MLB scores, schedule, live team updates, news: Cubs' walk-off slam steals show from Scherzer-Hamels duel

Believe it or not, the final day of the 2018 regular season is exactly seven weeks away. The season is flying by. These next seven weeks will determine the various postseason and awards races, so they're going to be seven busy and exciting weeks. Here is everything you need to know about Sunday's MLB action.

Sunday's scores

Bote, Cubs stun Nationals in ninth

For a few hours, the Sunday night game between the Nationals and Cubs in Wrigley Field was a pitching clinic. Max Scherzer and Cole Hamels were throwing up zeros with relative ease, for the most part. Hamels was dinged for a run early on a sac fly, but that was it. Through seven, the duo was dominant. 

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Max Scherzer WAS • SP • 31
7 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 11 K


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Cole Hamels CHC • SP • 35
7 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K


That's some fine work, no? Both looked exactly as in control of things as their stat lines would suggest, too. It was a true throwback duel, other than the fact that neither threw a pitch in the eighth inning. Still, it was a thing of beauty to see them both just carve up the opposing hitters. 

Things took a turn in the ninth, though. The Nationals put together a quick rally for two runs, thanks to a bases-loaded Ryan Zimmerman single. 

So things headed to the bottom of the ninth with a 3-0 Nationals lead. It was Ryan Madson to close things out for the Nats. After one out, Jason Heyward sent a weak grounder toward second and Wilmer Difo mishandled it into an infield single. Albert Almora was then hit by a pitch. After Kyle Schwarber fouled out, Willson Contreras was also hit by a pitch, setting the table for rookie sensation David Bote. And, yeah: 

It wasn't just a walk-off grand slam. The Cubs were down three with two outs and two strikes. That's the ultimate little-kid-in-the-back-yard-dreaming scenario, right? It almost never happens: 

Bote, 25, is hitting .329/.418/.539 with five doubles, three homers, 18 RBI and three steals in his first 91 MLB plate appearances. A few weeks back, he had a game-tying, two-run shot in the ninth against Arizona, too. Quite the start to a career. 

Mariners complete sweep in Houston

Believe it or not, the Astros went into Sunday's series finale with the Mariners having lost seven straight home games. Pretty crazy, huh? The Mariners beat Justin Verlander on Thursday, Gerrit Cole on Friday, and Charlie Morton on Saturday, and they had a 2-0 lead after seven innings against Dallas Keuchel on Sunday.

The bullpen, however, could not make the 2-0 lead stand up. With Alex Colome unavailable due to his recent workload, James Pazos and Nick Vincent were charged with protecting that 2-0 lead in the eighth inning, and they couldn't do it. Houston scored three to take the lead. Then, in the ninth, Ryon Healy tied the game 3-3 with a two-out home run.

The Mariners took a 4-3 lead in the top of the tenth on Dee Gordon's single and Mitch Haniger's double into the left field corner. Edwin Diaz nailed down the save while pitching for the fourth straight day. Seattle completed the four-game series sweep and the 'Stros have won an unfathomable eight consecutive home games.

Houston's lead in the AL West has dwindled to three games up on the A's and 4 1/2 games up on the Mariners, which is far closer than I think many fans expected at this point of the season. I know I expected the Astros to run away with the division. Instead, the A's and Mariners are making life tough on the defending champs.

Walk-off walk in Coors Field

The Rockies once again ran into bullpen woes Sunday. A 3-0 lead through six innings couldn't be held, as it was 3-3 going to the ninth. 

The Rockies would still win, though, thanks to a bases-loaded walk. Well, and two intentional walks called by Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. D.J. LeMahieu singled to start things off and advanced to second on Yasiel Puig's error. After Trevor Story stuck out, Roberts put David Dahl on first base. A weak Ian Desmond grounder moved runners to second and third with two outs. Roberts then left his pitcher no margin for error by putting Ryan McMahon on first to load the bases. 

Then came Chris Iannetta to face Dylan Floro. Iannetta would foul off the first pitch, but then watch four straight balls to win the game. 

The Diamondbacks now have a one-game lead over the Dodgers while the Rockies remain 1 1/2 games out. 

Sale dominates in return from the DL

Welcome back, Chris Sale. The Red Sox ace missed a little more than two weeks with shoulder inflammation, and, in his first start back Sunday, he was held to an 85-pitch limit. Sale certainly made the most of those 85 pitches.

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Chris Sale BOS • SP • 41
August 12 vs. Orioles
IP5
H1
R0
ER0
BB0
K12

Sale didn't even get to 85 pitches. Manager Alex Cora decided to play it safe, so he pulled Sale at 68 pitches. Even while limited to five innings and 68 pitches, Sale still managed to strike out a dozen. That doesn't happen often.

The Red Sox beat up on the Orioles on Sunday to complete the four-game sweep. They are 14-2 against the O's this season and 85-35 overall, which puts them on pace for 115 wins. Only two teams, the 1906 Cubs (116-36) and 2001 Mariners (116-46) have won as many as 115 games in the regular season.

Stanton hits 30th home run

Giancarlo Stanton is currently in the middle of one of his "vaporize everything" hot streaks. He smacked his 30th home run of the season Sunday afternoon and it's his fifth home run in his last six games.

Stanton is the first player to hit 30 home runs in his first season with the Yankees since Mark Teixeira slugged 39 homers in 2009. Overall, Stanton is hitting .331/.386/.584 with 11 home runs in his last 24 games, and he has seven homers in 17 games since Aaron Judge went down with a wrist injury.

Padres now going well against good teams

The Padres lost seven in a row to close out a pitiful 5-20 July. It was one of the worst months in club history. Looking at the schedule for the first two weeks of August, the Padres were tasked with playing the Cubs, Brewers and Phillies. And, all of a sudden, the Padres woke up. 

They managed a split in four games in Wrigley Field before taking two of three in Milwaukee and then returned home to grab two of three from the Phillies. 

Sunday, the Padres won on the strength of getting Jake Arrieta for five runs on eight hits in five innings while also seeing Joey Lucchesi hurt six scoreless innings. 

On the Phillies' end, they fall into a virtual tie for first place in the NL East with the Braves. 

Glasnow strong again for Rays

Tyler Glasnow, who came over from the Pirates in the Chris Archer trade, turned in his third straight strong outing for the Rays on Sunday. He struck out six Blue Jays in five innings of one-run ball.

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Tyler Glasnow TB • RP • 20
August 12 vs. Blue Jays
IP5
H2
ER1
R1
BB2
K6

Glasnow has been on a limited pitch count with Tampa after working out of the bullpen with the Pirates, so he's thrown only 12 innings in his three starts so far. In those three starts he has a 2.25 ERA and 18 strikeouts. And, most importantly, he's walked only three of the 43 batters he's faced with the Rays, or 7.0 percent. His walk rate with Pittsburgh was 14.0 percent.

Stewart makes MLB debut

Sunday afternoon right-hander Kohl Stewart made his long awaited MLB debut with the Twins. Stewart was the fourth overall pick in the 2013 draft -- he was picked between Jon Gray and Clint Frazier -- though he never developed as hoped. The 23-year-old has a 4.47 ERA with 101 strikeouts in 108 1/3 innings between Double-A and Triple-A his season.

Minnesota gave the ball to Stewart on Sunday because Lance Lynn has been traded and Adalberto Mejia landed on the disabled list. His MLB debut went okay at best.

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Kohl Stewart MIN • SP • 53
August 12 vs. Tigers
IP4 1/3
H8
R3
ER3
BB1
K1

Not the storybook debut Stewart or the Twins were hoping for, I'm sure, but Stewart is a big leaguer now. The Twins figure to give him a few more opportunities this season to see whether he can be a factor for them going forward.

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CBS Sports Writer

Mike Axisa joined CBS Sports in 2013. He has been a member of the BBWAA since 2015 and has previously written about both fantasy baseball and real life baseball for MLBTradeRumors.com, FanGraphs.com, RotoAuthority.com,... Full Bio

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