New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers beat leaders to close gaps
June 21, 2014, 12:18 am TWN
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- The New York Yankees and Detroit both tightened their American League division races with victories over the leaders on Thursday while Oakland widened its gap atop the AL West.
The Yankees moved within 1-1/2 games of Toronto by beating the Blue Jays for the 16th consecutive time, Detroit crept back within half a game of Kansas City by ending the Royals' 10-game winning streak, and Oakland padded its lead out to six games with victory over Boston.
New York's David Phelps pitched seven strong innings to guide the Yankees to a 6-4 win over Toronto.
Phelps (3-4) yielded two runs and struck out seven.
Carlos Beltran drove in two runs for New York, which swept a three-game home series for the first time this season.
Oakland's Scott Kazmir pitched seven innings to win his fourth straight start, and steer the Athletics to a 4-2 win over Boston.
Kazmir (9-2) extended his streak to 18 1-3 innings without allowing an earned run before giving up a two-run homer in the sixth. He struck out eight and didn't walk a batter.
Yoenis Cespedes hit his 14th home run of the season, blasting a solo shot off Jake Peavy (1-5) in the third.
Detroit's Anibal Sanchez also pitched seven sharp innings as the Tigers beat Kansas City 2-1.
Sanchez (4-2) kept the Royals offense quiet even though he failed to strike out a batter.
J.D. Martinez hit a tiebreaking homer in the fourth for the Tigers, who avoided a four-game sweep.
Cleveland's Nick Swisher provided the storybook ending by hitting a grand slam with two outs in the 10th inning to give the Indians a 5-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels.
Swisher had gone 0 for 4 with three strikeouts before his game-winning swipe to cap an improbable comeback after Albert Pujols' two-run single put the Angels ahead in the top of the inning.
Michael Bourn drew a leadoff walk and took third on Jason Kipnis' one-out double. Another walk loaded the bases and L.A. changed pitchers, bringing on Ernesto Frieri. He got the second out but then saw Swisher blast a shot over right field.
Milwaukee's Yovani Gallardo outpitched Chase Anderson in seven strong innings to lead the Brewers to a 4-1 win over Arizona.