Baseball / MLB

Arizona's Yoshihisa Hirano earns first save of season

AP, Kyodo

Christian Walker continued his remarkable late-innings production with a two-run homer in the seventh, Luke Weaver got Arizona off to a good start and the Diamondbacks beat Atlanta 4-1 to complete a three-game sweep on Thursday.

Walker lined the opposite-field homer to right-center off Chad Sobotka (0-1) following a single by Adam Jones. It was Walker’s sixth homer — all in the seventh inning or later. He added a double in the ninth.

Weaver (1-1) struck out nine in five scoreless innings, fanning the last five batters he faced. He allowed four hits.

Yoshihisa Hirano, who earned the win in the opening game of the series, gave up a one-out single to Ender Inciarte in the ninth. Hirano struck out pinch hitter Josh Donaldson and ended the game on Ozzie Albies’ flyball for his first save.

In his 10th game appearance of the year, Hirano came on as the fifth pitcher for the Diamondbacks and worked a scoreless ninth inning, though he needed 20 pitches to nail it down.

“I was told I would take the mound in a save situation so I was ready,” Hirano said.

“My fastballs were effective and the batters were fouling off nasty forkballs. I’m glad I was able to contribute to the team’s win.”

The Diamondbacks have won four straight, including their first sweep of the Braves since 2016.

Arizona led 4-0 before Freddie Freeman led off the eighth with a homer against Matt Andriese.

Braves starters had a 2.50 ERA in the series, allowing five earned runs in 18 innings. Atlanta relievers allowed nine earned runs in 10 innings for an 8.10 ERA while losing closer Arodys Vizcaino to season-ending shoulder surgery.

“We’ve just got to grind through it,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “On the back end of things like this is something really good if you handle it.”

Mariners 11, Angeles 10

In Anaheim, Jay Bruce delivered a tiebreaking pinch-hit RBI single in the ninth, and Seattle blew a late eight-run lead before rallying for victory over Los Angeles.

Ryon Healy homered twice and drove in five runs, and Omar Narvaez added a three-run shot as the Mariners snapped a six-game skid even after wasting a 10-2 lead heading to the bottom of the seventh.

“It’s not the way you draw it up, but they found a way,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. “That seventh inning got crazy.”

David Fletcher hit a tying homer leading off the eighth after the Angels put up seven runs in the seventh.

But the Mariners rallied against Los Angeles closer Cody Allen (0-1) for their ninth win in 10 road games this season.

Angels slugger Albert Pujols also drove in two runs, giving him 1,991 career RBIs. He is one RBI behind Babe Ruth for fifth place in baseball history.

Nationals 4, Giants 2

In Washington, Patrick Corbin took a one-hitter into the eighth inning in his first victory with the Nationals, Wilmer Difo homered and the hosts downed punchless San Francisco.

Signed to a $140 million, six-year contract in December after pitching for six seasons in Arizona, Corbin started three games without a decision with his new team before throwing a gem in the deciding matchup of a three-game series.

Corbin (1-0) struck out nine, walked one and a hit a batter over 7 innings against a struggling San Francisco offense that came in with a .208 average.

Blue Jays 7, Twins 4

In Minneapolis, Randal Grichuk, Justin Smoak and Teoscar Hernandez homered to help Toronto beat the hosts.

Tigers 9, White Sox 7

In Detroit, Nicholas Castellanos had three hits and drove in a pair of runs and the Tigers topped Chicago to end a five-game losing streak.

Royals 6, Yankees 1

In New York, Homer Bailey won consecutive starts for the first time since July 2017, holding the Yankees to three hits over six innings.

Dodgers 3, Brewers 1

In Milwaukee, Cody Bellinger smacked his 10th home run, Max Muncy hit a two-run shot and Julio Urias struck out a career-high nine and allowed one hit in six strong innings as Los Angeles extended its winning streak to five games by beating the hosts.

Orioles 6, Rays 5 (11)

In St. Petersburg, Florida, Joey Rickard drove in the winning run in the 11th with an RBI double, his fourth hit of the game, to lift Baltimore over Tampa Bay.

Rockies 6, Phillies 2

In Denver, Ryan McMahon homered twice and had five RBIs in his return to the lineup and Kyle Freeland pitched six scoreless innings in Colorado’s win over Philadelphia.

Reds 4, Padres 1

In San Diego, Joey Votto hit his first career leadoff homer and Tucker Barnhart and Jesse Winker also connected as Cincinnati beat the Padres to snap a four-game losing streak.

Votto, 35 and in his 14th big league season, was batting leadoff for the third straight game and just the fourth time in his career. He drove rookie Chris Paddack’s third pitch to right-center, his second of the season.