News from around the Central:
- St. Louis got outfielder Matt Holliday back for the first time in six games yesterday, as the slugger made his return from the nagging quadriceps injury that's bugged him for the last couple weeks.
- Reds fireballer Aroldis Chapman has completed his minor league rehab assignment, but he's not yet ready to return to the Cincinnati bullpen. Chapman got lit up in his final appearance at AAA Louisville: 1.2 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 3 K.
- As expected, the Pirates placed catcher Ryan Doumit (sprained ankle) and utilityman Steven Pearce (injured calf) on the 15-day DL. The Bucs called up catcher Dusty Brown and infielder Josh Harrison from AAA Indianapolis.
- Word out of Chicago is that Matt Garza's right elbow isn't barking anymore, and he might make his return to the Cubs' rotation without a rehab start in the minors -- maybe as soon as this weekend.
- It's been a forgettable year so far for Houston, but the Astros hope to make a memory today when 20-year-old prospect Jordan Lyles makes his big league debut against the Cubs at Wrigley Field.
- St. Louis starter Kyle McClellan came back to earth a little bit yesterday afternoon, as the Giants tagged the right-hander for seven earned runs on seven hits and two walks in a 7-3 win over the Redbirds at Busch Stadium. Cody Ross had a solo tater and Andres Torres delivered the coup de grace with fourth-inning grand slam. Madison Bumgarner turned in a solid start by going seven strong, giving up two runs on six hits and two walks.
- Death, taxes, and Cincinnati beating Milwaukee: the Brewers couldn't overcome Chris Narveson's second consecutive disaster start and fell to the Reds, 7-3. Our recap is here.
- Pittsburgh scored a run in the seventh to knot its game with New York at 3, but the Mets answered with two runs in the bottom of the frame and another two in the eighth to run away from the Pirates, 7-3, last night at Citi Field. Josh Thole did the damage in the seventh with a two-run double, and Justin Turner doubled in another run in the eighth. Dillon Gee got the win for New York with seven quality innings: five hits, three earned runs, no walks, eight strikeouts.
- Houston scored early, scored late, and scored often against Chicago, bludgeoning the Cubs, 12-7, at Wrigley Field last night. Rodrigo Lopez lasted just 4.2 innings in his Cubs debut, giving up ten hits (including two homers) and six earned runs. There were plenty of stars on offense for the 'Stros: Hunter Pence doubled and homered and drove in two, and Jeff Keppinger delivered a three-run, ninth-inning shot as part of his 3-5, 4 RBI day.
Your updated standings for May 31:
On tap for today:
- The Cardinals and Giants play at Busch Stadium at 6:09 p.m. CDT tonight (seriously, 6:09. I just double checked the scheduled). Chris Carpenter (1-5, 4.58) goes for the Cards, while Ryan Vogelsong (3-1, 1.77) starts for San Fran.
- The Reds and Brewers continue their series at Great American Ballpark tonight at 6:10 p.m. CDT. This one features Zack Greinke (3-1, 5.79) and minor-league callup Chad Reineke (0-0, ---), who's making his first start in the Show since 2009.
- The Pirates are back in action against the Mets at 6:10 p.m. CDT tonight at Citi Field. Pittsburgh gives the ball to James McDonald (3-3, 5.23) and the Mets counter with R.A. Dickey (2-5, 4.50)
- The 'Stros and Cubs play under the lights at Wrigley Field at 7:05 p.m. CDT tonight. Young right-hander Jordan Lyles (0-0, ---) makes his major league debut against Carlos Zambrano (5-2, 4.59).