BALTIMORE For the New York Yankees, this one was worth the wait.
After enduring two rain delays totaling nearly 2 hours, the Yankees regained sole possession of first place in the AL East with an 11-3 rout of the Baltimore Orioles on Monday night.
Randy Johnson (16-8) pitched six innings of shutout ball, Jason Giambi homered off Rodrigo Lopez (14-12) to cap a six-run fourth and New York handed the free-falling Orioles their season-high ninth straight defeat.
The victory moved the Yankees a half-game ahead of the Boston Red Sox, whose home game against Toronto was rained out. Boston must play a day-night doubleheader on Tuesday, forcing the Red Sox to shuffle their pitching rotation in the middle of a frenzied pennant race.
Tigers 4, White Sox 3
DETROIT Curtis Granderson's leadoff homer in the bottom of the ninth inning gave Detroit a victory over the White Sox.
Chicago's lead in the AL Central dropped to two games over idle Cleveland and its magic number remained at five to clinch the division. The White Sox had a 15-game lead on Aug. 1, and if they fail to finish in first it would be one of the biggest collapses in baseball history.
Brandon Inge hit two homers for the Tigers, who have won three straight after an eight-game losing streak.
Royals 5, Twins 0
MINNEAPOLIS Rookie J.P. Howell pitched five hitless innings before he was pulled and Angel Berroa homered to lead Kansas City over Minnesota, handing the Twins their fourth straight loss.
Andrew Sisco, Ambiorix Burgos and Jeremy Affeldt completed the three-hitter for the Royals. Two of their four shutouts this season have come against Minnesota.
The Twins fell to .500 for the first time since they were 3-3 on April 10.
Angels 4, Athletics 3
OAKLAND, Calif. Steve Finley hit a two-run homer, John Lackey pitched six strong innings and the Angels moved within one victory of clinching their second straight division title with a win over Oakland.
The Angels opened a five-game lead with six to play and lowered their magic number to two. They will send 10-game winner Ervin Santana to the mound against lefty Joe Kennedy to try to finish off the Athletics on Tuesday night.
ATLANTA The Atlanta Braves had to put their celebration on hold.
Todd Greene hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning and the Colorado Rockies rallied for a 6-5 victory over the Braves on Monday night, preventing Atlanta from clinching at least a tie for its 14th straight division title.
Colorado came all the way back from a four-run deficit, taking advantage of the Braves' shaky bullpen. Chris Reitsma (3-6) took over with one out in the eighth and didn't retire anyone.
Nationals 4, Marlins 0
MIAMI Cristian Guzman had three hits and three RBIs, Hector Carrasco pitched six strong innings and Washington put Florida on the brink of playoff elimination.
Florida has dropped four straight and 10 of 12. Another loss, or a Houston victory, will knock the Marlins out of NL wild-card contention.
Carrasco (5-3), a former reliever making his fourth start this season, allowed two hits, three walks and struck out six. He has not given up a run in his past three starts, spanning 17 2-3 innings.
Brewers 12, Reds 9
MILWAUKEE Carlos Lee drove in two runs to match his career high with 113 RBIs, and Milwaukee beat Cincinnati in a wild game.
After Cincinnati scored twice in the eighth inning for a 9-7 lead, Milwaukee rallied for five runs in the bottom half to reach 78 victories for the first time since 1997. The Brewers (78-78) are seeking their first winning season since 1992.
Bill Hall led off the eighth with his 17th home run and finished 4-for-4 with two RBIs. Geoff Jenkins and Russell Branyan also homered for Milwaukee.
Giants 3, Padres 2
SAN DIEGO Randy Winn hit a tying, two-out triple off Trevor Hoffman in the ninth inning, and J.T. Snow hit a go-ahead single two batters later as San Francisco stunned San Diego and pulled within three games of the NL West-leading Padres.
The Padres had been within one out of reducing their magic number for clinching the division title to two but Hoffman (1-6) blew a save for the third time in 44 chances, and saw his streak of 38 straight saves end.
Their magic number remains four, with six games to play.
Mets 6, Phillies 5
PHILADELPHIA Philadelphia's bad defense and shaky bullpen helped New York rally for four runs in the eighth inning in a crucial game for the Phillies.
Pat Burrell came to the plate with two runners on in the ninth but bounced back to the mound on a check-swing for the final out, dropping the Phillies 1 1/2 games behind Houston in the NL wild-card race.
Dodgers 9, Pirates 4
LOS ANGELES Rookie Jason Repko drove in four runs with a pair of triples and Jose Cruz Jr. homered, leading Los Angeles over Pittsburgh and sending Kip Wells to his major league-worst 18th loss.
Edwin Jackson (2-2) pitched 5 1-3 innings, allowing two runs one earned and four hits with no strikeouts.
Wells (7-18) was charged with four runs, six hits and four walks through eight innings. Despite escaping a bases-loaded, none-out jam in the first, he lost his sixth straight decision and is 1-14 with a 6.97 ERA in his last 19 starts.
Cruz, batting .329 in 41 games since the Dodgers acquired him in a trade with Boston on Aug. 9, made it 4-2 in the fifth with his 18th homer and sixth with Los Angeles. It was the 23rd home run surrendered by Wells, one fewer than his career high.
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