NEW YORK — eir third straight American League East title while the New York Yankees are preventing it from happening and auditioning potential starting pitchers for the wild-card game.So far http://www.bravesfanproshop.com/authentic-nick-markakis-jersey
, the Yankees are 2-for-2 in keeping the champagne in storage for their rivals and New York will try to complete the sweep and keep the Red Sox from clinching Thursday night in the finale of a three-game series at Yankee Stadium.“We don’t want them to celebrate here and we’re going to do everything we can to not do that,” New York’s Neil Walker said Tuesday.Article continues below ...Walker was responsible for putting the celebration on hold Tuesday by hitting a go-ahead three-run homer off Ryan Brasier in the seventh inning to give the Yankees a 3-2 win. On Wednesday, it was Luke Voit homering in consecutive at-bats off David Price in New York’s 10-1 win.Besides the power resulting in the Yankees tying their single-season record of 245 homers, the first two games can be viewed as part of the competition for who starts Oct. 3. New York’s J.A. Happ allowed an unearned run in six innings Tuesday and Luis Severino followed it by pitching seven innings of one-run ball to win his 18th game on Wednesday.“We’re going to fight to the end,” Severino said. “It doesn’t matter what the score says. They’re going to win 100-something games. We’re going to be behind them. We’re going to grind to the end and every game from here now we’re going to fight to the end.”On Wednesday, Yankees manager Aaron Boone seemed to drop a hint about who might pitch in a wild-card game, and it appears Masahiro Tanaka, who starts Thursday, could be deployed for that start. “We’ve started to talk about it a little bit in earnest the last few days in about where we’re at, what we’re thinking, possibilities and then how these next dozen games or so, whatever we have left, how they play out and how the rotation falls a little bit will all factor into our decision as to who we would pitch in a wild-card scenario, who would we pitch if we were moving on,” Boone said. “Those are things we’re starting to have conversations about and I would say that these next 12 days will play a role in that.”Tanaka enters the audition armed with a 12-5 record and a 3.47 ERA but, more importantly http://www.bravesfanproshop.com/authentic-nick-markakis-jersey
, on a roll. He has won his last three starts and is working on a 20-inning scoreless streak, which is just shy of the 21 1/3-inning scoreless run Tanaka put together from July 15-Aug. 5.Tanaka also has allowed two earned runs or fewer in nine of his last 11 starts, posting a 2.15 ERA in that span. Equally important, he has allowed just six homers in his last 71 innings.The right-hander last pitched in Friday’s 11-0 rout of the Toronto Blue Jays when he allowed four hits in six innings.Tanaka is 8-4 with a 4.08 ERA in 17 career starts against the Red Sox and 1-0 with a 6.60 ERA in three starts this season against Boston.The Red Sox (103-49) have lost their third series in the last 22 since the start of July and are trying to avoid three straight losses for the fourth time this year and first instance since Aug. 24-26.“It’s disappointing because what we set to do every series is to win it,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. “We don’t have a chance to win the series. We’ll show up tomorrow. We know what’s at stake. We’ll try to win a game and make it a happy flight.”Boston has managed three runs in the two games to fall to 2-6 at Yankee Stadium. The Red Sox are hitting .244 (129-for-530) this month, with a few hitters slumping of late.Andrew Benintendi is in a 2-for-15 slide, Xander Bogaerts is in a 2-for-14 slump while Mookie Betts has one hit in his last 12 at-bats. Betts went 0-for-4 with a walk as the designated hitter Wednesday after sitting out Tuesday to rest his left side.“There’s a few guys struggling and we’ve faced some good pitching too,” Cora said. “It’s a combination of both. I do think that sometimes we get too passive at the plate. We’re taking too many pitches right in the middle.”Eduardo Rodriguez will make his fourth start since returning from a sprained right ankle that cost him 39 games. Rodriguez is 1-1 with a 4.20 ERA since returning but allowed one run on five hits in six innings a week ago in a no-decision against TorontoRodriguez is 12-4 with a 3.53 ERA. He began the season 3-0 with a 5.29 ERA but is 9-4 with a 2.89 ERA in his last 16.In 11 career starts against the Yankees, Rodriguez is 4-3 with a 3.16 ERA. This year, he is 0-1 with a 4.09 ERA in two starts versus New York. SEATTLE (AP) — The Padres opened their bullpen gate and slammed the door on the Mariners‘ chances of a comeback.Four San Diego relievers set a franchise record by striking out nine consecutive batters, preserving a two-run lead in the Padres’ 5-4 victory over Seattle on Wednesday.Trey Wingenter struck out the side in the sixth in relief of Joey Lucchesi. Robert Stock fanned pinch-hitter Ben Gamel, the only batter he faced. Jose Castillo whiffed the next two batters in the seventh and Robinson Cano to start the eighth. And Craig Stammen completed the run by getting Nelson Cruz looking and Ryon Healy swinging.The totals: nine batters faced, 42 pitches, 31 strikes, zero balls in play.“A lot of really good slider strikes early (in the count),” Padres manager Andy Green said. “You see what the fastball does after they’ve seen those sliders — it just blows by those guys.”Austin Hedges and Hunter Renfroe hit long home runs for the Padres Mike Foltynewicz Jersey
, who finished off a two-game sweep of the fast-sinking Mariners.The Padres swept the interleague season series against the Mariners after taking two games in San Diego on Aug. 28-29. It was the first time since the two teams started meeting annually in 1997 that either club won every game in a season.“For us to be successful, you are going to have to do that to five or six teams in the season,” Green said. “That will be big if we start doing things like that.”The Mariners have lost 10 of 15 since Aug. 26 to fall out of contention for the AL wild card.“Certainly we have not had a good run,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said.Hedges helped the Padres jump on Wade LeBlanc early with a two-run homer to left field in the second inning, ending the left-hander’s 19-inning scoreless streak. Eric Hosmer reached leading off the inning on shortstop Gordon Beckham’s errant throw.Cruz homered for the Mariners, his 35th of the season, and drove in his 1,000th career run. He’s one of 11 active players to reach that total.Wil Myers put the Padres ahead 3-0 with an RBI double to right-center in the third.Seattle’s infield defense was sloppy again in the fifth. With two outs, third baseman Kyle Seager’s throw on Myers’ ground ball skipped short of Healy in the dirt. It was Seattle’s third error of the game and its ninth during the eight-game homestand.Renfroe followed with a home run to left, his 22nd of the season.“We’ve been there. Everybody has been there — putting guys on base with the unforced error, or the walk,” Renfroe said. “It is very deflating. … We were on the good end of it this time.”Lucchesi (8-8) allowed three runs on six hits in five innings, winning his second start of the season against the Mariners.The Mariners’ run of futility at the plate ended in the ninth when Seager led off with a homer against Kirby Yates, who then settled down to earn his ninth save in 10 opportunities.Mitch Haniger had a run-scoring triple in the fifth, and Cano followed with an RBI groundout before Cruz’s homer.LeBlanc (8-4) allowed five runs, two earned http://www.bravesfanproshop.com/authentic-nick-markakis-jersey
, on four hits in five innings.SHUFFLING LINEUPSPadres: San Diego had a surprise leadoff hitter Wednesday — catcher Francisco Mejia, who was playing his seventh game with the team after being promoted from Triple-A El Paso. With Luis Urias injured, Green said he doesn’t have a settled leadoff hitter against left-handers.Mariners: Servais said he wanted to throw a “few different faces” at Lucchesi after he struck out nine in six-plus innings in his previous start against Seattle. Bench players Kristopher Negron, David Freitas and Beckham got starts Wednesday.TRAINER’S ROOMPadres: 2B Urias (left hamstring) was “moving around better than anticipated” before the game, Green said, adding that it was still a long shot the prospect would play again this season. Urias injured himself trying to beat out a ground ball in the eighth inning on Tuesday. Cory Spangenberg, Jose Pirela and Freddy Galvis will get playing time at second.Mariners: A virus continues to do damage inside the clubhouse. SS Jean Segura sat out his second consecutive game and was unavailable to do any pregame work. LHP James Paxton is so sick that he won’t even travel with the team Thursday night. “His (scheduled) start Friday is a big question,” Servais said. … It’s also uncertain whether RHP Felix Hernandez (right hamstring) will take his turn or not this weekend. … With a shortage of healthy starters, Servais said it is likely one of the weekend games at the Los Angeles Angels will be a bullpen day. … LHP Marco Gonzales, who has logged a career-high 150 2/3 innings, will be on a limited pitch count over his final four starts.UP NEXTPadres: LHP Robbie Erlin (3-6, 4.42 ERA) will switch places with LHP Eric Lauer and start the opener of a three-game series at the Texas Rangers on Friday. Lauer is now slotted for Saturday.Mariners: RHP Mike Leake (9-9, 4.11) takes on the Angels on Thursday in the opener of a four-game series and a 10-game trip. Leake has a team-leading 18 quality starts and is seeking to win at least 10 games in back-to-back seasons.