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Strange double play helps Yasmani Grandal, Brewers

Yasmani Grandal’s home run helped the Brewers get back in the game. But it was a bizarre double play the Milwaukee catcher started on a pitch that got past him that really saved the day.

The host Brewers overcame an early five-run deficit and outlasted the Cincinnati Reds, 11-9, Wednesday, with Grandal in the thick of things.

In the sixth, Grandal hit a tying, two-run homer. The Brewers then tacked on three more runs in the inning for an 11-8 lead.

The Reds scored once in the seventh and had the bases loaded with one out. Reliever Jeremy Jeffress struck out Phillip Ervin swinging, but the ball zipped past Grandal. Fortunately for the Brewers, the ball caromed off the back wall and right back to Grandal.

“The ball gets past the catcher and a lot of times as a runner, you just react,” Reds manager David Bell said.

Curt Casali took off from first, assuming all the runners would advance. Derek Dietrich, however, stayed at third, seeing the ball ricochet to Grandal.

Grandal threw down to first and Casali was tagged out after a rundown.

“That’s a play we work on every day,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said, laughing. “We caught a break there, 100 percent.”

The game had been set up as a pitching duel between Zach Davies and Luis Castillo. They entered with the second-lowest (Davies, 1.54) and third-lowest (Castillo, 1.90) ERAs in the National League.

It turned out to be the shortest outing of the season for both, as Davies gave up six runs in three innings and Castillo allowed four in 2 2/3.

Padres 5, D-backs 2: Lefthander Eric Lauer pitched seven strong innings to win for the first time in seven starts and Greg Garcia had three hits, scored twice and drove in a run for host San Diego, which completed a three-game sweep of Arizona.

Lauer (3-4) held the Diamondbacks to one run and four hits, struck out seven and walked none to win for the first time since April 8 at San Francisco.

Royals 8, Cardinals 2: Brad Keller (3-5)pitched seven-plus innings of two-hit baseball, Jorge Soler hit a three-run homer and visiting Kansas City won the first game of a doubleheader.

Severe storms around St. Louis forced Tuesday night’s game to be postponed and created the day-night twinbill.

Keller (3-5) snapped a six-start winless streak. Keller matched his longest outing of the season. He struck out three, walked four and hit two batters.

Rangers 2, Mariners 1: Hunter Pence homered, Adrian Sampson (2-3) went 5 1/3 innings and gave up one earned run after host Texas used reliever Jesse Chavez to start the game, and the Rangers beat slumping Seattle to complete a three-game sweep.

The Mariners have lost 27 of 37 games to fall to the bottom of the AL West standings since starting the season 13-2.

Seattle lefty Marco Gonzalez (5-4) limited the Rangers to one earned run in seven innings, but dropped to 0-4 with a 4.56 ERA in five starts in May. He was 5-0 after his first seven starts this season.

A’s 7, Indians 2: Frankie Montas (6-2) pitched six scoreless innings, Mark Canha homered and drove in three runs and visiting Oakland extended its winning streak to six.

Nick Hundley had three hits, including a solo homer and two RBIs. Robbie Grossman also drove in a pair of runs as Oakland swept the three-game series and reached the .500 mark for the first time since April 26.

Earlier in the day, Cleveland outfielder Carlos Gonzalez was designated for assignment and catcher Eric Haase was recalled from Triple-A Columbus.

Gonzalez, who signed a minor league contract in spring training after spending 11 years with Colorado, batted .210 with two homers and seven RBIs in 30 games.

New York Sports