PITTSBURGH — Hot-hitting rookie Gregory Polanco homered and drove in four runs, resurgent right-hander Vance Worley pitched seven stingy innings, and the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the New York Mets 5-2 on Thursday night.
Polanco drove in the game’s first run with a groundout in the first inning, then sent a three-run homer into the right-field stands off Daisuke Matsuzaka in the fifth to put the Pirates ahead 5-1. The right fielder went 2 for 3 with a walk and is hitting .338 in 16 games since being called up from Triple-A Indianapolis on June 10.
Worley (2-0) scattered seven hits, walked two and struck out three. He has given up four runs in 20 2-3 innings over three starts since coming up from Indianapolis on June 15. He was 1-5 with a 7.21 ERA in 10 starts for Minnesota last season.
Matsuzaka (3-2) allowed five runs and five hits in six innings with four walks and four strikeouts. Lucas Duda hit his team-high 12th home run for the Mets.
Polanco’s home run came after Pedro Alvarez hit the first of his three singles and Worley also singled.
The Mets cut it to 5-2 on back-to-back doubles by Daniel Murphy and David Wright in the eighth, but Mark Melancon pitched a perfect ninth for his 14th save.
Alert baserunning by Andrew McCutchen enabled the Pirates to score a run in the fourth and move in front 2-1.
With runners on first and third with two outs, Ike Davis took off and got caught in a rundown between first and second. Before the Mets could tag Davis out, McCutchen raced home from third.
Duda tied it 1-all by slicing his homer down the left-field line leading off the fourth.
The Pirates opened the scoring in the first when Jordy Mercer drew a leadoff walk and scored on a groundout by Polanco.
Astros 6, Braves 1
HOUSTON — Matt Dominguez broke out of a slump with a three-run homer and rookie George Springer also went deep to back seven strong innings by Jarred Cosart in Houston’s victory.
Dominguez helped the Astros avoid a series sweep, snapping an 0-for-23 skid with his two-out shot to left-center off Mike Minor (2-5) that made it 5-1 in the fifth.
Cosart (8-5) allowed six hits and a run for his fourth straight victory.
Springer hit a solo drive off Juan Jaime in the seventh. He has 15 homers this season, the most by a rookie in franchise history before the All-Star break. Lance Berkman had the previous mark with 12 in 2000.
Blue Jays 7, White Sox 0
TORONTO — Adam Lind had three hits and three RBIs, and J.A. Happ pitched a season-high 7 2-3 innings in Toronto’s shutout of Chicago.
Jose Reyes had four hits and scored twice as the AL East leaders handed the struggling White Sox their seventh loss in eight games. Chicago lost for the 10th time in 11 road games.
Happ (7-4) allowed four hits and won for the third time in five starts. The left-hander struck out a season-high eight.
Chicago center fielder Adam Eaton left in the first inning with cramps in his left leg.
Starting for the first time since May 19, White Sox right-hander Scott Carroll (2-4) gave up five runs and nine hits in five innings. Paul Sokoloski sent the following story
Angels 6, Twins 4
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Two years after Jered Weaver threw a no-hitter against them, the Angels’ ace is still a nightmare for the Minnesota Twins.
Albert Pujols and Mike Trout drove in two runs apiece, Weaver pitched seven strong innings, and Los Angeles swept the Twins.
Weaver (8-6) yielded eight hits — all singles — and struck out six in another dominant start against the Twins. The right-hander has given up one run in 24 innings while striking out 24 in his last three home meetings with the Twins.
“Offensively, we didn’t do too much,” Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said. “Weaver was like we’ve seen him before. In this ballpark, we all know it’s tough to see the ball in day games, and he made it tough on us.”
Weaver improved to 7-0 in eight career starts against Minnesota, striking out the side on 12 pitches in the first inning and rarely struggling until the sixth. He snapped a three-start winless streak with plenty of offense from his teammates, who beat up Twins starter Ricky Nolasco for six runs and 11 hits.
Nolasco (4-6) pitched into the seventh inning of his fourth straight winless start, and Pujols improved to 12 for 22 in his career against him.
Joe Mauer hit a three-run double with two outs in the ninth for the Twins, who followed a four-game sweep of the White Sox by getting swept in Anaheim. Mauer and Chris Parmelee had three hits apiece, but Minnesota yielded 32 hits in the three-game series.