The San Francisco Giants became the first team to clinch a playoff spot this season, hitting four home runs to beat the San Diego Padres 9-1 on Monday night for their season-high eighth consecutive victory.
The Giants have the best record in baseball (94-50) with 18 games remaining — nine of them against the Padres, who are trying to win an NL wild card.
Tommy La Stella connected on the fourth pitch from Padres starter Yu Darvish (8-10), and Evan Longoria hit a three-run shot five batters later. Mike Yastrzemski added a solo homer in the fourth when Brandon Belt also went deep as San Francisco secured a spot in the postseason for the first time since 2016.
Blue Jays 8, Rays 1: In Toronto, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit his major league-leading 45th home run, Alek Manoah set a career high by pitching eight shutout innings, and Toronto dealt AL East-leading Tampa Bay its fourth loss in five games.
Teoscar Hernández had his first career five-hit game, and Bo Bichette added a solo home run, his 24th, as the surging Blue Jays improved to 12-1 in September.
Manoah (6-2) allowed just one hit, walked none and struck out 10 in snapping a five-start winless streak.
Yankees 6, Twins 5: In New York, Aaron Judge hit a tying three-run homer off Alex Colomé with two outs in the eighth inning, Gary Sánchez lined a winning single in the 10th, and New York overcame a five-run deficit to beat Minnesota.
New York won for just the fourth time in 16 games and moved one percentage point ahead of Boston for the second AL wild-card berth, one game behind Toronto, with 18 games left.
DJ LeMahieu began the comeback with a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Joey Gallo hit his 33rd homer, his eighth with the Yankees, in the seventh. Judge added his 33rd homer.
Dodgers 5, Diamondbacks 1: In Los Angeles, Clayton Kershaw struck out five in his first start since July 3 as Los Angeles beat Arizona for its seventh straight home win.
Kershaw, who had missed 57 games with elbow inflammation, gave up four hits, walked one and didn’t figure in the decision after throwing 50 pitches over 4 1/3 innings.
Phil Bickford (4-2) got the win with one inning of scoreless relief.
The Dodgers took a 3-1 lead in the first on Corey Seager’s RBI single and Justin Turner’s two-run double into the left-field corner. Turner added a solo homer, his 25th, in the eighth. Austin Barnes doubled into the left-field corner in the sixth, extending the lead to 4-1.
Cardinals 7, Mets 0: In New York, Adam Wainwright won his fifth straight start in a rare matchup of 40-year-old pitchers, and St. Louis blanked New York.
Paul Goldschmidt homered and had two RBIs for the surging Cardinals, who began the day one game behind Cincinnati and San Diego for the second NL wild card.
The 40-year-old Wainwright (16-7) allowed four hits in six innings with three walks and four strikeouts in a matchup against 41-year-old New York starter Rich Hill (6-7), who allowed three runs on six hits and two walks with four strikeouts in five innings.
Astros 15, Rangers 1: In Arlington, Texas, Jose Siri homered twice and added a two-run single in his first big league start, Yordan Alvarez hit two 400-foot homers and AL West-leading Houston overwhelmed last-place Texas.
Siri finished 4 for 5 with five RBIs while scoring three times for the Astros (84-59). Alex Bregman added a two-run homer, while Carlos Correa and Jose Altuve had two-run doubles.
Houston starter Jake Odorizzi left with right foot soreness after coming off the mound and running to cover first base for the first out of the second inning.
Mariners 5, Red Sox 4: In Seattle, Mitch Haniger made Boston pay for a costly error by first baseman Kyle Schwarber, hitting a three-run home run with two out in the seventh inning for Seattle.
Reliever Ryan Brasier (0-1) took the loss for the Red Sox, who have allowed 33 unearned runs since the All-Star break, most in the American League.
Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers hit back-to-back homers with two outs in the eighth for Boston.
Marlins 3, Nationals 0: In Washington, Sandy Alcantara allowed one hit over eight innings for Miami.
With two outs in the seventh, Josh Bell lined a single off the base of the right-field fence to end Alcantara’s no-hit bid. The right-hander then retired his next four batters, leaving with seven strikeouts and no walks after throwing 96 pitches.
Jesus Sanchez had a first-inning RBI single and Alex Jackson doubled home two runs in the ninth. Dylan Floro worked a one-hit ninth for his 11th save.
Alcantara (9-13) was perfect through five innings before Keibert Ruiz reached on second baseman Jazz Chisholm Jr.’s error to open the sixth.