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Longest MLB win streaks in 2018

MLB.com @DKramer_

Win streaks, particularly at this time of year -- with just days ahead of the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline and right out of the All-Star break -- can spark some of the most exciting moments of the regular season. Consider the Indians' historic 22-game run last year that catapulted Cleveland to the American League Central crown, or the 20-game run by the under-the-radar A's in 2002. These types of win streaks have a track record of proving paramount in pennant races. 

Entering Wednesday, the red-hot Pirates are riding an 11-game stretch without a loss, which dates back nearly two weeks. Here's a look at where the Bucs' current run stacks up against the other longest win streaks in 2018:

Win streaks, particularly at this time of year -- with just days ahead of the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline and right out of the All-Star break -- can spark some of the most exciting moments of the regular season. Consider the Indians' historic 22-game run last year that catapulted Cleveland to the American League Central crown, or the 20-game run by the under-the-radar A's in 2002. These types of win streaks have a track record of proving paramount in pennant races. 

Entering Wednesday, the red-hot Pirates are riding an 11-game stretch without a loss, which dates back nearly two weeks. Here's a look at where the Bucs' current run stacks up against the other longest win streaks in 2018:

12 GAMES

Astros, June 6-18
Despite entering June 6 with the Majors' fourth-highest winning percentage, the defending champs hadn't truly hit their stride, as they sat two games back of the Mariners in the AL West. 

•  Cut4: Five biggest moments from Astros' 12-game winning streak

Perhaps no moment was more quirky than the go-ahead balk in the ninth inning that the Astros drew against the Rangers on June 10. Tied at 7 and threatening with runners at second and third, Keone Kela rushed a pitch home that, after discussion among umpires, was ruled a balk, thus allowing the go-ahead run to score. Houston got just one walk-off win during its streak, and it came during its 12th and final win during the club's MLB-best run this year. Trailing 4-3 against the Rays in the bottom of the ninth on June 18, Alex Bregman roped a one-out, ninth-inning double to left that scored two.

Video: Astros reel off 12 straight wins to tie club record

11 GAMES

Pirates, July 11-July 25
Pittsburgh climbed its way back into the National League postseason picture out of the All-Star break with a streak that rivals arguably the Majors' top contenders in 2018. The Pirates extended their streak to 11 with two wins in Cleveland, first by overcoming three rain delays and tagging Corey Kluber for a season-high seven runs over just four innings for a rain-shortened 7-0 win. The next night, they scored seven runs in the first two innings for No. 11 before the AL Central leaders snapped the run in the series finale.

The Pirates also swept the Brewers in five games ahead of the break to knock Milwaukee out of first place, and outscored the Reds by 22 runs (27-5) over a three-game sweep on the road.

10 GAMES

Red Sox, July 2-12
Boston swept Washington, Kansas City and Texas earlier this month, and won another against Toronto as part of a season-high 10-game win streak that has helped it build a first-place cushion in what figures to be a very competitive AL East race the rest of the way. Over their 10-game run, the Red Sox paced the Majors in runs (73), batting average (.325) and on-base percentage (.395), and they ranked second in slugging percentage (.511). 

Video: Martinez, Betts key Boston's 10-game win streak

9 GAMES

Yankees, April 21-29
Perhaps more impressive than the Yankees' season-high nine-game win steak was that had they avoided one blemish -- a 2-1 loss on April 30 in Houston in an AL Championship Series rematch -- they would have gone on to win 18 in a row. After snapping their nine-game streak, the Bombers went on to win another eight straight from May 1-9. 

Video: Look back at Yankees' 9-game win streak in April '18

Mets, April 3-13
Promise filled the early leg of the Mets' season when they got off to a franchise-best 11-1 start, which was fueled in large part by a nine-game win streak that fell three short of a club record. The streak ended with a 5-1 loss to the Brewers at Citi Field, in which Matt Harvey gave up four runs in five innings. 

Video: Nine-game win streak fuels Mets' franchise-best start

Red Sox, March 30-April 10
After dropping their Opening Day contest to the Rays, the Red Sox won nine in a row in perhaps what was a sign of good things to come in 2018. Rookie manager Alex Cora joined Mickey Callaway (2018 Mets), Joe Morgan (1988 Red Sox) and Pat Moran (1915 Phillies) as the only skippers to guide their clubs to nine wins in their first 10 games on the job. 

Boston's ninth win in a row came via a 14-1 drubbing of the Yankees in 30-degree temperatures at Fenway Park on April 10, which included a nine-run sixth inning that featured the third career grand slam by superstar Mookie Betts

Video: NYY@BOS: Betts hits laser over Monster for grand slam

8 GAMES

•  Mariners, June 25-July 3
•  Yankees, May 1-9
•  Rays, April 18-28
•  Brewers, April 17-25
•  Red Sox, April 12-20

7 GAMES

•  Rockies, July 11-21
•  Reds, June 17-24
•  Indians, June 17-24
•  Rangers, June 16-23
•  Angels, April 8-14

Daniel Kramer is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver. Follow him on Twitter at @DKramer_.