The Minnesota Twins closed to within two games of the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central title race following a 9-4 defeat of the Kansas City Royals. The Tigers, meanwhile, lost 2-0 to the Chicago White Sox. The Twins scored four runs on just one hit in the fifth. Robinson Tejeda had kept the Twins hitless until the fourth but then issued four walks in the fifth as Minnesota scored four times. Billy Butler hit two homers while driving in four for the Royals.
Roy Halladay shut out the Seattle Mariners on seven hits as the Toronto Blue Jays won 5-0. For the Blue Jays, Aaron Hill hit a two-run homer in the sixth and Jose Bautista a two-run single in the seventh. The Cleveland Indians beat the Baltimore Orioles 4-2 as Fausto Carmona pitched six effective innings. David Hernandez had been cruising for the Orioles until the fifth inning when a home run from Luis Valbuena, a Lou Marson RBI double and a run scored on an error proved decisive.
Five solid innings from the starter Derek Holland set the Texas Rangers on their way to an 8-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays. Marlon Byrd hit a two-run double in the first inning, Chris Davis added his 20th home run of the season and Ian Kinsler had a three-run homer to reach the 30-homer, 30-steals milestone. The Oakland Athletics won 3-0 against the Los Angeles Angels.
The St Louis Cardinals remained one win away from securing a play-off spot in the National League Central after they lost 2-1 to the Colorado Rockies. Chris Carpenter kept the Rockies to just one run over his seven innings. Early mistakes cost the Los Angeles Dodgers as they gave up three unearned runs and missed the chance to clinch a play-off spot as the Pittsburgh Pirates ended a six-game losing streak to win 3-1.
The New York Mets beat the Florida Marlins 6-5 after trailing by one run going into the ninth as Daniel Murphy and Jeff Francoeur singled and Cory Sullivan came off the bench to send them home. Joey Votto drove in four as the Cincinnati Reds handed the Houston Astros a 10-4 defeat, their 11th loss in 12 games. Cliff Lee had an off day as he allowed seven runs in six innings as the Philadelphia Phillies lost 8-4 to the Milwaukee Brewers.
Javier Vazquez and the Atlanta Braves both made it four straight wins with a 4-1 defeat of the Washington Nationals. San Diego Padres won 4-0 against Arizona Diamondbacks and the Chicago Cubs defeated the San Francisco Giants 3-0. * PA Sport