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Around the NL Central: July 31 Edition

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"Catch" all the latest trade news.  Haha!
"Catch" all the latest trade news. Haha!

News:

Today is the non-waiver trade deadline!  And the Reds can no longer acquire Ubaldo Jimenez (whom they were rumored to be pursuing) as he is now a Cleveland Indian!  Well, I guess they could trade for him still, but they won't.

The Cardinals will make a move, though, as it appears all but certain that Rafael Furcal is on his way to St. Louis.  The Cards will be sending an outfielder who is "not on the 40 man roster" to the Dodgers

After the trade of Hunter Pence, the Astros have called up J.D. Martinez, who will skip AAA.  Martinez had a .338/.414/.546 line with 13 HR in Houston's AA affiliate this year.

Yesterday's Games:

The Brewers won their fifth straight after beating the Astros 6-2.  You can find my recap here.

Unfortunately, the Brewers lead in first still isn't growing as the Cardinals also won, defeating the Cubs 13-5.  There were two big innings in this one as the Cubs jumped to a 5-0 lead with a big first (a two run double from Geovany Soto followed by a three run homer from Alfonso Soriano) and the Cardinals had an eight run fifth.  The Cubs were aided by errors as Kyle Lohse gave up all five Cubs' runs with none of them being earned.  The Cubs were actually held hitless after the big first inning.  For Chicago, Rodrigo Lopez gave up six runs in 4.1 innings.  For the Cardinals, Ryan Theriot was 4-5 with three RBI and a run, Albert Pujols was 2-4 with a solo homer, Skip Schumaker was 2-4 and David Freese hit a home run for the second straight day.

The Pirates lost to the Phillies 7-4James McDonald gave up five runs on ten hits in five innings.  Pedro Ciriaco had a couple hits, Neil Walker went 3-4 with an RBI, Brandon Walker went 2-4 with a run and an RBI, and Pedro Alvarez hit a  two run home run.

The Reds beat the Giants 7-2, with the aid of a five run first inning--showing the Cubs how to maintain a lead after a big first.  Mike Leake held San Francisco in check, allowing two runs (one earned) in 6.1 innings while striking out seven.  Surprisingly, no Reds hitters had more than one hit (though several reached base multiple times via hits and walks).  Brandon Phillips and Miguel Cairo had a run and an RBI each.  Drew Stubbs and Joey Votto each had a run.  Edgar Renteria scored two runs and Chris Heisey drove in two.  Jay Bruce scored one and drove in two.

Updated Standings:


W L GB Last 10 Streak
Brewers
59 49 -- 7-3 W5
Cardinals 57 50 1.5 7-3 W2
Pirates 54 51 3.5
3-7 L2
Reds 52
55 6.5 5-5 W2
Cubs 42 65 16.5 3-7 L5
Astros 35 72 23.5 3-7 L2

 

Today's Matchups:

Johnny Cueto (6-4, 1.88) and the Reds go up against Barry Zito (3-3, 5.24) and the Giants.

The Pirates send Jeff Karstens (8-5, 2.41) to face off against Vance Worley (7-1, 2.02) and the Phillies.

Ryan Dempster (7-8, 4.98) and Jake Westbrook (9-4, 4.86) do battle as the Cubs take on the Cardinals. 

The Brewers try to sweep the Astros with Chris Narveson (7-6, 4.41) opposing Brett Myers (3-11, 4.66).