Upton, Cabrera help Tigers keep pace in wildcard race

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Justin Upton and Miguel Cabrera helped the Detroit Tigers keep pace with the Baltimore Orioles in the American League playoff race with a 5-3 extra-inning win over the Chicago White Sox in MLB on Monday.

Cabrera made noise early with two home runs in the first three innings, finishing the game with four hits in all. He now has 43 four-hit games and 38 multi-homer games in his illustrious career. 

After playing nine innings deadlocked at two runs apiece, the division rivals went into extra innings to take care of business. The 10th inning went scoreless, but Tigers slugger Upton broke the game wide open in the top of the 11th inning when he sent a towering moonshot into the seats for a three-run home run. The White Sox answered with a run in the bottom of the inning, but it was not enough to extend the game.

Upton's blast came at the perfect time after the Baltimore Orioles had already won earlier in the afternoon - 7-3 against the Tampa Bay Rays. The two teams entered the day tied for the final AL wildcard spot.

Meanwhile, the high-flying Toronto Blue Jays, Cleveland Indians and Texas Rangers all lost.

The Blue Jays went down 5-3 to the New York Yankees, the Indians fell 6-2 against the Houston Astros and the Rangers were no match for the Seattle Mariners 14-6.

Reigning World Series champions the Kansas City Royals trumped the Minnesota Twins 11-5, the Washington Nationals were too good for the Atlanta Braves 6-4, the Colorado Rockies blanked the San Francisco Giants 6-0, the Boston Red Sox were beaten 2-1 by the San Diego Padres and the Chicago Cubs saw off the Milwaukee Brewers 7-2.

The Los Angeles Dodgers crushed the Arizona Diamondbacks 10-2, the St Louis Cardinals eased past the Pittsburgh Pirates 12-6, the New York Mets shut out the Cincinnati Reds 5-0, the Los Angeles Angels defeated the Oakland Athletics 10-7, while the Philadelphia Phillies outlasted the Miami Marlins 6-2.

 

DOZIER HOMERS AGAIN

Twins second baseman Brian Dozier will not stop hitting home runs. This time, he belted three over the fence in the loss to the Royals. Dozier has now hit eight home runs in his last seven games while driving in 13 runs. 

After his first-career three-home run game, Dozier has 10 home runs in 13 games against Kansas City this season, which is the most by a player in a single season against the Royals.

 

HOME RUN? THINK AGAIN MAYBIN!

White Sox star Melky Cabrera slammed into the wall to rob Cameron Maybin of a home run.

 

CY YOUNG CONTENDERS WIN, BETTIS LEADS ROCKIES

Leading contenders for the National league (NL) Cy Young award earned Labor Day wins. Kyle Hendricks led the Cubs to victory over the Brewers, allowing just one run with six strikeouts in six innings. Hendricks is now 14-7 with an MLB-leading 2.07 ERA. Max Scherzer then led the Nationals past the Braves by giving up two runs with five strikeouts in seven innings. He is now 16-7 with a 2.88 ERA.

Chad Bettis became just the second pitcher in Rockies history to throw a shutout while allowing two hits or fewer at Coors Field (Jeff Francis against the Cardinals in 2006) in a six-run win over the Giants. Carlos Gonzalez led the team offensively with a grand slam in the third inning.

 

BLUE JAYS BIDDING TO STAY TOP OF AL EAST

Aaron Sanchez (13-2, 2.88) will take the mound for Toronto on Tuesday to face off against Luis Cessa (4-0, 4.17 ERA) in an attempt to stay ahead in the AL East.

Meanwhile, the Giants have been cold at the plate lately, so Jeff Samardzija (11-9, 4.06 ERA) will have to bring his best stuff against Tyler Anderson (5-5, 3.43 ERA) and the vaunted Rockies lineup.