Yankees' 15-5 win over the Milwaukee Brewers.

Rizzo went 4 for 4 and his homer was the 300th of his career, while Judge had three hits and three RBIs.

The AL East-leading Yankees (19-10) tallied 18 hits one day after registering 19 hits in a 15-3 win over the NL Central-leading Brewers (17-10).

This is the first time New York has scored 15 runs in consecutive games since July 21 and 22, 2007.

 

The game was tied at 4 before New York scored seven runs in the sixth inning. All the runs came with two outs and came after a controversial play at second base.

With no outs and Judge on first base, Alex Verdugo hit a ball to second baseman Brice Turang, who fielded it and threw to shortstop Willy Adames at second base to force out Judge.

Adames then threw to first to try to turn the double play, but his throw bounced off Judge's hand as the slugger raised his left arm while sliding into second base.

The Brewers argued that Judge should have been called out for interference but the umpires allowed Verdugo to remain safe at first.

After the game, umpire crew chief Andy Fletcher admitted the runner should've been ruled out for interference.

Shohei Ohtani had a career-high three doubles and the Los Angeles Dodgers collected 20 hits in an 11-2 rout of the Washington Nationals on Wednesday.

Ohtani went 3 for 6 with RBI doubles in the eighth and ninth innings. He leads the majors in batting average (.371), slugging (.695), OPS (1.128), extra-base hits (21) and doubles (14).

Mookie Betts and Will Smith each had four hits and rookie Andy Pages homered as the Dodgers won their third straight following a three-game skid.

Landon Knack earned his first win in his second career start, allowing two runs and three hits in six innings. He retired his last 13 batters and struck out five.

Nick Senzel homered for the Nationals, who didn’t have a baserunner after the second inning.

Trout hits MLB-leading 10th home run in loss

Mike Trout became the first player in the majors to reach 10 home runs this season, but Gunnar Henderson had three hits and three RBIs as the Baltimore Orioles held off the Los Angeles Angels, 6-5.

Trout got the Angels on the board with a solo shot off starter Dean Kremer in the sixth inning. This is the third time in the past seven seasons that Trout has been the first in MLB to reach double digits in homers.

Los Angeles rallied back from a 6-0 deficit and had the tying run on first in the ninth, but Jo Adell was caught stealing to end the game.

Henderson homered for the second straight game and added a two-run single in Baltimore’s four-run sixth. He is 9 for 20 in the past five games and 18 for 40 with five home runs and 11 RBIs in his last 10 games, helping the Orioles win eight.

Kremer struck out 10 over 5 2/3 innings and allowed two runs and three hits for his first win of the season.

Surging Braves win in 10 innings

Michael Harris II doubled home Ronald Acuna Jr. in the 10th inning and the red-hot Atlanta Braves topped the Miami Marlins, 4-3, after blowing a two-run lead in the ninth.

The Marlins scored twice in the ninth off Braves closer Raisel Iglesias to tie it but failed to score in the top of the 10th.

Harris led off the bottom half with a single to center to score the winning run and send Atlanta to its ninth win in 10 games.

Harris went 3 for 5 and Marcell Ozuna had three hits and two RBIs, giving him an MLB-best 29.

The Marlins were swept for the third time this season and dropped to an NL-worst 6-20.

Ranger Suarez and the Philadelphia Phillies each extended impressive streaks in the team's 7-0 victory over the Cincinnati Reds in Monday's opener of a four-game series.

Suarez increased his run of consecutive scoreless innings to 22 by limiting the Reds to two hits and a walk over seven dominant frames in Philadelphia's seventh straight win. The left-hander struck out five and improved to 4-0 in five starts this season.

Kody Clemens supplied the offence for the Phillies by going 2 for 4 with a three-run homer after being called up from the minors to replace slugger Bryce Harper, who is away from the team to attend the birth of his child.

Hunter Greene threw a season-high seven innings for Cincinnati but was handed the loss after allowing four runs on seven hits.

The Phillies opened the scoring in the second when Alec Bohm and Nick Castellanos reached on back-to-back singles before Bryson Stott plated Bohm with a sacrifice fly.

Johan Rojas tripled off Greene to start the third and came home on Kyle Schwarber's sac fly for a 2-0 edge, and the Phillies tacked on another run in the fourth when Bohm doubled and scored on Stott's fielder's choice grounder.

J.T. Realmuto's run-scoring double in the fifth put Philadelphia up 4-0, and Clemens' blast with Castellanos and Stott aboard in the ninth closed out the scoring.

Gelof's homer in ninth lifts Athletics over Yankees

Zack Gelof broke a scoreless tie with a two-run homer in the top of the ninth inning that gave the Oakland Athletics a 2-0 win over the New York Yankees in the opener of a four-game series.

Abraham Toro greeted reliever Victor Gonzalez with an infield single to start the ninth before Gelof lined a pitch from the Yankees' left-hander into the right field seats to end the scoreless stalemate.

Mason Miller then struck out Anthony Volpe, Juan Soto and Aaron Judge in order in the bottom of the ninth to record his fifth save and put an end to Oakland's three-game losing streak.

The Yankees were dealt a second loss in three games despite a dominant start from Carlos Rodon, who yielded only a fifth-inning single and two walks over seven innings.

A's starter JP Sears was equally good, however, as the former Yankee permitted just three hits and a walk while striking out seven in six innings.

The Yankees played nearly the entire game without manager Aaron Boone, who was ejected by home plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt in the top of the first inning after questioning whether Oakland lead-off hitter Esteury Ruiz swung a pitch that hit the outfielder.

Boone said after the game Wendelstedt was angered by a remark directed at the umpire by a fan sitting behind New York's dugout. 

Orioles stay hot by extending Angels' struggles

James McCann and Colton Cowser homered to back 5 2/3 scoreless innings from Albert Suarez as the Baltimore Orioles continued their surge with a 4-2 victory over the slumping Los Angeles Angels.

Adley Rutschman added two hits and two RBIs to help Baltimore to its seventh win in eight games, a run that has moved the Orioles a half-game ahead of the New York Yankees for first place in the American League East.

The Angels, meanwhile, have now lost five straight after dropping the opener of this three-game series.

Suarez scattered four hits and two walks while striking out five before departing with a 3-0 lead. McCann's solo homer in the second inning put Baltimore on the board before Jorge Mateo stole two bases in the third to precede Rutschman's run-scoring single.

Rutschman made it 3-0 when he followed Gunnar Henderson's single with a double off Los Angeles starter Reid Detmers in the fifth, and Cowser increased the margin in the seventh with his sixth home run of the season.

All four Baltimore runs came off Detmers, who lasted seven innings and was dealt his first loss of the season after going 3-0 over his first four starts.

The Angels did close the gap in the bottom of the seventh, as Jo Adell homered and Logan O'Hoppe followed with a single before later scoring on Nolan Schanuel's base hit that cut the lead to 4-2.

Los Angeles threatened in the ninth by loading the bases with one out, but Baltimore closer Craig Kimbrel got Schanuel to pop out before fanning Mike Trout to end the game and record his sixth save.

O'Hoppe recorded three of the Angels' eight hits for the game. 

 

 

 

Shohei Ohtani and Ronald Acuña Jr. have consistently broken the mold in their young careers, and the unique accomplishments seemingly keep on coming.

Ohtani was announced as the American League’s Most Valuable Player of 2023, becoming the first player to win the award twice by unanimous vote.

Acuña was a unanimous selection as NL MVP after completing MLB’s first ever 40-homer, 70-steal season.

Never before have both MVP votes in the same year been unanimous.

A two-way star unprecedented in the modern game, Ohtani led the AL with 44 home runs while hitting .304 and accumulating 96 RBIs and 20 stolen bases. From the mound, he went 10-5 with a 3.14 ERA and 167 strikeouts in 132 innings pitched. 

The Los Angeles Angels star received all 30 first-place votes from the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. Rangers shortstop Corey Seager finished second with 24 second-place votes, while Texas teammate Marcus Semien finished third with five second-place votes.

Acuña helped lead the Atlanta Braves to the best record in baseball at 104-58. He was second in the NL with a .336 batting average and led the majors with 149 runs, 217 hits, 386 total bases and 73 stolen bases while hitting 41 home runs with 106 RBIs.

Mookie Betts, who won the 2018 AL MVP award, received all 30 second-place votes, while his Los Angeles Dodgers teammate and former Brave Freddie Freeman finished third.

With the final MLB awards announced, attention now turns to the winter hot stove, primarily Ohtani’s free agency.

The Japan-born star appeared to be a lock for a record-breaking contract this offseason, but injuries cut his 2023 campaign short, and he underwent right elbow surgery in September.

While Ohtani will certainly receive massive compensation, a second major surgery on his throwing elbow could complicate the equation for the Angels and the host of other teams likely to bid for his services.

Ohtani underwent Tommy John surgery in 2018, and while the exact nature of his most recent surgery has not been revealed publicly, his team has said he will not pitch in 2024.

 

The Los Angeles Angels have appointed veteran former Texas Rangers boss Ron Washington as their new manager, the Major League team have announced.

The 71-year-old succeeds Phil Nevin, whose contract was not renewed after the Angels failed to reach this season’s play-offs.

Washington, who had been on the coaching staff at Atlanta, led the Rangers to back-to-back World Series appearances in 2010 and 2011 in his last frontline job.

The Los Angeles Angels are turning to a veteran to lead their ball club, hiring the 71-year-old Ron Washington to be their manager on Wednesday.

Washington, who becomes the old manager in major league baseball, hasn't managed a team since 2014, with the Texas Rangers.

His only previous experience as a manger in MLB came with the Rangers from 2007-14, as he directed the team to AL pennants in 2010 and 2011. He went 664-611 during his eight years at the helm in Texas, and also reached the playoffs in 2012, losing a one-game wild-card series to the Baltimore Orioles.

Washington spent the past seven seasons as the Atlanta Braves' third base coach, helping the franchise to the 2021 World Series title.

He becomes Los Angeles' fourth manager in the last six years and replaces Phil Nevin after the Angels decided to part ways with him after 1 1/2 seasons.

Despite having three-time AL MVP Mike Trout and 2021 league MVP Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles finished fourth in the AL West this past season with a 73-89 - its eighth consecutive losing season. 

It's been nine seasons since the Angels last made the play-offs, the longest postseason drought in MLB.

 

Phil Nevin will not return as manager of the Los Angeles Angels in 2024 after a second straight losing season.

The Angels declined Nevin’s contract option for next season, announcing they would find a new clubhouse leader in a statement Monday.

This winter, Los Angeles will hire their fourth manager in six seasons since Mike Scioscia’s 19-year tenure ended after the 2018 season.

Nevin, who took over for Joe Maddon during last season, went 119-149 as the Halos’ manager and missed the playoffs in both seasons.

The Angels flirted with a play-off spot and were five games over .500 at the end of July but went 17-38 down the stretch as stars Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout missed time due to injury.

ESPN reported Monday that general manager Perry Minasian will keep his job.

Los Angeles defeated the Oakland Athletics 7-3 Sunday to end the season.

“I know it didn't go the way we wanted, but I'm proud of the way that room held together,” Nevin said Sunday. “It wasn't fun. It's not fun ending the way we did, but it's a great group in there. There's a lot of great things that are on the horizon here with the young players and the guys coming back. Good future.”

The Angels are at a crossroads as an organisation with Ohtani set to hit free agency this winter and after Trout has missed significant time in two of the last three seasons.

Despite having two of baseball's most iconic stars, the Angels haven’t won a play-off game since 2009.

Adolis Garcia, Mitch Garver and Nathaniel Lowe hit consecutive solo home runs in the sixth inning to rally the Texas Rangers to a 5-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Monday that extended the American League West leaders' winning streak to six games.

Marcus Semien added a solo homer in the seventh inning to help back six sharp innings from Jon Gray as Texas reduced its magic number to win the division to four. The Rangers maintained a 2 1/2-game lead over second-place Houston with less than a week remaining in the regular season.

Garcia, Garver and Lowe's back-to-back-to-back homers off Jimmy Herget erased a 1-0 deficit, and Semien belted his third homer in two games an inning later to increase the lead to 4-1.

Texas had a season-high six homers in Sunday's 9-8 win over AL West rival Seattle and now has 227 for the season, surpassing the Angels' 225 for the most in the AL.

Gray ended a seven-start winless drought by holding the Angels to one run on five hits while recording seven strikeouts. The right-hander had gone 0-3 with a 6.46 ERA during that stretch.

Logan O'Hoppe finished 2 for 4 and accounted for Los Angeles' lone run with a solo homer in the second inning.

Angels starter Patrick Sandoval threw three scoreless innings before exiting with tightness in his right oblique. The left-hander walked the first two hitters of the fourth prior to departing.

 

Verlander dominates Mariners as Astros increase gap in AL wild card race

Justin Verlander took a shutout into the ninth inning in his best start since rejoining the Houston Astros, who increased their lead on the Seattle Mariners for the AL's third wild card with Monday's 5-1 win.

Verlander yielded just two hits and struck out eight until permitting a leadoff double to Josh Rojas to begin the bottom of the ninth. The three-time AL Cy Young Award winner was then removed after 96 pitches.

Rojas ended up scoring Seattle's lone run on a sacrifice fly from Julio Rodriguez.

Verlander helped the Astros to two World Series titles over four-plus seasons before signing with the New York Mets in December. The 40-year-old was traded back to Houston on Aug. 1.

Yordan Alvarez and Kyle Tucker had solo home runs to help Houston win the opener of this important three-game series. The Astros are now 1 1/2 games up on the Mariners for the final wild card and trail the first-place Texas Rangers by 2 1/2 games in the AL West.

Martin Maldonado went 2 for 3 and delivered an RBI double during a three-run second inning that staked Verlander to an early lead. Mauricio Dubon and Jose Altuve added RBI singles during the frame.

Luis Castillo struck out eight over six innings for Seattle, which has now lost four in a row, but allowed all five Houston runs.

 

Diamondbacks fall to Yankees, drop into tie for NL's second wild card

Oswald Peraza, Estevan Florial and Everson Pereira had eighth-inning RBIs as the New York Yankees rallied for a 6-4 win over Arizona that dropped the Diamondbacks into a tie for the NL’s second wild card spot.

The loss sent the Diamondbacks into a tie with the idle Chicago Cubs in the wild card standings with both teams one game ahead of the Miami Marlins. 

The Yankees, who overcame deficits three times in the game, trailed 4-3 entering their half of the eighth but tagged Kevin Ginkel for three runs to take the lead for good. Clay Holmes then pitched a perfect ninth for his 22nd save of the season.

Youngsters Peraza and Austin Wells homered to help the Yankees earn two wins in the three-game series.

Arizona’s Merrill Kelly needed 96 pitches to navigate five innings, but allowed just two runs while striking out five and leaving with the game tied.

Alek Thomas knocked in two runs for the Diamondbacks, while Corbin Carroll finished 3 for 5 with an RBI.

 

 

 

Manuel Margot singled to cap a two-run rally in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Tampa Bay Rays to a 5-4 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday.

Trailing by one entering the ninth, the Rays rallied against Angels closer Carlos Estevez.

Pinch-hitter Harold Ramirez and Yandy Diaz opened the inning with singles and runners were at the corners after Curtis Mead’s fly ball.

Isaac Paredes singled home the tying run and after Randy Arozarena struck out and Josh Lowe walked to load the bases, Margot flared a single to right to win it.

Tampa Bay already holds the top AL wild card and pulled within 1 ½ games of AL East-leading Baltimore after the Orioles’ 5-2 loss in Cleveland.

The late rally kept the Rays from losing consecutive games to the Angels, who stopped a six-game skid with an 8-3 win on Wednesday.

Tampa Bay starter Zach Eflin failed in his bid to become the AL’s first 16-game winner, allowing two runs and six hits in five innings.

 

Cole sharp as Yankees cool Blue Jays

Gerrit Cole boosted his Cy Young Award resume with eight stellar innings and the New York Yankees snapped the Toronto Blue Jays’ five-game winning streak, 5-3.

Cole retired the first 16 batters and allowed a run and two hits in his longest start since pitching a two-hit shutout against Minnesota on April 16.

He struck out nine without a walk and lowered his AL-best ERA to 2.75.

Jake Bauers gave Cole all the offense he needed with a three-run homer in the first inning.

Toronto is one-half game ahead of Texas and Seattle for the second of three AL wild-card spots.

 

Acuna, Olson power Braves

Matt Olson hit his major league-leading 53rd home run and Ozzie Albies homered for one of his four hits as the Atlanta Braves rolled to a 10-3 win over the Washington Nationals.

Atlanta totalled 18 hits with every member of the lineup reaching base at least once.

The Braves need only two wins in their final nine games to reach 100 wins for the second straight season.

Olson’s solo homer in the eighth inning gave him 132 RBIs, matching Gary Sheffield in 2003 for the most by a Braves player since the club moved to Atlanta in 1966.

Ronald Acuna Jr. tripled and scored in the third inning for his 140th run, making him the first player to reach that total since Alex Rodriguez had 143 in 2007.

 

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.

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.

Shohei Ohtani will wear a Los Angeles Angels uniform through the remainder of the 2023 MLB season.

Angels general manager Perry Minasian told reporters before a doubleheader against the Detroit Tigers on Thursday that Ohtani won't be traded as the team tries to make a playoff run.

"We're going to roll the dice and see what happens," Minasian said.

The Angels entered Thursday four games out of a wild-card spot after winning six of their last seven games to improve their record to 52-49.

Set to be a free agent at season's end, Ohtani has been the subject of rampant trade rumours as the Angels risk losing the two-way superstar to the open market without any compensation.

"I love Shohei Ohtani," Minasian said. "He comes in, prepares, works, goes out and performs on a nightly basis. Obviously, does both (hitting and pitching). He's a great teammate. He takes this really seriously. He eats it. He sleeps it.

"He's somebody that we would love to have going forward."

Minasian made his comments a day after the Angels acquired right-hander Lucas Giolito from the Chicago White Sox to bolster their starting rotation behind Ohtani.

Giolito was 6-6 with a 3.79 ERA and 131 strikeouts over 121 innings in 21 starts for the White Sox.

Ohtani, the 2021 AL MVP and the runner-up in MVP voting to the New York Yankees' Aaron Judge last season, is the odds-on favourite to take home the MVP Award this year.

As a hitter, he leads the majors in home runs (36) and OPS (1.066), and as a pitcher, he leads MLB in opponent batting average (.195) while his 148 strikeouts are tied with Joe Ryan of the Minnesota Twins for fourth.

With Ohtani in the fold, the addition of Giolito and the possibility of Mike Trout returning in another few weeks from a broken bone in his hand that has sidelined the 11-time All-Star since early July, Los Angeles has its sights set on reaching the playoffs for the first time since 2014.

The Angels' streak of eight consecutive seasons without a playoff berth is tied with the Tigers for the longest active stretch in MLB.

 

Shohei Ohtani’s solo shot keyed a three-run rally in the ninth inning, Trey Cabbage scored the walk-off run on a throwing error in the 10th and the Los Angeles Angels edged the Houston Astros 13-12 in a wild game Saturday.

Ohtani led off the home half of the ninth with his MLB-leading 33rd home run of the season, taking Houston closer Ryan Pressly deep. Taylor Ward scored on a passed ball later in the inning, and Hunter Renfroe’s RBI single tied the game.

After Ohtani was intentionally walked in the 10th, Astros rookie shortstop Grae Kessinger threw wide of first base while attempting to turn an inning-ending double play, allowing Cabbage to cross home plate and trigger a massive celebration.

The Angels, who had won just once in their previous 11 games, overcame deficits of six runs in the seventh inning and three runs in the ninth.

Both teams’ starters – Reid Detmers for the Angels and Framber Valdez of the Astros – pitched at least six innings, with 18 of the game’s 25 total runs coming in the seventh inning or later.  

Brewers blank Reds again, take NL Central lead

Freddie Peralta and three relievers combined to allow just one hit and the Milwaukee Brewers shut out the Cincinnati Reds for the third consecutive game, giving them sole possession of first place in the National League Central.

Christian Yelich homered on the first pitch of the game, and William Contreras and Owen Miller added solo shots later to secure the 3-0 win Saturday.

Peralta (6-7) got his first win since May 21 by throwing six strong innings, allowing one hit and two walks while striking out six.

Elvis Peguero and Joel Payamps pitched an inning each, and Devin Williams shut the door with his 22nd save of the season.

Milwaukee earned 1-0 victories over Cincinnati on July 9 – the last game before the All-Star break – and in the teams’ first game back on Friday. The Reds managed a total of just seven hits over those three games.

Orioles rally from 4 down, win 7th straight game

Gunnar Henderson hit a game-tying solo shot in the seventh inning, helping the Baltimore Orioles complete a four-run comeback and win collect their seventh straight win by beating the Miami Marlins 6-5.

The winning streak ties the Orioles’ season high and is the longest active run in the majors.

Baltimore (56-35) fell behind 4-0 in the second inning but entered the seventh trailing 5-4. Henderson led off the frame and hit a first pitch home run to tie the game, and Anthony Santander plated the go-ahead run with a one-out single.

Miami squandered a 4-for-5 night from Luis Arraez, who raised his batting average to .386 this season.  

The Los Angeles Angels have a clearer idea of how long they can expect to be without Mike Trout.

An early August return would be the best case scenario.

Trout is expected to miss four-to-eight weeks after undergoing surgery to remove a fractured hamate bone on Wednesday.

"I just talked to Mike; he just got out of surgery. He feels great," Angels manager Phil Nevin said. "The surgery went well. We spoke to the doctor a minute ago, but it sounds like everything went great."

The three-time AL Most Valuable Player suffered the injury on a swing while fouling off a pitch in a game against the San Diego Padres on Monday and the team put him on the 10-injured list the next day.

There was no immediate word on how long he would be sidelined, only he was already scratched from next Tuesday's Major League All-Star Game at Seattle.

Trout, who had been selected as a starter in the All-Star Game for a 10th consecutive time, said Tuesday he wasn't sure if he would need surgery or not.

Nevin said Wednesday surgery was the only way for the injury to heal, and the Angels will get a better idea of when he'll return when the 31-year-old gets going with his rehabilitation.

“It just remains to be seen how Mike’s hand responds when he starts doing the treatments and his rehab," Nevin said. "I know he’s anxious to get going. He was happy he could get this done right away so he can get back to the team as quick as possible.”

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

A strained right calf limited him to just 36 games in 2021, while left ribcage inflammation forced the 11-time All-Star to miss a month last season.

The Angels (45-43) entered play Wednesday seven games behind the first-place Texas Rangers in the AL West and four games out of a wild-card spot.

 

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