Undermanned Royals claim win in Toronto as Carrasco, Williams shut Cubs out

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The Kansas City Royals overcame the absences of 10 unvaccinated players beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-1 on the road on Thursday night.

Foreign nationals who are not vaccinated against Covid-19 are not allowed to enter Canada, while unvaccinated MLB players are not among the limited exemptions that also require a 14-day quarantine.

Many teams have been affected by the restrictions this season, but the Royals had a far bigger contingent than other MLB teams to this point, with a subsequent slew of promotions from the minor leagues to compensate.

Double-A callup Angel Zerpa pitched five innings to claim his first win as a starter in the major leagues, allowing only four hits despite only striking out two batters over 73 pitches.

With 2022 All-Star Andrew Benintendi unavailable, Bobby Witt Jr. hit the tie-breaking home run off Kevin Gausman in the fifth inning, before Nate Eaton added another in the closing frame.

Carrasco helps keep Cubs to zero

Carlos Carrasco was again in impressive form for the New York Mets, as they claimed an 8-0 win over the Chicago Cubs.

Carrasco allowed only one runner to advance past first base in six solid innings, striking out six and allowing five hits over 90 pitches, before Trevor Williams closed out the final three innings for his first save in the major leagues.

Brandon Nimmo and Pete Alonso scored home runs in the sixth and eighth innings respectively to cap off the win, maintaining the Mets' 2.5 game lead over the Atlanta Braves in the National League East, while moving to within three games of the NL-leading Los Angeles Dodgers.

Pena propels Astros to win in Anaheim

Jeremy Pena drove in the game-winning run for the Houston Astros as they went into an extra inning, defeating the Los Angeles Angels 3-2.

The Astros effectively had to do it without eight-time All-Star selection Jose Altuve, who exited the game with a bruised left leg after he was hit with Reid Detmers' first pitch of the game.

Houston moved to within 3.5 games of the American League-leading New York Yankees, extending their record for the season to 58-30.

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