The Wrap: AL
AL Quote of the Night
"Who says we can't reel off 25 wins in September?"
-- Red Sox catcher Victor Martinez who remains very hopeful after falling behind the Rangers for the AL wild card lead
Making his third straight start, Texas's Dustin Nippert tossed six innings of two-run ball to improve to 4-1 on the season and his first win since July 26. More importantly, the win vaulted the Rangers past the Red Sox for the AL wild card lead, as Texas was able to take two of three from visiting Boston. Rangers closer Frank Francisco worked a perfect ninth to earn his 17th save, two days after giving up six runs in 2/3 of an inning in Texas's series-opening loss Friday night.
Sometimes in basketball you'll see the final score of an overtime game and wonder how the heck those two teams played even through regulation, rarely does this occur in baseball but that's what happened Sunday in Baltimore. The Orioles scored once each in the eighth and ninth to force extras and then completely unraveled in the 13th inning, allowing nine runs in the frame. Baltimore reliever Brian Bass took the loss, giving up four runs in the last inning while Matt Albers came on after him and yielded five of his own. The Angels managed to tally six singles, a double, a walk and a three-run homer in the 13th for the team's fifth win in its last six games.
The Royals haven't done much right of late so we will give them the nod here for pulling out an extra-inning win over the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers. Detroit third baseman Ryan Raburn accounted for all three of the team's errors including one in the 10th that allowed Kansas City to score the go-ahead run. The Royals are now 6-9 on the month and have not won consecutive games since July 27-28 in Baltimore, something they look to do today in Chicago.
Rays catcher Gregg Zaun hit a pinch-hit grand slam in the bottom of the eighth inning to help Tampa Bay take two of three at home against Toronto. With the win, the Rays are now 3 ½ games out of the wild card lead, trailing Texas and Boston. Zaun now has five career grand slams with his last coming against Tampa Bay last year while he was a member of the Blue Jays.
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