Not too many teams are playing better baseball than the Cleveland Indians this season. The Boston Red Sox are looking pretty good these days, too.
The Red Sox continued to barrel their way through the American League with a 6-5, 10-inning victory Wednesday night over California, giving them 19 victories in their last 21 games.That gave Boston a 141/2-game lead in the AL East over the New York Yankees, who lost 2-1 to Oakland earlier in the day.
"We had a blast," Boston's Mike Greenwell said after the Red Sox completed a three-game sweep at California. "We wanted to win the series, but I didn't think we'd be able to sweep that ballclub. To be able to win three games here, that shows how good this team is."
The Indians, meanwhile, continued to roll along by beating Toronto 6-5, building their AL Central lead to 19 games over Milwaukee and their AL-best record to 73-35. The Red Sox are second-best in the AL with a 68-41 mark.
Jose Canseco hit a two-run homer, and Greenwell tripled in the winning run in the 10th inning for Boston.
Greenwell lined a 1-2 pitch into the right-field corner off losing pitcher Lee Smith (0-5), who had not allowed a run in his previous 10 outings. Greenwell's triple followed a leadoff single by Tim Naehring.
Mike Stanton (1-0) earned the victory with 11/3 innings of relief, striking out three of the four batters he faced. Rick Aguilera pitched the 10th for his 24th save as the Red Sox won for the sixth time in seven games on their current road trip.
California was swept for the first time this season, and the three-game losing streak is the Angels' longest of the season.
Athletics 2, Yankees 1
Steve Wojciechowski allowed four hits in 51/3 innings as Oakland completed a three-game sweep of visiting New York. Brent Gates, who extended his hitting streak to a career-high 13 games with two singles.
Indians 6, Blue Jays 5
Albert Belle's homer triggered a three-run sixth inning as Cleveland rallied to win at Toronto.
Belle sent Giovanni Carrara's first pitch in the sixth over the wall in left, his 29th of the season, closing Toronto's lead to 5-4.
The Indians then loaded the bases off Carrara (1-3) with a pair of walks and a single. Kenny Lofton's fielder's-choice grounder drove in the tying run, and the Indians scored the winner on a wild pitch by reliever Paul Menhart.
Tigers 7, White Sox 5
At Detroit, Lou Whitaker's three-run pinch homer in the ninth inning lifted the Tigers over Chicago, preventing a sweep of the three-game series by the White Sox.
Roberto Hernandez (2-6), who started the ninth inning seeking his 22nd save, blew a save for the ninth time this season. Felipe Lira (8-8) relieved starter Sean Bergman with no outs in the eighth inning. He went the rest of the way for the win, allowing one hit and striking out two.
The comeback wasted a three-run homer by Robin Ventura and a sacrifice fly by Frank Thomas in the eighth that gave the White Sox a 5-4 lead.
Rangers 9, Twins 1
Juan Gonzalez and Ivan Rodriguez homered and Bobby Witt scattered nine hits as Texas rolled past visiting Minnesota.
Rookie Jose Parra (1-2) took the loss for the Twins, giving up nine hits, two of them homers, and eight runs in four-plus innings.
Orioles 7, Mariners 1
Rookie left-hander Rick Krivda pitched six strong innings and Rafael Palmeiro hit his 28th home run as Baltimore won at Seattle.
Krivda (2-2), making his seventh major league start, gave up an RBI single to Edgar Martinez, the AL's leading hitter, in the first inning, but otherwise dominated the Mariners.
Dodgers 5, Expos 0
The 1980s had just started the last time the Los Angeles Dodgers swept a series in Montreal. Halfway through the 1990s, they did it again.
Behind Ramon Martinez's five-hitter and Mike Piazza's fourth homer in three games, Los Angeles beat the Expos to sweep a three-game series in Olympic Stadium for the first time since 1980.
Things didn't look good for the Dodgers as they crossed the border. They had lost four straight to start their 11-game road trip and entered Olympic Stadium having lost seven straight there and 28 of 33 in the past six seasons.
In the series, they hit eight homers and had 35 hits.
"I didn't expect us to sweep, but I didn't expect us to be swept in New York either," said third baseman Tim Wallach, who had a two-run homer in the fifth that broke a scoreless tie.
Piazza made it 3-0 in the sixth with his 22nd homer, and Roberto Kelly and Chad Fonville added RBI singles.
Martinez (13-8) threw his third complete game and second shutout. He didn't allow a hit after the third until the ninth. He is 6-1 with a 2.20 ERA in his last 10 starts.
Giants 3, Mets 2
A controversial call in the bottom of the ninth helped Terry Mulholland end a nine-game losing streak. The Giants led on Deion Sanders' homer to lead off the game and Barry Bonds' two-run double in the fifth. Mulholland (3-10), who had not allowed a hit since the second, got the first two batters in the ninth and had an 0-2 count on Chris Jones.
Jones hit an opposite-field drive to right that first base umpire Gary Darling ruled a foul ball. Television replays showed the ball deflected off the foul pole, which would have made it a home run.
Cubs 10, Marlins 2
Sammy Sosa hit two homers at Wrigley Field, giving him six in his last six games. His 25th and 26th homers came in the first and third off David Weathers (3-5).
Phillies 12, Padres 8
Jim Eisenreich had a pinch-hit grand slam and pitcher Tyler Green added a three-run homer as the Phillies won for the sixth time in seven games.
Green's homer capped a seven-run bottom of the first and gave Philadelphia a six-run lead.
Braves 6, Astros 2
Kent Mercker allowed two hits over seven innings as the Astros lost their seventh straight and 14th of 17.
Mercker (7-8) allowed both hits and one run in the second and then allowed only three more baserunners as the Braves swept the three-game series at the Astrodome.
Reds 3, Cardinals 1
David Wells threw a six-hitter for his first NL complete game, and Jerome Walton homered to lead off the game at St. Louis.
Wells is 3-1 since being obtained in a trade with Detroit on July 31 and is 13-4 for the season. He struck out six and walked two.
Rockies 9, Pirates 5
Dante Bichette hit his league-leading 31st homer, Vinny Castilla hit his 29th and Andres Galarraga his 27th as Colorado stopped Pittsburgh's six-game winning streak.
Walt Weis had four hits, all singles, as all but four of the Rockies' 17 hits were singles.
The Rockies took a 5-2 lead in the first when they set a club record with five straight singles and tied another with six hits in the inning.