Mike Trout of the Angels celebrates in the dugout after hitting a two-run home run off Cleveland starting pitcher Konnor Pilkington in the fifth inning Monday night in Cleveland. David Dermer/Associated Press

CLEVELAND — Angels star Mike Trout homered in his seventh consecutive game, one shy of the major league record, but the AL Central-leading Cleveland Guardians beat Los Angeles 5-4 on Monday night.

Amed Rosario doubled home Steven Kwan with the go-ahead run in the seventh for Cleveland, which increased its advantage to three games over the Chicago White Sox and five games over third-place Minnesota.

The game featured a strange sequence in the seventh when Cleveland Manager Terry Francona and Angels interim manager Phil Nevin were both ejected without a pitch being thrown in-between the tossings.

Trout’s 35th homer of the season came in the fifth. The three-time AL MVP connected off Konnor Pilkington for a 422-foot drive to dead center at Progressive Field.

Pittsburgh’s Dale Long established the MLB record of eight straight games with a home run in 1956. Don Mattingly of the Yankees matched it in 1987, as did Seattle’s Ken Griffey Jr. in 1993.

Trout can match the mark on Tuesday night when the Angels continue their series with the Guardians.


Trout is the first AL player with a seven-game home run streak since Kendrys Morales of Toronto in 2018. Cincinnati’s Joey Votto homered in seven straight last season from July 24-30.

BLUE JAYS 3, RAYS 2: Bo Bichette launched a go-ahead, two-run homer in the eighth inning after being hit by a high fastball in his previous at-bat, leading Toronto over visiting Tampa Bay in a showdown between AL wild-card contenders.

Toronto tied idle Seattle atop the standings for the three wild-card spots. Tampa Bay is a half-game behind.

Bichette, chosen the AL Player of the Week before the game after batting .500 (16 for 32) with five home runs and 13 RBI, connected off Jason Adam (2-3) for his 24th homer. Bichette went 2 for 3 and drove in all three Toronto runs.

In the sixth, Bichette slammed his bat in anger after being hit near his right wrist by a 97 mph fastball from Rays reliever Javy Guerra. The ball ricocheted past Bichette’s face as he attempted to get out of the way.

ASTROS 7, TIGERS 0: Framber Valdez pitched his first career shutout as Houston won at Detroit.


Valdez (15-5) posted his 24th straight quality start, tying Mets ace Jacob deGrom (2018) for the longest single-season streak. The All-Star left-hander gave up six hits and struck out eight with one walk.

The Tigers were shut out for the second day in a row and club-record 21st time this season, tying them with the 1973 New York Yankees and 1976 Chicago White Sox for most by a team with a designated hitter.

Tigers starter Eduardo Rodriguez (3-5) allowed five runs on 10 hits and a walk in five innings.


PIRATES 6, REDS 3: Rodolfo Castro and Diego Castillo homered in a five-run fifth inning to power Pittsburgh to a win at Cincinnati.

Castro hit a three-run home run off Mike Minor in the fifth inning. Castillo, who was recalled from Indianapolis before the game, hit a two-run shot – his 11th – to cap the inning.


CUBS 5, METS 2: Chris Bassitt had his shortest start in three months, failing to get through the fourth inning as NL East-leading New York lost to visiting  Chicago.

New York began the day with a 1 1/2-game edge over Atlanta, which played later in San Francisco.

The Mets had won each of Bassitt’s last eight starts, a span in which he had a 2.24 ERA. But the right-hander gave up five runs in 3 2/3 innings — his quickest exit since he lasted a season-low 3 1/3 innings against San Diego on July 8.

Rafael Ortega homered in the second — the first home run allowed by Bassitt (13-8) since he gave up Manny Machado’s round-tripper July 23, a stretch of 54 1/3 innings. Zach McKinstry hit a two-run shot in the third before Ortega and Alfonso Rivas each had an RBI single in the fourth.


RANGERS-MARLINS SPLIT: Rookie Charles Leblanc hit a pair of RBI doubles during an eight-run burst in the fifth inning and host Miami beat Texas 10-6 for a split of their doubleheader.


Texas won the opener 3-2 as Mark Mathias drew a bases-loaded walk to snap an eighth-inning tie.

The Marlins trailed 3-1 in the nightcap before breaking loose. Leblanc’s double against reliever A.J. Alexy (1-1) got Miami within one before Jon Berti hit a go-ahead, two-run single.

Brian Anderson followed with an RBI single and Garrett Cooper hit a two-run double. Nick Fortes added an RBI single and Leblanc capped the outburst with his second double.


DODGERS: Though Major League Baseball had initially recognized the Dodgers as clinching a playoff spot with their 11-2 rout of the San Diego Padres on Sunday — with playoff hats being passed out in the clubhouse, a congratulatory tweet from MLB’s official account and an “X” being briefly placed next to their name in the official online standings — the league had to backtrack because there are still three- and four-way tiebreakers that still exist.

The Dodgers now need one more win (or one more Milwaukee Brewers loss) to officially punch their ticket. They can still clinch the NL West as soon as Tuesday.


GIANTS: Infielder Wilmer Flores and the San Francisco Giants agreed to a contract that guarantees $16.5 million over the next three seasons and could be worth up to $21.5 million.

Flores gets salaries of $6.5 million each in 2023 and 2024. The deal includes a $3.5 million player option for 2025 that must be exercised within three days of the end of the 2024 World Series. The Giants have a conditional $8.5 million club option that can be exercised within five days of the end of the World Series if Flores declines his option. There is no buyout.

He is playing this season under a $3.5 million team option, completing a three-year deal worth $9.5 million.

Flores, 31, is hitting .235 and has matched his career high of 18 homers and set a career best with 65 RBI. He leads the Giants in RBI, runs (66) and games (132) and is tied for the team high with 18 doubles.

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