Thursday, Sept. 27
Minnesota at Boston (7:05 p.m. EDT). Josh Beckett, the major league leader in wins, goes for No. 21 in his last regular-season start.

-Robinson Cano, Yankees, tied a career-best with five RBIs, including a three-run homer, to help New York rout Tampa Bay 12-4 and clinch a playoff spot.
-Mike Lowell, Red Sox, had three hits and drove in five runs to propel Boston over Oakland 11-6.
-Jon Garland, White Sox, pitched his first shutout of the season, retiring the last nine batters he faced, as Chicago defeated Kansas City 3-0.
-Lance Berkman, Astros, homered twice to help Houston edge Cincinnati 7-6.

The New York Yankees clinched their 13th straight postseason appearance, beating Tampa Bay 12-4 on Wednesday to assure themselves of at least a wild-card berth in the playoffs. The Yankees were 9 1/2 games back in the wild-card race after play on July 7. New York's streak of 13 consecutive trips is one shy of the record set by the Atlanta Braves from 1991-2005. The victory eliminated defending AL champion Detroit from postseason contention.

The New York Mets wasted two homers by Carlos Beltran in a 9-6 loss to Washington that sliced their lead to one game over second-place Philadelphia. The Phillies, who beat Atlanta 5-2, haven't been this close to first place since they lost on opening day. It's the Mets' slimmest margin since they were a half-game in front before play on May 17.

Josh Fogg allowed five hits over 6 2-3 innings, leading Colorado to its franchise-record 10th straight victory, 2-0 over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday. The Rockies remained tied with Philadelphia, one game behind San Diego in the wild-card race. Colorado, now a franchise-best 14 games over .500 (86-72), won nine in a row once before - from Aug. 26-Sept. 5, 1997.

Michael Young reached 200 hits for the fifth consecutive season with a pair of RBI singles among his three hits and Texas pounded the Los Angeles Angels 16-2. The All-Star shortstop joined Wade Boggs and Ichiro Suzuki as the only players since 1940 with five consecutive 200-hit seasons. Boggs and Suzuki both had seven in a row, including this year for Suzuki.

Brandon Phillips hit his 30th homer of the season in Cincinnati's 7-6 loss to Houston on Wednesday to join Alfonso Soriano as the only second basemen in major league history to hit 30 homers and steal 30 bases in a season. Soriano did it twice while playing for the New York Yankees and once for Texas.

Mike Lowell drove in five runs to help Boston defeat Oakland 11-6 on Wednesday and took over the team lead with a career-high 116 RBIs, two more than David Ortiz. He also set a club record for most RBIs by a third baseman, passing Butch Hobson's total of 112 in 1977, and raised his batting average to a career-best .326.

Albert Pujols hit his 32nd homer of the season in St. Louis' 7-3 victory over Milwaukee on Wednesday and became the first player to reach 30 homers and 100 RBIs in seven straight seasons at the start of his career. Ted Williams was the last player to hit at least 100 RBIs in each of his first seven seasons, doing so from 1939-49, not counting his war service years, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Moises Alou hit his 13th home run in the New York Mets' 9-6 loss to Washington on Wednesday, extending his hitting streak to 30 games. Alou's streak is the longest by a player on a New York team (including Brooklyn) since Joe DiMaggio's record run of 56 games in 1941 with the Yankees.

Johan Santana's streak of pitching at least five innings in 123 straight starts dating to 2004 was snapped in Minnesota's rain-shortened 9-4 loss to Detroit on Wednesday. In the last 50 years, just Curt Schilling (147) and David Cone (145) had longer streaks. ... Chase Utley's 19-game hitting streak ended in Philadelphia's 5-2 win over Atlanta.

``You have to savor every moment. Enjoy it. The team we have now, where we came from, being way back, we couldn't be happier. We have a World Series to win, but this thing is really special.'' - Johnny Damon, after the Yankees clinched a playoff berth with a 12-4 win over Tampa Bay on Wednesday. New York, just 21-29 before play on May 30, has gone 70-38 since then.

Sept. 27
1923 - Lou Gehrig hit his first homer in the majors off Bill Piercy of the Boston Red Sox. On the same date 15 years later, he hit his 493rd and last off Dutch Leonard of the Senators.
1930 - Hack Wilson hit two home runs for the Chicago Cubs, giving him an NL-record 56 for the season.
1935 - The Chicago Cubs clinched the NL pennant and won their 21st consecutive game with a doubleheader sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cubs won the pennant with the opening-game victory.
1936 - Hall of Fame manager Walter Alston played in his only major league game as a late-inning substitute at first base for Johnny Mize of the St. Louis Cardinals. He made one error in two chances and struck out in his only time at bat.
1940 - Rookie Floyd Gieball pitched the Detroit Tigers to a pennant-clinching 2-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians. It was Gieball's second and last major league win.
1973 - The California Angels beat the Minnesota Twins 5-4 in 11 innings as Nolan Ryan struck out 16, including No. 383 of the season, a modern major league record.
1993 - Randy Myers became the first NL reliever with 50 saves in a season as the Chicago Cubs beat Los Angeles 7-3.
1996 - San Francisco's Barry Bonds became the second player to hit 40 homers and steal 40 bases in a season. Jose Canseco was the other. Bonds, who had 42 homers, stole his 40th base in a 9-3 win over Colorado.
1998 - Mark McGwire gave baseball a new magic number, hitting two homers to reach No. 70 in the St. Louis Cardinals' season finale against Montreal. It was McGwire's fifth homer in the season-ending, three-game series. McGwire's 70th and final home run of the season was a line shot over the left-field wall on a first-pitch fastball from Carl Pavano in the seventh.
1998 - The New York Yankees won their seventh straight game and ended their regular season with 114 victories. With a .704 winning percentage, the Yankees (114-48) became the first team since the 1954 Cleveland Indians (111-43) to play .700 ball over an entire season.
2000 - Anaheim's Darin Erstad was 4-for-5 with an RBI in a 9-7 loss to Oakland. With 99 RBIs, Erstad broke the major league record for RBIs in a season by a leadoff batter set by Boston's Nomar Garciaparra (98) in 1997.
2003 - Edgar Renteria became the first National League shortstop in 18 years to drive in 100 runs as St. Louis beat Arizona 3-2. Montreal's Hubie Brooks was the last NL shortstop to have at least 100, in 1985.
2003 - Sammy Sosa hit his 40th home run and Chicago beat Pittsburgh 7-2 in the second game of a doubleheader. Sosa set an NL record by reaching the mark for the sixth straight year.
2005 - The Atlanta Braves clinched their 14th straight division title thanks to Philadelphia's loss to the New York Mets. The Braves began their record-setting streak in 1991 - when they were in the NL West.
st time in franchise history.
Today's birthdays: Jon Garland 28; Jon Rauch 29; Vicente Padilla 30; Jason Phillips 31; Mike Schmidt 58.

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