CHICAGO – The Atlanta Braves clinched their first NL East title since 2005, then rode two homers by Andrelton Simmons to a 5-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs that touched off a wild party in the cramped visitors’ clubhouse at Wrigley Field.
The game was in the sixth when Washington lost 4-2 to Miami in a doubleheader opener, giving the Braves the division championship. There were a few high-fives in Atlanta’s dugout when the Marlins won, and a couple of Braves fans did the tomahawk chop in the stands.
Simmons hit a solo drive in the fourth and a two-run shot in the eighth, giving him 17 homers on the year.
Julio Teheran (13-8) struck out seven over six innings of one-run ball. Edwin Jackson (8-17), who leads the major leagues in losses, allowed three runs and eight hits in six-plus innings.
BREWERS 6, CARDINALS 4
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Norichika Aoki scored three times and doubled home a run, and Milwaukee beat sloppy St. Louis hours after the Cardinals clinched a playoff berth.
Wily Peralta (11-15) gave up five hits and walked five in five-plus innings for the Brewers. The Cardinals put the go-ahead run at the plate with two outs in the ninth, but closer Jim Henderson got slugger Matt Adams to strike out to end the game and earn his 26th save.
St. Louis learned earlier it was assured of at least an NL wild card after Washington lost its doubleheader opener against Miami.
However, the Cardinals weren’t sharp on the field. Starter Joe Kelly (9-5) had one of two errors in the Brewers’ two-run second.
REDS 11, PIRATES 3
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Rookie Billy Hamilton got three hits and stole two more bases as Cincinnati tied Pittsburgh for the NL wild-card lead at 89-67.
Jay Bruce hit a three-run double and Todd Frazier followed with a homer that capped a five-run burst in the first against Jeff Locke (10-7).
Bronson Arroyo (14-11) allowed three runs and five hits in five innings to win for the first time since Aug. 24.
MARLINS 4, NATIONALS 2, 1st GAME; NATIONALS 5, MARLINS 4, 2nd GAME
WASHINGTON (AP) — Giancarlo Stanton and Christian Yelich homered for the Marlins in a doubleheader opener after the Nationals honoured retiring manager Davey Johnson with a 15-minute pregame celebration.
Tom Koehler (4-10) allowed two runs and three hits in six innings, and Steve Cishek pitched a perfect ninth to tie a team record by converting his 27th consecutive save chance.
Dan Haren (9-14) lost to Miami for the third time this year, giving up three runs and eight hits in six innings.
Wilson Ramos’ ninth-inning grounder bounced off a leg of third baseman Chris Coghlan for a game-ending error that allowed pinch-runner Eury Perez to score from third for Washington. The Nationals earned a split in the doubleheader that left them five games back in the NL wild-card race with six games left.
Rafael Soriano (3-3) pitched a scoreless ninth inning to win Washington’s regular-season home finale, and Denard Span drove in three runs.
Jayson Werth off Sam Dyson (0-2) leading off the ninth, and Perez pinch ran and stole third with one out.
Coming back from right forearm tightness, Stephen Strasburg allowed three runs and six hits in six innings and left with a 4-3 lead. Stanton hit a tying double off Tyler Clippard in the eighth.
METS 4, PHILLIES 3
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Wilfredo Tovar hit a two-run, seventh-inning single in his major league debut, putting the Mets ahead for good at 3-2.
LaTroy Hawkins earned his 100th career save and 12th this season by striking out Jimmy Rollins to end it. Trying to stop a streak of four straight fourth-place finishes in the NL East, the Mets completed a three-game sweep and tied the Phillies for third.
Carlos Torres (4-5) allowed two runs and seven hits in six innings to beat Cliff Lee (14-7), who gave up three runs — two earned — and eight hits in seven innings.
Before the game, the Phillies said they were removing the interim tag on manager Ryne Sandberg.
DODGERS 1, PADRES 0
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Adrian Gonzalez scored an unearned run and Zack Greinke combined with three relievers on a two-hitter for the NL West champions.
Andrew Cashner (10-9) had a two-hitter into the seventh when Gonzalez singled with one out, Matt Kemp struck out and Michael Young doubled off the right-field wall. Will Venable bobbled the ball, and Gonzalez came home after initially being held by third base coach Tim Wallach.
J.P. Howell (4-1) pitched a perfect sixth, and Kenley Jensen struck out the side in the ninth for his 27th save. Los Angeles leads the major leagues with 21 shutouts.
DIAMONDBACKS 13, ROCKIES 9
DENVER (AP) — Matt Davidson hit a three-run homer for the second straight day, and Arizona hung on after opening leads of 7-1 in the third and 13-5 in the ninth.
Colorado’s Michael Cuddyer was 3 for 5, raising his league-leading average to .334. Todd Helton, who is retiring at the end of the season, had four RBIs to raise his total to 1,402. Each team had 19 hits.
Will Harris (4-1) got the final two outs of the fifth. Juan Nicasio (8-9) gave up seven runs, seven hits and two walks in 2 1-3 innings.