Sun, Oct 02, 2016 - Page 12 News List

Ortiz, Red Sox beat Toronto


Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz celebrates their win over the Toronto Blue Jays at Fenway Park in Boston on Friday.

Photo: AP

Opening his final weekend with yet another game-winning homer, David Ortiz lined a two-run shot into the right-field stands to break a seventh-inning tie and help the Boston Red Sox beat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-3 on Friday.

The American League East champion Red Sox ended a three-game losing streak and stayed one game ahead of Cleveland, who beat the Kansas City Royals 7-2, in the race for home-field advantage in the playoffs.

The Blue Jays fell one game behind Baltimore in the wild-card race and were within range of Detroit and Seattle in the fight for the AL’s final post-season berth.

With his image mowed into the grass in center for the final regular-season series of his career, Ortiz hit his 38th homer of the year — and No. 541 of his career — to help Boston rally from a 3-1 deficit with four runs in the seventh. It was extra-base hit No. 1,192, tying Ken Griffey Jr and Rafael Palmeiro for eighth on baseball’s all-time list.

Dustin Pedroia had three hits for Boston, while Brad Ziegler (2-3) picked up the win with one inning of scoreless relief. Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth for his 31st save.

Devon Travis had three hits, including a pair of doubles, and Jose Batista homered for Toronto.

Mark Trumbo hit his major league-leading 47th home run, while Jonathan Schoop and Adam Jones also went deep in a six-run fifth inning as the Baltimore Orioles beat the New York Yankees 8-1 to maintain their AL wild-card lead.

Trumbo and Jones homered off Michael Pineda (6-12).

Schoop tied his career high with five RBIs, hitting a go-ahead, two-run double in the fourth and adding a three-run homer in the fifth against James Pazos — Baltimore’s big league-high 250th home run this season.

In Arlington, Texas, Yu Darvish looked playoff-ready with a season-high 12 strikeouts in six innings as the Rangers beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 and clinched home-field advantage throughout the post-season.

Texas can be tied by only the Cleveland Indians and they own the tie-breaker by winning the teams’ season series. The AL owns home-field advantage in the World Series thanks to their win in the All-Star Game.

In the National League, Madison Bumgarner lined a key two-run double in the sixth and emphatically pumped his arms while yelling in celebration at second base as the San Francisco Giants beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 9-3 to maintain their slim lead for the second NL wild card.

Brandon Belt added a three-run homer in the seven-run inning and Bumgarner (15-9) beat the Dodgers for the first time in seven starts since May 21 last year. It was win No. 100 of his career.

Matt Holliday hit an emotional home run as the St Louis Cardinals shut out the Pittsburgh Pirates 7-0 to keep within one game of San Francisco for the second NL wild-card spot.

Holliday, out since Aug. 12 because of a thumb injury, was informed by the club earlier this week that it is not planning to pick up the US$17 million option on his contract for next year and instead will pay him the US$1 million buyout.

Holliday was given a standing ovation before he pinch-hit in the seventh. He responded with his 20th home run and came out for a curtain call.

Elsewhere on Friday, the Chicago White Sox beat the Twins 7-3; the Detroit Tigers beat the Atlanta Braves 6-2 and pulled within a half-game of Toronto for the second AL wild-card spot; and the New York Mets moved to within one game of securing a NL wild-card berth with a 5-1 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.

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