Braves sweep Phillies, win 4th straight NL East title

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ATLANTA (AP) — Ian Anderson turned in another dominant pitching performance, Jorge Soler and Austin Riley homered, and the Atlanta Braves won their fourth straight NL East title by completing a sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies with a 5-3 victory Thursday night.

After an up-and-down season marred by injuries and legal issues but bolstered by a flurry of moves at the trade deadline, the Braves won their 21st division title since moving from Milwaukee to Atlanta in 1966.

They open the best-of-five Division Series at the NL Central champion Brewers on Oct. 8.

Soler hit the first leadoff homer of his career, going deep for the 26th time this season on a 3-2 pitch from Kyle Gibson (4-6).

Riley added to the lead with his 33rd homer in the fourth. He drove in another run with a broken-bat single in the fifth to extend the lead to 5-0.

That was more than enough for Anderson (9-5), who pitched six scoreless innings of one-hit ball before yielding a two-run homer to Andrew McCutchen in the seventh. A.J. Minter, Luke Jackson and Will Smith worked the final three innings, with Smith earning his 37th save.

ASTROS 3, RAYS 2

HOUSTON (AP) — Carlos Correa hit his career-high 25th homer and Houston beat Tampa Bay to clinch the AL West.

It’s the fourth division title in five seasons and 10th overall for the Astros. They’re in the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season, extending a franchise record.

Manager Dusty Baker’s Astros will open the AL Division Series on Oct. 7 against the Chicago White Sox.

Yuli Gurriel singled to start Houston’s fourth and Kyle Tucker walked. Correa followed with his towering shot that smashed off the wall in left field to put the Astros up 3-0 against Ryan Yarbrough (9-7).

Lance McCullers (13-5) didn’t allow a hit until Ji-Man Choi singled to start the sixth. There were two outs in the inning when Brandon Lowe homered on a ball to right field that sailed just inside the foul pole to cut the lead to 3-2.

ORIOLES 6, RED SOX 2

BALTIMORE (AP) — Boston was dealt another blow in its postseason push, with Ryan Mountcastle hitting a three-run homer in the third inning of Baltimore's win.

The Red Sox fell into a tie with Seattle for the American League’s second wild card.

Boston’s Nick Pivetta (9-8) struck out the side in the first, but he ultimately allowed three runs and four hits in 4 2/3 innings. He struck out eight with two walks.

Alexander Wells (2-3) allowed a run and three hits in six innings after entering the game with a 7.61 ERA.

CARDINALS 4, BREWERS 3

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Rookie Dylan Carlson homered from each side of the plate and St. Louis beat Milwaukee

J.A. Happ (10-8) gave up three runs on nine hits and struck out seven in 6 1/3 innings, his longest outing since St. Louis acquired him from the Minnesota Twins on July 30.

Kodi Whitley and T.J. McFarland combined for two innings of scoreless relief and Luís Garcia earned his second save as the Cardinals won the rubber game of the series after having their franchise record 17-game winning streak snapped the night before.

Carlson, batting from the left side, bashed a 93-mph pitch from Milwaukee reliever Miguel Sánchez (2-1) into right field for a two-run homer to give the Cardinals a 4-3 lead in the sixth.

RANGERS 7, ANGELS 6

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Adolis Garcia set a Texas rookie record for home runs and RBIs in a series-clinching win over Los Angeles.

Brock Holt put Texas ahead for the first time with a two-run double in the eighth inning off Jimmy Herget (2-3).

Spencer Patton (2-2), the fourth Texas pitcher, threw two scoreless innings with three strikeouts. Joe Barlow worked a 1-2-3 ninth against the heart of the Angels lineup for his 11th save.

Angels star Shohei Ohtani went 2 for 5 with a double and his AL-leading eighth triple.

CUBS 9, PIRATES 0

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Justin Steele breezed through seven innings and Chicago handed Pittsburgh its 100th loss of the season.

Steele (4-4) struck out seven and gave up four hits on 76 pitches.

Sergio Alcántara drove in three runs, two coming on a homer to right off Miguel Yajure (0-2) that gave Chicago a 3-0 lead in the six-run second.

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More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

The Associated Press

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