Rays use 24 strikeouts against Tigers to keep A's at bay in wildcard race

The Tampa Bay Rays hold just a half-game lead ahead of the Oakland Athletics in the race for the AL wildcard spot.

The MLB American League wildcard race is becoming intense following the Tampa Bay Rays' 1-0 win over the Detroit Tigers.

Saturday's victory kept the Oakland Athletics at bay after the latter beat the Houston Astros 8-4 for their third consecutive win against the 2017 World Series champions.

Oakland are using a heck of a weekend against the American League West-leading Astros to cut into an already diminishing Rays lead for the second wildcard spot.

Tampa Bay now have just a half-game advantage over Oakland which is almost entirely because of the effort on the mound.

Ryan Yarbrough, Chaz Roe, Nick Anderson, Emilio Pagan, Diego Castillo and Colin Poche combined to strike out 24 Tigers batters in 13 innings of work. The Rays needed every single one of those K's because it took Tampa Bay 13 innings to score a run.

Before scoring that run in the 13th inning, Tampa Bay had gone 29 consecutive innings without scoring once. But again, it was a timely run because Oakland are not letting up.

The A's won their third straight game in a four-game series against the Astros and did so without hitting a homer for the third time this season.


Torres homers twice as Yankees top Indians

Gleyber Torres went two for four with two home runs in the New York Yankees' 6-5 win over the Cleveland Indians.

Miguel Sano went three for six with a home run and two RBIs as the Minnesota Twins beat the Texas Rangers 12-7.

Eduardo Rodriguez threw 7.3 scoreless innings in the Boston Red Sox's 4-0 win over the Baltimore Orioles.


Doolittle blows save

Washington Nationals closer Sean Doolittle blew a save by giving up four hits (three homers) and four runs in a third of an inning against the Milwaukee Brewers, who prevailed 15-14.


Tapia steals homer

Colorado Rockies centerfielder Raimel Tapia was a thief in an 11-4 win over the Miami Marlins.


Saturday's results

New York Yankees 6-5 Cleveland Indians
Chicago Cubs 2-0 Pittsburgh Pirates
Seattle Mariners 4-3 Toronto Blue Jays
Oakland Athletics 8-4 Houston Astros
Tampa Bay Rays 1-0 Detroit Tigers
Cincinnati Reds 6-1 St Louis Cardinals
Milwaukee Brewers 15-14 Washington Nationals
San Diego Padres 5-3 Philadelphia Phillies
Boston Red Sox 4-0 Baltimore Orioles
New York Mets 4-1 Kansas City Royals
Atlanta Braves 4-3 Los Angeles Dodgers
Minnesota Twins 12-7 Texas Rangers
Colorado Rockies 11-4 Miami Marlins
San Francisco Giants 11-6 Arizona Diamondbacks
Los Angeles Angels 6-5 Chicago White Sox


Cardinals at Reds 

The Cardinals need every win they can get right now as they are tied for the lead in the National League Central with the Cubs. The Reds are not out of the playoff race either so they could use the win as well.