Red Sox wrap up AL East crown

BOSTON — The Boston Red Sox clinched the AL East title on Friday night, getting seven strong innings from Jon Lester to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-3 and eliminate Tampa Bay from the division race.

One night after securing their first playoff appearance since 2009, the Red Sox added their first division title since '07. Boston entered the night with a magic number of one — meaning the next Red Sox win or Rays loss would clinch the division.

Lester (15-8) allowed one run on five hits and two walks, striking out eight to win for the seventh time in nine decisions. It was his 100th career victory.

Toronto pinch-hitter Adam Lind hit a two-run homer off Junichi Tazawa in the eighth to make it 5-3 before Koji Uehara got five outs for his 20th save. With the crowd standing for most of the final inning, he struck out Brett Lawrie to end the game and the Red Sox poured out of the dugout and bullpen.

Dustin Pedroia had three hits for the Red Sox, who have won 19 of their last 25.

Toronto starter Esmil Rogers (5-8) did not make it out of the third inning, allowing two runs on three hits and five walks and striking out two while getting only seven outs.

Athletics 11, Twins 0

At Oakland, Calif., Yoenis Cespedes and Josh Donaldson homered, Alberto Callaspo had two hits and drove in two runs, and Bartolo Colon pitched six shutout innings as Oakland trimmed its magic number to two by beating Minnesota.

Josh Reddick had two hits and also drove in a run for the A's, who won for the eighth time in 10 games. The A's can clinch their second consecutive AL West title with a win Saturday combined with a Texas Rangers loss.

Colon (17-6) won his third straight start, giving up five hits, walking one and striking out eight, one off his season high.

Angels 3, Mariners 2, 11 innings

At Anaheim, Calif., Chris Iannetta drove in Kole Calhoun with a two-out hit in the 11th inning, and Los Angeles rallied past Seattle for its eighth victory in 10 games.

Matt Shoemaker pitched five scoreless innings of two-hit ball in his major league debut for the Angels, who came back from a late two-run deficit and several missed opportunities to win the opener of the final homestand in their disappointing season.

Nick Franklin had three hits for the Mariners, who have lost 10 of 12 to fall 20 games below .500.

Rays 5, Orioles 4, 18 innings

At St. Petersburg, Fla., David DeJesus ended a nearly seven-hour game with a one-out RBI single in the 18th inning, and Tampa Bay took sole possession of the top AL wild-card spot by beating Baltimore.

Tigers 12, White Sox 5

At Detroit, Max Scherzer became baseball's first 20-game winner, pitching through a rainy six innings to help Detroit defeat Chicago.

Scherzer (20-3) was making his fifth attempt to win No. 20. He had two losses and two no-decisions in his previous four starts. Torii Hunter had four hits for Detroit, and Victor Martinez homered.

Indians 2, Astros 1, 61/2 innings

At Cleveland, Zach McAllister lasted five innings and the Cleveland Indians got two gift runs from Houston in a rain-shortened victory over the Astros to move into the second spot in the AL wild-card standings, a half-game behind Tampa Bay and a half-game ahead of Texas.

Royals 2, Rangers 1

At Kansas City, Mo., Neftali Feliz walked Alcides Escobar on four pitches with the bases loaded and two outs in the eighth inning, giving Kansas City a victory over Texas in the opener of an important three-game series between teams in the playoff race.


Yankees 5, Giants 1

At New York, Alex Rodriguez set a major league record with his 24th career grand slam, passing Lou Gehrig with a tiebreaking shot in the seventh inning that sent New York Yankees to victory over San Francisco.

Rodriguez's slam helped CC Sabathia (14-13) beat Tim Lincecum in a matchup of former Cy Young Award-winners having subpar seasons.

National League

Braves 9, Cubs 5

At Chicago, Chris Johnson went 3 for 4 with a home run, and Atlanta beat Chicago to reduce its magic number to clinch the NL East to one.

The Braves broke open a tie game in the top of the ninth with four runs — all with two outs. Brian McCann and Johnson had RBI singles, and Andrelton Simmons followed with a two-run double.

Cardinals 7, Brewers 6,10 innings

At Milwaukee, Carlos Beltran's 10th-inning sacrifice fly kept St. Louis in sole possession of first place in the NL Central.

Reds 6, Pirates 5, 10 innings

At Pittsburgh, Joey Votto homered off Kyle Farnsworth in the 10th inning for Cincinnati, which got three unearned runs in the ninth to tie the game and pulled even with Pittsburgh for the top wild-card spot in the National League.

Nationals 8, Marlins 0

At Washington, Jordan Zimmermann pitched a two-hitter and picked up his NL-leading 19th win for barely-still-alive Washington.

Zimmermann (19-8) took a no-hitter into the sixth inning, struck out nine and faced only three batters above the minimum.

Mets 6, Phillies 4

At Philadelphia, David Wright homered in his return to New York's lineup, Daniel Murphy had three hits and Daisuke Matsuzaka earned his second straight victory.

Eric Young Jr. singled, doubled and drove in a run for the Mets, who have won four of seven.

Rockies 9, Diamondbacks 4

At Denver, Colorado's Jhoulys Chacin tossed six shaky innings and helped himself with his first career home run.

Troy Tulowitzki, Charlie Blackmon and Corey Dickerson also went deep for the Rockies.

Padres 2, Dodgers 1

At San Diego, Robbie Erlin allowed four hits over 72/3 innings and fellow rookie Jedd Gyorko hit his 20th homer to lead San Diego.

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