Detroit’s Max Scherzer became the first pitcher this season to reach 17 wins, steering the Tigers to a 10-3 victory over Cleveland on Thursday which notched a 12th straight win and extended their season-long dominance of the Indians.
The Tigers completed a four-game sweep, which opened a seven-game lead over Cleveland in the increasingly one-sided fight for the American League Central division.
Also on Thursday, the Dodgers hot road form continued with a win at St Louis and Bruce Chen pitched Kansas City to victory over Boston.
Detroit’s Scherzer (17-1) allowed four hits in seven innings while Miguel Cabrera drove in three runs for the Tigers, who beat Cleveland for the 12th time in their past 13 meetings.
Cleveland’s futility for the series was summed up when manager Terry Francona let Ryan Raburn pitch the ninth inning. The utility player — facing his old team — retired three straight hitters in his professional pitching debut and drew a standing ovation.
Los Angeles’ A.J. Ellis hit a three-run home run to help the Dodgers to a 5-1 win over St Louis.
The Dodgers have won 17 of their past 18 games on the road, with the only loss coming on Tuesday in the second game of this four-game series.
L.A. rookie Ryu Hyun-jin (11-3) allowed one unearned run in seven innings, striking out seven and walking none. He increased his winning percentage to .786, which is the highest winning percentage for a rookie in Dodgers’ history.
Kansas City’s Bruce Chen outdueled Jon Lester as the Royals defeated Boston 5-1. Chen (5-0), who was making his fifth start since beginning the season in the bullpen, did not allow a runner past first base until the eighth and retired 11 in a row at one stage.
Lester (10-7), who came into the game with a 6-2 record and 1.64 ERA in nine starts against the Royals, needed 41 pitches in the first inning when Kansas City sent eight men to the plate and scored three runs.
Pittsburgh’s Russell Martin came up with a pinch-hit single with two outs in the 10th inning, giving the Pirates a 5-4 win over Miami.
New York’s Dillon Gee pitched 7 2/3 strong innings to guide the Mets to a 2-1 win over Colorado which completed a three-game sweep.
Philadelphia’s Ethan Martin earned his first major league win and Cody Asche hit his first home run as the Phillies routed the Chicago Cubs 12-1.
San Francisco’s Tim Lincecum allowed only one hit over eight shutout innings, to steer the Giants to a 4-1 defeat of Milwaukee.