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Wednesday's MLB playoffs: Rays hit 3 more HRs to beat Yankees, take 2-1 lead in ALDS

Associated Press

San Diego — Randy Arozarena homered for the third straight game and Kevin Kiermaier and Michael Perez also went deep for the Tampa Bay Rays, who beat the New York Yankees 8-4 Wednesday night to move within one victory of reaching the AL Championship Series for the first time in 12 years.

New York slugger Giancarlo Stanton hit a two-run shot in the eighth inning to become the first player with a homer in each of his team’s first five games of a single postseason. Stanton has six homers and 13 RBIs in those five games.

The Rays took a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five Division Series. Game 4 is Thursday night at Petco Park, which has yielded 16 home runs in three games – nine by Tampa Bay.

Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Diego Castillo, right, celebrates with catcher Michael Perez (7) after defeating the New York Yankees in Game 3 of a baseball American League Division Series, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, in San Diego.

The Rays are looking to advance out of the ALDS for just the second time. They reached the 2008 World Series before losing to the Philadelphia Phillies.

Arozarena, a 25-year-old rookie from Havana who’s nicknamed “The Cuban Rocket,” is having a breakout postseason. He homered leading off the fifth to chase loser Masahiro Tanaka and give the Rays a 5-1 lead.

Arozarena went 3 for 4 with a walk. He leads all players in the postseason with 12 hits in five games.

Kiermaier hit a three-run shot off Tanaka in the fourth to make it 4-1.

Charlie Morton held the Yankees to two runs, one earned, in five innings. He struck out six in winning his fifth straight postseason decision.

More ALDS

►Athletics 9, Astros 7: Chad Pinder tied the score with a three-run homer in the seventh inning, Sean Murphy hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly in the eighth and Oakland rallied past Houston to avoid elimination in their AL Division Series.

Houston leads the best-of-five set 2-1 and can advance to its fourth straight AL Championship Series with a victory in Game 4 on Thursday.

The Astros wasted leads of 2-1 and 7-4, and the Athletics bounced back after giving up advantages of 1-0 and 4-2.

Houston’s bullpen had stifled Oakland in the first two games with seven shutout innings of one-hit relief, but Pinder ended that dominance.

Marcus Semien, Tommy La Stella, Mark Canha and Matt Olson also homered for the A’s, whose entire infield went deep. Teams outhomering opponents are 18-0 in the postseason.

The teams have combined for 18 homers – including seven in Game 3 – in the neutral-site series at Dodger Stadium featuring all day games. After two straight days in the 90s, the temperature cooled to 81 degrees.

Liam Hendriks pitched three innings of scoreless relief for the win. Brooks Raley took the loss.

NLDS

►Braves 2, Marlins 0: Rookie right-hander Ian Anderson pitched like a poised veteran, right fielder Nick Markakis made a nifty defensive play late and Atlanta threw another playoff shutout in beating Miami for a 2-0 lead in their NL Division Series.

The Braves have tossed three shutouts in four games this postseason. Travis d’Arnaud and Dansby Swanson both homered for the second straight day, putting Atlanta one win from a sweep in the best-of-five matchup.

The 22-year-old Anderson, who made his major league debut in late August, scattered three hits and struck out eight over 5 2/3 innings. He added to his impressive outing last week in the first round when he fanned nine in six scoreless innings against Cincinnati

Mark Melancon, the fifth Atlanta pitcher, finished the three-hitter for a save.

Marlins starter Pablo Lopez allowed three hits and struck out seven over five innings in his postseason debut. It was his first outing since Sept. 24.

Game 3 is Thursday in Houston.

►Dodgers 6, Padres 5: Manny Machado tried to awaken a slumbering San Diego offense by screaming at his teammates after connecting for a homer against Clayton Kershaw.

While it almost worked, the Padres fell into a 2-0 deficit in their best-of-five National League Division Series when Eric Hosmer stranded the bases loaded with a game-ending groundout off Joe Kelly in a 6-5 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

Machado’s solo shot in the sixth inning was followed immediately by another from Hosmer, closing the Padres to 4-3 in their first NLDS since 2006.

Fernando Tatís Jr. hit a long drive off reliever Brusdar Graterol that would have put the Padres up by a run in the seventh, but Cody Bellinger robbed the 21-year-old phenom with a leaping grab at the wall in center field.

Machado’s outburst, starting when he threw his bat at his own dugout after lifting a low pitch from Kershaw to left, was aimed at a San Diego offense that had been mostly silent for the first 14 innings of the neutral-site series at the home of the Texas Rangers.

Mitch Moreland and Trent Grisham drove in runs in the ninth inning off a Kenley Jansen who struggled with velocity, and Kelly walked Tatis and Machado. On the 49th pitch of the inning, Hosmer fouled off a 1-2 pitch, then grounded a 1-2 knuckle-curve at the knees to second baseman Kiké Hernández.

In a 5-1 loss in Game 1, San Diego became the first team to use at least nine pitchers in three straight games in the playoffs or regular season. Another bullpen-heavy game could be looming in Game 3 with both of the Padres’ top two starters sidelined by injuries.

Mike Clevinger was removed from the NLDS roster Wednesday after lasting just two pitches into the second inning of Game 1 while dealing with an elbow issue. The right-hander can’t return until the World Series if the Padres get that far.

Division Series

AMERICAN LEAGUE

All games on TBS

Tampa Bay 2, N.Y. Yankees 1

At San Diego

Monday, Oct. 5: New York Yankees 9, Tampa Bay 3

Tuesday, Oct. 6: Tampa Bay 7, New York Yankees 5

Wednesday, Oct. 7: Tampa Bay 8, New York Yankees 4

Thursday, Oct. 8: Tampa Bay vs. New York Yankees (Happ 2-2), 7:10 p.m.

x-Friday, Oct. 9: New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay, 7:10 p.m.

Houston 2, Oakland 1

At Los Angeles

Monday, Oct. 5: Houston 10, Oakland 5

Tuesday, Oct. 6: Houston 5, Oakland 2

Wednesday, Oct. 7: Oakland 9, Houston 7

Thursday, Oct. 8: Oakland vs. Houston, 3:35 p.m.

x-Friday, Oct. 9: Houston vs. Oakland, 3:35 p.m.

NATIONAL LEAGUE

L.A. Dodgers 2, San Diego 0

At Arlington, Texas

Tuesday, Oct. 6: Los Angeles Dodgers 5, San Diego 1

Wednesday, Oct. 7: Los Angeles Dodgers 6, San Diego 5

Thursday, Oct. 8: Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Diego, 9:08 p.m. (MLB)

x-Friday, Oct. 9: Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Diego, 9:08 p.m. (FS1)

x-Saturday, Oct. 10: San Diego vs. Los Angeles Dodgers, 8:08 p.m. (FS1)

Atlanta 2, Miami 0

At Houston

Tuesday, Oct. 6: Atlanta 9, Miami 5

Wednesday, Oct. 7: Atlanta 2, Miami 0

Thursday, Oct. 8: Atlanta (Wright 2-4) vs. Miami (Sanchez 3-2), 2:08 p.m. (FS1)

x-Friday, Oct. 9: Atlanta vs. Miami, 2:08 p.m. (FS1)

x-Saturday, Oct. 10: Miami vs. Atlanta, 4:08 p.m. (FS1)

x-If necessary