ATLANTA (AP)Max Scherzer pitched seven strong innings to help the New York Mets beat Max Fried and the Atlanta Braves 4-1 on Monday night in the opening game of their NL East showdown.

Scherzer (6-1) gave up only three hits, including Austin Riley’s 24th homer in the seventh. That cut the Mets’ lead to 2-1, but Luis Guillorme answered with his solo drive off Darren O’Day in the eighth.

All-Star closer Edwin Diaz, pitching for the third straight day, struck out the side in the ninth for his 19th save.

Former Mets second baseman Robinson Cano, obtained by Atlanta for $1 in a minor league deal with the San Diego Padres on Sunday, had two hits in his Braves debut.

NL East-leading New York moved 2 1/2 games ahead of second-place Atlanta.

Fried (9-3) gave up two runs on five hits and five walks, matching his career high, in five innings.

PADRES 6, ROCKIES 5

DENVER (AP) – Manny Machado, Jake Cronenworth and C.J. Abrams hit 400-foot homers, and San Diego stopped a 10-game losing streak at Coors Field.

Cronenworth had three hits, including a 410-foot solo homer in the third inning. Machado’s 446-foot solo homer made it 3-1 in the seventh, and Abrams’ three-run drive in the eighth traveled 427 feet for a 6-2 lead.

Padres left-hander Sean Manaea (4-4) gave up five hits in 6 1/3 innings, departing after Randall Grichuk’s homer got the Rockies within 3-2 in the seventh.

Connor Joe and Charlie Blackmon hit two-out RBI doubles in the ninth before Taylor Rogers got C.J. Cron to ground out for his 24th save in 29 chances.

The Padres had lost 10 of 14.

Colorado right-hander Jose Urena (0-1) gave up two runs and seven hits in six innings.

CARDINALS 6, PHILLIES 1

ST. LOUIS (AP) – Miles Mikolas pitched into the eighth inning for St. Louis, and Albert Pujols passed Stan Musial on the career extra-base hits list.

Mikolas (6-7) gave up six hits, including a first-inning homer by Rhys Hoskins, struck out five and walked none in 7 1/3 innings.

Corey Dickerson and Lars Nootbar homered for St. Louis.

The teams split the four-game series and are tied for the final NL wild card.

Philadelphia’s Aaron Nola (6-6) was charged with five runs and seven hits in seven innings. He struck out seven and walked none.

RAYS 10, RED SOX 5

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – Yandy Diaz had three hits, scored three times and drove in three runs, sending Tampa Bay to the victory.

Diaz’s 10th multihit game since June 26 raised his batting average to .500 (27 for 54) over his last 15 games.

Tampa Bay had dropped four of six, including a three-game series sweep at lowly Cincinnati over the weekend. Luke Bard (1-0) pitched three innings for his first win with the Rays.

J.D. Martinez, Xander Bogaerts and Alex Verdugo had two hits apiece for the Red Sox, who have given up 25 runs in losing their last three games against the Rays. Jake Diekman (4-1) was charged with the loss.

GUARDIANS 8, WHITE SOX 4

CLEVELAND (AP) – Rookie Nolan Jones drove in four runs in his home debut for Cleveland, leading the Guardians to the victory in the opener of a four-game series between the AL Central rivals.

Jones hit a two-run single in the first inning off Lance Lynn (1-2). He then chased the right-hander by driving home two more runs with a double in the fifth.

Back from a 1-6 road trip to Detroit and Kansas City, the Guardians staked Cal Quantrill (5-5) to a five-run lead in the first and moved back to .500 (42-42).

Yoan Moncada hit a three-run homer as the White Sox began an eight-game trip leading into the All-Star break.

DIAMONDBACKS 4, GIANTS 3

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Ketel Marte and his tender left hamstring beat out a throw to key a rally in Arizona’s 4-3 win over San Francisco.

Marte edged out a throw to first in the third inning on an attempted double play to get things going. Daulton Varsho hit a two-run single four batters later, and David Peralta and Sergio Alcantara also singled in runs as Arizona did just enough to back Merrill Kelly (8-5) in his second consecutive win.

Kelly pitched two-run ball over seven innings. Mark Melancon closed it out against his former club for his 12th save.

Alex Cobb (3-4), facing Arizona at home for the first time, saw his winless stretch reach seven starts since he won at Colorado on May 17. He gave up three runs in six innings.

RANGERS 10, ATHLETICS 8

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) – Corey Seager homered in a career-best fourth consecutive game, and Texas rookie Josh Smith’s first big league homer was an inside-the-park shot.

Seager led off the fifth inning with his 20th homer. Smith’s one-out liner in the sixth skipped past sliding center fielder Ramon Laureano and rolled to the warning track. The speedy leadoff hitter slid headfirst across the plate easily ahead of the throw, pausing on his belly briefly before getting up and smiling.

Laureano, Sheldon Neuse and Chad Pinder homered for Oakland. Adrian Martinez (2-2) allowed six runs – four earned – in 4 1/3 innings in his fourth career start.

Spencer Howard (1-1) pitched five effective innings for Texas. Brett Martin worked the ninth for his third save.

ROYALS 3, TIGERS 1, GAME 1

ROYALS 7, TIGERS 3, GAME 2

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Bobby Witt Jr. had his first career four-hit game along with three RBIs to help Kansas City finish a doubleheader sweep.

In the opener, Brad Keller (5-9) tossed seven strong innings for the Royals and rookie Vinnie Pasquantino homered. Scott Barlow earned his 14th save with a scoreless ninth.

Witt had a hit in each of the first three innings in the late game, giving him six hits for the doubleheader. He scored twice and stole three bases on the day.

Detroit starter Alex Faedo (1-5) recorded just five outs in the second game. Angel Zerpa (1-0) earned his first major league win with two innings of scoreless relief.

The Tigers have lost four straight.

Injured Royals infielder Whit Merrifield didn’t play, ending his consecutive games streak at a franchise-record 553. Merrifield exited Sunday’s game with right toe discomfort.

In the doubleheader opener, Pasquantino connected against Michael Pineda (2-4). It was his second career homer, both against Pineda, and both on the first pitch in the fourth inning.

PIRATES 5, MARLINS 1

MIAMI (AP) – Mitch Keller pitched seven effective innings and Jake Marisnick homered, leading Pittsburgh to the victory.

Keller (3-6) allowed one run and five hits in his longest outing of the season. Yerry De Los Santos struck out four in 1 1/3 innings for his third save.

Diego Castillo drove in two runs and Kevin Newman had three hits for the Pirates, who won their third straight.

Avisail Garcia hit an RBI single in the sixth for Miami. Trevor Rogers (4-8) was charged with three runs, two earned, and six hits in 5 1/3 innings.

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