Wednesday, September 25, 2013
And That HappenedPosted by Craig Calcaterra
Indians 5, White Sox 4: Unbelievable. Chris Perez blows a save in the top of the ninth and the ancient Jason Giambi picks him and the Indians up in the bottom, smacking a two-run walkoff homer. Still life in that old bat. Still life in the Indians, who remain in Wild Card position.
Rangers 3, Astros 2: Texas keeps pace. Helps that the Rangers are playing a corpse of an Astros team, which has lost 11 in a row. Given what everyone else in the AL is doing right now, the Rangers are the only remaining threat to Tampa Bay and Cleveland.
Cardinals 2, Nationals 0: Close but no cigar for Michael Wacha, who loses a no-hitter with two out in the ninth on a Ryan Zimmerman infield single that went a freaking inch over Wacha's head and just couldn't be put away by Pete Kozma and Matt Adams. A near no-no now, but it's not even certain he'll be in the playoffs rotation for St. Louis.
Pirates 8, Cubs 2: Gerrit Cole pitched six strong and hit an RBI single. Pedro Alvarez drove in three. Pittsburgh keeps pace with St. Louis and remains a game up on Cincy.
Mets 4, Reds 2: Mike Leake had been dominant of late but he came up empty against the Mets, not even making it out of the second inning. He gave up gave up four runs and eight hits in that short time, including a three-run homer to Daniel Murphy. Cincinnati is now three back of the Cardinals and one back of the Pirates.
Braves 3, Brewers 2: An Andrelton Simmons walkoff single helps Atlanta remain two up on the Dodgers and a half game up on the Cardinals for the best record in the NL and a chance to face the Wild Card victor. There isn't a team in the playoff picture who has a more pronounced home/road split than the Braves, so they need to keep their foot on the gas.
Blue Jays 3, Orioles 2: And with that the Orioles are eliminated. Mark DeRosa, of all people, helped twist the knife, hitting the game-tying RBI single in the eighth and the go-ahead RBI in extras.
Phillies 2, Marlins 1: The 100th loss of the year for Miami. Didn't take much in the way of fireworks for the Phillies to hand it to the Marlins, either. Their runs came on a bases-loaded walk and a groundout single.
Rays 7, Yankees 0: It's almost over for the Yankees. Matt Moore shut them out for five innings and the Rays pen took care of the rest. Hiroki Kuroda's second half continues to be decidedly "meh" as he allowed five runs in five and two-thirds.
Tigers 4, Twins 2: The Tigers clinch the playoffs and the magic number for the division title is now one. Doug Fister and Austin Jackson lead the charge.
Rockies 8, Red Sox 3: Charlie Blackmon, Troy Tulowitzki and Corey Dickerson went deep off John Lackey. Tyler Chatwood allowed only one run -- unearned -- in seven.
Angels 3, Athletics 0: The Angels' late surge continues, as Jason Vargas throws a four-hit shutout, ending this one in a crisp two hours and 17 minutes. Watch the Angels, who are set up to spoil the Rangers' season in their final series this weekend.
Diamondbacks 2, Padres 1: Didi Gregorius tripled in what would prove to be the winning run in the 12th. Paul Goldschmidt hit his 36th homer. The Padres' only run came on a passed ball. West Coast Baseball.
Mariners 4, Royals 0: That's almost it for the Royals, who are now four back with five to play. James Paxton pitched seven shutout innings and struck out 10. Justin Smoak with a big three-run homer.
Dodgers 2, Giants 1: Hyun-Jin Ryu combined with two relievers for a five-hitter. Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig went deep.
Craig writes the HardballTalk blog for NBC Sports.com