Jose Abreu drilled a go-ahead, bases-clearing double in the fourth inning and James McCann and Yoan Moncada homered to lift the host Chicago White Sox past the Chicago Cubs 9-5 on Saturday to snap a six-game losing streak.
Despite suffering their sixth loss in seven games, the Cubs clinched the National League Central when the St. Louis Cardinals lost earlier in the night. It's the Cubs' third division title in the past five seasons and first since 2017.
The White Sox still could join the Cubs as division champs. The White Sox remained one game behind the American League Central-leading Minnesota Twins entering Sunday's regular-season finale and are one game ahead of the third-place Cleveland Indians. Chicago owns the tiebreaker on Minnesota, but Cleveland holds the tiebreaker on Chicago.
Moncada, Abreu, McCann and Nick Madrigal had two hits apiece for the White Sox, with Abreu and Moncada both driving in three runs. The White Sox outhit the Cubs 10-5. Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant went 2-for-4 with four RBIs, smacking a third-inning grand slam that gave Chicago a 5-2 lead.
Brewers 3, Cardinals 0
Brandon Woodruff allowed just two hits in eight innings to lead Milwaukee past host St. Louis to keep its playoff hopes alive.
These teams split the first four games of their five-game NL Central showdown heading into Sunday's critical game. The loss prevented the Cardinals from clinching a berth in the National League postseason bracket.
Woodruff (3-5) only allowed singles by Kolten Wong in the first inning and Yadier Molina in the second. He struck out 10 batters overall and retired 19 consecutive batters after Molina's hit. Josh Hader pitched the ninth to earn his 13th save. Losing pitcher Adam Wainwright (5-3) allowed three runs on eight hits in 6 2/3 innings.
Pirates 8, Indians 0
Rookie Ke'Bryan Hayes went 5-for-5 with three doubles and Colin Moran homered and drove in four runs to lift Pittsburgh to a romp over host Cleveland, which was eliminated from the American League Central race and will settle for a wild-card berth.
Bryan Reynolds belted a two-run homer and Jose Osuna also went deep as Pittsburgh banged out 13 hits en route to just its sixth road win of the season, tying Texas for the fewest road wins in the majors.
Joe Musgrove (1-5) followed up a career-high 11 strikeouts by fanning 10 and scattering three hits over seven innings for the Pirates, who have won four of their last five games overall. The Indians mustered just five hits to see their six-game winning streak come to a halt.
Rays 4, Phillies 3
Top-seeded Tampa Bay used a three-run fifth inning to win another close one, beating Philadelphia in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Just before the start of the second meeting, the Seattle Mariners beat the Oakland A's 5-1 to give the Rays the No. 1 overall seed in the expanded eight-team American League playoffs -- facing either Toronto or the New York Yankees.
The win improved the Rays' MLB-best record in one-run games to 14-5 -- 6-2 in September -- and marked their 20th comeback victory.
Yankees 10, Marlins 4
DJ LeMahieu had four hits and drove in three runs to inch closer to securing the American League batting title as New York overcame a three-run deficit to beat visiting Miami.
LeMahieu had a two-run double in the sixth and an RBI single in the seventh. The second baseman's fourth four-hit game of the season raised his batting average to .359, giving him a 31-point lead in the batting race on Chicago's Tim Anderson (.328), who went 0-for-5 in a 9-5 loss to the Cubs later Saturday.
The last Yankee to win a batting title was Bernie Williams in 1998. Luke Voit capped New York's seven-run sixth with a three-run home run. It was his major league-leading 22nd homer. Tyler Wade and Aaron Hicks hit two-run homers for the Yankees, who had lost five of their previous six games and were homerless in five straight games for the first time since 2014.
Twins 7, Reds 3
Luis Arraez went 4-for-4 with three doubles and three RBIs as Minnesota secured home field advantage for the Wild Card Series with a victory over Cincinnati in Minneapolis.
Max Kepler had two doubles and scored three times, Eddie Rosario also doubled and drove in two runs for Minnesota, which improved to a major league best 24-6 at home while bashing eight doubles, one off the team's single-game record.
The Twins can clinch their second consecutive American League Central title with a victory in Sunday's finale or a loss by the Chicago White Sox. Tyler Clippard (2-1) picked up the win with a scoreless inning of relief.
Nationals 4, Mets 3 (Game 1)
Josh Harrison's sixth-inning RBI snapped a tie as host Washington eliminated New York from playoff contention by coming back to earn a win in the opener of a doubleheader.
The defending World Series champion Nationals kept alive their hopes of not finishing alone in last place in the NL East. The Mets, who needed to sweep the remainder of the four-game series and get plenty of help to earn a wild-card berth, missed the playoffs for the fourth straight season.
The rally made a winner of Max Scherzer (5-4), who bested Jacob deGrom in a battle of Cy Young Award winners. Scherzer, who won the AL Cy Young in 2013 and the NL Cy Young in 2016 and 2017, allowed three runs on six hits and two walks while striking out seven over six innings.
Nationals 5, Mets 3 (Game 2)
Trea Turner's one-out solo homer sparked a five-run third inning for Washington, which completed a doubleheader sweep of visiting New York as Anibal Sanchez (4-5) earned the win by tossing 5 1/3 solid innings.
The sweep means the defending World Series champion Nationals can still technically escape the NL East basement with a win in Sunday's season finale. The Mets are one game ahead but if the two teams finish the season tied, Washington would earn fourth place by virtue of its 6-4 series win over New York.
Josh Harrison contributed to the pivotal rally, when the Nationals sent 10 batters to the plate in the third inning against Rick Porcello (1-7).
Red Sox 8, Braves 2
Christian Vazquez belted a grand slam in an eight-run second inning and Tanner Houck struck out a career-high 10 in six innings to lead Boston to a blowout win over host Atlanta.
Vazquez went 3-for-5 with his second career slam while Bobby Dalbec smacked a two-run homer for Boston. Houck (3-0) gave up one run, three hits and three walks as he has won all three of his major league starts. He has given up two runs (one earned) and six hits while striking out 21 in 17 innings.
Dansby Swanson went 2-for-4 with a homer for the Braves, who had just six hits. Atlanta is the No. 2 seed for the National League playoffs.
Mariners 5, A's 1 (Game 1 / 8 innings)
J.P. Crawford singled home the go-ahead run to ignite a four-run, eighth inning as Seattle defeated Oakland in the opening game of a doubleheader.
Crawford's single snapped a 1-1 tie, and was followed by Ty France's RBI single and a two-run homer from Kyle Seager. Mariners reliever Kendall Graveman (1-3) worked the final two innings to get the win against his former team.
Khris Davis had a sacrifice fly in the fourth for Oakland. Liam Hendriks (3-1) took the loss for the A's, who finished with six hits.
Mariners 12, Athletics 3 (Game 2)
Dee Strange-Gordon's two-run single was the key hit in an eight-run third inning as "host" Seattle completed a doubleheader sweep of Oakland at the Coliseum in Northern California.
Kyle Seager, Evan White and Tim Lopes homered for the Mariners, who were considered the home team in the nightcap because a three-game series between the teams scheduled for Sept. 1-3 in Seattle was postponed because of a positive COVID-19 test in the A's organization. The first two games of that series were made up in a Sept. 14 twin bill in Seattle.
Mariners rookie right-hander Justin Dunn (4-1) went five innings and allowed three runs on six hits. A's right-hander Paul Blackburn (0-1), making his first major league appearance of the season, lasted just 2 1/3 innings. He allowed seven runs on five hits.
Blue Jays 5, Orioles 2
Randal Grichuk hit a three-run home run, Cavan Biggio had a solo shot and Toronto continued its dominance over visiting Baltimore.
Grichuk, who entered the game in the sixth inning, has 12 homers this season, seven against the Orioles. The Blue Jays lead the season series with the Orioles 8-1.
Blue Jays starter T.J. Zeuch allowed no runs and five hits in five innings before giving way to Chase Anderson (1-2), who allowed one hit and struck out four in two innings. Anthony Bass pitched a perfect 1 1/3 innings for his seventh save.
Rangers 6, Astros 1
Jeff Mathis and Leody Taveras smacked back-to-back home runs in the seventh inning while Kyle Gibson produced his second scoreless outing against Houston as Texas rolled at Arlington, Texas.
Mathis followed a leadoff single from Anderson Tejada and a four-pitch walk by Ronald Guzman with his third home run this season.
Mathis chased Astros rookie right-hander Brandon Bielak (3-3) before Taveras greeted another rookie right-hander, Andre Scrubb, with his 403-foot shot to right-center on the first pitch.
Tigers 4, Royals 3
Austin Romine's two-run double keyed a three-run first inning as Detroit defeated host Kansas City, snapping a five-game losing streak.
Neither team scored after the third inning. Matthew Boyd (3-7) battled through six innings to earn the win. He allowed three runs on five hits. Two of his three wins in 2020 came against the Royals, and the Tigers won all three of his starts against Kansas City.
Bryan Garcia picked up his fourth save in six chances. Carlos Hernandez (0-1) suffered his first career loss for Kansas City. He allowed four runs (three earned) on seven hits in 1 2/3 innings.
Rockies 10, Diamondbacks 3
Elias Diaz homered and finished with three hits, Ryan McMahon also went deep, and Colorado hammered host Arizona in Phoenix.
German Marquez tossed seven solid innings, Raimel Tapia had three hits and Trevor Story two for Colorado. Marquez (4-6) allowed three runs on five hits and struck out seven with a walk.
Jon Jay and Daulton Varsho had two hits apiece for Arizona. Diamondbacks starter Luke Weaver (1-9) left after allowing five runs -- four earned -- on seven hits and striking out six in five innings.
--Field Level Media