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Around the NL Central: September 7 Edition

News and notes from around the Central:

Yesterday's action:

  • Another chance to drive a stake through the Cardinals' heart, another lackluster start by Yovani Gallardo: Yo's all-time record against the Cards dropped to 1-7 as he surrendered tape-measure shots to Jon Jay and Matt Holliday as St. Louis defeated Milwaukee, 4-2. Our recap is here.
  • Cincinnati needed 13 innings to do it, but after Mike Leake blew a two-run lead in the ninth inning, the Reds eventually rallied for a 4-2 win over Chicago at Wrigley Field. The Reds got two runs in the sixth on Joey Votto's double and a run-scoring DP off the bat of Devin Mesoraco, but Leake coughed up that advantage (and lost his shutout) when someone named Bryan LaHair jacked a two-run, two-out bomb in the ninth to knot the game at 2. But the Reds got the win thanks to back-to-back doubles from Dave Sappelt and Votto and a run-scoring single from Miguel Cairo in the 13th.
  • Houston pushed Pittsburgh to the brink of elimination with a 4-1 victory at PNC Park. Brett Myers returned from paternity leave with a flourish, working 7.2 innings of four-hit ball (one run) while striking out six. Brad Lincoln was almost as good, giving up five hits and striking out six in six innings, but the Astros got two runs in the second on Jimmy Paredes RBI groundout and Humberto Quintero's run-scoring double. Quintero was the hitting hero for the 'Stros, as he drove in two more insurance runs with a single in the ninth to account for the final margin.

Your updated standings for September 7:

W L GB Last 10 Streak Elimination #
85 58 -- 6-4 L1 --
Cardinals 75 67 9.5 6-4 W1
Reds 70 72 14.5
4-6 W1 6
Pirates 65
77 19.5 3-7 L1
Cubs 61 81 23.5 4-6 L1 Done
Astros 48 94 36.5 5-5 W1 Done

The Wild Card race looks like this right now:

W L GB Last 10 Streak
85 58 -- 6-4 L1
82 59 2.0 4-6 L2
Cardinals 75 67 9.5 6-4 W1
Giants 75 67 9.5
5-5 W2
Reds 70
72 14.5 4-6 W1

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

W L GB Last 10 Streak
Phillies (East) 90 48 -- 7-3 W2
Brewers (Central)
85 58 7.5 6-4 L1
D-backs (West)
81 61 11.0 8-2 L1
Braves (Wild Card)
82 59 9.5
4-6 L2


On tap for today:

  • The Crew and Cardinals wrap things up for their season series at 7:15 p.m., when Zack Greinke (14-5, 4.00) faces Chris Carpenter (8-9, 3.92).
  • The Reds and Cubs conclude their series at 7:05 p.m. CDT at Wrigley Field. Johnny Cueto (9-5, 2.29) battles Ryan Dempster (10-11, 4.75) in this one.
  • The Pirates and Astros are back in action at 6:05 p.m. CDT at PNC Park. Brian Burres (1-0, 1.69) is on the bump for the Bucs, while J.A. Happ (5-15, 5.71) starts for the 'Stros.