Toronto claimed a series win over the New York Yankees with a 14-8 margin in American League East.
Hill drives Toronto to victory
Toronto claimed a series win over the New York Yankees with a 14-8 margin in American League East. The Blue Jays answered every Yankees rally with one of their own, including an eight-run outburst in the fifth inning which saw them to victory. Aaron Hill doubled twice, driving in three runs and scoring the same at Rogers Centre. However, the Canadians are a lowly seventh in the wild card race in which Boston extended their lead after a 6-1 victory over Chicago White Sox.
Jon Lester became the 10th pitcher in club history to reach the 200-strikeout mark with eight punch-outs as Boston also got homers from Mike Lowell and Victor Martinez. Central league leaders Detroit Tigers completed a series sweep against Tampa Bay, with a 5-3 win which saw them extend their lead to a season-high seven games. Tampa are third in the wild card race behind Boston and Texas, who were beaten 7-0 by Baltimore - the bottom side taking the final two games of the series.
Minnesota are still second in Central, despite a 3-1 defeat by Cleveland, while bottom side Kansas went down 7-2 to West leaders Los Angeles - who swept the series. Seattle are still fourth in the wild card race despite a second successive defeat against Oakland by 5-2. Despite their loss, it was a big day for Ichiro Suzuki - who became the second-fastest Major Leaguer to reach 2,000 hits.
In the National League, Houston inflicted a series sweep on leaders Philadelphia with a 4-3 victory. The match saw Bud Norris bounce back after below-average form, giving up just two runs in six innings. Basement side Washington edged Florida 5-4 to halt an eight-match losing streak, after Ryan Zimmerman hit a two-run homer in the ninth. It meant Florida lost ground in the wild card race in third.
Cincinnati completed a series win over Atlanta by 4-2 as the Reds extended their winning streak to seven games. Central leaders St Louis went down 6-5 to Pittsburgh, while San Francisco remain second in the wild card standings despite a 2-1 defeat by Milwaukee. Basement side San Diego inflicted a shock 4-3 defeat on West leaders Los Angeles, while Colorado hold a two-game lead in the wild card standings after a 13-5 win over Arizona.
Seth Smith recorded his first two-homer game and equalled his career best with five RBIs - while Ian Stewart and Carlos Gonzalez also went deep. * PA Sport