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Big League Stew

The Juice: D-Backs top Reds after blown saves by Heath Bell and Aroldis Chapman

Mark Townsend
Big League Stew

The Juice returns for season No. 6! It's almost eligible for free-agency! Stop by daily for news from the action, along with great photos, stats, video highlights and more.

A fun day of baseball was highlighted by a wild game out west.

For 5 2/3 innings, Cincinnati Reds starter Mike Leake was absolutely perfect. 17 Arizona Diamondbacks up, 17 down, right up until the opposing pitcher, Patrick Corbin, brought him back to reality with a double. That was Leake's first mistake of the day. His second and final mistake immediately followed as Gerardo Parra put Arizona ahead 2-1 with a two-run homer. The action would settle down again as both starters worked through the eighth. Then it went to the bullpens and the real fun began.

In the top of the ninth, D-Backs closer Heath Bell did something that no Arizona reliever had done before. For the fifth consecutive appearance, he allowed a home run. Ouch. It was a two-run shot by Jay Bruce (his second of the game) which put Cincinnati up 3-2. It also cost Corbin a chance to go 10-0. Double ouch. After walking the third batter, Bell was removed and his status as closer was immediately called into question.

Moving on to the bottom of the ninth, Reds closer Aroldis Chapman was somehow less effective than Bell. He faced only four batters, retiring none. Single, walk, walk, two-run walk-off single from Jason Kubel wins it for Arizona, 4-3.

Perfect 10: The Toronto Blue Jays winning streak reached double digits on Saturday after they knocked off the Baltimore Orioles in a another nine-inning thriller, 4-2. As is always the case when teams get on this type of roll, the contributions come from everywhere on the roster. This time, though, the biggest contribution came from the top as all-star Jose Bautista launched the two-run go-ahead homer off Darren O’Day in the eighth.

With the victory, Toronto moves to 37-36. That means all five teams in the American League East are now north of .500. Pretty remarkable, though not completely surprising.

Uncle Charlie smiles: After taking his frustrations out on the media following Friday night’s loss to the Mets, Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel had reason to smile Saturday as his offense finally broke loose and carried the team to an 8-7 victory.

Veteran first baseman Ryan Howard did the bulk of the damage, homering twice and driving in four. But it was unlikely hero Kevin Frandsen who came up with the biggest hit, a walk-off home run in the ninth after Jonathan Papelbon blew his third consecutive save chance. Papelbon had been a perfect 14 for 14 prior to his slump, so that's something else for the media to bug Manuel about.

Giants finally get the Marlins off their back: The Miami Marlins nine-game winning streak at AT&T Park is why baseball is the greatest game you'll find. There's really no logic or explanation for why it happened, it just happened. And then it ended on Saturday, because odds tend to favor a perennial championship contender like the San Francisco Giants knocking off Miami at least one time out of ten. Sure, it took them 11 innings to finally get the job done, but it's done thanks to Hector Sanchez's game-winning single. Giants win 2-1.

MORE SCORES

Yankees 7, Rays 5: Mired in a 9 for 87 slump with no extra-base hits in the month of June, Vernon Wells snapped out of it with a clutch three-run double in the eight inning to give New York the lead and the victory.

Rockies 7, Nationals 1: Colorado snaps a five-game losing streak thanks to seven shutout innings from Jhoulys Chacin and a productive big league debut by outfielder Corey Dickerson (two doubles).

White Sox 3, Royals 2: Reliever Jesse Crain extended his scoreless appearance streak to 29 with a spotless eighth and Chicago’s offense rewarded him with his second victory as Alejandro De Aza delivered the go-ahead run in the ninth on a sacrifice fly.

Astros 4, Cubs 3: A J.D. Martinez three-run homer helped Houston overcome a 3-0 deficit early. Then, with the game still tied in the ninth, the Astros scratched out the game-winner on Ronny Cedeno’s safety squeeze.

Rangers 4, Cardinals 2: Like Friday, Nelson Cruz delivered the game-winner. This time it was a two-run homer all the way back in the third.

Indians 8, Twins 7: A little too close for comfort for Cleveland after jumping out to a 6-2 lead in the first. Michael Bourn and Jason Kipnis had three hits each.

Dodgers 6, Padres 1: Zack Greinke struck out a season-high eight, including his old pal Carlos Quentin twice.

Tigers 10, Red Sox 3: Max Scherzer became the first pitcher to start a season 11-0 since Roger Clemens in 1997. Pencil him in for Citi Field in July.

Pirates 6, Angels 1: Pittsburgh improves to a season-best 15 games over .500 (45-30). This has to be the year, doesn't it?

Mariners 7, A's 5: Raul Ibanez tied it with a three-run homer in the seventh and then rookie Nick Franklin put Seattle up with a two-run single in the eighth.

''A lot of people thought that I was done, that I had retired. People forgot that I was just 31- years-old. In my career, just last year was a really bad year. I know what I am capable of doing.''

''It feels great. You have no idea how happy and excited I am. I have to continue working hard and hopefully play for many years to come.''

— Francisco "K-Rod" Rodriguez on picking up his 300th career save in the Brewers 2-0 victory over the Atlanta Braves.

View photo

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(USA Today)

Howie Kendrick gets the worst end of a very minor collision with Pirates catcher Russell Martin. He was also out at the plate.

• Ryan Howard has faced Dillon Gee in six different MLB games. He's homered off him in five of those games.

Courtesy of True Blue LA's Eric Stephen, Yasiel Puig in the first inning this year is 10-for-14 with a double, home run, and a walk;

• Jay Bruce's last seven hits have all been home runs.

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