MINNEAPOLIS -- The Tampa Bay Rays didnt lose their edge during their recent slide. Theyre still strategizing with a World Series in mind. Saving Chris Archers right arm is one example, and he was so good on Friday night there was no concern of overexertion. Archer spun six scoreless innings, and the Rays added to their slim wild-card lead by beating the Minnesota Twins 3-0. "There was no moment that really showed up. He pretty much had his way," said manager Joe Maddon, who was more than satisfied with 87 pitches by the rookie. "I just want to really eye him up, because our intent is to play well into October, and I want to make sure that hes well." The Rays hold the second wild-card spot with four teams still in striking range. They nudged their advantage to 1 1/2 games over Cleveland, due to a loss by New York that pushed the Yankees to two games back. Baltimore (2 1/2 games behind) and Kansas City (3 1/2) are lurking, too. Archer (9-7) scattered three singles and struck out seven without a walk, following a pair of rough outings to start September. In his 20th start, he lowered his ERA to 3.03. "I still feel mentally and physically there. But I have an understanding of the big picture and maybe saving a couple extra innings, just in case if we do make that magical playoff run," Archer said. Yunel Escobar had an RBI double among his three hits for the Rays, and Desmond Jennings and James Loney drove in runs with singles against Kevin Correia (9-12), whose defence behind him was less than ideal. "We need to make the plays that should be made. Were not good enough to make up for that right now," Correia said. After losing 13 of 17 games, the Rays picked up an important victory on Thursday night over AL East-leading Boston on a tiebreaking eighth-inning double by rookie standout Wil Myers. The Rays started their weekend reprieve against the floundering Twins before 11 straight games against wild-card competitors Texas, the Orioles and Yankees. Tampa Bay has won 10 straight games against the Twins, including five this year. The Twins, who lost 15 of their last 18 home games, struck out 11 times. "I know hittings not easy. Ive been there. But you have to defend the plate. You have to put the ball in play. You have no chance when you dont swing," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. Correia, who leads the Twins in wins, starts, innings and strikeouts, left with no outs and two on in the seventh, and reliever Caleb Thielbar escaped with a popped-up bunt by Ben Zobrist that became a double play and a pickoff throw that caught David DeJesus stealing. That was about the only sequence for the Rays that went wrong. Archer took advantage of the weakened Twins lineup, missing star Joe Mauer and a whole lot more, and never let a runner advance past second base. In the fifth inning, he hit Darin Mastroianni with a pitch to put two on with one out. But Archer retired Clete Thomas and Eduardo Escobar on called third strikes, skipping off the mound and pumping his arm with a clenched fist on his way to the dugout. His changeup was extra sharp. "Ive had games where its been decent, but tonight was the best its been in my career," Archer said. Jake McGee, Joel Peralta and Fernando Rodney each pitched a scoreless inning in relief, and Rodney recorded his 35th save in 43 tries with a perfect ninth. So Archer left the game in good hands, even if he felt he couldve pitched longer. "Hes got a long career ahead of him, so at one point hes got to understand that and realize its not a bad thing," catcher Jose Molina said. NOTES: Mauer (concussion) felt good working out for the second straight day, and general manager Terry Ryan said the team will consider taking him on the road next week. ... RHP Jesse Crain, who has yet to pitch for the Rays since being acquired in a July trade with the White Sox because of a shoulder problem, might be ready for game action next week. ... LHP Matt Moore (15-3, 3.18 ERA) will try to extend his seven-game winning streak on Saturday for the Rays, against Twins rookie LHP Andrew Albers (2-2, 3.35 ERA). ... Zobrist became the Rays leader in career walks, passing Carlos Pena on the franchise list. Jesse Barfield Blue Jays Jersey . Gough finished in fourth, 0.433 seconds behind American Erin Hamlin, who took the bronze medal at the Sanki Sliding Center in Rzhanaya Polyana. Bud Norris Blue Jays Jersey .com) - Jeff Teague had 25 points, eight rebounds and seven assists as the Atlanta Hawks defeated the Milwaukee Bucks 90-85 on Saturday night. http://www.bluejaysonline.com/blue-jays-...sanchez-jersey/. Ryan Callahan trade talks caught a lot of people off guard. Details are now emerging about why the Rangers would consider such a move. Darren Dreger: He wants a lot of money. Its been widely reported that Callahan is looking for a seven-year term around $6 million per year. That is not accurate. Im told that it is more than $6. Bud Norris Jersey .com) - Hassan Whiteside scored 20 points with nine rebounds in the Miami Heats 83-75 win over the Boston Celtics on Sunday. Jack Morris Blue Jays Jersey .com) - A pair of Eastern Conference rivals will meet on Saturday as D. WASHINGTON -- In extra innings, with a chance to reclaim first place in the NL East, Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez gave two pitchers their major league debuts. Welcome to the big time, Juan Jaime and Ryan Buchter. "Perfect scenario to bring em in," Gonzalez said with a smile. "Those are big innings. We always talk when we bring em up, How are you going to use them? Whats the situation? Well, today was an extra-inning game against your division rival. Youre going to have to use them sooner or later." Jaime pitched a scoreless 11th inning and Buchter handled the 12th. Each allowed a walk but no further damage, and Buchter (1-0) got the win when the Braves scored a pair in the 13th Friday in a 6-4 victory over the Washington Nationals that flip-flopped the standings atop the NL East. "Youve got to test it out sometime, you know," said Buchter, with the game ball safely nestled in his glove in his locker. "Its a good chance to get experience." The win moved the Braves back into first place by one-half game and maintained their mastery over their division rivals. Atlanta was struggling before arriving in D.C. this week, but the club is 20-7 vs. Washington since the start of last season, including the first two of this four-game set. Evan Gattis, who earlier extended his hitting streak to 19 games, singled in the go-ahead run in the 13th off Jerry Blevins (2-3). Andrelton Simmons followed with an RBI groundout that might have been an inning-ending double play had second baseman Danny Espinosa not bobbled the ball. Jordan Walden worked the 13th for his second save, long after Craig Kimbrel blew a save for the fourth time this season. With the Nationals down to their last out in the ninth, Anthony Rendon tied the score when he got every bit of a 98 mph fastball from Kimbrel, the first homer allowed by the Braves closer in 2014. The umpires initially ruled Rendons hit a double, but a replay review clearly showed the ball striking the top of the barrier next to the visitors bullpen beyond the outfield fence. "This game changes on one swing sometimes," Washington manager Matt Williams said. "That couldve been the one swing, but it turns it out it wasnt. SSo we have to be ready to go tomorrow and put this one behind us like we always do.ddddddddddddWe got two more against these guys and a whole bunch of games left. We have to have short memories." Until Rendons homer, the Braves were poised to celebrate another nine-inning edition of continued dominance of the Nationals, this time by two-striking Stephen Strasburg into submission while riding Mike Minors 11 strikeouts. The Braves got nine hits against Strasburg, and six came with a pair of strikes, including every run-producing play: Freddie Freemans first-inning home run, Simmons fourth-inning RBI single and Jason Heywards two-run double in the fifth. That was plenty of support as long as Minor was in the game. He allowed two runs and seven hits over seven innings, and his 11 strikeouts were one short of a career high. Minor had given up 11 runs and 22 hits over nine innings in his previous two starts. The Braves fouled pitches and worked the count so successfully that Strasburg had thrown 107 pitches by the time he was pulled after six innings, even though he didnt walk a batter. He allowed nine hits -- tying a career high -- and struck out eight. Minor, by contrast, was able to finish off the Nationals batters. He gave up Ian Desmonds mammoth homer in the second inning -- the ball landed only a row or two from the cherry trees behind the left-field bleachers -- and Denard Spans RBI triple in the seventh. Minors performance nearly got him his first win since May 19. "Ninety-nine per cent of the time," Gonzalez said, "he gets a W there." NOTES: Gattis has the longest active hitting streak in the majors. ... Braves RHP Gavin Floyd was placed on the 15-day disabled list, one day after breaking a bone in his throwing elbow in the seventh inning of Thursdays win. Floyd flew to Atlanta to be examined by team doctors. Gonzalez said Alex Wood will take Floyds spot in the rotation, starting Wednesday against the Houston Astros. ... Atlanta OF Justin Upton complained again of dizziness and was not in the lineup. He did not play Wednesday and appeared only as a pinch-hitter Thursday. Gonzalez said it is time for Upton to "get a full evaluation, wherever that may be." ' ' '