Christian Yelich became the first major leaguer to hit for the cycle twice in one season against the same team, driving in four runs to lead the Milwaukee Brewers over the Cincinnati Reds 8-0 on Monday night.
Less than three weeks after his cycle in Cincinnati, the streaking slugger accomplished the feat against the last-place Reds once again to help the Brewers in their playoff pursuit. Milwaukee began the night 2 1/2 games behind the first-place Chicago Cubs in the N.L. Central but with a three-game lead in the wild-card race.
Yelich singled in the first inning, doubled in the second, launched a two-run homer in the fifth and completed the cycle with a two-run triple in the sixth. With the Brewers nursing a large lead, he was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the eighth.
Yelich’s huge second half has turned him into a top contender for the N.L. MVP award. He also hit for the cycle when he went 6 for 6 in a 13-12 comeback victory on Aug. 29 at Cincinnati, making him the fifth player to turn the trick twice in one season – and first in Brewers history.
The previous player with two cycles in one season was Aaron Hill in 2012.
Wade Miley (5-2) labored through five innings and Brandon Woodruff got his first save.
Anthony DeSclafani (7-6) gave up four runs and seven hits in five innings.
Cardinals 11, Braves 6: In Atlanta, Kolten Wong hit the first of four St. Louis homers, Miles Mikolas won his third straight start and the Cardinals beat the N.L. East-leading Atlanta to give their playoff push another boost.
St. Louis has 35 victories since the All-Star break, most in the National League, and has won two straight after losing four in a row. The Cardinals, who also got homers from Paul DeJong, Harrison Bader and Yadier Molina, began the night tied with the Dodgers for the second N.L. wild card.
The Braves took a third consecutive loss after winning a season-best six straight games. They remained 6 1/2 games ahead in the division following Philadelphia’s loss to the Mets, which reduced Atlanta’s magic number to seven as the Braves try to clinch their first N.L. East title in five years.
Mike Foltynewicz (11-10) allowed six runs and four walks in 4 2/3 innings. Atlanta pitchers have issued 32 walks over the last four games, all at home, where they are 38-37 and have dropped nine of 12.
Mikolas (16-4) gave up two runs in five innings. He improved to 16-0 when getting at least two runs of support, and the Cardinals are 21-3 in those games.
Freddie Freeman homered for the Braves.
Blue Jays 5, Orioles 0: In Baltimore, the lost their 107th game, tied for most in a season since its arrival in 1954.
Toronto rookie Ryan Borucki (4-4) pitched eight innings of three-hit ball. The Blue Jays have won 13 of 17 games between the two bottom teams in the AL East.
Toronto stands 25 games better than the Orioles, whose 43-107 record is worst in the majors. The only other Orioles team with 107 defeats was the 1988 club, which started 0-21 on its way to a 54-107 finish.
The franchise record for losses is 111, by the 1939 St. Louis Browns. After going 54-100 in 1953, the Browns moved to Baltimore. The major league record is 120 losses, set by the expansion New York Mets in 1962.
Making his first major league start, Evan Phillips (0-1) retired the first five batters he faced before Kevin Pillar doubled, Rowdy Tellez hit an RBI single and Danny Jansen homered to left.
Mets 9, Phillies 4: In Philadelphia, Michael Conforto had a career-high six RBIs and finished a triple shy of the cycle, and Zack Wheeler pitched seven solid innings for his career-best 12th win for New York.
Conforto had a two-run single in the fifth, an RBI double in the seventh off Tommy Hunter (4-3) and a three-run homer in the ninth for the Mets, who have won 7 of 11 and are 26-17 over their last 43 games. Conforto has 75 RBIs, including 45 since the All-Star break, second most in the N.L. over that span behind Milwaukee’s Christian Yelich.
Wheeler (12-7) allowed four runs and three hits to become the first Mets pitcher since Steve Trachsel in 2001 to record nine wins after the All-Star break. Since the break, the right-hander is 9-1 with a 1.68 ERA in 11 starts.
Marlins 8, Nationals 5: In Miami, Washington reliever Wander Suero balked in a run while the Nationals blew a four-run lead.
Washington led 4-0 after 4 1/2 innings but trailed by the end of the sixth. Suero let in the go-ahead run, balking with pinch-hitter Rafael Ortega batting and Austin Dean at third base to put Miami ahead 5-4.
Washington tied it in the seventh when Trea Turner beat out a potential double play, but Miami loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning and Lewis Brinson hit a tiebreaking single off Koda Glover (1-3).
Jarlin Garcia (3-2) recorded the final out of the seventh. Adam Conley pitched the ninth for his third save.
Rays 3, Rangers 0: In Arlington, Texas, Tyler Glasnow allowed two infield singles in six innings for his first win since Tampa Bay traded Chris Archer to get the right-hander.
Ji-Man Choi homered and drove in two runs to help the Rays improve to a major league-best 21-5 since Aug. 19. Tampa Bay started the day seven games behind Oakland for the second American League wild card.
Adam Kolarek, Jose Alvarado and Sergio Romo pitched a scoreless inning apiece to wrap up the second two-hit shutout of the Rangers in a week. Romo got his 22nd save in 29 chances.
Glasnow (2-6) got his fourth career win in 26 starts over two seasons. He struck out six, walked two and hit a batter.
Adrian Sampson (0-2) gave up two runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings.
Twins 6, Tigers 1: In Detroit, Kohl Stewart pitched six solid innings and Eddie Rosario homered for Minnesota before leaving with an injury in a victory over Detroit.
Gabriel Moya pitched the opening inning for the Twins before Stewart (2-1) took over and worked through the seventh. He allowed an unearned run and three hits with five strikeouts.
Rosario hit a solo shot in the first, his 24th home run of the year. He left in the fourth after aggravating a right quad injury on the play that gave the Tigers their only run of the game.
Jorge Polanco added a solo homer of his own in the ninth.
Jordan Zimmermann (7-8) allowed five runs in 3 2/3 innings. Nicholas Castellanos had three hits and a walk for Detroit.
Pirates 7, Royals 6: In Pittsburgh, Pirates rookie Jacob Stallings hit a two-out RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning to rally Pittsburgh past Kansas City.
After Jordan Luplow grounded into a double play, Kevin Kramer walked and moved to second on Kevin Newman’s single. Stallings then singled off Ben Lively (0-3), scoring Kramer.
The Pirates scored twice with two outs in the eighth to tie it 6-all, including Starling Marte’s RBI triple.
Newman had three hits as the Pirates won for the ninth time in 12 games.
Edgar Santana (3-3) pitched a 1-2-3 ninth.
Ryan O’Hearn hit his 11th home run in 36 games for the Royals since making his debut July 31. He also had an RBI double.
Mariners 4, Astros 1: In Houston, rookie pinch-hitter Daniel Vogelbach’s first career grand slam with two outs in the eighth inning lifted Seattle over Houston.
The loss cut Houston’s lead in the A.L. West to four games over Oakland, which was off Monday night.
The Mariners trailed 1-0 when Nelson Cruz singled off Hector Rondon (2-5) with no outs in the eighth, and Kyle Seager singled with one out. Pinch-hitter Robinson Cano then hit a ball into shallow center field that looked like it would drop in for a hit, but Jake Marisnick sprinted before diving and extending his arm to make the catch.
Rondon walked pinch-hitter Denard Span to load bases before Vogelbach sent a 97-mph fastball into the bullpen in right-center.
Marwin Gonzalez had an RBI double to give the Astros the lead in the fourth. But they couldn’t muster much else on a night they managed just three hits, with the last one coming in the fifth.
Mariners starter Wade LeBlanc allowed three hits and one run in 5 1/3 innings. Ryan Cook (2-1) struck out one in a perfect seventh for the win, and Edwin Diaz pitched a scoreless ninth for his MLB-leading 56th save.
Cubs 5, Diamondbacks 1: In Phoenix, Kyle Hendricks took a one-hit shutout into the ninth inning and Chicago three-hit Arizona.
Hendricks (12-11) struck out eight and walked one. A.J. Pollock hit a leadoff homer against Hendricks in the ninth and Paul Goldschmidt added a two-out single before Justin Wilson relieved and closed things out.
Javier Baez homered in Chicago’s three-run sixth inning that broke open what had been a pitcher’s duel between Hendricks and Patrick Corbin (11-6).
Kris Bryant also homered, and the Cubs maintained their 2 1/2-game lead in the N.L. Central after second-place Milwaukee beat Cincinnati earlier Monday.
The Diamondbacks led the N.L. West when the month began but opened the day four games behind first-place Colorado. Arizona has lost 8 of 10 to fall five games out of the second wild card.
Giants 4, Padres 2: In San Diego, Brandon Crawford and Evan Longoria homered off Bryan Mitchell, and left-hander Andrew Suarez pitched into the eighth inning to lead San Francisco to a victory over San Diego.
Suarez (7-11) snapped a two-start losing streak by holding San Diego to two runs and four hits while striking out four and walking three in 7 2/3 innings. Will Smith pitched the ninth for his 13th save.
Rookie Chris Shaw had his first three-hit game for the Giants.
The Padres dropped to 60-91 to match last year’s loss total with 11 games to play. Ownership had expected the Padres to be better than the club that finished 71-91 last year, but San Diego has lost at least 91 games for the third straight season and the fourth time in eight years.
Dodgers 8, Rockies 2: In Los Angeles, Joc Pederson hit two homers, Max Muncy added a three-run shot and Los Angeles moved back into first place in the N.L. West with a victory over Colorado.
Dodgers starter Huyn-Jin Ryu pitched seven scoreless innings, throwing 93 pitches to match a season high. He struck out five and didn’t walk a batter as he lowered his ERA to 2.21 over seven starts since returning from a strained left groin.
The Rockies entered this showdown series with a half-game lead on Los Angeles, but the teams switched places as the Dodgers unleashed the high-powered offense that helped them win three of four last weekend in St. Louis.
It was a rough night all-around for the Rockies, who not only dropped out of first place in the division but fell a half-game behind the Cardinals for the second N.L. wild card. They also lost slugger Trevor Story in the fourth inning with an undisclosed injury. The All-Star shortstop was injured on a swing against Ryu.
Story was checked by manager Bud Black and a trainer before leaving the game. Already this season, Story has become the first shortstop in major league history with at least 40 doubles, 30 home runs and 25 steals.
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