Rays Orioles Baseball

Rays starting pitcher Zach Eflin allowed one hit and struck out eight in Tampa Bay’s 7-1 win over the Orioles on Friday night in Baltimore. Julio Cortez/Associated Press

BALTIMORE — Zach Eflin and two relievers combined on a two-hitter, Brandon Lowe and Harold Ramírez homered, and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Baltimore Orioles 7-1 on Friday night to pull into a virtual tie atop the AL East.

Tampa Bay, which has won 9 of 11 and 18 of 24, erased a season-high four-game deficit in six days thanks in part to winning the first two of a four-game series against Baltimore.

Heston Kjerstad homered leading off the sixth — his first major league hit — for the Orioles, who have dropped four straight to match their longest skid of the season. Baltimore (91-56) still leads the Rays (92-57) by percentage points in the division race.

Eflin (15-8), who leads the AL in victories, allowed one baserunner in the first five innings. Gunnar Henderson reached on third baseman Isaac Paredes’ fielding error to lead off the first but was erased two batters later when Anthony Santander grounded into a double play.

Eflin’s bid to throw the second no-hitter in Rays history and first since Matt Garza’s in 2010 ended when Kjerstad smashed a cutter to right field. It was the first big-league start for Kjerstad, who made his debut Thursday as a pinch hitter.

MARLINS 9, BRAVES 6: Luis Arraez homered twice and Jacob Stallings had two doubles, the second a go-ahead line drive with the bases loaded in the seventh inning, and Miami won at home.

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In their first game since winning the division title Wednesday, the Braves lost Ronald Acuña Jr. after 7 1/2 innings because of right calf tightness. Acuña felt discomfort when he grounded into a double play to end the top of the inning.

GUARDIANS 12, RANGERS 3: Lucas Giolito struck out a season-high 12 over seven scoreless innings, Josh Naylor and Andrés Giménez each drove in three runs, and Cleveland won at home.

Texas, which had its six-game winning streak halted, holds the second AL wild-card berth. The Rangers also are second in the West, where first-place Houston and third-place Seattle are separated by 1 1/2 games.

YANKEES 7, PIRATES 5: Aaron Judge and Gleyber Torres scored when a potential game-ending double play turned into a game-turning error as New York rallied at Pittsburgh.

The Yankees trailed by two in the ninth before taking advantage of some shaky pitching by Colin Holderman (0-3) and some sloppy defense by the Pirates.

REDS 5, METS 3: Jonathan India hit a tiebreaking homer in the seventh inning and Cincinnati won at New York.

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Grant Hartwig (4-2) plunked Luke Maile leading off the seventh. India then homered on a 2-2 pitch.

NOTES

ANGELS: Los Angeles  put outfielder Mickey Moniak and infielder Mike Moustakas on the 10-day injured list.

The Angels also recalled outfielder Jordyn Adams and infielder Kyren Paris ahead of their series opener against Detroit.

ORIOLES: Former outfielder Adam Jones was honored before the game against Tampa Bay, hours after signing a ceremonial contract and retiring with the franchise with which he spent the bulk of his career.

Jones jogged in from center field with his two sons to a loud ovation. After a video montage featuring tributes from several former teammates, Jones threw an honorary first pitch to former Orioles outfielder Nick Markakis.

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CUBS: Chicago activated Marcus Stroman from the 15-day injured list, hoping he can help the bullpen as the team makes a playoff push during the final two weeks of the regular season.

Stroman, a 32-year-old right-hander, has been out for about six weeks with right hip inflammation. He has a 10-8 record and 3.85 ERA in 23 starts, but Manager David Ross said he’ll be in the bullpen for the time being.

YANKEES: Reliever Anthony Misiewicz was struck in the face by a line drive from Ji Hwan Bae of Pittsburgh and left the game.

Bae hit a 100.6 mph liner up the middle with two runners on in the bottom of the sixth inning. The left-handed Misiewicz raised his glove to catch it but the ball hit Misiewicz in the face and rolled into right field. Misiewicz was on the ground for several minutes while being tended to, then stood and made his way to a cart with a towel pressed to the left side of his face.

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