x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

MLB: Orioles claim victory after 18-inning epic in Seattle

Baltimore ran out 4-2 winners after a near six-hour encounter with the Seattle Mariners to move level at the top of the American League East.

Baltimore's Taylor Teagarden hits a single in the 18th inning against Seattle
Baltimore's Taylor Teagarden hits a single in the 18th inning against Seattle

The Baltimore Orioles moved level with the New York Yankees at the top of the American League East - but only after an epic 18-inning battle with the Seattle Mariners.

With the Yankees' game in Toronto rained out, Baltimore took full advantage with a 4-2 win, but they needed five hours 44 minutes to do it.

Nate McLouth opened the 18th with a walk off Lucas Luetge (2-2). With McLouth breaking toward second, J.J. Hardy sent a single through the right-side hole. McLouth continued onto third.

Teagarden then lifted his game-winner down the right-field line. Hardy later scored on Mark Reynolds' fielder's choice.

The long-awaited return of starting pitcher Andy Pettitte to the Yankees' rotation was put on hold for a day as their match against the Toronto Blue Jays was called off due to weather conditions last night.

Pettitte, out since June 27 with a fractured ankle, will instead pitch the opener of their day-night double header today.

The weather put paid to plans for the 40-year-old to make four starts before the postseason to build up strength and get his bearings.

"Four starts? This pretty much eliminates that," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said with a shrug. "What are you going to do?"

Pettitte, who has won five World Series rings with the Yankees and tops the major league list for postseason wins with 19, has a 3-3 record with a 3.22 earned run average this season after coming out of a one-year retirement to return to baseball.

The Tampa Bay Rays saw their play-off hopes dealt a blow as they lost 7-5 to the Boston Red Sox.

Felix Doubront limited Tampa Bay's sputtering offence to one hit over six innings.

Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia, James Loney, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Ryan Lavarnway drove in runs for the Red Sox, who beat their AL East rivals for the second straight night.

Defeat extended Tampa Bay's losing streak to four games and dropped the third-placed Rays six games behind the Yankees and Orioles.

The Detroit Tigers remain three games behind leaders Chicago White Sox in the AL Central after a 12-2 rout of the Oakland Athletics.

Miguel Cabrera homered twice, including an eighth-inning grand slam, as the Tigers overcame an early injury to right-hander Max Scherzer.

Cabrera matched a career high with six RBIs and now has 40 homers on the season which is also a career best.

Prince Fielder and Jhonny Peralta added home runs for the Tigers.

Scherzer left after two innings because of a fatigued throwing shoulder but a scan revealed no structural damage.

The White Sox retained their lead with a fifth consecutive win in a 3-2 success over the Kansas City Royals.

Gavin Floyd pitched seven good innings and Alex Rios hit a tiebreaking homer in the seventh.

Alejandro De Aza and Gordon Beckham also went deep for Chicago.

The Minnesota Twins tied the Cleveland Indians for fourth spot in the AL Central with a 6-5 win over 12 innings.

Darin Mastroianni scored the go-ahead run from second base on an infield hit in a two-run 12th inning.

Mastroianni singled with two outs and stole second off Scott Maine, a team-record 10th pitcher used by Cleveland.

The Los Angeles Angels defeated Texas 11-3, while the Milwaukee Brewers continued their forward progress in the National League with a 6-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Yovani Gallardo gave up just two hits over more than six innings, striking out six and walking four as the Brewers moved ahead of the Pirates in the wild card race.

Ryan Braun had two hits, drove in a run and stole three bases for the Brewers, who have won six of seven.

Carlos Gomez and Jonathan Lucroy had three hits apiece for the Brewers.

AJ Burnett gave up two runs in six innings but could not stop Pittsburgh's late season drop in form as they went 4-12 this month.

The Atlanta Braves saw their four-game winning streak come to an end as the Miami Marlins won 4-3.

Jose Reyes hit a two-out RBI single in the 10th inning after the home side had overcome an awful ninth.

Atlanta lost to Miami for only the fourth time in 14 meetings despite rallying from a 3-0 deficit in the ninth to tie the game.

Cincinnati moved closer to the Central title with a 3-1 win over the Chicago Cubs.

For the Reds Homer Bailey pitched well into the eighth inning and Ryan Hanigan hit a three-run double.

Dusty Baker managed his 3,000th major league game as Cincinnati reduced its magic number to win the title to four games.

The St Louis Cardinals were 4-1 winners over Houston, Arizona beat San Diego 3-2 and San Francisco defeated Colorado 6-3.

The games between Philadelphia and the New York Mets, and between the Washington Nationals and Los Angeles Dodgers, were also rained out.