NEW YORK – Shawn Chacon kept up his mastery of Toronto with eight dominant innings, Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano hit back-to-back homers leading off the first, and the New York Yankees opened their final home series of the season by beating the Blue Jays 5-0 Friday night.

Hideki Matsui and Tino Martinez also drove in runs in a four-run first, sending the first-place Yankees to their fifth straight win and 11th in 12 games. New York began the night a game ahead of Boston as the Yankees chase their eighth straight AL East title.

Chacon (6-3) improved to 3-0 with a 1.17 ERA in three starts against the Blue Jays this season. After pitching eight innings of four-hit ball in Toronto last Saturday, he allowed three hits in eight innings Friday, running his scoreless innings streak against the Blue Jays to 20.

Ted Lilly (9-11) handed New York its most recent loss Sunday in Toronto, but the former-Yankee was gone after 11 batters Friday.

Cubs 5, Astros 4

CHICAGO – Derrek Lee helped the Chicago Cubs play spoiler – for one day, at least – going 3-for-3 and making a spectacular defensive play that preserved a 5-4 victory over the NL wild card-leading Houston Astros.

Nomar Garciaparra drove in a pair of runs for the Cubs, who handed the Astros only their second loss in the last 10 games.

The Astros began the day two games ahead of Philadelphia and four in front of Florida in the wild-card race. The Phillies played at Cincinnati later Friday while the Marlins were in Atlanta.

Trailing 5-1 after four innings, the Astros rallied, thanks to Craig Biggio and a defensive gaffe by Corey Patterson.

Mariners 2, Tigers 1

DETROIT – Ryan Franklin won for the first time in eight starts since July 30, leading the Seattle Mariners over Detroit 2-1 Friday night and extending the Tigers’ losing streak to eight.

Franklin (7-15) allowed one run and five hits in seven innings, struck out five and walked none. Eddie Guardado, Seattle’s fifth pitcher, got three outs for his 34th save in 39 chances, striking out pinch-hitter Marcus Thames with a runner on second to end the game.

Seattle is 3-6 on its season-high 11-game trip. Detroit dropped to 4-19 in September.

With the score 1-all, Rene Rivera led off the eighth against Chris Spurling (3-4) with his third single of the game. Vic Darensbourg relieved, and Ichiro Suzuki’s single moved pinch-runner Jamie Bubela to third.

Brewers 9, Cardinals 6

MILWAUKEE – Bill Hall had four hits and Lyle Overbay hit a tiebreaking double as the Milwaukee Brewers overcame a four-run deficit and sent Chris Carpenter to his first loss in more than three months, beating the St. Louis Cardinals 9-6 Friday night.

Chris Capuano (18-10) won despite a career-high eight walks. He allowed six runs and six hits in six innings, becoming the first Brewers pitcher with 18 victories since Teddy Higuera in 1987.

Matt Wise pitched two scoreless innings, and Derrick Turnbow finished for his 34th save in 38 chances.

Giants 7, Rockies 6

DENVER – Barry Bonds had his streak of four straight games with a homer stopped Friday night, but he drew a key walk in San Francisco’s rally from four runs down in the eighth inning for a 7-6 victory over the Colorado Rockies.

The Giants (72-81) improved to 7-1 with Bonds in the starting lineup and pulled within 41/2 games of the first-place San Diego Padres in the NL West. San Diego, which entered the day with a magic number of six, played at Arizona later Friday.

Bonds finished with two singles, a walk and an RBI. The unintentional four-pitch walk came off Mike DeJean (5-4) with the Giants trailing by four and two men on.

Braves 4, Marlins 3

ATLANTA – The Braves moved a step closer to their 14th straight division title, their rookies coming through in a four-run eighth inning that sent Atlanta to stunning 4-3 over the Florida Marlins on Friday night.

Josh Beckett extended his scoreless streak against the Braves to 19 innings this season, leaving after the seventh with a 3-0 lead. The Florida bullpen couldn’t hold it.

Rookie Jeff Francoeur, Ryan Langerhans and Brian McCann had RBIs in the decisive inning. McCann brought home the winning run with a two-out single off Todd Jones (1-5).

Mets 5, Nationals 2

WASHINGTON – Carlos Beltran’s three-run homer in the 10th inning lifted the New York Mets past the Washington Nationals 5-2 on Friday night in a game played pretty much for fourth place and pride.

The Mets blew a 2-0 lead with two outs in the bottom of the ninth when pinch-hitter Carlos Baerga hit a two-run homer off reliever Roberto Hernandez, who has blown six of seven save opportunities this season.

But New York came right back to take the lead, with Beltran driving a 3-2 pitch into the visiting bullpen off Gary Majewski (4-4) with two outs in the 10th for his 16th homer.

Phillies 11, Reds 10

CINCINNATI – David Bell completed Philadelphia’s last-swing comeback, hitting a two-out, two-run homer in the ninth inning Friday night for a pulsating 11-10 victory over the Cincinnati Reds that tightened the NL playoff race.

The Phillies took the field knowing that Houston had already lost, providing a chance to close in on the first-place Astros in the wild-card race.

The Phillies wasted a five-run lead and, until the ninth, looked like they were going to waste their chance to gain ground as well.

Two homers in a stirring comeback pulled it out and moved them one game behind Houston with eight to play.

Chase Utley started the big ninth inning by hitting a three-run shot, his second homer of the game, off David Weathers (7-4), cutting it to 10-9.

Indians 7, Royals 6

KANSAS CITY, Mo – Travis Hafner homered in his sixth consecutive game and the Cleveland Indians scored an unearned run in the ninth inning to defeat the Kansas City Royals 7-6 Friday night, remaining 11/2 games behind the first-place Chicago White Sox in the AL Central.

Cleveland, which won for the ninth time in 10 games, maintained a 11/2-game lead over the Boston Red Sox in the AL wild-card race. The White Sox, who led the Indians by 15 games on Aug. 1, beat Minnesota 3-1.

Hafner hit a two-run homer off Jose Lima in the third inning and is one short of tying the Cleveland record for consecutive game with home runs, set by Jim Thome from June 25-July 3, 2002.

Hafner’s last 10 hits have been for extra-bases.


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