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Cards reclaim division lead...Rangers thump Rays...Nats sweep Braves

UNDATED (AP) — The St. Louis Cardinals are back atop the National League Central.

Matt Holliday was 4-for-4 with a two-run homer and three RBIs as the Redbirds ripped Colorado 11-4. Matt Carpenter, Yadier (YAH'-dee-her) Molina and Daniel Descalso drove in two runs apiece as part of the Cards' 18-hit attack.

Joe Kelly is 9-4 after holding the Rockies to three hits in five shutout innings.

Pittsburgh's 5-2 loss to San Diego drops the Pirates one game behind St. Louis. Jedd Gyorko (JUR'-koh) went 3-for-5 and put the Padres ahead for good with a three-run homer in the third inning. The Padres' bullpen tossed four hitless innings after Eric Stults gave up two runs and seven hits.

Cincinnati is 2 ½ games off the division lead after Mike Leake scattered five hits in eight innings of the Reds' 10-0 shutout of Houston. Jay Bruce launched a grand slam and had five RBIs as the Reds took a 4 ½-game lead over Washington for the final NL wild-card berth.

The Texas Rangers put a halt to their seven-game losing streak while moving back into a tie with Tampa Bay for the two American League wild-card berths.

Ian Kinsler and Elvis Andrus (AN'-droos) each had two hits and three RBIs as the Rangers whipped the Rays 7-1. Kinsler led off the game with a homer to put the Rangers ahead to stay. Andrus hit a two-run homer and Leonys (lee-OH'-nihs) Martin added a solo shot to support Alexi Ogando (oh-GAHN'-doh), who held the Rays to a run and two hits in five innings.

Cleveland rallied from a 3-0 deficit to beat Kansas City 5-3 and stay within a half-game of an AL wild-card berth. Michael Bourn furnished an RBI triple and a solo homer in his last two at-bats as the Indians dropped the Royals 3 ½ games off the wild-card pace.

Miguel Cabrera homered for the first time in three weeks and Austin Jackson hit a two-run single as Detroit beat Seattle 6-2, slicing the Tigers' magic number for winning the AL Central to six. Jose Alvarez worked out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the eighth to keep the Tigers ahead 3-2.

Atlanta's magic number to clinch the NL East remains four after the Braves were swept in a day-night doubleheader in Washington.

Shortstop Andrelton (AN'-drehl-tuhn) Simmons booted Denard Span's ninth-inning grounder while the Nationals were scoring the tying and winning runs in a 6-5 victory over the Braves in the opener. The Braves turned a 3-0 deficit into a 5-3 lead before Craig Kimbrel blew a save for the first time in 38 chances.

In the nightcap, Span stretched his hitting streak to a major league season-high 28 games and Ryan Zimmerman homered as the Nats blanked the Braves 4-0. Tanner Roarke allowed two hits in seven innings to improve to 7-0.

The Dodgers thumped Arizona 9-3, giving Los Angeles a magic number of two for clinching the NL West. Matt Kemp was 4-for-4 with three RBIs as the Dodgers ended a four-game losing streak. Adrian Gonzalez and Juan Uribe (yoo-REE'-bay) each hit two-run homers to help Zack Greinke (GREHN'-kee) improve to 15-3.

Also in the majors, Oakland moved closer to a playoff berth by beating the Angels 2-1 on Josh Donaldson's walkoff single in the bottom of the ninth. The win gives the Athletics a magic number of six for claiming their second straight AL West title.

R.A. Dickey struck out eight while allowing four hits in seven innings of Toronto's 2-0 shutout of the New York Yankees. Colby Rasmus and Rajai (RAH'-zhay) Davis hit solo homers as the Blue Jays dealt the Yanks their fourth straight loss and dropped them 3 ½ games behind the wild-card co-leaders.

Matt Wieters (WEE'-turz) hit a tiebreaking, sacrifice fly off Koji Uehara (wah-HAH'-wah) in the ninth inning to lift Baltimore past Boston 3-2, pushing the Orioles within two games of the wild-card co-leaders. Chris Davis socked his team-record 51st homer of the season for the Orioles, who allowed just three hits and left the Red Sox's magic number at three for winning the AL East.

Chase Utley went 3-for-4 with a homer and four RBIs for the second straight night as Philadelphia downed Miami 6-4. Roy Halladay held the Marlins to a run and four hits in six innings, his best outing in five starts since missing nearly four months due to surgery on his shoulder.

Pinch-hitter Logan Schafer dropped a suicide squeeze bunt in the bottom of the ninth to push Milwaukee past the Chicago Cubs 4-3. Carlos Gomez hit a two-run homer and a sacrifice fly for the Brewers.

Angel Pagan was 3-for-3 with a tiebreaking homer, a triple, three RBIs and two runs scored in San Francisco's 8-5 win over the New York Mets. The Giants worked out 10 walks against Mets pitching, six surrendered by Zack Wheeler.

Alexei Ramirez doubled home the tiebreaking run and Dayan Viciedo (day-AN vih-see-EH'-doh) added a pair of RBI singles as the Chicago White Sox beat Minnesota 4-3. Jose Quintana held the Twins to one run despite yielding eight hits in six innings.

MLB-METS/HARVEY

Harvey to try rehab...Rangers GM expects Washington to return

UNDATED (AP) — Matt Harvey will try to rehab his injured elbow without reconstructive surgery in an effort to pitch for the New York Mets next season.

Harvey will soon begin a throwing program designed to last as much as six to eight weeks, although Tommy John surgery remains a possibility. If he feels pain or other symptoms that hinder his pitching, he likely will need the operation that will force him to miss the 2014 season.

The 24-year-old pitcher was diagnosed with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament by Mets doctors on Aug. 26.

In other major league news, Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels says it's his full expectation that manager Ron Washington will return next season. The vote of confidence came hours before the Rangers ended a seven-game losing streak that dropped them out of contention for the AL West title and left their playoff hopes in doubt.

Blue Jays slugger Edwin Encarnacion (ehn-kahr-nah-see-OHN') needs surgery on his left wrist and will miss the remainder of the season. The Blue Jays are also shutting down All-Star lefty Brett Cecil for the final 13 games due to a sore elbow.

MLB-BLUE JAYS-ENCARNCION

Jays slugger done for season

TORONTO (AP) — Blue Jays slugger Edwin Encarnacion (ehn-kar-nah-see-OHN') needs surgery on his left wrist and will miss the remainder of the season. Encarnacion sat out four games last week with soreness in his wrist. He returned to play all three games of a weekend series against Baltimore, but had just one hit in 12 at-bats.

Encarnacion ranks third in the majors with 36 home runs, while his 104 RBIs are the fourth-highest total. He's batting .272 overall.

SUPER BOWL-TICKETS

Super prices for Super Bowl

NEW YORK (AP) — Wow!

The NFL says the highest-priced tickets for this season's Super Bowl will be about $2,600 each for 9,000 premium seats for the Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. That's more than twice the $1,250 cost for similar tickets at last year's Super Bowl in New Orleans.

The next tier of seats is expected to go for $1,500 compared to $950 in New Orleans. A league spokesman says 40 percent of general admission seats will be under $1,000.

NFL-INJURIES

Falcons hit with injuries

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons will be without running back Steven Jackson for Sunday's game with Miami due to a thigh injury suffered in Sunday's win over the Rams.

Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon has been placed on injured reserve-designated to return, meaning he will be out a minimum of eight weeks because of a foot injury suffered against St. Louis.

In other NFL injury news;

— San Francisco 49ers nose tackle Ian Williams has been placed on injured reserve with a broken left ankle that will require surgery. The three-year veteran was injured in Sunday's loss to Seattle.

— The Colts have placed left guard Donald Thomas on injured reserve ahead of season-ending surgery for a torn quad tendon in his right leg. He was injured in Sunday's loss to Miami.

GOLF

Ryder Cup and PGA Championship head to Long Island

FARMINGDALE, N.Y. (AP) — The Bethpage Black golf course on Long Island has secured the 2019 PGA Championship and 2024 Ryder Cup.

Bethpage Black first held a big tournament in 2002 when Tiger Woods won the U.S. Open. It held another U.S. Open in 2009, and The Barclays in 2012 as part of the FedEx Cup playoffs.

SAILING-AMERICA'S CUP

Sailing postponed

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Strong wind kept Emirates Team New Zealand the Oracle Team USA off the water in the America's Cup. The two races that were scheduled were postponed due to the conditions, pushing races 11 and 12 to Wednesday when lighter wind is expected.

Team New Zealand needs two wins to claim the America's Cup for the second time in 18 years.

FIGURE SKATING

Weir won't be in the Olympics

UNDATED (AP) — Three-time U.S. champion figure skater Johnny Weir will not be competing at the Sochi (SOH'-chee) Olympics, likely bringing an end to his amateur career. U.S. Figure Skating has confirmed that Weir did not register for the qualifiers for the national championships, where the Olympic team will be selected. The deadline to register was Sept. 1.

SPORTS BETTING

No go in Jersey

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — A federal appeals court has dealt another blow to New Jersey's efforts to legalize sports gambling, upholding a ruling that the state's betting law conflicts with federal law and shouldn't be implemented. The ruling likely means New Jersey's last chance to legalize sports gambling is to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.

Voters passed a sports betting referendum in 2011, and last year New Jersey enacted a law that limited bets to the Atlantic City casinos and the state's horse racing tracks. Bets wouldn't be taken on games involving New Jersey colleges or college games played in the state.



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