Phillies

Instant Replay: Phillies 9, Cubs 8

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Instant Replay: Phillies 9, Cubs 8

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The Phillies’ offense flexed its muscles for a change on Tuesday night in a 9-8 victory over the Chicago Cubs at Citizens Bank Park.

With eight runs and 13 hits, the Phillies matched their run total of the last three games, while snapping a five-game losing streak.

The victory is just the Phillies’ third in the 16 games since the All-Star break. At 51-61, the Phillies remained 17 games out in the NL East.

But the game was not without its drama. Closer Jonathan Papelbon struggled again in the ninth inning, allowing three runs to score in a non-save situation.

Starting pitching report
Kyle Kendrick made it through six innings, allowing five runs on six hits without a walk. In his last six starts, Kendrick has allowed 28 runs (25 earned) in 31 2/3 innings with 44 hits, five homers and 14 strikeouts.

During that six-game stretch, Kendrick is 3-3 with a 7.11 ERA.

For the Cubs, Edwin Jackson allowed seven runs on 10 hits and two walks in just five innings. Jackson struggled with his command, throwing 51 of his 92 pitches for strikes and surrendering a homer, three doubles and a triple.

Bullpen report
Lefty Jake Diekman allowed a hit and notched two strikeouts in 1 1/3 innings before turning it over to Justin De Fratus with one out in the eighth. De Fratus gave up an infield single and a broken-bat bloop single before settling down to retire the last two hitters of the eighth.

Papelbon gave up three runs -- two earned -- along with three hits and a walk.

At the plate
Playing right field for the first time in his life, Darin Ruf went 2 for 3 with his fourth home run and an RBI double. Fellow rookie Cody Asche also had a pair of hits, including his first big-league, extra-base hit and a pair of runs.

Meanwhile, Dom Brown returned from the seven-day disabled list for a concussion and had two RBIs. Chase Utley also had two RBIs to go with two singles and a triple. Carlos Ruiz capped off the scoring with solo homer in the eighth.

The 12 hits are the most in a game for the Phillies since getting 15 against the Mets on July 19.

The Cubs scored four runs in the second inning on the strength of a three-run homer by No. 8 hitter, Donnie Murphy. It was Murphy’s first homer of the season in just his second game. Anthony Rizzo capped off the Cubs’ scoring with a solo homer in the third inning.

Up next
The series continues on Wednesday night when Cole Hamels (4-13, 3.87) faces Travis Wood (7-8, 3.05). Hamels is coming off a tough-luck no-decision against the Giants in which he scattered seven hits and a walk for eight innings of shutout ball. Hamels was in line for the win until Papelbon allowed two runs in the ninth of a 2-1 loss.

Hamels is 3-1 with a 2.37 ERA in six starts against the Cubs, though he has not faced them since 2010.

Wood has faced the Phillies twice during his career. The first time, in Wood’s third career start, he came within three outs of getting a perfect game on July 10, 2010 for the Reds at Citizens Bank Park. Ruiz broke up the no-hitter to lead off the ninth. Ruiz doubled again in the 11th inning to set up the only run of the game in a 1-0 victory for the Phillies.

MLB Playoffs: Verlander, Astros beat Yankees to force Game 7 in ALCS

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MLB Playoffs: Verlander, Astros beat Yankees to force Game 7 in ALCS

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HOUSTON — Justin Verlander remained perfect with Houston, pitching seven shutout innings when the team needed him most, and Jose Altuve homered and drove in three runs as the Astros extended the AL Championship Series to a decisive Game 7 with a 7-1 win over the New York Yankees on Friday night.

Acquired in an Aug. 31 trade, Verlander has won all nine outings with the Astros. And with his new club facing elimination in Game 6 against the Yankees, he delivered again.

After striking out 13 in a complete-game victory in Game 2, Verlander threw another gem. The right-hander scattered five hits and struck out eight to improve to 9-0 with 67 strikeouts since being traded from Detroit. George Springer helped him out of a jam in the seventh, leaping to make a catch at the center-field wall and rob Todd Frazier of extra bases with two on and Houston up 3-0.

Game 7 is Saturday night in Houston, with the winner advancing to the World Series against the NL champion Los Angeles Dodgers.

Dusty Baker fired by Nationals after 2 NL East titles

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Dusty Baker fired by Nationals after 2 NL East titles

WASHINGTON -- Dusty Baker's time as the manager of the Washington Nationals is over after two seasons, two NL East titles and zero playoff series victories.

The Nationals announced Friday that they would not be bringing Baker back. His two-year deal with the club is expiring.

The contracts for the members of Baker's coaching staff also are finished. The team said it will work with its new manager to fill those positions.

The moves come the week after Washington was eliminated from its NL Division Series against the Chicago Cubs with a 9-8 loss at home in Game 5. The Nationals also were bounced from the postseason in the NLDS round in 2016 -- also with a Game 5 loss at home by one run, that time against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

This outcome, essentially, is what Baker was worried about as far back as spring training in February, when he made clear his desire for a new contract, knowing his was up after 2017.

Before the series against the Cubs began, Baker was asked about his possible future in Washington.

"I've given some thought to some things, but we were told that we were waiting until after the season to make a determination," he said at the time. "There's a good chance I'll be back."

He expected negotiations to pick up after the season ended (see full story).

Turner, Taylor repay Dodgers' patience by sharing NLCS MVP
CHICAGO -- Justin Turner and Chris Taylor shared MVP honors in the NL Championship Series, repaying a Dodgers organization willing to roll the dice on players whose big league careers were stalled.

In Turner's case, it was then-bench coach Tim Wallach who rediscovered him playing in a Cal State-Fullerton alumni baseball game four years ago, after his career appeared all but over.

In Taylor's case, it was Los Angeles' willingness to gamble that an offseason of grueling workouts would enable the young utilityman to rebuild his swing in a matter of months.

The co-MVPs turned up in the interview room together after the Dodgers eliminated the reigning World Series champion Chicago Cubs 11-1 in Game 5. They were champagne-soaked with hats turned backward, a pair of goggles still perched on Turner's head. Fittingly, they doused each other with praise.

"He's a dynamic player and a table setter," said Turner, who hit .333 for the series, with two home runs and seven RBIs. "When he goes, we usually go as a team."

"I talk to him as much as I can. He's one of the reasons I decided to make the changes I did," said Taylor, who finished at .316 with two homers and three RBIs. Both men also walked five times, as many as the entire Cubs roster (see full story).

Rare Jackie Robinson rookie jersey up for auction
NEW YORK -- A rare jersey from Jackie Robinson's historic rookie season with the Brooklyn Dodgers 70 years ago could be available for someone with a few spare millions.

The jersey, part of a Heroes of Sports offering by Heritage Auctions, has been certified by Mears, one of the top memorabilia authentication companies. It is accompanied by a letter from Robinson's widow, Rachel, saying it is the one brought home by the Hall of Famer at the end of the 1947 season, when he became the first black player in the majors and earned Rookie of the Year honors.

"This is the only one known from the `47 season, the only one that survived," Chris Ivy, Heritage's director of sports auctions, told The Associated Press in a phone interview. "It stayed in his closet for five decades plus until it was eventually sold to a private collector in the early 2000s."

The online auction opened Friday and closes at 11 p.m. on Nov. 19. The entire collection is from one owner and can be viewed on Heritage's website. Other items available for bidding include Babe Ruth's pants from the Hall of Fame induction in 1939, Keith Hernandez's 1978 Gold Glove award, a Wilt Chamberlain jersey from 1966, Bill Vukovich's Indianapolis 500 trophy from 1953 and Muhammad Ali's shoes from his fight against Ken Norton in 1973.

Ivy said the Robinson jersey has been valued at more than $3 million. He wouldn't be surprised to see it exceed that.

"It's tough to estimate a piece like this -- it's a one of a kind," he said. "As far as collectibles a rookie (jersey) is always sought after, something that's significant."