Astros rout Rangers, secure home-field advantage in ALDS as Red Sox fall
The Houston Astros clinched home-field advantage in the American League (AL) Division Series with a 14-3 win over the Texas Rangers, paired with a Boston Red Sox loss.
Houston also moved within one game of the Indians for the best record in the AL, although Cleveland own the tiebreaker with five games to play.
Every Astros starting position player recorded a hit in the rout of Cole Hamels and the Rangers. Alex Bregman and Carlos Correa led the way with three hits apiece and combined for five RBIs. Brian McCann and Cameron Maybin each added three RBIs for the Astros, who matched a club record with their 49th road win of the season.
All of the attention in Houston has been on newly acquired starting pitcher Justin Verlander and rightfully so. The former Tiger has gone 4-0 in his month with the Astros and got the team back on track after their worst month of the season in August.
However, as good as Verlander has been, 2015 AL Cy Young Award winner Dallas Keuchel has gradually been coming back into form. The former eighth-round pick tossed six innings, allowed five hits, one earned run and struck out eight Tuesday in the Astros' 97th win of the season.
Baltimore Orioles 1-10 Pittsburgh Pirates
Tampa Bay Rays 1-6 New York Yankees
Washington Nationals 1-4 Philadelphia Phillies
Atlanta Braves 3-4 New York Mets
Minnesota Twins 8-6 Cleveland Indians
Toronto Blue Jays 9-4 Boston Red Sox
Cincinnati Reds 6-7 Milwaukee Brewers
Houston Astros 14-3 Texas Rangers
Los Angeles Angels 9-3 Chicago White Sox
Chicago Cubs 7-8 St Louis Cardinals
Detroit Tigers 1-2 Kansas City Royals
Miami Marlins 0-6 Colorado Rockies
San Francisco Giants 4-11 Arizona Diamondbacks
Seattle Mariners 6-3 Oakland Athletics
San Diego Padres 2-9 Los Angeles Dodgers
The Twins came back to defeat the Indians in dramatic fashion as Brian Dozier's three-run homer in the eighth inning led Minnesota to an 8-6 victory. The win moves the Twins' magic number to one to lock up the second AL wildcard spot.
Boston got no help in fending off the Yankees, who are still vying for the AL East title. The Rays fell to New York 6-1 but Tampa starter Blake Snell could not even get out of the second inning. The young lefty tossed one-plus, allowed four hits, four earned runs and four walks while throwing less than half of his pitches (24 of 49) for strikes.
The Yankees' Aaron Hicks robbed Wilson Ramos of a grand slam with an amazing catch.
TWINS AT INDIANS
The Twins (83-74) can lock up a play-off spot with a win (or an Angels loss) Wednesday while the Indians (98-59) will do their best to hold off the surging Astros, who have Verlander on the mound in their matchup with the Rangers. Danny Salazar (5-6, 4.48 ERA) toes the rubber for the Tribe against the Twins' Adalberto Mejia (4-6, 4.48 ERA).