Yu Darvish was nearly perfect against the Astros once again, taking a no-hit bid into the eighth inning and striking out a career-high 15 to lead the Texas Rangers over Houston 2-1 on Monday for their eighth straight win.
Darvish (12-5) dominated the Astros until Carlos Corporan lined a home run into the right-field seats with one out in the eighth for Houston’s only hit.
Until the homer, Houston’s lone runner came when rookie Jonathan Villar drew a two-out walk in the sixth. A pitch before the walk, Texas catcher A.J. Pierzynski was ejected for arguing with plate umpire Ron Kulpa on a breaking ball he called low.
In early April, Darvish was one out away from a perfect game at Minute Maid Park before Marwin Gonzalez singled between his legs.
Darvish exited after the eighth, having increased his major league-leading strikeout total to 207.
Joe Nathan pitched a perfect ninth for his 35th save. Brett Oberholtzer (2-1) took the loss.
YANKEES 2, ANGELS 1
In New York, playing without Mariano Rivera in the ninth inning, the New York Yankees used a pair of relievers to close out the Los Angeles Angels and preserve the win for Hiroki Kuroda.
Kuroda (11-7) tossed three-hit ball for eight shutout innings.
Rivera was given the night off after blowing three straight save chances, including one on Sunday. Fans chanted: “We want Mo!” after Boone Logan relieved to begin the ninth and allowed a leadoff single to J.B. Shuck.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said after the game that he wanted to give Rivera a night off after the career-saves leader pitched three times in the past five days.
David Robertson struck out Mark Trumbo and ex-Yankee Chris Nelson with the bases loaded for his first save this season.
Garrett Richards (3-4) took the loss.
WHITE SOX 6, TIGERS 2
In Chicago, Chris Sale scattered nine hits in his fourth complete game of the season as the Chicago White Sox overcame Miguel Cabrera’s fourth homer in four games to beat the Detroit Tigers.
Josh Phegley, Gordon Beckham and Alexei Ramirez singled in runs in a three-run fifth inning as Chicago handed AL Central-leading Detroit their third loss in four games.
Sale (8-11) struck out six and walked none, winning his second straight start after going 1-9 in his previous 11.
Cabrera went two-for-four with a homer in the first. The AL leader in batting, RBIs and runs scored is second in homers with 37.
Tigers starter Doug Fister (10-6) gave up four runs on eight hits and three walks in six innings.
TWINS 3, INDIANS 0
In Minneapolis, Minnesota, Andrew Albers threw a two-hitter in his second career start as the Minnesota Twins backed him with a pair of home runs to beat Cleveland.
Albers (2-0) allowed just two singles, walked none and struck out two.
Brian Dozier and Trevor Plouffe homered to help the Twins win for the eighth time in 11 games.
Prized prospect Danny Salazar (1-1) gave up three runs on three hits with three walks and five strikeouts in four innings. The slumping Indians have lost seven of their last eight and are in danger of sliding out of the playoff chase.
ATHLETICS 5, BLUE JAYS 1
In Toronto, Alberto Callaspo hit a tiebreaking, two-run double in the ninth inning as the Oakland Athletics topped Toronto.
Callaspo, who had a tiebreaking double in the eighth inning of Sunday’s 6-4 win, broke a 1-all deadlock with a bases-loaded double off closer Casey Janssen (4-1).
Ryan Cook (5-2) got two outs.
AP, Atlanta, Georgia
Cole Hamels took a shutout into the ninth inning and Cody Asche hit a three-run homer as the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves 5-1 on Monday in a game overshadowed by a fatal fall at Turner Field.
A police spokesman said a man died after falling more than 30m from an upper-level platform to a parking lot. He said the fall occurred before 9pm and appeared to be an accident.
Hamels (5-13) struck out nine with one walk while allowing six hits and one run as the Phillies snapped a streak of 11 straight road losses.
Asche, a left-handed hitter, pulled a fastball from Julio Teheran (9-6) about three rows deep into the right-field seats in the sixth inning.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel earned his 1,000th career win.
DODGERS 4, METS 2
In Los Angeles, Adrian Gonzalez scored the go-ahead run on Yasiel Puig’s sacrifice fly that capped a three-run sixth inning, helping Los Angeles beat New York for their sixth straight victory.
The Dodgers improved to 38-8 since June 22, the franchise’s best 46-game stretch in the modern era that began in 1900. The 1899 Brooklyn Superbas had 38 wins in several 46-game stretches between April and June.
Gonzalez went three for four and drove in a run for the seventh straight game, the longest RBI streak on the team this season.
Ricky Nolasco (9-9) extended his winning streak to four. Kenley Jansen got the final four outs to earn his 18th save in 21 chances.
Jenrry Mejia (1-2) gave up three runs — two earned — and six hits in six innings as the Mets’ two-game winning streak ended.
REDS 2, CUBS 0
In Chicago, Mat Latos allowed six hits in eight innings and Brandon Phillips hit a two-run homer in the seventh to lead Cincinnati over All-Star Travis Wood and Chicago.
Latos (12-3) struck out nine for the Reds, who are 13-1 in their last 14 games at Wrigley Field and gained a half-game on idle Pittsburgh and St Louis in the NL Central.
Aroldis Chapman struck out the side in the ninth inning for his 28th save in 32 tries to hand the Cubs their third straight home shutout loss. They have gone 32-2/3 innings without a run at Wrigley Field.
Phillips provided all the offense with his 15th homer of the season.
ROCKIES 14, PADRES 2
In Denver, Colorado, Jhoulys Chacin pitched eight solid innings and drove in a run with a sacrifice fly, leading Colorado past San Diego on a rainy night for their fourth consecutive victory.
D.J. LeMahieu had three hits, including a homer, a double and two RBIs in a game that included a 63-minute weather delay. Dexter Fowler went three for four with a double and four RBIs, while Wilin Rosario added three RBIs. Nolan Arenado had four hits and an RBI as the Rockies put up a season high in runs.
Chacin (11-6) worked out of first-inning trouble by inducing Yonder Alonso to ground into a double play with runners at first and third and one out.
AP, Phoenix, Arizona
Adam Eaton hit the first pitch of the ninth inning for a game-ending homer as Arizona beat Baltimore.
Arizona trailed 4-2 before stringing together three straight run-scoring singles in the seventh inning to take the lead.
Chris Davis tied the game in the eighth inning with major league-leading 43rd homer.
Wil Nieves then led off the bottom half with his first homer in a year to put Arizona up 6-5.
Baltimore tied it in the ninth on Nick Markakis’ sacrifice fly off Brad Ziegler (6-1), but Eaton put a quick end to a night of momentum swings by sending the first pitch by Darren O’Day (5-2) into the pool in right-center to set off a wild celebration.
In other interleague play, it was:
‧ Royals 6, Marlins 2