MLB Sunday scores, highlights, updates, news: Rookies come up big for Red Sox

It's a super-sized Sunday, thanks to the Washington Nationals hosting the San Francisco Giants for a doubleheader. With 16 games on the docket, let's dive right in. 

Final scores

Giants 4, Nationals 2 (Game 1 box score)
Toronto Blue Jays 7, Pittsburgh Pirates 1 (box score)
Minnesota Twins 6, Detroit Tigers 4 (box score)
Miami Marlins 5, Colorado Rockies 3 (box score)
Cleveland Indians 4, Tampa Bay Rays 3 (box score)
New York Mets 6, Philadelphia Phillies 2 (box score)
Milwaukee Brewers  7, Cincinnati Reds 4 (box score)
Kansas City Royals  14,  Chicago White Sox  6 (box score)
Atlanta Braves 6, St. Louis Cardinals  3 (box score)
Houston Astros  2,  Texas Rangers  1 (box score)
Oakland Athletics  9, Baltimore Orioles 3 (box score)
Chicago Cubs  7,  Arizona Diamondbacks  2 (box score)
Los Angeles Dodgers  6, San Diego Padres 4 (box score)
Los Angeles Angels  4,  Seattle Mariners  2 (box score)
Nationals 6, Giants 2 in 11 innings (Game 2 box score)
Boston Red Sox  3,  New York Yankees  2 in 10 innings (box score)

Clutch rookies step up for Red Sox

The Red Sox nipped the Yankees in their Sunday night rubber match, as you see above. Boston ace Chris Sale struck out 12 and allowed one run in seven innings, but by the end of the night two rookies -- Rafael Devers and Andrew Benintendi -- were the story. 

First, with the Sox trailing 2-1 in the ninth and Aroldis Chapman on the mound, Devers unleashed this clutch bomb ... 

Yep, clutch. Also, there's this ... 

It takes a special hitter to turn one around at 102.8 mph, and when that hitter is just 20 years of age it's ... especially special. In the 15 games since his call-up, Devers is hitting .328/.391/.586. He has been huge. 

Andrew Benintendi has also been huge of late. The rookie has been solid for much of the year, but of late you get the sense that he's starting to realize his vast potential. On Sunday night in the Bronx, he tallied a hit and a walk. The hit was a big one ... 

And that's one day after Benintendi homered twice and drove in six. 

By no means have the Red Sox wrapped up the AL East, but they're now up by 5 1/2 games over the Yanks. They have a challenging stretch of schedule ahead, but they're also 9-1 thus far in August.

Keuchel comes up big for Astros

Coming into his start against the Rangers, Astros left-hander Dallas Keuchel had struggled since his return from the disabled list. Specifically, he'd allowed 14 runs in 12 innings across three starts. Over that same span, he had struck out seven against eight walks, allowed three home runs and seen his ERA increase from 1.67 to 2.87. As well, the Astros came into Sunday's tilt having lost five in a row and having gone a paltry 2-9 in August. Given that backdrop, it's safe to say Keuchel came up big against the in-state rivals ... 

Dallas Keuchel SP / Houston (vs. TEX, 8/13)
IP: 6 2/3 H: 6 R: 1 SO: 7 BB: 3

That's Keuchel's best start since early June -- i.e., before he went on the DL with that neck injury. Given the extent to which Houston starters outside of Keuchel have struggled lately, this outcome is doubly encouraging. Barring a trade during the August waiver period, the Astros' rotation is going to remain a concern, but getting Keuchel back to form would certainly be encouraging as the playoffs approach. 

Bridwell has been a savior for the Angels

The Angels obtained right-hander Parker Bridwell from the Orioles in April for cash considerations. Typically, players traded for cash don't go on to do much with their new squads. Bridwell, though, has been a bit of a savior for the Angels, who thanks in part to a 10-3 record in August are now in second wild-card position in the AL. They're in said position despite losing Mike Trout for a significant span of time and getting exactly one start from ace Garrett Richards

Key to surviving the loss of Richards has been Bridwell. Here's some of his work on Sunday against the Mariners ... 

Bridwell can touch the mid-90s with his four-seamer, and he complements it with a full repertoire of supporting pitches. After Sunday's six innings of one-run ball, the 26-year-old Bridwell now boasts an ERA of 2.88 after 11 starts and one relief appearance. In those 11 starts, the Angels are 10-1. 

Bridwell's underlying indicators suggest he won't keep this up, but the Angels may need him to continue defying expectations. That's because, in addition to Richards, also on the DL right now are Matt Shoemaker , Alex Meyer , Andrew Heaney and Nick Tropeano . That's a full big-league rotation. 

That the Angels are in playoff position at the moment is most of all a testament to Mike Trout's ongoing greatness and Andrelton Simmons ' career year. But it's also a reflection of Bridwell's outstanding work as a rotation stop-gap. 

Nats walk it off in grand style

The Nationals split a doubleheader with the Giants on Sunday, and the nightcap ended in thrilling fashion. It's the 10th inning, the bases are loaded, and the score is tied 2-2. Howie Kendrick , your move ... 

That, baseball folks, is the always compelling walk-off grand slam. That's also the 99th home run of Kendrick's career. He entered Sunday with a line of .371/.389/.543 since his trade to Washington, so he's indeed been a nifty addition for the Nats. With Bryce Harper out for some time (see below), Kendrick is going to become even more important to the NL East leaders. 

Don't sleep on the Blue Jays

The American League wild-card race is hilariously bloated. Entering Sunday, the Blue Jays were only four back of the second spot, though there were six teams between them and said spot. Still, four games is workable, especially when everyone is playing each other. The Jays won on Sunday, too, which was good for their third win in the last four games. They've climbed to within five games of .500 and are definitely in striking range of the playoff spot. 

Josh Donaldson was a bit mean to this baseball Sunday, too: 

That was part of a five-run first inning and the Jays never looked back, taking down the Pirates, 7-1. In addition to Donaldson staying hot, Justin Smoak 's career year continued. He was 2 for 4 with a double and homer. He's now hitting .299/.375/.586 with 32 homers and 77 RBI. 

The Blue Jays still have quite the uphill battle, but never say never. It's looking like the second AL wild card might only need to win something like 83 games.

Astros add bullpen help

The Astros have acquired veteran right-handed reliever Tyler Clippard from the White Sox in exchange for cash considerations or a player to be named later. Get more details here

Nats seem to have dodged bullet with Harper

Bryce Harper injured his knee on Saturday night and it looked bad, but the Nationals say it's only a bone bruise and he could be back this season. More on that here.

Giancarlo making history

Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton is on a ridiculous home run surge and has tied the club record with his 42nd homer. More on that here.

Quick hits

CBS Sports Writer

Dayn Perry has been a baseball writer for CBS Sports since early 2012. Prior to that, he wrote for FOXSports.com and ESPN.com. He's the author of three books, the most recent being Reggie Jackson: The... Full Bio

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