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Best of MLB: Indians' win streak ends at 22 with loss to Royals

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Best of MLB: Indians' win streak ends at 22 with loss to Royals

CLEVELAND -- The Cleveland Indians can return to clinching their division and playoff preparations.

Their historic winning streak is, well, history.

Cleveland had its AL record run stopped at 22 straight games on Friday night as the Indians were beaten 4-3 by the Kansas City Royals, who became the first team to conquer the defending league champions since Aug. 23.

Jason Vargas (16-10) pitched into the sixth and Brandon Moss homered off Trevor Bauer (16-9) as the Royals ended baseball's longest win streak in 101 years. The Indians set a new league mark and came within four of matching the overall record held by the 1916 New York Giants.

Following a magical, walk-off win in extra innings on Thursday night, the Indians couldn't muster another late rally and fell for the first time in more than three weeks.

When Francisco Lindor struck out with a runner on first to end it, the packed crowd gave the Indians a prolonged standing ovation. Manager Terry Francona and the Cleveland players came out of the dugout to salute their fans (see full recap).

Dodgers' rebound continues with 7-0 blanking of Nationals
WASHINGTON -- Alex Wood threw six shutout innings, Corey Seager hit a three-run homer during a five-run second and the Los Angeles Dodgers' rebound continued with a 7-0 win over the Washington Nationals on Friday.

Wood (15-3) allowed three hits with eight strikeouts and one walk for Los Angeles, which has won three in a row after losing 11 consecutive games and 16 of 17.

The teams entered the highly anticipated three-game series having clinched playoff berths and owning the top two records in the National League. The Dodgers lowered their magic number to clinch the NL West to six.

Justin Turner and Yasiel Puig homered in the Dodgers' first Washington appearance since winning Game 5 of the NL Division Series last October.

The NL East champion Nationals fell six games back of Los Angeles in the chase for home-field advantage in the playoffs (see full recap).

Cozart homers twice as Reds beat Pirates
CINCINNATI -- Zack Cozart hit two of Cincinnati's four solo home runs and the Reds beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 4-2 on Friday night.

Joey Votto and Scott Schebler both homered, sending the Pirates to their third straight loss and eighth in the last nine games.

Chad Kuhl gave up all four home runs, a single-game career high for the second-year right-hander. He previously hadn't allowed more than two in any game and yielded only four over a combined 12 starts in July and August.

The Reds reached Kuhl (7-11) for eight hits with three walks and six strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings.

Homer Bailey allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings for his first win in six starts since Aug. 11. Bailey (5-8) gave up five hits and two walks with seven strikeouts. He also hit a batter (see full recap).

Best of MLB: J.D. Martinez becomes 18th player with 4 HRs in a game

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Best of MLB: J.D. Martinez becomes 18th player with 4 HRs in a game

LOS ANGELES — J.D. Martinez keeps doing damage and the Arizona Diamondbacks keep winning.

Martinez tied a major league record by slugging four of Arizona's six home runs, and the Diamondbacks routed the NL West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers 13-0 on Monday night for their 11th straight victory.

"We were part of history," Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. "You can't believe it after it keeps happening -- second, third and finally the fourth time. It was amazing. J.D. works as hard as anybody at his swing, perfecting his craft, and he deserves that moment."

Martinez was the headliner on a big night for a couple Diamondbacks.

Robbie Ray struck out a career-high 14 while helping second-place Arizona to its longest win streak since it also won 11 in a row from June 18-30, 2003.

"He has our number," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. "He was exceptional."

Martinez is the 18th player in major league history to hit four homers in a game, and the 16th in the modern era. The team's six homers tied for the most in Dodger Stadium history by a visitor.

"I felt like it was one of those days," Martinez said. "I was seeing the ball well and when I was swinging, I was hitting it." (See full recap)

Indians win 12th straight game
CHICAGO — Trevor Bauer was sharp again to win his eighth straight decision, and the Cleveland Indians beat the Chicago White Sox 5-3 on Monday for their 12th straight victory.

Bauer (15-8) gave up two runs on three hits with nine strikeouts and one walk over 6 1/3 innings as the Indians allowed more than two runs for just the third time in the winning streak.

Jose Ramirez hit his third home run in two games and 23rd of the season, and Carlos Santana added his 22nd to power the Indians' offense.

James Shields (2-6) kept the White Sox in the game before taking a line drive by Francisco Mejia off the knee in the top of the seventh. Shields limped off the field and is considered day-to-day.

The veteran right-hander allowed four runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings, extending his streak to 11 starts without a win.

The 21-year-old Mejia, a top catching prospect, had a run-scoring single in the fourth for his first hit and RBI in his first career start for the Indians (see full recap).

Jake Arrieta exits with injury as Pirates rout Cubs
PITTSBURGH — Josh Bell broke the National League record for most home runs by a rookie switch hitter, hitting his 24th of the season off hurting Chicago ace Jake Arrieta to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates over the Cubs 12-0 on Monday.

Bell had three hits and four RBIs, including a two-run shot off Arrieta in the first inning. Bell moved ahead of former Atlanta star Chipper Jones, who hit 23 for the Braves in 1995. Max Moroff added three hits and four RBIs for Pittsburgh, including a solo home run off Arrieta (14-9) in the third.

Arrieta was removed later in the third inning with an apparent right leg injury. The 2015 Cy Young Award winner clutched his right leg several times following a pitch to Bell. Arrieta attempted to throw a practice pitch after being visited by trainers but failed to release the ball while in obvious pain.

Chad Kuhl (7-10) allowed four hits in seven innings for the Pirates, striking out a career-high eight. Pittsburgh has won three straight (see full recap).

Carlos Martinez throws three-hit shutout in Cardinals' win over Padres
SAN DIEGO — Carlos Martinez threw a three-hitter and struck out 10, Yadier Molina hit a two-run single and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the San Diego Padres 2-0 Monday for their fourth victory in five games.

The Cardinals remained three games behind Colorado in the race for the NL's second wild card.

It was the second career shutout and complete game for Martinez (11-10). He got his first of each on June 10 when he threw a four-hitter and struck out 11 in a 7-0 victory against Philadelphia. He also pitched nine scoreless innings against San Francisco on May 20 in a game the Cardinals lost 3-1 in the 13th.

Martinez allowed only three singles and walked three. The Padres didn't get a runner into scoring position the whole game and never had two runners on in any inning.

Luis Perdomo (7-9) allowed two runs and seven hits in six innings (see full recap).

Billy Hamilton's walk-off HR pushes Reds past Brewers
CINCINNATI — Billy Hamilton hit a solo home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, sending the Cincinnati Reds over the Milwaukee Brewers 5-4 Monday.

Hamilton, who leads the majors with 58 stolen bases, sent a drive into the left-field seats for his fourth homer of the season. He connected off Josh Hader (1-3).

The last-place Reds opened a three-game series by stopping the playoff-contending Brewers. Raisel Iglesias (3-2) pitched a perfect ninth for the win.

Hamilton had two hits and also threw a runner out at the plate from center field (see full recap).

MLB Notes: Astros acquire Justin Verlander to boost rotation

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MLB Notes: Astros acquire Justin Verlander to boost rotation

HOUSTON -- The Houston Astros have acquired Justin Verlander in a trade with the Detroit Tigers.

The right-hander joins the American League West leaders and a rotation that includes Dallas Keuchel and Lance McCullers.

Astros owner Jim Crane says: "He adds a boost to our rotation. He's been pitching well. We think he'll give us some leadership. He's been in the playoffs before and adds a dimension we didn't have."

The 34-year-old Verlander, who won the Cy Young Award in 2011, is 10-8 with a 3.82 ERA this season. The Tigers will receive three minor league prospects.

Crane hopes Verlander is a piece that can help the Astros in the postseason. He says: "We hope it positions us to get into the playoffs, get by the first round, get into the second round and get to the world series and win it. That's what we've been working at and that's what we'll continue to work at and we want to win" (see full story).   

Giants: Bumgarner scratched with flu-like symptoms
SAN FRANCISCO -- San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner was a late scratch for Thursday night's game against the St. Louis Cardinals as a result of flu symptoms, the team announced.

Right-hander Matt Cain (3-10, 5.75 ERA) started in his place. The team has not yet announced when Bumgarner will return to the starting rotation.

Bumgarner (3-6, 2.85) is 3-3 in nine starts since coming off the disabled list on July 15 after spending nearly three months on it with a left shoulder AC sprain and bruised ribs. The 28-year-old lefthander suffered the injuries in a dirt-biking accident in Colorado on April 20.

Reds: Votto gives bat, jersey to 6-year-old cancer patient
CINCINNATI -- A young cancer patient got quite a souvenir when Reds star Joey Votto hit a home run. A couple of them, in fact.

After Votto rounded the bases in the seventh inning during a 7-2 win over the Mets on Thursday, he waved to 6-year-old Walter Herbert , who was sitting in the front row near the Cincinnati dugout and wearing a blue shirt that said: "BE KIND."

Votto high-fived the boy, then gave him a bat and a red No. 19 jersey while the game went on.

"We did not expect that," Walter's mom, Emily, said in an interview with The Associated Press after the game. "We thought he'd say hi when he recognized him. We were very surprised he went all out."

Votto declined to talk about his gesture after the game. Told that the family was thrilled, Votto said, "Well, that's what's important."