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Yanks take 1st WC on head-spinning sweep

Judge, Stanton power late rally for 6th straight win
September 26, 2021

BOSTON – The largest Yankees delivered in a massive eighth-inning rally on Sunday, with Aaron Judge doubling home two runs and Giancarlo Stanton obliterating a two-run homer onto Lansdowne Street, wresting control of the American League Wild Card chase with a 6-3 victory over the Red Sox at Fenway Park.

FINAL WEEK! How contenders line up

September 26, 2021

The goal remains simple for every remaining postseason contender: Win every game possible, and let the rest take care of itself. No matter if it’s an October-bound club or an also-ran left on the schedule, teams still have to take care of business. That schedule can sometimes make a tiny

Wild Card in reach as Cards' streak hits 16

September 26, 2021

CHICAGO -- The Cardinals have won 16 games in a row. They have trimmed their magic number for a spot in the National League Wild Card Game, somehow, to a single game, after Sunday afternoon’s wild, emotional and rulebook-laden 4-2 victory over the Cubs at Wrigley Field.

Crew seals Central on Fan Appreciation Day

Counsell elated after clinch: 'It almost worked out as good as we could have hoped'
September 26, 2021

MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers clinched the fourth division crown in franchise history just in time for their fans to join the celebration. Willy Adames launched a go-ahead home run in the first inning to erase an early deficit and Milwaukee never let that lead go, finishing a three-game sweep with

Giants rally in 9th to complete sweep of Rox

Gausman's 11 K's, Crawford's knockout homer lift spirits after Belt's exit
September 26, 2021

DENVER -- Kevin Gausman is recapturing his All-Star form at just the right time for the Giants. Gausman struck out 11 and fired six innings of one-run ball, and Tommy La Stella delivered a pinch-hit, go-ahead single in the ninth inning as the Giants rallied to beat the Rockies, 6-2,

Corey, Trea hit 100th HRs in LA's 100th win

September 26, 2021

PHOENIX -- When the Dodgers acquired Trea Turner back in July, the initial question was where the All-Star would play defensively. There are very few teams where Turner, who is one of the most dynamic players in baseball, doesn’t immediately become the starting shortstop. Instead, Turner had to slide to

Playoff watch: Five spots still up for grabs

September 26, 2021

The American and National League Central divisions champions are squared away, and the Rays are champions of the AL East. We know the Dodgers and Giants are in; it's just a matter of where they'll play. The remaining postseason slots? There’s one week left to sort it all out. The

The wacky final outs in Cards' 16th win

@ByNickAguilera and @zachsilver
September 26, 2021

CHICAGO -- The Cardinals may have won their 16th straight game on Sunday with a 4-2 victory over the Cubs, but they didn’t get there without a little controversy. With one out and runners on first and second in the bottom of the ninth, the Cubs' Frank Schwindel lofted a

Power Rankings: Down to the wire

September 26, 2021

Teams are clinching postseason positions now as we enter the final week of the regular season, and that's solidifying their spot in the top tier of the Power Rankings. The Rays, who clinched their second straight American League East title on Saturday with a win over the Marlins in

Baz gives 97-win Rays food for thought

Rookie continues push for spot on postseason roster as club ties franchise mark for wins
September 26, 2021

ST. PETERSBURG -- The American League East champion Rays haven’t finalized any postseason pitching plans yet, but in only two starts, top prospect Shane Baz has given them a lot to think about. The 22-year-old right-hander was downright dominant again Sunday afternoon, holding the Marlins to three hits and a

'An absolute ace': Sho K's 10 in home finale

AL MVP front-runner reaches 150-strikeout milestone in 7-inning effort
September 26, 2021

ANAHEIM -- Shohei Ohtani lost out on getting his 10th win of the season, but he still turned in yet another dominant performance on the mound against the Mariners on Sunday. Ohtani, making his 23rd start of the year, allowed one run over seven innings, with 10 strikeouts and no

Complete 2021 MLB postseason schedule

August 25, 2021

Major League Baseball today announced the schedule for the 2021 Postseason, which is set to open with the American League Wild Card Game presented by Hankook on ESPN on Tuesday, Oct. 5, followed by the National League Wild Card Game presented by Hankook on TBS on Wednesday, Oct. 6. Game

Here are the '21 playoff tiebreaker scenarios

September 15, 2021

Just as extra innings are sometimes required to resolve games, extra games are sometimes required to resolve regular-season races. It hasn’t happened often, even in the dual-Wild Card era in which more teams are in the late-season mathematical mix. Since Major League Baseball went to the dual-Wild Card format in

A's walk off again, sweep Astros, stay alive

Canha dedicates big hit to fans: 'I feel like I'm playing for them'
September 26, 2021

OAKLAND -- The A’s still aren’t sure if they’ll get to play another game at the Coliseum this season. If this weekend was truly the final home series of the year, they sure treated their fans to a satisfying finale. Mark Canha knew it was over once he made contact.

Franco 2 shy of tying record on-base streak

Rookie phenom doubles and triples, showing he's over hammy injury that landed him on IL
September 26, 2021

ST. PETERSBURG -- If there were any lingering doubts about how rookie shortstop Wander Franco’s previously injured right hamstring was holding up, he erased them in a big way Sunday afternoon at Tropicana Field. Back in the lineup after sitting out the Rays’ American League East-clinching 7-3 victory over the

MadBum helps BCraw's son root against LA

September 26, 2021

The Giants had an adorable fan in the stands at Chase Field on Saturday to cheer on the D-backs, who beat the Dodgers, 7-2, to help San Francisco widen its lead in the National League West. Brandon Crawford’s wife, Jalynne, shared on Instagram that former Giants ace Madison Bumgarner gifted

What to know in PHI-ATL battle for NL East

September 26, 2021

The Braves and Phillies are two National League East rivals chasing the same prize this week at Truist Park. The teams open a three-game series on Tuesday night in Atlanta, with the Braves holding a 2 1/2-game lead in their quest for a fourth consecutive NL East title. The Phillies,

Sox slip to 2nd Wild Card as Yanks sweep

September 26, 2021

BOSTON -- A day after they led the Yankees with four outs to go and lost, the Red Sox suffered an even more crushing defeat on Sunday night, failing to hold a one-run lead with five outs left. This gut punch of an 6-3 defeat put the Red Sox into

Braves sweep Padres, extend NL East lead

Atlanta owns 2 1/2-game advantage heading into final homestand of '21
September 26, 2021

SAN DIEGO -- While closing out a 4-3 win over the Padres in a stressful manner on Sunday afternoon, Will Smith strengthened the narrative that has been created as the Braves have spent the past couple months persevering and responding favorably to adversity. “These past two games, my God,” Braves

Belt exits after 93 mph fastball hits hand

Initial scan inconclusive; slugger will undergo X-rays when club returns home
September 26, 2021

DENVER -- The Giants won their sixth consecutive game at Coors Field for the first time in franchise history, but the achievement was marred by the loss of first baseman Brandon Belt, who departed Sunday’s 6-2 win over the Rockies after being drilled on the left hand. Belt, San Francisco’s

1 thing to watch in final week for each team

September 25, 2021

It breaks my heart to say this, but: There is only one week left in the regular season. Can you believe it? The postseason will be wonderful, but after Sunday, it’s going to be until next March that every Major League Baseball team plays on the same day. That is

Trout moving on from frustrating season

September 25, 2021

ANAHEIM -- Angels superstar Mike Trout acknowledged that the 2021 season was the most frustrating of his career because of a season-ending right calf strain suffered on May 17, but he said he’s in a better place mentally after deciding to shut it down for the season a few weeks

Manoah stands tall, keeps Wild Card alive

Jansen, Springer both homer, help Toronto stay on pace in AL Wild Card
September 26, 2021

MINNEAPOLIS -- Alek Manoah has a habit of looking danger in the eye and smiling, maybe shooting it a wink. The rookie right-hander danced in and out of trouble again in Sunday afternoon's 5-2 win over the Twins, making big pitches in the biggest moments of a game that the

What's ahead? Cards' final week FAQ

September 26, 2021

ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals went from barely sniffing the National League Wild Card chase, to making it seem like they would need all 162 games to clinch a berth to now potentially having a week to set themselves up for the NL Wild Card Game. Sixteen consecutive wins --

'Rock solid' Marco prevails in duel vs. Ohtani

Southpaw wins ninth consecutive decision for WC-chasing Mariners
September 26, 2021

ANAHEIM -- Looking for a strong outing on the mound to keep up in the AL Wild Card race, the Mariners received just that from left-hander Marco Gonzales on Sunday. Gonzales held the Halos to one run, three hits and three walks through seven innings to earn the win in