HOUSTON, Texas — Cleveland pitchers came within two outs of producing a no-hitter at Houston on Thursday, and had to settle for a 5-1 win against the Astros.
Set up by starter Trevor Bauer, the Indians pitching staff looked like achieving the rare feat until Jed Lowrie hit a home run with one out in the ninth inning.
Elsewhere, Alex Rodriguez hit his first home run since a year-long doping suspension but it was not enough for the New York Yankees, who were beaten at home by Toronto, while Detroit set a modern American League record for scoreless innings to start a season, en route to another comfortable win against Minnesota.
Cleveland starter Bauer was replaced after throwing 111 pitches through six innings. He struck out a career-high 11.
Relievers Kyle Crockett and Scott Atchison each pitched a scoreless inning before Nick Hagadone took over. Hagadone struck out the first batter to begin the ninth but Lowrie then sent a fastball far over the left-center field wall for Houston’s only hit.
The Indians have not had a no-hitter since Len Baker threw a perfect game in 1981 against Toronto.
Roberto Perez and Jose Ramirez homered for Cleveland.
In a rainy night in New York, Rodriguez took the headlines but the Blue Jays took the game, beating the Yankees 6-3.
Rodriguez led off the sixth with a drive into the left-field seats for his 655th career homer and first since 2013. The three-time MVP ranks fifth on the career list.
Toronto’s eccentric rookie pitcher Daniel Norris claimed his first win in the majors, Edwin Encarnacion homered and the Blue Jays got RBI singles from Jose Reyes and Kevin Pillar in a four-run second inning.
Detroit pitchers extended their run of scoreless innings to 24 before letting in a run in the seventh inning as the Tigers beat Minnesota 7-1.
Detroit broke the AL mark of 22 scoreless innings to start a season set by the 1947 Chicago White Sox, STATS said. The longest such streak in the majors since 1912 is 32 innings by the 1963 St. Louis Cardinals.