The Los Angeles Dodgers extended their winning run as the Cleveland Indians' streak came to an end in MLB.
Since the Indians began their record-setting 22-game streak on August 24, the best team in the National League (NL) began a puzzling swoon.
The Dodgers lost 11 straight, and 17 of 18, before finally getting back on track as ace Clayton Kershaw returned to the mound to end the losing skid on Tuesday. That victory has been followed by two more, including Friday's 7-0 shut-out win over the Washington Nationals.
The Dodgers (95-52) were once considered challengers to the MLB record of 116 wins in a season, but are still on pace to win more than 100 games.
Alex Wood went six strong for the Dodgers, striking out eight Nationals batters to improve his record to 15-3. The Dodgers now have a magic number of six to clinch the NL West and gained a game on the team chasing them for the NL's top seed.
The Dodgers have a six-game lead over the Nationals (89-58) in the NL. They are also four-and-a-half games clear of the Indians for the best record in baseball after Cleveland saw their 22-game win streak end with a 4-3 loss to the Kansas City Royals.
Chicago Cubs 8-2 St Louis Cardinals
New York Yankees 8-2 Baltimore Orioles
Cincinnati Reds 4-2 Pittsburgh Pirates
Tampa Bay Rays 6-13 Boston Red Sox
Atlanta Braves 3-2 New York Mets
Miami Marlins 2-10 Milwaukee Brewers
Colorado Rockies 6-1 San Diego Padres
San Francisco Giants 2-3 Arizona Diamondbacks
Philadelphia Phillies 0-4 Oakland Athletics
Washington Nationals 0-7 Los Angeles Dodgers
Cleveland Indians 3-4 Kansas City Royals
Detroit Tigers 3-2 Chicago White Sox
Minnesota Twins 3-4 Toronto Blue Jays
Houston Astros 5-2 Seattle Mariners
Los Angeles Angels 7-6 Texas Rangers
COZART WITH ANOTHER PAIR OF HOMERS
Reds shortstop Zack Cozart added to his career year with two more home runs on a two-for-five night. Cozart now has 22 homers on the season and is hitting a career-best .302.
No one out-pitched Athletics starter Daniel Mengden on Friday. Acquired from the Astros for Scott Kazmir in 2015, the Texas A&M alumnus tossed a complete game, two-hit shutout with seven strikeouts against the Phillies. He struck out seven without a walk in just his third start of the season.
Carlos Martinez was having a great day until John Lackey went ballistic on the home plate umpire. Unfortunately for Martinez, that tirade woke up the Cubs' bats and a seven-run sixth inning brought Martinez's day to an end. He finished with 5.3 innings, with six hits, three walks and seven earned runs allowed.
SOGARD SAVES JEFFRESS
Brewers starter Jeremy Jeffress owes Eric Sogard a big steak after the infielder bailed him out with two outs in the second inning of Milwaukee's win over the Marlins.
Sogard? So good. pic.twitter.com/IEhlnzIKx7-- MLB (@MLB) September 16, 2017
RANGERS AT ANGELS
Time is running out for the Rangers and the Angels to catch the Twins or the Yankees for a wildcard spot and the two teams play each other again on Saturday. It's not a bad pitching matchup either. Cole Hamels (10-3, 4.05 ERA) takes on the best rookie pitcher you have never heard of in Parker Bridwell (7-2, 3.94 ERA).