The Los Angeles Dodgers' recent surge has them in full control of the NL West division, and that surge took an exciting step forward on Thursday night. After trailing 4-1 heading into the ninth inning, Chris Taylor's RBI single capped off the rally for a 5-4 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks, completing the sweep of their second-place rivals. The victory is their 22nd comeback win of the year, as Taylor's walk-off hit was just one of his career-high four on the night. Fernando Rodney suffered the blown save and the loss after getting the rally started with a bases-loaded walk to Logan Forsythe. Corey Seager tied the game with a two-run single, as the Dodgers increased their division lead to 5.5 games. Arizona got two home runs from All-Star Jake Lamb in the loss, which was their sixth in eight games since June 28th. The late-game heroics also spoil a dazzling start from Robbie Ray, who struck out a career-high 13 in six innings. Forsythe provided the lone run in the first eight innings for Los Angeles with a solo blast in the fifth. The Dodgers will stay home for an interleague matchup with the Kansas City Royals over the weekend. While the Diamondbacks will look to get back on track at home against the lowly Cincinnati Reds.
Sale Suffers Rare Loss for Red Sox
Chris Sale seemed to be nearly untouchable in his first season with the Boston Red Sox, that was until the Tampa Bay Rays touched him up on Thursday night. Sale suffered just his fourth loss of the year in the Red Sox' 4-1 defeat to the Rays at Tropicana Field. Wilson Ramos went deep and drove in three against Sale, who surrendered two big flies on the night. He did strike out 12 over seven innings, becoming the first Red Sox pitcher with 12 games of 10 or more strikeouts before the All-Star break. Pedro Martinez had 11 of those in 1999. The lefty gave up home runs to Peter Bourjos in the second and Ramos in the sixth in his final start before the All-Star break. Rookie Jake Faria gave up just one run on four hits in six innings, improving to 4-0 for the Rays, who currently hold an American League Wild Card spot. Ramos stayed hot for Tampa Bay, as he has three home runs in seven games since returning from a torn ACL. Alex Colome finished things off for his 23rd save for Tampa Bay, who hosts the Red Sox all weekend long.
Brewers Jump All Over Cubs in Rout
The Chicago Cubs' struggles reached a new low on Thursday afternoon, while the first-place Milwaukee Brewers got a boost of confidence over the defending World Series champs. Ryan Braun's home run ignited a seven-run third inning, as the Brew-Crew cruised to an 11-2 win at Wrigley Field. Braun drove in two, Domingo Santana had four hits and two driven in to lead the Brewers' offense, as they improved to 48-40 on the year. Zach Davies enjoyed the support in his 10th win, as he allowed two runs on five hits in six innings on the afternoon. Wilson Contreras was the lone bright spot for the Cubs' offense with a home run, as they dropped a game under .500 on the season. Mike Montgomery struggled in his sixth loss, giving up seven runs on six hits in 2.1 innings. This game even saw outfielder Jon Jay pitch the ninth inning, as he recorded a 1-2-3 frame for Chicago. Kyle Schwarber went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts in his first game since being called up by the Cubs, who have not won consecutive games since June 18-20. Milwaukee will quickly move on to the Bronx for an interleague battle with the Yankees, while the Cubs stay home to host the Pirates beginning Friday afternoon.