Left-hander Jon Lester, who survived cancer to pitch the clincher of Boston's World Series victory last year, shut down Kansas City 7-0 on Monday for the first no-hitter in the majors this season. Now he can add pitching a no-hitter to his already amazing list of accomplishments.
The 24-year-old Lester (3-2) allowed just two baserunners, walking Billy Butler in the second inning and Esteban German to open the ninth. He struck out nine, including Alberto Callaspo to end the game.
Twins 7, Rangers 6, 12 innings
At Minneapolis, Howie Clark’s single over the head of Josh Hamilton in center field lifted Minnesota over Texas in a game that saw reliever Bobby Korecky become the first Twins pitcher to get a hit in an American League game.
Korecky (1-0) also picked up his first career victory by getting two outs in the top of the 11th with the bases loaded and then pitching a perfect 12th.
Carlos Gomez led off the 12th with an infield single off Franklyn German (1-3) and advanced to second on a groundout from Delmon Young. Mike Lamb was walked intentionally. Clark then sent one over the head of a leaping Hamilton, who was playing in with the speedy Gomez in scoring position.
CUBS 7, ASTROS 2
Geovany Soto didn’t get the automatic home run he deserved, but it didn’t make a difference as the Chicago Cubs beat the Houston Astros 7-2 on Monday.
Soto was credited with an inside-the-park homer in the fourth inning despite replays showing that it should have been an automatic home run.
The ball bounced just to the right of the yellow line on the wall in left-center field. Astros center fielder Michael Bourn scooped it up and threw it home, but Soto scored easily before the throw got there.
Nationals 4, Phillies 0
At Washington, Ryan Zimmerman saved a run or two with a quick stab to stop a double down the left-field line in the first inning, charged a two-hopper barehanded to throw out the swift Shane Victorino in the fifth, then made a tough catch look routine when pinch hitter Greg Dobbs hit a foul pop-up in the seventh.
With the help of his third baseman’s flawless defense, Tim Redding (6-3) threw 6 1-3 scoreless innings and Washington opened a seven-game homestand with a win over Philadelphia.
In other games, it was
• Rockies 4, Giants 3
• Cardinals 8, Padres 2