Pittsburgh Falls to Milwaukee

Pittsburgh Pirates catcher Chris Stewart tags out Milwaukee Brewers' Domingo Santana at home during the third inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017, in Milwaukee. Santana tried to score on a hit by Eric Thames. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Pittsburgh Pirates catcher Chris Stewart tags out Milwaukee Brewers' Domingo Santana at home during the third inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017, in Milwaukee. Santana tried to score on a hit by Eric Thames. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

MILWAUKEE — Eric Thames hit his 29th home run, Domingo Santana went 3 for 4 with two RBIs and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-2 on Tuesday night.

The Brewers pulled within two games of the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs who were playing the New York Mets.

Gerrit Cole (11-10) took his first loss in 10 road starts since the Atlanta Braves beat him 5-2 on May 22. He slipped to 8-1 away from PNC Park over that stretch after allowing five runs and seven hits in six innings. He tied his season-high with 10 strikeouts in his fifth start against Milwaukee this season. He beat Milwaukee 8-1 on June 19 at Miller Park, striking out a season-high 10 for the first time.

Manager Craig Counsell turned to the bullpen to protect the 5-2 lead. Jeremy Jeffress, Oliver Drake, Jared Hughes, Anthony Swarzak and Josh Hader each turned in a scoreless inning. Jeffress (3-0) was the pitcher of record. Corey Knebel pitched the ninth for his 35th save in 40 chances.

Santana’s two-run double highlighted the Brewers’ four-run third.

With one out and the bases loaded, Ryan Braun hit into a fielder’s choice.

An intentional walk set up the force at any base, but Santana foiled the move with his first hit. Thames added the last run with a sharp liner to right that beat the shift. Santana failed to slide coming home on the play and was an easy out.

Thames drove an 0-2 pitch into the second deck in right, but the Pirates took the lead the next inning on Jody Mercer’s run-scoring groundout and Jordan Luplow’s bloop RBI single off lefty Brent Suter.

Suter allowed two runs and three hits in his third outing and second start of three innings since coming off the disabled list Aug. 31 with left rotator cuff strain.

He went three in his previous start Sept. 3 and pitched an inning of scoreless relief Sept. 5 in Cincinnati.

LOOKING AHEAD

The Pirates set their rotation for the upcoming series against Cincinnati. RHP Chad Kuhl (7-10, 4.21 ERA) goes Friday, RHP Ivan Nova (11-13, 4.25) starts Saturday and Cole has Sunday. RHP Trevor Williams was bumped from the rotation.

UP NEXT

Pirates: RHP Tyler Glasnow (2-6, 7.45 ERA) makes his 13th major-league start of the season and second against Milwaukee. He lost 6-2 to Zach Davies on May 7 at PNC Park.

Brewers: RHP Chase Anderson (9-3, 2.93 ERA) makes his 22nd start of the season filling in for Nelson. Anderson, who beat the Cubs 15-2 on Saturday, has never made consecutive starts on short rest.

RED SOX 11, ATHLETICS 1

BOSTON (AP) — Mookie Betts hit two home runs and a two-run triple, and Boston rolled past Oakland.

The Red Sox, winners of five of their last six, pushed their American League East lead back to four games over the Yankees following New York’s loss to 2-1 loss to Tampa Bay.

Betts went 3 for 5 with six RBIs. He’s driven in three runs or more in a team-high 11 games.

The loss snaps a five-game win streak for the A’s. They managed just one run and one hit off Eduardo Rodriguez (5-5), who struck out nine over six innings.

Sean Manaea (10-10) was pulled after giving up seven earned runs on 11 hits in 3 2/3 innings.

BRAVES 8, NATIONALS 0

WASHINGTON (AP) — Freddie Freeman hit a three-run home run off Gio Gonzalez and Julio Teheran threw seven shutout innings as Atlanta cruised past Washington.

Gonzalez (14-7) allowed five earned runs and seven hits in five innings and struck out eight. The left-hander did guarantee his $12 million option for next season with his first out of the game as he reached 180 innings this season.

The Nationals, who clinched the division Sunday when the Braves came back to beat the Miami in extra innings, lost for just the second time in eight games. This loss kept them from closing the gap on the Los Angeles Dodgers for the best record in baseball and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

Teheran (11-11) allowed seven hits, struck out five and walked two.

BLUE JAYS 3, ORIOLES 2

TORONTO (AP) — Richard Urena singled home the winning run in the ninth inning and Toronto handed slumping Baltimore its sixth straight loss.

Facing Orioles closer Zach Britton (2-1), who had recorded the final out of the eighth, Kevin Pillar drew a leadoff walk in the ninth and went to third on Teoscar Hernandez’s single. One out later, Pillar scored when Luke Maile singled off the glove of third baseman Manny Machado.

Urena followed with a single to center. Darwin Barney raced around from second and slid home safely ahead of the throw from Adam Jones.

Blue Jays left-hander Tim Mayza (1-0) got one out for his first career win.

Tim Beckham homered for the Orioles.

RAYS 2, YANKEES 1

NEW YORK (AP) — Adeiny Hechavarria hit a tiebreaking home run in the eighth inning off Sonny Gray and Tampa Bay, playing as the home team in a series relocated to Citi Field because of Hurricane Irma, beat the Yankees.

Tampa Bay has split the first two games of the set held at the home of the New York Mets.

The Rays will fly back to Florida immediately after Wednesday afternoon’s game for firsthand looks at the storm damage. No word yet from MLB if Boston and Tampa Bay will play at Tropicana Field on Friday night as scheduled — the Rays expect to host the three-game set, but it could be reconfigured to give them an extra day off to handle personal matters.

Tommy Hunter (3-5) pitched one inning to give Tampa Bay, on the fringe of the AL wild-card race, its second win in six games. Alex Colome closed for his 44th save in 49 chances.

Gray (9-10) again pitched well but wound up with a loss. The Yankees, who hold the top AL wild-card spot, have dropped just three of their last 10.

ROYALS 4, WHITE SOX 3

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Brandon Moss hit a grand slam in the first inning for his third consecutive game with a homer, powering Kansas City past Chicago.

Scott Alexander worked out of a ninth-inning jam for his fourth save in six chances. He yielded a double to Adam Engel and a single to Yolmer Sanchez to lead off the ninth. He struck out Yoan Moncada, retired Jose Abreu on a pop to Whit Merrifield and got pinch hitter Matt Davidson on a grounder to end the game.

White Sox rookie Dylan Covey (0-5) walked the bases loaded before Moss drove a full-count fastball to right-center. It was Moss’s fourth career grand slam and his first since July 24, 2014. He has nine RBIs in his past three games.

Sam Gaviglio (4-5) picked up his first Royals victory in his second start after being picked up on waivers Sept. 1 from Seattle.

TWINS 16, PADRES 0

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jason Castro homered twice, Brian Dozier was a double from the cycle and the Minnesota Twins pounded the San Diego Padres.

Minnesota hit a season-high seven home runs, setting a Target Field record for most homers in a game, to back another strong start from Kyle Gibson. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Twins set a major league record by homering in each of the first seven innings with Jorge Polanco, Eddie Rosario, Eduardo Escobar and Kennys Vargas adding to the total.

Gibson (10-10) pitched six innings with four hits and six strikeouts. He has allowed two runs or fewer in five straight starts for Minnesota, which maintained its hold on the second wild card spot in the American League.

MARINERS 10, RANGERS 3

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Ben Gamel and Kyle Seager both hit three-run homers and the Seattle Mariners beat the Texas Rangers in a matchup of wild card hopefuls.

Texas (72-72) and Seattle (72-73) have split the first two games of their four-game series. The Rangers dropped three games behind Minnesota for the American League’s second wild card, while the Mariners remained 3 1/2 back after the Twins also won.

Seager’s homer in the third made it 7-1 and chased Miguel Gonzalez (7-11), who made his second start overall and first at home for the Rangers since they acquired him in an Aug. 31 trade with the Chicago White Sox. Gonzalez allowed seven runs and seven hits while recording only seven outs.

Marco Gonzales (1-1), traded from St. Louis to Seattle on July 21, got his first victory in six starts for the Mariners. The lefty struck out six while allowing three runs over five innings, his longest outing this season.

CARDINALS 13, REDS 4

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Paul DeJong homered, Yadier Molina drove in three runs and the streaking St. Louis Cardinals outslugged the Cincinnati Reds.

The Cardinals have won four straight and six of their last seven to stay two games behind the first-place Chicago Cubs in the NL Central.

Molina’s two-out, two-run double in the bottom of the first gave the Cardinals a 2-1 lead. He drove in his 10th run over his past three games with a single in the sixth. Molina leads the team with 75 RBIs.

Matt Carpenter walked a career-best four times, doubled in a run and scored twice.

Lance Lynn (11-7) allowed four runs, three earned, on six hits in five innings.

Robert Stephenson (4-5) was pulled after three innings, the shortest career outing for the Reds rookie. He allowed six runs, four earned, and all three of his walks scored.

CUBS 8, METS 3

CHICAGO (AP) — Kris Bryant hit a three-run homer, Jose Quintana pitched seven effective innings and the Chicago Cubs beat the New York Mets for a sorely needed victory.

Quintana (10-11) also helped himself at the plate with a pair of sacrifices, including a perfectly placed safety squeeze that drove in Kyle Schwarber in the fourth. Quintana got another bunt down in the sixth, sending Javier Baez to third ahead of Ben Zobrist’s RBI single.

Chicago had lost three in a row and six of eight, making for a crowded race at the top of the NL Central. St. Louis and Milwaukee also won Tuesday night, so the Cubs remained two games ahead of the Cardinals and 2 1/2 games better than the third-place Brewers.

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