Albert Pujols hit a pair of solo home runs and Matt Shoemaker took a shutout into the seventh inning to lead the Los Angeles Angels over the Tampa Bay Rays 6-2 in the American League on Sunday.
Pujols drove a 0-2 pitch over the center-field fence in the first inning and in the seventh, the three-time National League’s Most Valuable Player increased the Angels’ advantage to 6-2 with his 12th homer of the season and 504th of his career, equaling Eddie Murray for 25th place in the overall rankings.
David Price became the 319th pitcher Pujols has homered off during the regular season.
Also in the AL, Detroit’s Victor Martinez hit a two-run homer and Torii Hunter added a solo hit as the Tigers won their 11th straight road 6-2 game to complete a three-game sweep of the Boston Red Sox.
It was the sixth straight win and 15th in 18 for the Tigers, who have the majors’ best record at 27-12.
Ian Kinsler got four hits, while Miguel Cabrera had three hits and two RBIs as Detroit dominated their first matchup against the Red Sox since losing last season’s AL championship series to the eventual World Series champions.
It was the first time that the Red Sox have been swept at home by the Tigers since losing four games in June 1983.
In other AL games, the Kansas City Royals beat the Orioles 8-6, the Athletics trounced the Indians 13-3, the Mariners downed the Twins 6-2, the Rangers defeated the Blue Jays 6-2 and the Astros were 6-2 winners over the Chicago White Sox.
In interleague play, Josh Harrison homered in the seventh inning to make up for a base-running blunder and made a diving catch in left field that helped preserve Pittsburgh’s first win in the Bronx since the 1960 World Series.
The Pirates beat the New York Yankees 5-3 in the second game of a doubleheader after losing the opener 4-3.
Mark Teixeira had a two-run single and Brett Gardner added an RBI double in the first game, as Starling Marte hit a two-run homer for the Pirates in the second after striking out four times in the opener.
In the NL, Ryan Doumit scored off a wild pitch as the Atlanta Braves got two runs in the ninth inning to rally past the St Louis Cardinals 6-5.
Freddie Freeman started a ninth-inning rally with a leadoff single off St Louis closer Trevor Rosenthal (0-2).
In San Francisco, Pablo Sandoval homered for the first time in more than a month and Ryan Vogelsong won for the second time in nine starts as the Giants beat the Florida Marlins 4-1 to salvage a split of the four-game series.
In other NL games, the Cubs downed the Brewers 4-2, the Rockies outlasted the Padres 8-6 over 10 innings, the Diamondbacks defeated the Dodgers 5-3, the Phillies beat the Reds 8-3 and the Nationals were 6-3 winners over the Mets.