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MLB: Boston maul Toronto

The Boston Red Sox continued their impressive recent run with a 14-1 mauling of the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre - all of the runs coming between the second and fifth innings.

David Ortiz went deep twice to pass Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski for 36th on the all-time list as the reigning World Series champions made it five wins on the trot to close the gap on third-placed Toronto in the American League East division.

They also eased a step closer to the second-placed New York Yankees after their arch-rivals slumped to a 4-2 defeat to the Texas Rangers at Yankee Stadium.

That loss allowed Baltimore to strengthen their hold on first place in the division with their 4-2 win over the Los Angeles Angels, Adam Jones clubbing a pair of home runs for the Orioles.

In the AL Central division, the Detroit Tigers moved further clear after beating the Arizona Diamondbacks 4-3 - making it back-to-back wins after four successive defeats - while seeing second-placed Cleveland go down by the same scoreline against Minnesota.

The Washington Nationals recorded a third successive victory after seeing off the Colorado Rockies 7-2, Ian Desmond contributing five hits including a two-run homer to help put his side clear at the top of the National League East.

The Nationals are now a game clear of the Atlanta Braves, who were beaten 3-1 by the Miami Marlins after Garrett Jones hit a two-run single in the 10th inning to seal victory at Turner Field.

In the NL Central, the Milwaukee Brewers earned a half-game lead over the non-playing Cardinals with a 5-2 win over the Cincinnati Reds, while there was no change at the top of the NL West as both the San Francisco Giants and LA Dodgers picked up victories.

Pacesetters the Giants beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-4 for their fourth triumph in five games while the Dodgers were 5-2 victors over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Also, the Chicago White Sox inflicted a fourth successive defeat on the Kansas City Royals with a 3-1 win, while the Seattle Mariners were 5-2 winners against the New York Mets.