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Around the NL Central: September 17 Edition

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Bartender!  A round of smiles!
Bartender! A round of smiles!

News:

If Reds first baseman Joey Votto had an MVP vote, he claims he would give it to Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp.  Votto, an MVP candidate himself, declined to answer where he would rank himself.

Pirates outfielder Jose Tabata, whom Pittsburgh recently signed to a long term contract, is out for the season due to a broken bone in his hand. Tabata hasn't played since September 5.

Yesterday's Games:

The Brewers beat the Reds 6-3.  You can find our recap here.

The Cubs beat the Astros 4-3 in twelve innings. Carlos Lee managed to tie the game 3-3 for Houston in the ninth inning as he launched a massive 368 foot home run to left field, plating Jordan Schafer. Lee was 3-5 overall in the game, and contributed two homers overall.  For the Cubs, Geovany Soto hit a homer and Aramis Ramirez picked up three hits, including a triple.  Matt Garza was great, giving up just one run through eight innings before giving up the homer in the ninth.

The Cardinals beat the Phillies 4-2 in eleven innings.  Both teams scored one run in the second inning with the Cards tacking on a second in the eighth and the Phillies tying it in the ninth.  St. Louis would have the last laugh, though, as they scored two in the eleventh inning to pick up the win.  Albert Pujols was 4-4 with two walks and Yadier Molina went 2-5 with a solo homer.  Jaime Garcia had a very good outing, allowing just one run in seven innings.

The Pirates lost to the Dodgers 2-7.  Not really much of note for Pittsburgh in this game.  A couple two hit games, an Alex Presley homer, and a short outing from Jeff Locke.

Updated Standings:


W L GB Last 10 Streak Elimination #
Brewers
88 63 -- 4-6 W1 --
Cardinals 82 68 5.5 8-2 W3
7
Reds 74 77 14.0
5-5 L1 Done
Pirates 68
83 20.0 3-7 L1
Done
Cubs 66 85 22.0 5-5 W1 Done
Astros 51 99 36.5 4-6 L2 Done

 
The Wild Card race looks like this right now:


W L GB Last 10 Streak
Brewers*
88 63 -- 4-6 W1
Braves
86 65 2.0 4-6 L1
Cardinals 82 68 5.5 8-2 W3
Giants 81 70 7.0
7-3 W
Dodgers 74
76 13.5 6-4 W1

 
And here are the playoff participants, if the season ended today:


W L GB Last 10 Streak
Phillies (East) 97 51 --
6-4 L1
Brewers (Central) 88 63 10.0 4-6 W1
D-Backs (West)
87 64 11.0 6-4 L2
Braves (Wild Card)
86 65 12.0
4-6 L1

 

Today's Matchups:

Henry Sosa (2-4, 5.02) and Rodrigo Lopez (5-6, 5.04) do battle as the Astros and Cubs face off.

Jake Westbrook (12-8, 4.61) takes the mound for the Cardinals as they play the Phillies and Roy Oswalt (7-9, 3.88).

Yovani Gallardo (16-10, 3.66) is pitching for the Brewers and is up against Edinson Volquez (5-5, 5.80) and the Reds.

For the Pirates, it's James McDonald (9-8, 4.09) pitching against the Dodgers and Ted Lilly (9-14, 4.39).