Sunday, August 15, 2004

AL: Streaking Indians game out of first

The Associated Press

CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Indians pulled within one game of the AL Central lead, scoring four runs in the first inning and beating the Minnesota Twins 7-1 Saturday night behind home runs by Travis Hafner and Victor Martinez.

Cleveland, which has not shared the division lead this late in the season since 2001, can tie the first-place Twins with a victory today, which would complete a three-game sweep.

The Indians have won six straight and 10 of 11, gaining seven games on the Twins in 10 days. Minnesota, which has lost eight of 10, had a season-high six-game lead over the Indians and Chicago White Sox after last Sunday's games.

Jake Westbrook (11-5) won for the fifth time in six starts, giving up one run and five hits in seven innings.

Athletics 6, Royals 1

OAKLAND, Calif. - Mark Kotsay made a run-saving catch to preserve a tie in the top of the sixth inning and then homered to lead off a five-run bottom half. Damian Miller went 3-for-3 with a three-run double, and Rich Harden (7-5) won his fourth straight decision as the first-place A's stopped a three-game losing streak. Harden allowed one run and five hits in six innings to remain unbeaten in seven starts since the All-Star break.

Red Sox 4, White Sox 3

BOSTON - David Ortiz's second homer of the game broke an eighth-inning tie and Curt Schilling got his first home win in seven weeks for Boston. Manny Ramirez hit his 30th homer and is tied with Ortiz for the AL lead.

Yankees 6, Mariners 4

SEATTLE - John Olerud hit a tiebreaking, two-run single in the eighth inning against his former team, and the New York Yankees overcame another mediocre start by Esteban Loaiza. After Loaiza wasted a three-run lead and fell behind 4-3, the Yankees tied the score in the seventh on doubles by Enrique Wilson and John Flaherty off Jamie Moyer.

Blue Jays 7, Orioles 2

TORONTO - Josh Towers beat his former team to win for the sixth time in seven starts, and Toronto stopped a four-game losing streak. Towers (8-4) allowed two runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings, improving to 16-5 in 27 career games with Toronto.

Rangers 6, Devil Rays 5

ARLINGTON, Texas - Kevin Mench hit a go-ahead home run in the fifth inning, and Gary Matthews Jr. added a solo shot to lead Texas. Brian Shouse, Frank Francisco, Carlos Almanzar and Francisco Cordero combined for four innings of one-hit relief, with Cordero getting three outs for his 35th save in 37 chances.

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