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Author: Subject: 180 in the second half of the season

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posted on 11-7-2018 at 01:28 AM Edit Post Reply With Quote
180 in the second half of the season

CHICAGO — The Chicago Cubs have already clinched a spot in the National League playoffs.But as they begin their final regular-season series against the rival St. Louis Cardinals on Friday at Wrigley Field Authentic Matt Ioannidis Jersey , the Cubs realize they need to be in the right mentality as they push for their third straight NL Central title.After a 3-0 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday, the Cubs lowered their magic number to three to clinch the division title. More important, the win increased their lead over the idle second-place Milwaukee Brewers to one game in the Central.Article continues below ...While the Cubs’ postseason berth has already been secured, they are hoping to hold off the surging Brewers for the title. That will make the next three games against the Cardinals critically important.“I think these are all playoff games to get us ready for October,” Cubs center fielder Albert Almora Jr. told reporters Thursday, according to the Chicago Tribune. The Cubs will continue to play without shortstop Addison Russell. Major League Baseball extended his administrative leave through Sunday as Russell remains under investigation for alleged domestic violence against his ex-wife.The Cubs have also been hampered with injuries, which makes finding a way to stick together for the next three days even more important. “(It’s) all hands on deck,” first baseman Anthony Rizzo told reporters, according to the Tribune. “We got to figure out how to win.”Kyle Hendricks (13-11, 3.49 ERA) will start for the Cubs on Friday and will be in search of his third straight victory.Hendricks has allowed just one earned run in three of his four starts in September and has at least worked into the seventh inning in each of his past two starts. He is 4-2 with a 3.49 ERA in 13 career stats against St. Louis.While the Cubs have plenty at stake, the Cardinals still have plenty of incentive. After being swept by the Brewers punctuated by a tough-to-swallow 2-1 loss on Wednesday Matt Ioannidis Jersey Elite , St. Louis could still find their way into the wild-card picture if they can find a way to get back on track in Chicago.But knowing the Cubs will be looking to still capture the division title, the Cardinals know what they’re up against.“In my mind, we have to win all three games — that’s all there is to it,” Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright told reporters on Wednesday, according to the team’s official website.“We had ourselves in a good spot and we just got beat three games by a good team over there and we did not make the pitches we needed to, make the plays we needed to, didn’t hit the way we needed to and that’s a good way to lose a baseball game, lose a series and get swept against a good team. You’ve got to capitalize and we had our chances certainly.”Wainwright will look to snap the Cardinals’ three-game skid when he takes the mound in Friday’s series opener. Wainwright (2-3, 4.08) has allowed four earned runs in two of his three September starts and will attempt to get St. Louis started in the right direction against Chicago, against whom he has a 15-9 career record in 44 outings (35 starts) with a 3.94 ERA. ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Jake Bauers spoiled the Oakland Athletics‘ chance to close some ground on the AL wild card-leading New York Yankees.Bauers hit a three-run homer off Jeurys Familia in the eighth inning to help the Tampa Bay Rays slow the playoff-chasing Athletics with a 7-5 win Saturday night.Oakland remains 1 1/2 games behind the Yankees for the top AL wild card after New York lost to Toronto earlier in the day. The A’s , who have dropped two of three since winning six straight, fell 3 1/2 games behind Houston in the AL West.Bauers’ homer was just the second allowed by Familia (4-2) since he was acquired by Oakland on July 21 from the Mets.It came a few minutes after Oakland manager Bob Melvin was ejected by home plate umpire Larry Vanover for arguing a third-strike call on Marcus Semien in the top of the eighth.Bauers, who busted a 4-for-65 slump with three hits and four RBIs, celebrated his 11th homer with a big flip of the bat.“It’s nothing to do with disrespect or showing people up or anything like that. It’s just purely letting a lot of pent up emotions out,” he said. “The homer felt great, the bat flip felt better.”Andrew Kittredge (2-2) retired Mark Canha with the bases loaded in the eighth to preserve a 4-4 tie and win a game in which both teams used relievers as openers. Tampa Bay and Oakland have been at the forefront of that trend this season.“Oakland’s playing for an awful lot right now,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “Every game, they put themselves in a situation where they’re playing for a wild card home field. They’ve been on a nice run. It makes all the sense in the world how aggressive they’re being.”Sergio Romo got his 20th save despite giving up a homer to Matt Chapman in the ninth. It was Chapman’s 23rd homer.Oakland’s big chance came in the eighth. Before Canha grounded out, Semien was called out on strikes with the bases loaded.“I mean, everyone sees the box,” Semien said. “I looked at the box on the computer and it was not in the strike zone. That’s the facts. That’s what I saw on our computer.”Melvin Authentic Adrian Peterson Jersey , who was ejected for the second time this season, saw it, too.“The closer we get to the end, the more emotional we’re going to be,” he said. “He’s trying to grind through that at-bat and drive in the go-ahead run, and you feel like he gets a (strike) call that’s not a strike. … It happens.”Brandon Lowe hit a two-run homer in the second to put Tampa Bay ahead, and Jed Lowrie made it 2-1 in the third with a single off Yonny Chirinos. Chirinos then retired 10 in a row before Matt Olson tied it in the sixth with his 27th home run.Kevin Kiermaier hit an RBI triple and scored on Bauers’ sacrifice fly for a 4-2 lead in the sixth, but Canha’s pinch-hit double helped the A’s tie it at 4 in the seventh.Tommy Pham’s 17-game hitting streak came to an end for the Rays, who have won 10 of 13.FOUR TEAMS WINNING 100 GAMES?With two weeks left in the season, the A’s, Astros and Yankees could join the Red Sox as 100-win teams. Never before have three teams from the same league — or four teams from both leagues — won 100 games in the same season.“There seems to be Adrian Peterson Jersey Elite , at least in our league, more powerhouses this year than in the past, maybe a little less parity,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “The only thing I would really take from that is that if you went into the season and looked at those (other) three teams that might win 100 games, you almost expected them to.”TRAINER’S ROOMAthletics: OF Chad Pinder was in the leadoff spot after stumbling over the bullpen mound while chasing a foul ball Friday night.Rays: Cash said Romo is fine after the reliever “dinged his knee up a little bit” while working a perfect ninth inning Friday night. … INF Daniel Robertson, rehabbing after season-ending left thumb surgery, resumed taking grounders at second base and shortstop.UP NEXTRHP Mike Fiers (5-0, 2.72 in seven starts since being acquired from Detroit) will pitch Sunday’s series finale for the A’s. RHP Diego Castillo, who started Friday night’s game for the Rays and pitched two innings, will start again Sunday.
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