Best of MLB: Cubs Snap 8-game Skid Against Mets With 5-1 Win

CHICAGO -- Anthony Rizzo hit a three-run homer, Jon Lester pitched 7 2/3 innings and the Chicago Cubs stopped an eight-game losing streak against the New York Mets with a 5-1 victory on Monday night in a rematch of last year's NL Championship Series.

With one out and two on in the third inning, Rizzo fouled off five straight 2-2 pitches from Steven Matz before driving a changeup deep into the right-center bleachers for his 22nd homer.

The crowd of 41,353 cheered wildly as Rizzo rounded the bases on a picturesque night at Wrigley Field. The All-Star slugger is batting .339 with three homers and 10 RBIs in July.

The last time the Mets had visited the iconic neighborhood ballpark, they finished off a sweep of the Cubs to advance to the World Series. They swept Chicago again in New York from June 30 to July 3, roughing up Lester for one of the wins.

This time around was much different.

Lester (10-4) allowed one run -- Wilmer Flores' leadoff homer in the seventh -- and four hits in his first win in a month. David Ross added a sacrifice fly in the sixth, and Albert Almora Jr. singled in Matt Szczur in the eighth as the NL Central leaders won for the fourth time in five games since dropping five in a row (see full recap).

A-Rod, bullpen fuel Yankees' win over Orioles
NEW YORK -- Alex Rodriguez hit his 696th career homer , Ivan Nova grinded through six innings and the Yankees' bullpen trio closed up shop for the second straight game to help New York beat the Baltimore Orioles 2-1 on Monday night.

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Nova (7-5) loaded the bases in the first inning and needed 60 pitches to get through three but allowed just a solo homer to Jonathan Schoop. He handed a 2-1 lead over to New York's bullpen troika of Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman.

The No Run DMC triad, possibly in its final days with Miller and Chapman rumored to be on the trade block, covered the final three innings to extend its scoreless streak to 22 innings. The Yankees are 18-1 when all three relievers pitch in the same game.

Chapman hit 105 mph while locking down his 19th save. He retired Ryan Flaherty on a grounder with a runner on first to end it -- the bouncing ball hit part of Flaherty's shattered bat in the middle of the diamond before being easily handled.

Nova hadn't thrown more than 5 1/3 innings in five starts and had a 6.93 ERA in that time. He was coming off 10 days' rest, though, and used just 37 pitches over his final three innings (see full recap).

Leake strikes out 11 in Cardinals' victory
ST. LOUIS -- Mike Leake had his second straight double-digit strikeouts game with no walks, joining Bob Gibson as the only Cardinals to accomplish the feat, and St. Louis beat the San Diego Padres 10-2 on Monday night.

Leake (7-7) struck out a season-best 11, one shy of his career high, and allowed one run and six hits in six innings. He fanned 10 over seven innings in a victory at Milwaukee on July 10.

Gibson accomplished the feat in his final start of the 1968 regular-season and his first in 1969, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Leake has four career double-digit strikeouts games and is the first Cardinals pitcher with 10 or more in consecutive starts since Lance Lynn in 2012.

Pinch-hitter Matt Adams' two-run double keyed a four-run sixth inning. Randal Grichuk and Jedd Gyorko connecting in consecutive at-bats in the seventh, and Stephen Piscotty homered into Big Mac Land in the third deck in left in the eighth. Adams is 9 for 21 with two homers and eight RBIs as a pinch hitter (see full recap).

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