MLB roundup: Pirates power past Reds

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle insists he hasn’t been keeping close tabs of his team’s slide following a hot start. He wasn’t aware the Pirates had dropped eight straight series until someone mentioned it to him earlier in the week.

“If somebody would have told me you’re going to lose eight series, you’d think you’re going to be horrible,” Hurdle said. “We’re not horrible. We’re fighting. And we believe that our best baseball is in front of us.”

It is, at least when the Pirates play the struggling Cincinnati Reds. Josh Harrison hit a two-run homer, Colin Moran and Elias Diaz added solo shots and the Pirates pulled away for a 6-2 victory on Saturday to push their modest winning streak to three and assuring themselves of their first positive series since taking a two-game set from the Chicago White Sox a month ago.

“We know what’s happened here the past couple weeks,” Harrison said. “Guys are still plugging away and coming ready to show up every day and we’ve had three in a row. We know that doesn’t speak for what’s happened or what will happen. We’ve just got to continue to keep bringing it every day.”

Moran and Diaz both went deep off Luis Castillo (4-8) to give Pittsburgh the lead. Harrison hit his fourth of the season off reliever Austin Brice in the sixth. The Cincinnati native finished 2 for 4 is hitting .368 (14 for 38) against the Reds.

ASTROS 10, ROYALS 2

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Houston won their 10th straight game, with Dallas Keuchel getting three-run homers from Max Stassi and Alex Bregman to rout Kansas City.

Jose Altuve hit a two-run double in the first inning to send the World Series champions on their way. The Astros had an 11-game win streak last season that ended in Kansas City.

The Royals have lost five in a row and are just 2-12 in June.

YANKEES 4, RAYS 1

NEW YORK (AP) — Luis Severino pitched eight sharp innings and also jumped to steal away a popup from catcher Gary Sanchez as New York won for the 13th time in 16 games.

Giancarlo Stanton and Sanchez hit back-to-back home runs to help the Yankees send Tampa Bay to their 18th loss in 22 games at Yankee Stadium.

Severino (10-2) simply overwhelmed a weak-hitting Rays lineup that has produced just one run over its last 21 innings. The 24-year-old righty gave up three hits, struck out nine and walked two, tying Cleveland’s Corey Kluber for the AL wins lead.

TIGERS 7, WHITE SOX 5

CHICAGO (AP) — Nicholas Castellanos homered twice and Jose Iglesias hit a tiebreaking RBI single in Detroit’s two-run eighth for its fourth straight win.

Castellanos hit a three-run drive in the third and a two-run shot in the fifth. It was his first multihomer game since Aug. 22 against the Yankees and No. 4 for his career.

The Tigers blew a 5-0 lead but recovered in time to improve to 7-1 against the lowly White Sox this year. Buck Farmer (3-3) pitched a scoreless inning for the win and Shane Greene worked the ninth for his 19th save.

BLUE JAYS 2, NATIONALS 0

TORONTO (AP) — Max Scherzer lost his second straight start for the first time since 2015 when Marco Estrada pitched 6 2/3 shutout innings and Devon Travis homered to lead Toronto past Washington.

Scherzer (10-3) gave up four hits, including the two-run homer by Travis, in six innings. The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner struck out 10, increasing his major league-leading total to 152.

Travis homered for the second game in a row when he connected in the fifth, right after Scherzer hit Luke Maile with a pitch.

BRAVES 1, PADRES 0

ATLANTA (AP) — Sean Newcomb pitched six scoreless innings and Charlie Culberson homered to lead Atlanta.

The NL East-leading Braves improved to 25-7 when their starter pitches at least six innings, and Newcomb has been a big reason for the success.

A winner in eight of his last nine decisions, Newcomb (8-2) allowed two hits, walked one and struck out seven. He retired the last 13 batters he faced.

MARLINS 5, ORIOLES 4

BALTIMORE (AP) — J.T. Realmuto homered twice and had four RBIs off Alex Cobb, and Miami handed Baltimore its ninth straight loss.

Realmuto singled in a run in the first inning, hit a two-run shot in the third and led off the fifth with his ninth home run. It was his fourth career multihomer game, the second this season.

The Orioles, who have their longest skid since a 10-game stretch in July 2011, tied a club record with their 11th consecutive home loss and fell to 19-50 overall, the worst record in the majors.

ATHLETICS 6, ANGELS 4

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Stephen Piscotty hit a tiebreaking, two-run single with two outs in the sixth inning and Oakland held on to beat Los Angeles.

Chad Pinder homered and tripled, Marcus Semien also went deep and Jonathan Lucroy drew a bases-loaded walk to help Oakland end its season-high four-game losing streak.

ROCKIES 5, RANGERS 2

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Adrian Beltre hit a tiebreaking two-run triple in the eighth inning, and Texas snapped a seven-game losing streak.

The 39-year-old Beltre, who has been on the disabled list twice this season because of a strained left hamstring, got the triple on a fly ball that went over the head of right fielder Carlos Gonzalez and ricocheted off the bottom half of the outfield wall. It was Beltre’s 3,095th career hit, tops among active players.

TWINS 9, INDIANS 3

CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland pitcher Carlos Carrasco was pulled after he was struck on the right arm by a line drive, and Minnesota got four hits from Eddie Rosario in a win over Cleveland.

Carrasco grabbed his arm after being hit by Joe Mauer’s leadoff liner in the second inning and went to his knees on the infield grass. The Indians announced he was taken to a hospital for examination of a forearm contusion.

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