News and notes from the playoff chase:
- Philadelphia's really mailing it in at the end of year: the Phils dropped their fifth straight game -- and third straight to the Nats -- falling 7-5 at Citizens Bank Ballpark. But the Phils have bigger things to worry about, and one of those things is Hunter Pence, who's day to day with a mild strain of his patellar tendon.
- Meanwhile: the Wild Card-leading Braves took another step backwards last night, getting handcuffed by Javier Vazquez and losing to the Marlins, 3-0, in Miami, as Derek Lowe fell to 0-4 with an 8.24 ERA in his last four starts. With St. Louis defeating the woeful Mets at Busch Stadium and San Francisco clipping the Dodgers, 8-5, Atlanta has a lead of just 1.5 games on the Cards and only 3.5 on the hard-charging Giants.
- Arizona reduced its magic number to clinch the NL West title to two with a hard-fought, 8-5 win over the Pirates at Chase Field. The Diamondbacks are off on Thursday, though, so the earliest they'd be able to pop the champagne is Friday, when the Giants come to town.
The Wild Card race looks like this right now:
|W||L||GB||Last 10||Streak||Wild Card E #
Note: If the Brewers were not leading the Central, they would have a three (3) game lead on the Braves for the Wild Card spot.
And here are the playoff participants, if the season ended today:
|W||L||GB||Last 10||Streak||Magic #
Braves (Wild Card)
On tap for today:
- Philadelphia vs. Washington: Oswalt (8-9, 3.66) vs. Peacock (1-0, 1.42)
Milwaukee has the day off.
- Arizona has the day off.
Atlanta has the day off.
St. Louis vs. New York: Westbrook (12-9, 4.58) vs. Capuano (11-12, 4.47)
- San Francisco @ Los Angeles: Bumgarner (12-12, 3.21) vs. Kuroda (12-16, 3.19)