Wander Franco’s walk-off HR caps Rays’ wild win

Wander Franco led off the bottom of the ninth inning with a 411-foot home run to right to give the Tampa Bay Rays a wild 9-8 victory over the Cleveland Guardians on Friday night in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Franco jumped all over a 1-1 slider from Cleveland’s Nick Sandlin (5-5) to smack his 17th homer of the season. Franco had three RBIs and Isaac Paredes hit a two-run homer for the Rays, who blew a three-run, ninth-inning lead before Franco’s heroics.

Paredes’ 23rd homer of the season in the sixth gave the Rays a 5-4 lead. Tampa Bay tacked on three runs in the seventh without a hit as they loaded the bases with one out on three walks from Daniel Norris. The Rays then scored two on an Andres Gimenez error and another on a Manuel Margot fielder’s choice.

Myles Straw hit his first homer of the season for Cleveland, which has lost 10 of its last 14 games. The Guardians also scored three runs without a hit, tying the game in the ninth on three walks, a hit batter and three wild pitches.

Rangers 2, Giants 1

Jon Gray combined with two relievers on a three-hitter, Nathaniel Lowe and Mitch Garver hit consecutive pitches for home runs and visiting Texas celebrated manager Bruce Bochy’s return to San Francisco with a victory.

The Oracle Park visit was the first for the 68-year-old Bochy since he stepped down after the 2019 season following 13 years as the Giants’ manager, a stint that included three World Series titles. Bochy watched Gray (8-5) fire seven shutout innings, with the right-hander allowing just two hits while fanning seven.

While the Rangers earned their ninth win in their last 10 games, the Giants suffered their fifth loss in the club’s last six games.

Yankees 9, Marlins 4

Anthony Volpe belted a three-run home run and Aaron Judge also went deep to lift visiting New York over Miami.

New York’s Kyle Higashioka ripped a two-run single in the ninth inning to highlight a three-hit performance. Oswaldo Cabrera, Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Gleyber Torres each had an RBI single for the Yankees, who recorded 14 hits and went 7-for-13 with runners in scoring position.

Randy Vasquez (2-1), who was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre prior to the game, picked up the win after allowing two runs on three hits in 3 2/3 innings. Jesus Luzardo (8-7) permitted seven runs on nine hits in 3 1/3 innings to lose his second straight start.

Phillies 13, Twins 2

Bryson Stott homered, doubled and drove in three runs while J.T. Realmuto hit a homer, singled and had two RBIs as host Philadelphia crushed Minnesota.

Johan Rojas hit his first career homer and knocked in three runs, Trea Turner added three hits and two RBIs and Nick Castellanos ripped three hits for the Phillies, who have won three straight. Kyle Schwarber left the game in the seventh after fouling a ball off his foot while Bryce Harper sat out with back spasms and is considered day-to-day.

Jorge Polanco and Max Kepler each hit a solo home run for the Twins. Polanco and Michael A. Taylor had two hits each for Minnesota, which has dropped four in a row. Twins starter Dallas Keuchel (0-1) lasted only 1 2/3 innings and gave up six hits and six runs with two walks and no strikeouts.

Braves 7, Mets 0

Austin Riley had three hits, including a home run, and a pair of RBIs for visiting Atlanta, which rolled over New York in the opener of a four-game series.

The Braves improved to 4-4 on a season-long 11-game road trip. The Mets fell to 2-8 this month. Eddie Rosario had two hits and three RBIs for the Braves. Charlie Morton (11-10) earned the win after allowing three hits and walking a career-high seven while striking out four over five-plus innings.

Mark Vientos had two singles for the Mets, who left 14 runners on base and went 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position. Tylor Megill (6-6) took the loss after allowing six runs (five earned) on nine hits and one walk while striking out three over 5 1/3 innings.

Nationals 8, Athletics 2

Ildemaro Vargas hit a three-run home run as Keibert Ruiz and Jake Alu also homered in Washington’s victory over visiting Oakland in the opener of a three-game series.

It was a tight game until Vargas’ fourth blast of the season in the bottom of the seventh inning. Alu’s first career home run came in his 14th game in the majors, a solo shot in the eighth.

Ruiz, Vargas and Stone Garrett all had two hits for Washington, which received at least one hit from every batter in the lineup to total 12 as a team. Athletics starter Paul Blackburn (2-3) took the loss, giving up four runs on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings. The team had won his past three starts.

Reds 9, Pirates 2

Luke Maile hit a three-run home run and Elly De La Cruz also drove in three as visiting Cincinnati toppled Pittsburgh.

Spencer Steer added an RBI double and an RBI single, and TJ Friedl had an RBI single for the Reds, who had lost two in a row and eight of nine.

Cincinnati starter Andrew Abbott (7-3) allowed two runs and four hits in 5 2/3 innings, with nine strikeouts and no walks. Ke’Bryan Hayes homered and Andrew McCutchen hit an RBI single for the Pirates, who have lost three of four.

Red Sox 5, Tigers 2

Chris Sale pitched in a major league game for the first time in more than two months and Triston Casas hit a three-run home run to help Boston stretch its winning streak to three games by beating visiting Detroit.

Casas put Boston in front 4-0 when he hit his 19th homer of the season in the fourth inning. It was the first home run Tigers starter Tarik Skubal has allowed this season.

Sale, who spent more than two months on the injured list with shoulder inflammation, retired the first 14 batters he faced. Sale allowed two runs on one hit, struck out seven and didn’t walk a batter in 4 2/3 innings. Kerry Carpenter’s solo home run in the fifth was the only hit Sale allowed.

Cubs 6, Blue Jays 2

Javier Assad pitched seven strong innings, Cody Bellinger hit a two-run home run and visiting Chicago defeated Toronto.

Nico Hoerner added a solo shot and Bellinger, Hoerner and Ian Happ each had two hits for the Cubs, who are 7-3 this month. Assad (2-2) allowed one run, four hits and one walk with two strikeouts in his third start of the season.

Brandon Belt hit a solo home run for the Blue Jays, who returned from a 5-2 road trip. Toronto starter Jose Berrios (9-8) allowed six runs (four earned) and nine hits with three strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings.

Royals 12, Cardinals 8

Salvador Perez went 4-for-4 with a home run and four RBIs as host Kansas City jumped to a 9-0 lead after two innings, then had to stave off St. Louis’ attempted comeback.

Maikel Garcia singled twice and scored twice, extending his hitting streak to a career-best 15 games and matching the Royals’ rookie hitting-streak record. Nelson Velazquez and Bobby Witt Jr. added homers as Kansas City won its seventh straight home game.

Willson Contreras went 3-for-3 with a 461-foot home run and five RBIs for St. Louis, which has dropped 13 of 20 since its season-best, six-game winning streak July 15-20. Adam Wainwright (3-7) was torched for eight runs — his most since June 17, 2017 — on nine hits while recording three outs.

Astros 11, Angels 3

Jon Singleton posted his first career multi-home run game and Justin Verlander won in his 500th career start as Houston walloped visiting Los Angeles.

Singleton, signed by Houston as a minor league free agent on June 24 and recalled from Triple-A Sugar Land on Tuesday, went 3-for-4 with a walk and a career-high five RBIs in his first appearance at Minute Maid Park for the Astros since Sept. 25, 2015.

Verlander (7-6) made his first start in Houston since being re-acquired by the Astros at the trade deadline. He became the 50th pitcher in history to record 500 career starts, delivering a quality start in the process by allowing three runs on six hits with seven strikeouts over six innings.

Brewers 7, White Sox 6 (10 innings)

Mark Canha delivered a go-ahead, pinch-hit double in the 10th inning and the bullpen contributed 4 1/3 innings of one-run relief to lift Milwaukee over host Chicago.

William Contreras, Carlos Santana and Victor Caratini had two hits apiece for the Brewers, who maintained a 2 1/2-game lead on the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds atop the National League Central. The Brewers have played extra innings in four of the past six games, including three straight.

Eloy Jimenez smacked a two-run home run among his three hits for Chicago, while Yoan Moncada and Andrew Vaughn had two hits apiece.

Padres 10, Diamondbacks 5

San Diego left-hander Blake Snell continued his mastery of Arizona and Xander Bogaerts had four hits, including a two-run home run, and three RBIs in Phoenix.

The win snaps a four-game losing streak for the Padres, whose offensive outburst matched the run total they scored during that stretch.

Snell, who entered the game 4-1 with a 0.84 ERA in eight career games (seven starts) against the Diamondbacks, allowed only two hits in six innings while striking out seven and walking four.

Mariners 9, Orioles 2

Julio Rodriguez, moved back into the leadoff spot with J.P. Crawford placed on the 7-day concussion list, doubled, homered and drove in four runs, and Luis Castillo pitched six strong innings as Seattle routed visiting Baltimore.

Cal Raleigh and Ty France also homered for the Mariners, who won their eighth in a row and for the 13th time in their past 15 to pull within a half-game of Toronto for the American League’s third and final wild-card playoff berth.

Anthony Santander homered for the AL East-leading Orioles, who lost for the third time in their past four games.

Dodgers 6, Rockies 1

Lance Lynn delivered another strong start for his new team, Freddie Freeman drove in two runs and Los Angeles beat Colorado for a season-high-tying sixth straight win.

Lynn (9-9) gave up one unearned run on four hits with nine strikeouts and one walk over five innings. He has allowed a combined five runs — four earned — in three starts for the Dodgers, winning each of them, after he was acquired from the Chicago White Sox near the trade deadline.

Brendan Rodgers drove in a run for the Rockies in his return to the lineup and left-hander Austin Gomber (9-9) allowed only two runs on eight hits over five innings.

–Field Level Media

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