Around the Wild Card Race: September 21 Edition

The Brewers just blocked the Pirates chances of making the playoffs, and possibly a .500 season.

News and notes from around the Wild Card race:

  • Let's start with some news from outside the Wild Card race. The first two playoff berths were clinched yesterday, as Cincinnati and Washington both earned spots in the postseason. However, they have not clinched their divisions yet.
  • Carlos Beltran of St. Louis has been struggling with knee problems lately and had to sit out of the starting lineup on Thursday, though he did pinch hit in the game. The Cardinals are trying to take it easy with him and not overwork him.
  • Desperate times have started in Los Angeles, as they are considering moving around their rotation to stay in the Wild Card race. Harang may be moved to start on Sunday in a critical series against Cincinnati.

Looking at yesterday's games:

  • Milwaukee had to rally late after working their way into a 7-4 hole, putting up four runs in the eighth inning and holding on for a 9-7 win. Yesterday's recap is available from morineko if you missed it. (Box Score)
  • St. Louis got some timely hitting from Allen Craig and Carlos Beltran, then survived a few rallies by the Astros to complete the series sweep with a 5-4 win. (Box Score)
  • San Diego managed to salvage one game in their series against Arizona, putting three up early thanks to a Jesus Guzman home run, followed with another run in the second and two in the sixth. Arizona kept it interesting by loading the bases in the ninth inning, but five relief pitchers combined to shut the Diamondbacks down and salvage a 6-5 win. (Box Score)
  • Washington used a balanced attack to get past Los Angeles, riding six strong innings from Ross Detwiler and three innings of strong relief pitching to a 4-1 win, clinching their spot in the postseason. (Box Score)
  • It was all about the bookends in New York yesterday. Philadelphia put up eight runs in the first inning and seven runs in the ninth, along with twenty-one hits and four walks. They also got a great start from Tyler Cloyd, who pitched eight innings and allowed only one run. The end result was a 16-1 win for the Phillies. (Box Score)

Here are the updated Wild Card standings:

W L GB Last 10 Streak Elimination #
Atlanta 86 64 - 6-4 W1 -
St. Louis 80 70 - 5-5 W4 -
Milwaukee 77 72 2.5 8-2 W5 11
LA Dodgers 77 73 3 3-7 L1 10
Philadelphia 76 74 4 7-3 W3 9
Arizona 74 75 5.5 6-4 L1 8
Pittsburgh 74 75 5.5 2-8 L3 8
San Diego 72 78 8 7-3 W1 5

St. Louis continued winning, so it was another day of trying to keep pace. Milwaukee remained 2.5 games back with their win, but moved ahead of Los Angeles when they dropped their last game in Washington. Philadelphia and San Diego kept pace as well, but Arizona and Pittsburgh both lost another game in the standings.

Another team's hopes mathematically ended as New York was officially eliminated from the race. San Diego is the next team up, though they should survive through the weekend at a minimum.

Even though they made up no ground, Milwaukee's playoff chances continued to go up. Here are the updated playoff odds for the Brewers.

Date Odds
Today (9/20) 17.5%
Yesterday (9/19) 13.9%
One Week Ago (9/13) 6.7%
Two Weeks Ago (9/6) 0.4%
One Month Ago (8/20) <0.1%

New series start up today. Here are the opening games for the weekend:

St. Louis vs. Chi. Cubs - 1:20 PM CDT
Chris Carpenter (0-0, N/A ERA) vs. Chris Volstad (3-10, 6.26 ERA)

Atlanta vs. Philadelphia - 6:05 PM CDT
Tommy Hanson (12-8, 4.33 ERA) vs. Kyle Kendrick (9-11, 3.95 ERA)

Milwaukee vs. Washington - 6:05 PM CDT
Shaun Marcum (5-4, 3.91 ERA) vs. Edwin Jackson (9-10, 3.89 ERA)

LA Dodgers vs. Cincinnati - 6:10 PM CDT
Joe Blanton (9-13, 4.97 ERA) vs. Bronson Arroyo (12-8, 3.74 ERA)

Pittsburgh vs. Houston - 7:05 PM CDT
Jeff Locke (0-1, 5.49 ERA) vs. Edgar Gonzalez (2-1, 4.40 ERA)

Arizona vs. Colorado - 7:10 PM CDT
Wade Miley (15-10, 3.10 ERA) vs. Drew Pomeranz (1-9, 5.06 ERA)

San Diego vs. San Francisco - 9:15 PM CDT
Casey Kelly (2-1, 5.85 ERA) vs. Ryan Vogelsong (12-9, 3.65 ERA)

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