Texas’ Nelson Cruz homered and the Rangers got consecutive two-run doubles from Adrian Beltre and A.J. Pierzynski, as they beat the New York Yankees 8-5 on Wednesday to maintain a share of the American League West lead.
Texas kept pace with Oakland, who had a shutout win over Cincinnati, while the Yankees lost ground in the AL East race, falling 3.5 games behind Boston, who beat Colorado.
Elsewhere, Cleveland scored twice in the ninth inning to edge Baltimore, Pittsburgh also left it late to down Seattle, Kansas City edged Atlanta in 10 innings and Toronto’s R.A. Dickey pitched a shutout against Tampa Bay.
Texas rookie Justin Grimm (7-5) allowed three runs in five-plus innings to guide the Rangers to victory, getting the better of Yankees veteran Andy Pettitte (5-6), who dropped his third straight start.
Oakland matched stride with Texas atop the AL West as A.J. Griffin shut out Cincinnati in his first career complete game, steering the Athletics to a 5-0 win.
Griffin (6-6) struck out seven and allowed only two hits in a 108-pitch gem, while Josh Donaldson hit a three-run homer for Oakland.
Boston edged further clear of the Yankees with a 5-3 win over Colorado.
Red Sox starter John Lackey (5-5) gave up two runs, no hits and struck out a season-high 12 over seven strong innings, while Daniel Nava drove in two runs for Boston.
Colorado got two solo homers from Michael Cuddyer, who extended his hitting streak to 23 games to match Dante Bichette’s club record set in 1995.
Cleveland’s Scott Kazmir took a no-hitter into the seventh to set up the Indians’ 4-3 win over Baltimore.
Kazmir gave up one unearned run in seven innings, but left before throwing a pitch in the eighth due to an apparent injury.
Baltimore promptly scored twice to take a 3-2 lead, but the Indians rallied against Jim Johnson (2-6) in the ninth.
After a lead-off walk, Jason Giambi hit his 400th career double. An intentional walk loaded the bases for Lonnie Chisenhall, who hit into a run-scoring fielder’s choice, and Drew Stubbs also hit into a fielder’s choice to bring home pinch-runner Mike Aviles.
Pittsburgh’s Jordy Mercer hit a go-ahead single with two outs in the ninth inning, leading the Pirates to a 4-2 win over Seattle.
The Pirates (48-30) moved 18 games over .500 for the first time since 1992, their last season with more wins than losses.
Mercer put the Pirates in front with his clutch hit and Travis Snider scored on a wild pitch to pad the lead.
Kansas City’s Alex Gordon drove in David Lough in the 10th inning, giving the Royals a 4-3 win over Atlanta.
Lough singled to start the 10th and then reached second on Miguel Tejada’s bunt. That set the stage for Gordon, who hit a solo home run earlier in the game. He dropped a base hit into shallow left field, allowing Lough to score easily.
In Toronto, Dickey pitched his first complete game for the Blue Jays, guiding the hosts to a 3-0 win over Tampa Bay.
Dickey (7-8) retired his first 13 batters to produce his first shutout for Toronto, after moving from the Mets at the end of last season.
Washington’s Jordan Zimmermann dominated after a shaky start to guide the Nationals to a 3-2 win over Arizona.
Houston’s Erik Bedard pitched six effective innings and the Astros used a four-run fourth inning to beat St Louis 4-3.
San Diego second baseman Logan Forsythe bobbled a groundball in the 13th inning and then threw home wildly, leading to two runs that gave Philadelphia a 7-5 win.