Bogaerts helps Red Sox to gritty win, Granderson stars in extras for Mets

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The Boston Red Sox cemented their grip on first place in the AL East with a gritty 6-5 win over the New York Yankees on Saturday.

Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts racked up three hits, with three runs scored, a home run and three RBIs in a monster effort to propel Boston to victory.

With the Toronto Blue Jays losing 6-1 to the Los Angeles Angels and the Baltimore Orioles going down 5-2 to the Tampa Bay Rays, the Red Sox now lead the East by three games. The Yankees are seven games adrift.

Curtis Granderson was the hero for the New York Mets, homering to tie and win the game in a 12-inning 3-2 victory over the Minnesota Twins.

The Mets remain tied at the top with the San Francisco Giants in the National League wildcard race, San Francisco seeing closer Santiago Casilla blow another save in a 3-2 defeat to the St. Louis Cardinals.

A 6-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks saw the Los Angeles Dodgers go five games ahead of the Giants in the NL West, while Jon Gray threw a complete-game shutout as the Colorado Rockies blanked the San Diego Padres 8-0.

The Pittsburgh Pirates claimed 10-4 and 7-3 victories in a double-header with the Cincinnati Reds and the Cleveland Indians lost Carlos Carrasco for the year with a fractured hand in a 1-0 win over the Detroit Tigers.

There were emphatic wins for the Oakland Athletics, who crushed the Texas Rangers 11-2, and the Milwaukee Brewers - 11-3 victors over the Chicago Cubs, and the Philadelphia Philles shutout the Miami Marlins 8-0.

Defending World Series champions the Kansas City Royals edged the Chicago White Sox 3-2, the Houston Astros beat the Seattle Mariners 2-1 and the Atlanta Braves earned a 7-3 triumph over the Washington Nationals.

 

BOGAERTS THE DIFFERENCE IN THRILLER

The Red Sox are starting to look like serious World Series contenders, showing that they have what it takes to win hard-fought games as they held off the Yankees.

Ace David Price gave up five earned runs off of nine hits in six innings, but he struck out seven batters and has been much better during the second half of the season.

Bogaerts was the star of the night for the Red Sox but, after tying the game with an RBI single, it was Mookie Betts who scored the winning run, reaching home on a wild pitch by Adam Warren.

 

GRAND FINISH FOR THE METS

While there was disappointment for the Yankees, the Mets were on the end of a favourable dramatic finish at Citi Field.

Outfielder Granderson showed off his power with the Mets trailing the Twins 2-1 in the 11th with an opposite field home run to knot things up.

And he followed up that effort with the winning blast in the very next inning, smacking his second homer to right field to seal a walk-off win.

 

CASILLA CRUMPLES UNDER THE PRESSURE

Giants fans were right to be nervous when Casilla came into the game leading the Cardinals 2-1.

Casilla, who was booed by some fans on his way to the mound at AT&T Park, had eight blown saves this season going into the contest.

And he promptly made it nine as the Cardinals rallied in the final inning. Casilla walked Yadier Molina, with Randal Grichuk then hitting a tying single.

The comeback was then completed when Molina's pinch-runner, Jose Martinez, scored on a sacrifice fly from Kolten Wong.

 

INDIANS AIM TO COMPLETE SWEEP

After breaking an MLB record by using nine different pitchers in Saturday's shutout, the Indians will attempt the sweep the Tigers. Cleveland's Trevor Bauer (11-7, 4.06 ERA) will face off against surging rookie Daniel Norris (2-2, 3.81 ERA).