Can they still catch the Boston Red Sox?

Red Sox

Red Sox

Red Sox manager John Farrell told reporters Saturday that if the Red Sox clinch the American League East title against Houston on Saturday, Sale will not pitch on Sunday.

Only one team in the last 10 years has posted a losing record in the final week of the season and gone on to win the World Series: the 2013 Red Sox. Boston leads the Yankees by two games - both teams have two games left and they are each assured playoff spots.

If Boston and NY wind up even, they will play a one-game tiebreaker Monday at Yankee Stadium for the division crown, with the loser going to the wild-card game. Had the Red Sox won, Friday, it would have all been clinched, because the Astros would have been two behind Cleveland but the Indians own the tiebreaker with a 5-1 series win over Houston.

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Rays 7, Orioles 0: Evan Longoria and Logan Morrison homered, and host Tampa Bay sealed a third-place finish in the AL East. Longoria hit a leadoff drive in the fifth, marking his fifth straight 20-homer season and the ninth of his 10-year career. The Cardinals took the first game 4-2 as Howie Pollet held the Dodgers to two hits, a homer and an RBI single by Howie Schultz. But with the Fenway Park crowd rooting for a rally, Rafael Devers grounded out to end it, with Ken Giles getting his 34th save. This is about the performance we can expect to get in a potential must-win situation. Kennedy (5-13), who was 0-9 with a 6.13 ERA in 18 home starts since an August 20, 2016, victory over Minnesota, threw 86 pitches in five innings. The rest of the bullpen should be ready to go for at least one inning regardless of if they pitched the previous night.

"It's a big number", head coach A.J. Hinch said.

Boston is now 1-4 on their homestand.

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The Sox have been in sole possession of first place since the end of play on August 1, but the AL East is the only division still undecided, and last night suggested quite a gap between the East and West. Chad Bettis picked up his second win since returning from testicular cancer, holding the NL West champs to one run over seven innings and retiring his last 14 batters. He should be tuning up for the postseason with two or three innings, not digging deep to avoid Game 162. Ehire Adrianza added two hits, including a double that went off the top of the left-field wall, narrowly missing a home run for Minnesota, which is already set as the American League's second wild-card team. Brian Duensing (1-1) pitched a scoreless eighth. Sometimes you go through those stretches and it's just kind of important for us to know that we've got to take it one game at a time.

The Cubs got a timely three-run homer from Ian Happ off Reds reliever Michael Lorenzen down two in the eighth inning to lift the Cubs to a 5-4 win. Stephen Vogt hit a solo homer and had three RBIs to back Chase Anderson, who held St. Louis to a run and three hits over seven innings.

Perez (13-12) allowed just two hits over the first six innings and had a 5-0 lead to work with before the A's came to life late. Pelfrey allowed six hits, only one of them a single, and walked six. But given how horrendous he has been primarily as a starter in the postseason (2-8 with a 5.54 ERA), contributing in a new way may give Price the confidence he needs.

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