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Quintana throws 3-hitter, Cubs close in

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

MILWAUKEE (AP) Jose Quintana was acquired by the Chicago Cubs for big games, and he came through big against the Brewers.

Quintana pitched a three-hitter for his second big league shutout, and the Cubs beat Milwaukee 5-0 on Sunday to close in on a second straight NL Central title and damage the Brewers' playoff hopes.

Coming off its first World Series title since 1908, Chicago (87-68) won three of four in the weekend series and opened a 5 1/2-game lead over the second-place Brewers (82-73) with seven games remaining.

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Diamondbacks clinch wild-card spot

PHOENIX (AP) Of course it was J.D. Martinez who got the hit that secured home-field advantage in the wild-card game for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

He's been getting big hit after big hit ever since coming over from Detroit before the July 31 trade deadline.

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Nats slugger Harper could return Monday

NEW YORK (AP) Bryce Harper could come off the disabled list and return to the Washington Nationals' lineup Monday night in the opener of a three-game series at Philadelphia.

"We're still trying to make up our minds," manager Dusty Baker said after Sunday's victory over the New York Mets. "So I will let you know (Monday)."

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Red Sox win, close in on division title

CINCINNATI (AP) Mookie Betts wasn't about to stop. Neither are the Red Sox, who are heading home with a chance to win another division title.

Betts doubled with the bases loaded to tie it in the eighth inning and dashed home from second base on an infield single, rallying the Red Sox to a 5-4 victory Sunday that moved them closer to an AL East championship.

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Twins sweep Tigers, close in on WC berth

DETROIT (AP) Eduardo Escobar may be having the most unpredicted success on the surprising Minnesota Twins.

Escobar hit his 20th home run, Jorge Polanco also went deep and Minnesota beat the Detroit Tigers 10-4 on Sunday to complete a four-game sweep that moved the Twins closer to securing a wild-card berth in the playoffs.

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Cards stumble again in loss to Pirates

PITTSBURGH (AP) The St. Louis Cardinals are running out of time to make their September surge extend their season beyond the first day of October.

Seung Hwan Oh's difficult season hit another low point when he surrendered a go-ahead two-run homer to Pittsburgh's Starling Marte in the fifth inning on Sunday as the Pirates pulled away for a 4-1 victory to blunt the Cardinals' momentum heading into the regular season's final week.

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Kluber becomes AL's first to 18 wins

SEATTLE (AP) At this point, there is not much Corey Kluber can do to strengthen his case for the American League Cy Young Award. Another win, another quality start, another 10 strikeouts has become what is expected from Cleveland's ace.

"He's the Cy Young. I think he's clearly the Cy Young," Indians teammate Jason Kipnis said. "That doesn't take away anything from Chris Sale. I think he's clearly the No. 2 and would be the Cy Young in any other year Corey Kluber is not pitching like this. What he's done has just been efficient as you can be."

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Kershaw picks up NL-best 18th victory

LOS ANGELES (AP) In a couple of months, Clayton Kershaw might need to make some room at home for a fourth NL Cy Young Award.

Kershaw became the first 18-game winner in the majors, pitching eight stingy innings to lead the Los Angeles Dodgers over the San Francisco Giants 3-1 on Sunday.

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Scherzer lifts Nats to home-field in LDS

NEW YORK (AP) With a pair of top pitchers going toe-to-toe on the mound, this one felt like a low-scoring playoff game. And that's exactly what the Washington Nationals are getting ready for.

Max Scherzer struck out 10 and outpitched Jacob deGrom in a matchup of aces, and the Nationals edged the New York Mets 3-2 on Sunday to clinch home-field advantage in the NL Division Series.

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