Napoli blasts 2 HRs as Red Sox top Angels

Napoli blasts 2 HRs as Red Sox top Angels

BOSTON -- Coming off perhaps their ugliest loss of the season, the Red Sox responded with their most well-rounded game in weeks en route to an 8-3 victory over the Angels on Saturday at Fenway Park.

A two-homer effort by Mike Napoli led the offense, while knuckleballer Steven Wright notched his first career win as a starter. This was the best scoring output for the Red Sox since April 28, when they scored eight times in a loss to the Blue Jays.

More

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros' triple play the turning point vs. Tigers

Astros' triple play the turning point vs. Tigers

DETROIT -- When Jonathan Villar has children, the Astros' utility infielder is looking forward to telling them about the Saturday afternoon he started a triple play in a 3-2 win at Comerica Park.

He imagines describing the scene: runners on first and second in the fifth inning with no outs, and Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler at the plate. Maybe Villar will remember how, in the moment before Kinsler swung at the 2-1 offering from Lance McCullers, he was itching for a ground ball to be hit to him.

More

Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ByAZuniga. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blanco strikes out, advances to third on error

|
Blanco strikes out, advances to third on error

Generally, pitchers can safely regard a strikeout as a positive outcome for an at-bat -- worst case scenario, the batter ends up on first base after a wild pitch, but a K removes 99 percent of possible defensive/fluky baseball shenanigans. We say "99 percent" because, as the Rockies proved Saturday against the Giants, one should never underestimate the power of baseball shenanigans:

Continue Reading on Cut4

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

ASG debate: Donaldson or Moustakas at 3B?

Both worthy of serious consideration on AL roster for Midsummer Classic

ASG debate: Donaldson or Moustakas at 3B?

*** We will be doing daily ASG debates until balloting ends on July 2. We will frequently be pitting one player against another and have a writer make a case for one of them, but that doesn't mean there aren't other great candidates for that position. In fact, your comments could spark a new debate for us to tackle. So let us know what you think! ***

Trading for Josh Donaldson was good business for the Blue Jays. But you've also got to appreciate how the Royals upgraded at third base. They did it without having to go out and get a new player.

More

Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Matusz ejected for foreign substance on arm

Matusz ejected for foreign substance on arm

MIAMI -- After getting two quick outs in the bottom of the 12th inning on Saturday night, Orioles reliever Brian Matusz had his arm checked by umpires for a foreign substance and was ejected from Baltimore's 13-inning, 1-0 loss.

"We're not going to address the issue right now," Matusz said. "Obviously I have my own personal opinions about the issue, but right now with emotions running high, we're going to let this settle and address questions at a later time."

More

Steve Wilaj is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Choo drives in four in Rangers' 10-run third

Texas outfielder hits RBI single, three-run HR

Choo drives in four in Rangers' 10-run third

NEW YORK -- Shin-Soo Choo had his first four-RBI game of the season Saturday afternoon and only his second in the past four years.

He did it all in one inning with a run-scoring single and a three-run home run. Those were two of the big hits in a 10-run inning that helped carry the Rangers to a 15-4 victory over the Yankees.

More

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hamilton plans to rejoin Rangers on Monday

Outfielder expects be activated for Texas' series opener in Cleveland

Hamilton plans to rejoin Rangers on Monday

ROUND ROCK, Texas -- A rain cancellation prevented Josh Hamilton from stepping onto the field for the Triple-A Round Rock Express on Saturday, but it didn't stop him from making some big news.

The former American League Most Valuable Player announced an end to his Minor League stint and expects to join the Rangers for their series against the Cleveland Indians. Hamilton will fly to Cleveland on Sunday and plans to be on the active roster on Monday.

More

Chris Dukes is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Price ejected before game starts on Saturday

Price ejected before game starts on Saturday

CLEVELAND -- There was a nice duel between starting pitchers and a tight game played Saturday that the Reds ultimately lost by a 2-1 score to the Indians for their seventh-straight loss. And Reds manager Bryan Price was not in the dugout for any of it.

Price missed all of the game because he was ejected during the exchange of lineup cards at home plate just before first pitch.

More

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bolsinger brilliant in 1-hitter; Dodgers take series

Bolsinger brilliant in 1-hitter; Dodgers take series

LOS ANGELES -- Mike Bolsinger pitched a one-hitter for a career-high eight innings and rookie Joc Pederson homered again as the Dodgers blanked the Padres Saturday night, 2-0.

Bolsinger, the rotation replacement for the injured Brandon McCarthy, allowed a single to Yangervis Solarte to lead off the game, then retired the next 23 batters. He is 3-0 with an 0.71 ERA after opening the season at Triple-A. Kenley Jansen got the save, pitching in back-to-back games for the first time since February foot surgery.

More

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter and listen to his podcast. Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants outlast Rockies for eighth straight win

Giants outlast Rockies for eighth straight win

DENVER -- A remarkable display of two-out hitting carried the San Francisco Giants to their eighth consecutive victory, a 10-8 decision Saturday over the Colorado Rockies in the first half of a day-night doubleheader.

Victimizing Rockies starter Jordan Lyles (2-5) -- who left in the fifth inning with a sprained toe on his left foot -- and reliever Yohan Flande, the Giants scored all of their runs from the fourth through sixth innings. Each came with two outs as Giants hitters went 9-for-12 in those situations. San Francisco's 4-5-6 hitters, Brandon Belt, Hunter Pence and Brandon Crawford, combined to drive in seven runs.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. Dargan Southard is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gordon's HR aids Royals in rain-shortened I-70 clash

Gordon's HR aids Royals in rain-shortened I-70 clash

KANSAS CITY -- Alex Gordon drilled a two-run homer and Edinson Volquez pitched six strong innings as the Royals held on for a 3-2 win over the Cardinals on Saturday in a rain-shortened game that ended after 5 1/2 innings.

Rain began shortly after the game started and stayed steady throughout. Then with the Royals about to bat in the sixth, crew chief Brian Gorman signaled for the tarp. The forecast was for rain to continue steadily throughout the night and through Sunday.

More

Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB. Robert Falkoff is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Peterson revels in first career walk-off hit

Rookie second baseman locks up win with first-pitch single in 11th

Peterson revels in first career walk-off hit

ATLANTA -- Exactly one week after hitting his first career grand slam, Braves second baseman Jace Peterson tallied his first walk-off hit, sending Atlanta to a 3-2 victory over the Brewers in the 11th inning with a single to left-center field.

"I was trying to be aggressive," Peterson said. "Trying to get a fastball, and he threw it first pitch, so I was just trying to get a base hit and trying to get the run in."

More

Carlos Collazo is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jennings wins first as Marlins top O's in 13

Jennings wins first as Marlins top O's in 13

MIAMI -- The Orioles opted to avoid Giancarlo Stanton in the 13th inning, intentionally walking the slugger to load the bases. Martin Prado made them pay with a two-out RBI single off lefty T.J. McFarland, lifting the Marlins to a 1-0 victory over the Orioles in 13 innings at Marlins Park.

Prado's heroics snapped Miami's eight-game losing streak and gave manager Dan Jennings his first victory after five losses. Each team left 10 on base. Carter Capps struck out six in three innings of relief to collect the win.

More

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. Steve Wilaj is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Victorino exits game due to calf tightness

Red Sox right fielder considered day to day

Victorino exits game due to calf tightness

BOSTON -- The Red Sox were expecting to rely on Shane Victorino as their No. 2 hitter against the Angels on Saturday, but the oft-injured outfielder had to be removed from the game after tweaking his left calf during the third inning.

Erick Aybar flied out to deep right field to lead off the third as Victorino made a jumping catch at the warning track. He appeared shaken up, but stayed in the game before Mookie Betts replaced him as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the third and collected an RBI single. The Red Sox won, 8-3.

More

Alec Shirkey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burnett authoring quite the swan song with Pirates

Right-hander leads the Majors with a 1.37 ERA in final season

Burnett authoring quite the swan song with Pirates

PITTSBURGH -- A.J. Burnett walked off the mound at PNC Park after the seventh inning, striding slowly from the third-base line toward the Pirates' dugout with his glove in his right hand. He quickly raised it above his head, fist-bumped catcher Francisco Cervelli and hugged manager Clint Hurdle.

Burnett is enjoying his time back in Pittsburgh, and it's showing on the mound.

More

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yanks use position player in relief vs. Texas

|
Yanks use position player in relief vs. Texas

Major League Baseball has officially cut down on the average elapsed time it takes to complete a game, thanks in part to some pace-of-play measures that have been put in place for the 2015 season. 

But, America's pastime is still boundless as it does not adhere to the confines of a clock. This means that some games can take a while, be they back-and-forth extra inning affairs or lopsided contests that got out of hand early. Regardless of how the game came to take forever, baseball's marathons share a common silver lining: POSITION PLAYERS PITCHING!

Continue Reading on Cut4

Hamels continues outstanding run in win

After eight innings of one-run ball, left-hander extends personal win streak to four

Hamels continues outstanding run in win

WASHINGTON -- The Phillies' front office loves this.

Cole Hamels pitched beautifully in Saturday's 8-1 victory over the Nationals at Nationals Park. He allowed five hits, one run, one walk and struck out five in eight innings to improve to 5-3 with a 2.98 ERA.

More

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

On Their Game: Randy Johnson and Geddy Lee

Base to bass: Hall of Famers are friends, and Big Unit rocks as a photographer

On Their Game: Randy Johnson and Geddy Lee

AUSTIN, Texas -- Amid the lights, video boards, shooting sparklers and other elaborate props that are commonplace on stage at a rock concert stands a quiet and very tall figure, dressed in blue jeans and an unassuming T-shirt, holding a camera.

He needs to be close to action, but he also has to stay out of the way of the main attraction, all the while capturing the poignant moments that will eventually document this particular moment in the band's history.

More

Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wright diagnosed with spinal stenosis

Mets third baseman has been experiencing lower back pain for a few weeks

Wright diagnosed with spinal stenosis

PITTSBURGH -- The Mets have once again put third baseman David Wright's rehab on hiatus after he was diagnosed with spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal column.

Wright will cease baseball activities and take medication for the next week, while continuing a program of core strengthening and back stabilization exercises. The Mets believe it will be enough to eliminate the flare-ups of lower back tightness that Wright has recently been experiencing. They do not consider Wright's condition degenerative, according to assistant general manager John Ricco.

More

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Maddon sticking with struggling Rondon

Cubs closer has had rough month, but has support of manager

Maddon sticking with struggling Rondon

PHOENIX -- Cubs manager Joe Maddon may use a different pitcher as the closer Saturday, but it has nothing to do with a lack of support for Hector Rondon.

Rondon blew his third save Friday, giving up a game-tying, two-run homer to the D-backs' Paul Goldschmidt with two outs in the 10th inning. Arizona eventually won the game, 5-4, in 13 innings. Rondon was upset not just about Goldschmidt's homer but also A.J. Pollock's double, which set up the home run.

More

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phils shake off Nats' batting practice tunes

Philadelphia to use 'silent treatment' at Citizens Bank Park

Phils shake off Nats' batting practice tunes

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. military bombarded Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega with heavy metal music to force him from his compound and surrender in 1989. Britney Spears' music has blared from merchant ships to scare away pirates off the horn of Africa.

The Nationals have chosen "Somewhere Out There" by Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram, seemingly to annoy their opponents.

More

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burnett cruises as Bucs bash around Harvey

Burnett cruises as Bucs bash around Harvey

PITTSBURGH -- Saturday's game at PNC Park was billed as a pitchers' duel, a showdown between Mets ace Matt Harvey and veteran A.J. Burnett. But the Pirates quickly turned it into the worst start of Harvey's young career, running away with an 8-2 win over the Mets.

Burnett, meanwhile, continued to show no signs of slowing down in what he's said will be the final season of his career. The 38-year-old right-hander struck out 10 and improved to 4-1 with a Major League-best 1.37 ERA with his ninth straight start allowing two runs or fewer.

More

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros halt Tigers behind McCullers, triple play

Astros halt Tigers behind McCullers, triple play

DETROIT -- Lance McCullers earned his first Major League victory in the same city where his father earned his next-to-last Major League win 25 years ago. His six quality innings, helped by a fifth-inning triple play, allowed the Houston Astros to piece together a go-ahead rally in the sixth for a 3-2 win over the Tigers Saturday afternoon at Comerica Park.

McCullers (1-0), whose father, Lance McCullers Sr., pitched for the Tigers in 1990, survived an Anthony Gose RBI double in the third inning and a James McCann double and score in the fifth to toss six innings of two-run ball on six hits with an intentional walk and six strikeouts. He avoided add-on runs in the fifth when Jonathan Villar, Jose Altuve and Chris Carter turned a triple play on an Ian Kinsler grounder with Miguel Cabrera on deck.

More

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Moose day to day with bruised left clavicle

Moose day to day with bruised left clavicle

KANSAS CITY -- Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas left Saturday's 3-2 win over the Cardinals prior to the bottom of the fifth inning and was replaced by Christian Colon.

Club officials indicated that Moustakas exited with a left clavicle contusion, but manager Ned Yost didn't seem too concerned about his third baseman missing much time.

More

Jordan Wilson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies' bats, Hamels end Nationals' streak

Phillies' bats, Hamels end Nationals' streak

WASHINGTON --- Left-hander Cole Hamels proved to be too much for the Nationals, who lost to the Phillies, 8-1, at Nationals Park on Saturday afternoon.

Hamels pitched eight solid innings, allowed the one run, five hits and struck out five batters. He received plenty of run support as the Phillies scored a season-high eight runs. Ryan Howard had three hits and drove in two runs.

More

Bill Ladson and Todd Zolecki are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Braves rookie delivers in 11th to sink Brewers

Braves rookie delivers in 11th to sink Brewers

ATLANTA -- Shelby Miller bounced back from a rocky first inning and the Braves' bullpen held off the Brewers long enough for Jace Peterson to give Atlanta a walk-off single for a 3-2, 11-inning win Saturday.

Alberto Callaspo started the final rally with a one-out walk from right-hander Brandon Kintzler, and Andrelton Simmons followed with an infield single. After a groundout moved them to second and third, Peterson stepped into the box and drilled the first pitch he saw into left-center field for his first career walk-off hit.

More

Carlos Collazo is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Jon Cooper is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sprained toe forces Lyles to exit vs. Giants

Rockies starter first shows discomfort in fourth inning, departs in fifth

Sprained toe forces Lyles to exit vs. Giants

DENVER -- Rockies right-hander Jordan Lyles suffered a sprained big toe on his left foot during Saturday's 10-8 loss to the Giants at Coors Field and is listed as day to day.

"We'll continue to evaluate him," manager Walt Weiss said.

More

Dargan Southard is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cherington believes effort is there for Red Sox

General manager says 'I don't see any lack of accountability'

Cherington believes effort is there for Red Sox

BOSTON -- Through the first 42 games this season, there are few denying the Red Sox's pervasive and persistent woes on offense. Whether the club can recover from the slow start, however, is another matter -- one general manager Ben Cherington discussed at length on Saturday.

Cherington's overarching theme was simple: The struggles of 2015 do not reflect how the Red Sox have approached their issues from an effort standpoint. To point fingers at the character of the clubhouse, he explained, would be issuing false blame.

More

Alec Shirkey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Harvey pays the price on tough day for Mets

Righty allows career-high seven runs in career-low four innings vs. Bucs

Harvey pays the price on tough day for Mets

PITTSBURGH -- The final indignity of the Mets' rotten Saturday occurred in the seventh inning of their 8-2 loss to the Pirates, some time after the worst outing of Matt Harvey's career had come to an end. Eric Campbell, the replacement for injured third baseman David Wright, fielded a routine grounder and fired it into the stands, resulting in an error and an eighth Pirates run.

So it went for the Mets, on a day in which they learned that Wright's lower back injury may be more serious than they thought. A day in which Harvey threw the fewest innings of his career and allowed the most runs. A day in which the Mets lost for the fourth time in five games. A day that marked the one-month anniversary of their 11th consecutive win, which now seems so incredibly far in the past.

More

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Napoli on a tear during homestand

Red Sox first baseman finds his stroke at Fenway Park

Napoli on a tear during homestand

BOSTON -- Why were the Red Sox so patient when Mike Napoli spent the first seven weeks of the season in one of the most epic slumps imaginable? Because they know full well what the payoff is when Napoli gets hot.

The slugger hit two home runs on Saturday night, leading the Red Sox to an 8-3 victory over the Angels.

More

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.