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Around The NL Central; May 14 Edition

News around the Division:

Reliever Evan Meek is ready to begin a rehab assignment for the Pirates today after he was placed on the DL retroactive to April 27. 

A bit of sad news as former Red Mel Queen passed away yesterday at the age of 69.  Queen came up in 1962 as an outfielder, but also pitched in seven games in 1964 before switching to pitching full time in 1964.  Overall, in his career, Queen had -0.5 batting rWAR and 5.4 pitching rWAR.  His best year was in 1967, when he pitched 195.2 innings and had a 2.76 ERA and 2.98 FIP.

I guess the Astros sale hadn't officially been announced by current owner Drayton McClane yet.  Now it has.

Yesterday's Action:

The stupid Cubs crushed the Giants 11-4Ryan Dempster allowed just two runs in six innings while striking out eleven San Francisco hitters.  It was mostly small ball for Chicago as they hit no homeruns, but Starlin Castro, Reed Johnson, and Darwin Barney all had three hits and a grand total of nine RBI between them.

The stupid Reds beat the stupider Cardinals 5-4 in ten innings.  Matt Holliday went 3-5 and drove in a couple runs, and Albert Pujols and Daniel Descalso each had a couple hits for St. Louis.  Eduardo Sanchez blew the save for the Cardinals.  Scott Rolen was 3-5 for the Reds and Fred Lewis, Joey Votto, and Brandon Phillips all picked up a couple hits.  Phillips singled in Edgar Renteria to tie the game in the ninth and Votto singled in Chris Heisey to win the game.

The Astros lost to the Mets 6-4.  All six Mets runs scored after the sixth inning after Bud Norris went seven innings while giving up just one run before only getting one out in the eighth and allowing three more runs to score.  Chris Johnson, Michael Bourn and Carlos Lee all had a couple hits for Houston.

The Brewers beat the Pirates 5-2.  You can find our recap here.

Updated Standings:

W L GB Last 10 Streak
Cardinals 22 17 -- 6-4 L1
Reds 21 17 0.5 7-3 W1
Pirates 18 20 3.5 5-5 L3
Cubs 17 20 4.0 5-5 W1
Brewers 17 21 4.5 4-6 W1
Astros 14 24 7.5 3-7 L1


On tap for tonight:

The Astros have J.A. Happ (2-4, 5.75) going up against R.A. Dickey (1-4, 4.50) of the Mets in a battle of initials. 

The Cardinals Kyle McClellan (5-0, 3.30) tries to keep his perfect record as he faces the Reds and Johnny Cueto (1-0, 0.00).  If the Reds win, they'll take over first place in the central. 

The Cubs go against Ryan Vogelsong (2-0, 3.05) and the Giants.  Doug Davis will be debuting for Chicago, which is good news for the rest of the NL Central. 

The Pirates and Brewers will play again this afternoon.  Gametime is 3:00, and we'll have the pitching matchups/lineups at 1:00.