Brewers head to Chicago with the front-runners in their sights

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2 weeks 11 hours ago #1 by officialsbaseball
ST. LOUIS (AP) — In a pivotal series for the Dodgers Keith Hernandez Jersey , rookie Walker Buehler came through with a masterful performance.Buehler allowed two hits in eight innings, Yasiel Puig homered twice and Los Angeles drew even with the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL wild-card race with a 3-0 victory on Friday night. The Dodgers also moved within one-half game of first-place Colorado in the NL West.Buehler (7-5) pitched beyond the seventh inning for the first time and earned his first victory since Aug. 17. He retired the first 13 batters before Paul DeJong singled to left field. Harrison Bader singled later in the fifth for the Cardinals’ only other hit.“This was probably the best pitching performance of the year,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “Not only Walker but across the board. Against a very good club in St. Louis on the road and obviously what’s at stake right now for each game. He wanted this moment and just coming out firing. His command. Just domination. He kind of did what he wanted to do tonight.”Buehler struck out nine and walked two. In two career starts against St. Louis, the right-hander has not allowed a run and has 18 strikeouts in 15 innings.“He’s got some serious weapons,” Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said. “He’s throwing 97-98 (mph), with command. When you can locate your fastball, regardless of velocity, that’s a nice weapon. Then you do it with that velocity and then you do it with some cut. And his cutter, at least from the side, it looked like it had some depth. Then second time through the lineup Jorge De La Rosa Jersey , start mixing in a changeup and hitting with that, that’s a pretty potent weaponry right there.”The Dodgers and Cardinals are tied for the second NL wild-card position, four games behind Milwaukee for the top spot. But Los Angeles has its sights on the division crown and moved closer when the Rockies lost to San Francisco.“Sometimes there’s teams you match up well against,” Buehler said. “It’s hard to explain. It’s just the way the game works and luckily tonight that worked out.”Puig homered in the second off Jack Flaherty (8-7) and connected again in the ninth off Tyler Webb. It was his second multi-homer game of the season.“I was trying to do my best,” Puig said through a translator. “He threw a fastball there and I was able to connect with it. I can hit lefties sometimes and right there I was trying to find something up in the zone. I wasn’t expecting a home run but it happened.”In the seventh, Cody Bellinger scored on a passed ball by Yadier Molina.Kenley Jansen hit Yairo Munoz with a pitch to open the ninth but retired the next three batters to finish the two-hitter, earning his 35th save in 39 opportunities.Flaherty worked six innings, allowing one run on four hits with two walks and eight strikeouts. He has 168 strikeouts this season, the fourth-best total for a rookie in franchise history.“We want to win. I don’t care about my line. I don’t care about anything other than winning,” Flaherty said. “It doesn’t matter how I pitched http://www.diamondbacksfanproshop.com/authentic-taijuan-walker-jersey , I didn’t pitch well enough. He pitched better than I did.”TRAINER’S ROOMDodgers: Relievers John Axford and Tony Cingrani were scheduled to pitch in the California Championship Series for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga on Friday night. “They’re stacking the deck, trying to help them make their playoff push,” Roberts joked. “They’re supposed to go an inning each. We’ll see how they come out of it. Our hope is to get these guys back.” Axford could return to the majors after one appearance, while Cingrani (shoulder) would likely need more rehab work.Cardinals: IF Jedd Gyorko is likely to return to the starting lineup Saturday, manager Mike Shildt said. He drew a pinch-hit walk in the eighth inning and was replaced by pinch-runner Adolis Garcia.UP NEXTThe Cardinals send right-hander John Gant (7-5, 3.16 ERA) to the mound Saturday afternoon to make his third career appearance and first start against Los Angeles. Veteran lefty Rich Hill (8-5, 3.88) starts for the Dodgers. CHICAGO — The Chicago Cubs had hoped to use the past four days to maintain or pad their lead in the National League Central, but the weather certainly didn’t cooperate.Heading into a pivotal three-game series against the second-place Milwaukee Brewers, the Cubs will attempt to again create some distance. The series opens a day after Chicago’s scheduled series finale against the Washington Nationals was washed out by rain, which was a constant throughout the weekend.The Cubs will attempt to bounce back after being swept in a Saturday doubleheader that was forced after Friday’s scheduled game was rained out as well.Article continues below ...“The bright side is just getting through (the weekend) Jarrod Dyson Jersey ,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon told reporters Sunday, according to the Chicago Tribune. “We’ve done really well through this stretch. I’ve been really pleased with it and it’s not easy to do what we’ve been doing over the past couple of weeks and how well we’ve actually played.”Despite losing their past two games, the Cubs are 4-4 in their last eight games, which had allowed the Cubs to maintain their cushion over the Brewers. But the margin has been trimmed to two games after Milwaukee completed a three-game sweep of the San Francisco Giants on Sunday with a 6-3 victory.The Brewers will enter Monday’s series opener having won eight of their past 10 games and captured two of three from the Cubs last week. Now, with the Cubs within reach, the Brewers head to Chicago with the front-runners in their sights.“Something we’ve been talking about (is) ‘Don’t think about the wild card — think about the division,” said Brewers pitcher Jhoulys Chacin, who will take the mound Tuesday. “We have the chance this week. It feels really important now.”Jon Lester will take the mound as the Cubs attempt to get back on a winning track after the wet weekend in Washington.Lester (15-5, 3.53 ERA) has won three of his past four starts but hasn’t pitched since Sept. 2. Lester threw six scoreless innings in his last outing against the Philadelphia Phillies when he scattered six hits and struck out seven.Lester was scheduled to pitch Friday, but when the game was rained out ttp://www.diamondbacksfanproshop.com/authentic-brad-boxberger-jersey , it allowed the Cubs ace to open the series against Milwaukee on Monday rather than pitch Wednesday’s series finale.Lester is 4-2 with a 2.40 ERA in seven career starts against the Brewers.Milwaukee will counter with Wade Miley (3-2, 2.12) as the Brewers attempt to continue to close the gap. Miley has won just won of his six previous starts but shut down the Cubs last week when he allowed just one earned run in six innings while allowing just three hits and striking out five. Miley is 5-2 with a 4.13 ERA in eight career starts against the Cubs.Miley has allowed three or fewer runs in each of his 12 starts with the Brewers and, like the rest of his teammates, believe that catching the Cubs and capturing the division title is well within reach.“Why wouldn’t it be? Heck, yeah,” Miley said after his last start, according to the Brewers’ official website. “I don’t think you quit thinking about it until you can’t think about it no more. I think that’s the way to go about it.”

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