Friday brought us what we’ll call a 15 1/2-game slate of big league action. The Mets and Cardinals had to complete Thursday’s suspended game before playing Friday’s regularly scheduled game. Here is everything you need to know about Friday’s MLB action.

Select games can be streamed regionally via fuboTV (Try for free). For more on what channel each game is on, click here.

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Baseball scores for Friday, June 14

Braves, McCann walk-off with eighth straight win

Big series in Atlanta this weekend, folks. Big, big series. The first-place Braves and second-place Phillies are meeting at SunTrust Park for a three-game set. The Braves took a 1 1/2-game lead into the series and, for eight and a half innings, it looked like the Phillies would cut that lead to a half game.

Bryce Harper swatted his 12th homer, Rhys Hoskins hit his 15th homer, and Scott Kingery hit his eighth homer to help the Phillies build an 8-4 lead. Atlanta drew closer with two runs in the eighth. Then, in the ninth, the Braves put three runs on the board against closer Hector Neris. Austin Riley doubled in a run and Brian McCann poked a two-out, two-strike, two-run walk-off single to left. To the action footage:

McCann’s single extends Atlanta’s winning streak to eight games — it is their longest winning streak since a nine-gamer in 2014 — and its NL East lead to 2 1/2 games. It’s the largest division lead this season. The Braves are 11-2 in their past 13 games, and, at some point in the next week, they’ll add Dallas Keuchel to their rotation. Not bad. Not bad at all.

As for the Phillies, they’ve lost four of their past five games and have quickly fallen behind the Braves in the NL East after sitting in first place since April 26. Friday’s loss means the Phillies are assured of leaving this series in second place.

Bauers hits for the cycle

Another day, another cycle. One day after Angels star Shohei Ohtani became the first Japanese-born player to hit for the cycle, Indians slugger Jake Bauers hit for the cycle on Friday. He’s the first Cleveland player to hit for the cycle since Rajai Davis in 2016.

Against the Tigers, Bauers’ big day went double in the second, infield single in the fourth, triple also in the fourth, and homer in the eighth. (He also struck out in the sixth.) Here’s the video:

Friday’s cycle makes for the best day in Bauers’ first season with the Indians. He came over in the three-team trade that sent Edwin Encarnacion to the Mariners and Yandy Diaz to the Rays, and went into Friday’s game hitting .209/.294/.346 overall. The cycle raised his line to a more respectable .222/.305/.384. It’s a start.

Bauers is the third player to hit for the cycle this season, joining Ohtani and Twins shortstop Jorge Polanco. Ohtani and Bauers are the third set of players in history to hit for the cycle on back-to-back days.

Vlad Jr. exits after hit by pitch

Scary moment in Houston on Friday night. Blue Jays wunderkind Vladimir Guerrero Jr. took a 96.3 mph Gerrit Cole fastball to the left hand in the first inning. He initially stayed in the game and ran the bases, but was removed and sent for tests a short while later.

Here’s the video of the (unintentional) hit-by-pitch:

The good news: X-rays came back negative and Guerrero was diagnosed with a left hand contusion. He has a bruise, basically. It is unclear whether he will be able to play Saturday. After taking a Cole heater to the hand, I wouldn’t be surprised if Vlad Jr. needs a day or two to get healthy.

Diaz blows Thursday’s game on Friday

Mets closer Edwin Diaz had a really bad game spanning 19 hours. Thursday night, Diaz blew a two-run ninth inning lead against the Cardinals. Harrison Bader’s game-tying double was the big blow. Soon after the Cardinals tied the game, rain arrived at Citi Field, and the game was suspended.

The Mets and Cardinals resumed the game Friday evening and, because he was technically still in the game, the Mets sent Diaz back out for the tenth inning. Officially, it goes into the record books as a two-inning appearance. In reality, it was two separate one-inning stints on back-to-back days. St. Louis took the lead when Diaz coughed up a run.

Three runs in two innings spanning two days gives Diaz a 3.58 ERA in 27 2/3 innings this season. That’s not horrible, but it’s not “best reliever in baseball” stuff, which is what Diaz arguably was coming into the season. Blowing the save, dwelling on it for 19 hours, and then taking the loss in the same game couldn’t have been fun. 

Giolito pitches White Sox back to .500

For the first time since they were 3-3 six games into last season, the White Sox have a .500 record. Two Eloy Jimenez home runs (more on that below) and another Lucas Giolito gem helped the ChiSox beat the Yankees on Friday night, leveling the team’s record at 34-34. Giolito is down to a 2.22 ERA on the year.

The White Sox have not been .500 this late in the season since they were 50-50 on July 26, 2016. They’ve won 11 of their past 16 games and are 25-20 dating back to April 24. It may not sound like much, but the White Sox had not won 25 times in a 45-game span since early 2016. The transition from rebuilder to contender to officially underway.

As for the Yankees, they have now lost eight of their last 11 games, and have been outscored 74-56 in the 11 games. Friday’s loss combined with the Rays beating the Angels moves New York into second place and gives Tampa sole possession of first place in the AL East for the first time in a month.

Alvarez crushes third home run

Four MLB games, three home runs for Astros rookie Yordan Alvarez. Like the first two, Alvarez’s third home run was an absolute bomb. He hit the ball on to the train tracks at Minute Maid Park. That’s an opposite field shot as a left-handed hitter. Look at this home run. Just look at it:

Statcast measured that home run at 109 mph off the bat and says it traveled 425 feet. Again, that’s an opposite field homer. Only nine other players have hit an opposite field home run at least 425 feet this year. (Ronald Acuna and Javier Baez have each done it twice.) Prior to his call up, Alvarez swatted 23 home runs in 56 Triple-A games.

With a name like that and home runs like that, we have to start calling him Air Yordan, right? Right. The Astros are already an offensive force. Add Alvarez to a healthy Carlos Correa, George Springer, and Jose Altuve, and forget it. They might be unstoppable.

Highlight of the Day: Andrus steals home again

For the third time this season, the Rangers stole home Friday night. Elvis Andrus did the deed, specifically. It was a delayed steal of home against the Reds and instant replay overturned the original out call. Here’s the video:

Three steals of home is a new single-season franchise record. Furthermore, Andrus now has six career steals of home. That is not only the most in Rangers history, it is the second most by any player in the last 45 years.

Andrus also stole home against the Athletics on April 14 this season. Rougned Odor stole home against the A’s last week.

Stat of the Day: Yankees hit and allow homers again

For the first time in league history, one team has both hit a home run and allowed a home run in 13 consecutive games. The Yankees are that team. Luke Voit slugged a first inning home run against Lucas Giolito on Friday night — it was the first homer Giolito has allowed to a right-handed batter this season — to extend the team’s homer streak to 17 games. 

That is tied for the second longest such streak in Yankees history:

  1. 25 games: June 1-29, 1984
  2. 17 games: May 26, 2019 to present
  3. 17 games: May 22 to June 8, 1961
  4. 16 games: July 16 to August 1, 1993
  5. 16 games: My 15 to June 4, 1994

A half-inning after Voit gave the Yankees a 1-0 lead, White Sox slugger Eloy Jimenez turned it into a 3-1 deficit. Jimenez hit a three-run home run against CC Sabathia to get the ChiSox on the board. With that blast, New York’s pitchers have allowed a home run in 13 straight games, the fifth longest streak in franchise history. The Yankees are the first team to hit and allow a homer in 13 straight games.

As for Jimenez, he added another home run later in Friday’s game, and has five home runs in his last six games after hitting four homers in his previous 26 games. He went into Friday’s game with a .236/.294/.446 batting line. It sure looks like the young man is starting figure things out though.

Quick hits