- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 4, 2016

PITTSBURGH (AP) - Ben Zobrist hit a three-run homer, Anthony Rizzo also connected and Jon Lester worked out of a pair of jams to lead the Chicago Cubs over the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-2 Wednesday for a three-game sweep.

Zobrist’s third-inning homer put Chicago ahead after center fielder Andrew McCutchen dropped Rizzo’s two-out liner for an error. Lester (3-1) scattered eight hits in 5 2/3 scoreless innings, struck out five and walked two.

With its seventh win in eight games, Chicago improved to a major league-best 20-6. The Cubs have won seven straight road games and completed their first sweep in Pittsburgh since Sept. 7-9, 2012. They lead second-place Pittsburgh by six games in the NL Central.

Juan Nicasio (3-3) allowed four runs - one earned - eight hits and three walks in 4 1/3 innings.


CHICAGO (AP) - David Ortiz hit his 509th home run to put Boston ahead to stay.

Ortiz’s two-run shot to right field off Carlos Rodon (1-4) in the fifth inning tied him with Gary Sheffield for 25th all-time. It was his sixth homer of the season and 451st with Boston, one off Carl Yastrzemski’s club mark.

Embattled Clay Buchholz (1-3) was sharp over seven innings in Boston’s fourth win in five games.


ST. LOUIS (AP) - Matt Holliday’s RBI single with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning gave St. Louis a victory.

St. Louis loaded the bases with one out in the ninth inning against Phillies closer Jeanmar Gomez (2-1). Stephen Piscotty delivered an RBI infield single to tie the game. Holliday then smacked a single through the left side of the infield to drive in plate the winning run.

Cardinals starter Mike Leake, the team’s big free agent addition in the offseason, entered the game with an 0-3 record and 5.83 ERA, He allowed four runs and four hits in five innings.

Kevin Siegrist (4-0) pitched a scoreless top of the ninth for the win.


HOUSTON (AP) - Jason Castro homered and drove in four runs, and Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa both homered and knocked in three as Houston won consecutive games for the first time this season.

The Astros built a 6-0 lead after two innings and didn’t let up in setting a season high for runs. Altuve hit his fifth leadoff homer this year, Castro connected for the second straight game with his two-run shot in the third, and Correa’s first home run since April 6 came in the fourth.

Minnesota right-hander Phil Hughes (1-5) allowed six hits and a season-high six runs in two innings.

Reliever Scott Feldman (1-2) pitched two scoreless innings for the win.


NEW YORK (AP) - Steven Matz (4-1) allowed two hits over 7 2/3 innings, Lucas Duda hit two of the Mets’ four home runs and New York extended its streak of winning series to six for the first time since August and September 2006.

Matz (4-1) struck out eight and walked none. He has a 0.67 ERA over his last four outings.

Jhoulys Chacin (1-2) gave up eight runs, seven hits and four walks in 4 2/3 innings.


BALTIMORE (AP) - CC Sabathia pitched seven sharp innings, Brian McCann drove in three runs and New York ended its six-game losing streak.

Playing in his 1,000th major league game, Jacoby Ellsbury went 3 for 3 with two walks to help the Yankees improve to 9-16 and avoid their worst skid since April 2007.

Sabathia (2-2) turned in his best performance of the season at a time when New York desperately needed a victory. The lefty allowed six hits, walked two and struck out six.

He outpitched Tyler Wilson (1-1), who took a one-hitter into the sixth before the light-hitting Yankees took a 3-0 lead.


CLEVELAND (AP) - Corey Kluber pitched a five-hit shutout and Cleveland used a four-run fourth inning to defeat Detroit for the fifth straight time this season.

Kluber (2-3) worked out of jams in the second and fourth to beat Detroit for the second time in two weeks. The right-hander, who won the AL Cy Young Award in 2014, struck out seven and walked two in his second career shutout and eighth complete game.

Anibal Sanchez (3-3) didn’t allow a hit through three innings, but gave up four runs on three hits, a walk, a hit batter and a wild pitch in the fourth.


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Steve Pearce hit one of four Tampa Bay homers, a go-ahead three-run shot in the sixth inning, and the Rays beat Los Angeles.

Brandon Guyer, Steven Souza Jr. and Curt Casali added solo home runs for the Rays.

Pearce chased Alex Wood (1-3) with his third homer this season to put Tampa Bay ahead 5-2.

Ramirez (5-1) went two scoreless innings to get the win. Alex Colome pitched the ninth and picked up his sixth save.


TORONTO (AP) - Russell Martin singled home the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning and Toronto beat Texas.

Edwin Encarnacion singled off Tony Barnette (1-2) to begin the ninth and was replaced by pinch-runner Ezequiel Carrera. Justin Smoak walked, Troy Tulowitzki popped up and Kevin Pillar walked to load the bases for Martin, who drove a ball beyond the reach of Nomar Mazara into the right field corner.

The Blue Jays won 3-1 in 10 innings Tuesday on Justin Smoak’s second home run of the game.

Roberto Osuna (1-0) worked one inning for the win.


MIAMI (AP) - Giancarlo Stanton homered and drove in two runs for Miami.

Jose Fernandez (3-2) allowed three runs in five innings while striking out seven for the Marlins, who have won nine of 10.

Miami held Arizona scoreless over the final four innings for the win.

Kyle Barraclough struck out Nick Ahmed with two on to end the eighth and A.J. Ramos pitched a clean ninth for his ninth save.


CINCINNATI (AP) - Brandon Phillips, Eugenio Suarez and Zack Cozart homered in a five-run second against Jake Peavy (1-3).

Peavy allowed seven runs and eight hits in six innings, raising his ERA to 9.00 in six starts. He had been 7-0 with a 2.38 ERA in 12 starts against the Reds.

Adam Duvall added a solo shot for the Reds, and Dan Straily (1-1) overcame solo homers by Brandon Belt and Conor Gillaspie for his first major league win since April 10, 2014, with Oakland.


MILWAUKEE (AP) - Mike Trout had an RBI triple and sparked a four-run eighth with a solo homer.

Trout tied the game at 3 after leading off the eighth with a drive to right on a hanging curveball from Tyler Thornburg (2-1). Five batters later, pinch-hitter C.J. Cron drove in the go-ahead run after looping a two-out double. Trout, a four-time All-Star,has 18 RBIs in his last 13 games after a slow start.

Fernando Salas (2-1) pitched a scoreless inning, and Joe Smith threw two shutout innings for his second save.


KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Daniel Murphy finished a triple shy of the cycle, slumping slugger Bryce Harper also went deep. Mrphy and Clint Robinson drove in three runs apiece.

Stephen Strasburg (5-0) allowed two runs and five hits in six innings while striking out seven.

Kris Medlen (1-3) gave up nine runs, six of them earned, and six hits in two-plus innings for Kansas City. His home ERA rose to 20.65 in two starts at Kauffman Stadium this season.


OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Dae-Ho Lee hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the seventh after an earlier solo shot for his first career multi-homer game, and Seattle completed a three-game sweep.

Mike Montgomery (1-0) pitched two scoreless innings for the win on a day Nelson Cruz also homered, a rare shot into the second deck of seats in dead-center.

Lee hit his third and fourth homers, connecting in the seventh against John Axford (2-1) as the Mariners had a season-high 16 hits and improved to an AL-best 11-4 on the road. The A’s lost their fourth straight.


SAN DIEGO (AP) - Tyler Chatwood (4-2) pitched three-hit ball for eight innings in his sixth start since Tommy John surgery, sending San Diego to its eighth shutout loss in 28 games this season.

Jake McGee pitched perfect ninth for his seventh save.

Cesar Vargas (0-1) allowed one run, four hits and three walks in six innings.

Christhian Adams grounded into an RBI in the fifth, and DJ LeMahieu’s squeeze bunt scored Mark Reynolds in the ninth.

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