Streaking Mets gain ground on Nats...Pujols moving up...Cueto and Kershaw both throw 2-hitters

(AP) — The New York Mets closed within a half-game of Washington by routing the Nationals 7-1 in the opener of a three-game series in the Nation's Capital. The Mets have won four in a row.

Nat-killer David Wright hit a three-run home run to give him 100 RBIs against the Nationals in his career. Neil Walker and Yoenis Cespedes also homered against Washington loser Gio Gonzalez. The southpaw gave up seven runs on 10 hits in five innings to fall to 3-2.

Portly Bartolo Colon went seven strong innings for the win. He's 4-3. Colon scattered five hits while allowing just one run in seven innings.

In other baseball:

— Albert Pujols hit a two-run home run, the 569th of his career, and Nick Tropeano threw 6 2/3 strong innings to help the Los Angeles Angels blank Texas 2-0 for their eighth victory in their last 11. Pujols is tied for 12th in career homers with Rafael Palmeiro.

— Clayton Kershaw tossed a two-hitter for his third shutout of the season in the L.A. Dodgers' 1-0 win over Cincinnati. That's the eighth straight time the Dodgers have beaten the Reds. Kershaw is 7-1. He struck out seven, ending his franchise-record streak of six starts in a row with at least 10 strikeouts.

— In another pitchers' duel, San Francisco blanked San Diego 1-0. Johnny Cueto pitched a two-hitter to raise his mark to 7-1. The Giants scored the lone run in the bottom of the ninth on pinch-hitter Hunter Pence's RBI double. Brandon Belt scored all the way from first on the bloop double.

— Salvador Perez had a career-high five hits, including a double, a triple and an RBI, to lead the Kansas City Royals to a 10-4 victory over Minnesota.

— Stephen Vogt hit a leadoff homer in the seventh inning to snap a scoreless tie and the Oakland Athletics blanked the Seattle Mariners 5-0 to end a four-game skid. Rich Hill pitched eight innings to win his fourth straight start.

— Randal Grichuck hit a tiebreaking solo homer in the ninth to lift the St. Louis Cardinals to a 4-3 win over the Chicago Cubs. Matt Adams tied the score with a two-run homer off in the seventh. That was the Cardinals' major league-leading ninth pinch-hit homer this season.

— Miguel Cabrera hit two of Detroit's four solo homers, then scored a tiebreaking run on Victor Martinez's seventh-inning single to lift the Detroit Tigers to a 5-4 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies. Detroit has won seven of eight.

— Miami trimmed Tampa Bay 7-6 in the interleague battle of Florida. Ichiro Suzuki had four hits, including a single in Miami's two-run eighth inning. The 42-year-old Suzuki has 10 hits in the past three games to raise his average to .417 and increase his career hit total to 2,960.

— The AL Central-leading Chicago White Sox held off Cleveland 7-6 in the first game of a day-night doubleheader. Mat Latos improved to 6-1 for the Sox. He allowed three runs over six innings. AL home run leader Todd Frazier hit his 14th homer. Brett Lawrie added a tie-breaking three-run homer. The Indians won the nightcap 5-1 as Juan Uribe, Rajai Davis and Jose Ramirez homered.

— Pittsburgh recovered from seeing starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong hit in the head with a pitch to defeat Colorado 6-3. Vogelsong was struck in the second inning by a 92 mph fastball from Rockies starter Jordan Lyles. Vogelsong was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital where he is being treated for injuries to his left eye.

Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers looks to extend his franchise record by striking out 10 or more batters for a seventh consecutive game as L.A. is home to the Reds. Kershaw is 6-1 with a 1.67 earned run average. He has 88 strikeouts and just four walks in 70 innings this season.


Duda lost long term

UNDATED (AP) — Mets manager Terry Collins expects first baseman Lucas Duda to be out at least four to six weeks and maybe longer with a stress fracture in his lower back. He's been placed on the 15-day disabled list with the back problem that had been bothering him for some time.

Duda is hitting .231 with seven home runs and 19 RBIs after putting up 27 home runs last season and 30 in 2014.


— Jordan Zimmermann is expected to miss at least one start for Detroit after he suffered a right groin strain in a game against Tampa Bay Sunday. Manager Brad Ausmus says Zimmermann has a Grade 1 strain, which is the lowest level. The right-hander is 7-2 this season.

— Tampa Bay outfielder Kevin Kiermaier is expected to be sidelined eight to 10 weeks with a broken left hand. He is set to undergo surgery Tuesday to repair two fractures sustained when he dove for a fly ball Saturday against Detroit. He was hitting .236 with five homers and 16 RBIs.

— The Rangers' Josh Hamilton will miss the entire season after more surgery on his left knee. The 2010 AL MVP and a five-time All-Star, had surgery twice on the knee last year. The first was in September, and then he had another operation after the season.

— The Kansas City Royals have placed All-Star outfielder Alex Gordon on the 15-day disabled list with a fractured right wrist. Manager Ned Yost says Gordon will not need surgery but will miss three to four weeks. Gordon was injured in a loss to the Chicago White Sox on Sunday when he collided with third baseman Mike Moustakas.

— Yu Darvish is set to make his first start Saturday for the Texas Rangers in nearly 22 months since having Tommy John surgery. Darvish is expected to start for the Rangers in Saturday night's home game against Pittsburgh after five rehab outings this month.


Braves get Matusz, draft picks from Orioles

ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Braves have invested deeper into their already important June draft by acquiring left-hander Brian Matusz and the 76th pick in the draft from the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for minor league pitchers Brandon Barker and Trevor Belicek.

The move gives the rebuilding Braves five of the first 80 picks in the June 9-11 draft, including the No. 3 overall selection.

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