Carpenter comes in for short-handed Yankees, as Brewers extend NL Central lead

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Nestor Cortes carried a three-hit shutout into the ninth inning as the New York Yankees defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 7-2 on Thursday.

Cortes was in impressive form, finishing with five struck out and four hits over 109 pitches before Wandy Peralta came in to close the game out.

The Yankees came into this game with Giancarlo Stanton and Josh Donaldson both unavailable while DJ LeMahieu also deals with wrist soreness.

Requesting a release after 21 games in Triple-A ball for the Round Rock Express, the Texas Rangers' affiliate, Matt Carpenter scored twice from two at-bats as the designated hitter in his debut game for the Pinstripes.

Now on a three-game winning streak, the Yankees moved to 32-13 to extend their lead over the Rays atop the American League East.

Nola propels Phillies to win over Braves

The Philadelphia Phillies bounced back to defeat the Atlanta Braves, splitting their four-game series with a 4-1 win.

Aaron Nola struck out 10 and gave up only four hits while pitching a shutout coming into the ninth inning, giving up one more hit over an eventual 109 pitches before Corey Knebel closed.

The Phillies and Braves are now even on a 21-24 record in the National League East, both seven-and-a-half games behind the New York Mets.

Brewers beat Cardinals, extend NL Central lead

Josh Hader made the eventual save for the Milwaukee Brewers, earning a 37th consecutive scoreless appearance as they defeated the St Louis Cardinals 4-3.

Eric Lauer started slowly for the Brewers, giving up two runs and four hits in the opening two innings, before closing with four hits and a strikeout over 96 pitches in five innings.

Tyrone Taylor drove in for the seventh game in a row while Luis Urias scored a home run, as the Brewers extended their lead over the Cards in the NL Central.

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