News and notes from around the Central:
- Nick Stavinoha -- who Brewer fans will remember from the kneeling, one-handed homer he hit off of Trevor Hoffman last season -- set a record with 109 RsBI for AAA Memphis this season, but that wasn't enough to earn him a roster spot with the Cardinals for September.
- Reds right-hander Bronson Arroyo took a wicked shot off his left leg on a comebacker hit by Rafael Furcal on Sunday, and Arroyo was sporting a large bandage and a larger welt on his leg on Monday. But he says he expects to make his scheduled start on Saturday against Colorado.
- Pirates backstop Chris Snyder was hoping to make it back for the last couple weeks of the season after undergoing surgery on his lower back on June 10, but his rehab didn't progress as quickly as hoped and Snyder says he's done for the year.
- After a couple of successful rehab starts for AAA Iowa, Andrew Cashner was finally activated from the DL by the Cubs. Cashner was expected to hold down a spot in the rotation this year, but those plans were scuttled when Cashner landed on the disabled list on April 6 with a strained rotator cuff.
- The Astros clearly think a lot of Clint Barmes since they held onto the veteran shortstop in the midst of their horrendous season, and Barmes apparently thinks a lot of the 'Stros, too: he told reporters he'd love to return to Houston in 2012.
- Behind homers from Ryan Braun and Tony Plush and eight dynamite innings from Randy Wolf, Milwaukee reduced its magic number to 11 by beating St. Louis, 4-1. Our recap is here.
- Chicago got three runs in the fifth inning to break a 1-1 tie and survived some white knuckle moments to clip Cincinnati, 4-3. Aramis Ramirez drove in two in the fifth with a single, and came around to score when Dontrelle Willis uncorked a wild pitch two batters later. The Reds got one run back when Reed Johnson booted Yonder Alonso's drive in the seventh, turning a single into a three-base error, and pulled within one in the eighth when Starlin Castro kicked away Joey Votto's grounder, allowing Brandon Phillips to score. But Carlos Marmol put the Reds down in order in the ninth to notch his 32nd save on the season.
- James McDonald was magnificent for 7.1 innings, holding the Astros to three hits and three walks while striking out six, as Pittsburgh got a measure of revenge, defeating Houston 3-1. Rookie Henry Sosa worked in and out of trouble all day, giving up six hits and three walks in six innings but limiting the Bucs to two runs, both of which scored in the fourth inning (Ryan Doumit RBI double and Josh Harrison run-scoring single). Derrek Lee homered in the eighth to account for the final margin, and Joel Hanrahan worked out of a jam in the ninth inning to pick up his 35th save.
Your updated standings for September 6:
|W||L||GB||Last 10||Streak||Elimination #
The Wild Card race looks like this right now:
And here are the playoff participants, if the season ended today:
Braves (Wild Card)
On tap for today:
- The Crew and Cardinals are back at it at 7:15 p.m. CDT, when Yovani Gallardo (15-9, 3.68) takes on Kyle Lohse (12-8, 3.72).
- The Reds and Cubs play under the lights at Wrigley Field at 7:05 p.m. CDT. Mike Leake (11-8, 4.12) faces Rodrigo Lopez (4-6, 4.94) in this one.
- The Pirates and Astros play game two of their series at 6:05 p.m. CDT at PNC Park. Brad Lincoln (1-1, 3.64) gets another start for the Bucs, while Brett Myers (3-13, 4.81) returns from paternity leave for the 'Stros.