The San Francisco Giants need a full-strength roster to stay in the playoff hunt. Unfortunately, with Buster Posey hurting and slumping, and both Brandon Belt and Hector Sanchez potentially done for the year because of concussions, that's exactly what they haven't got.
Milwaukee Brewers starters Kyle Lohse and Matt Garza should both be returning to the rotation in time to help the team in another close NL Central battle. The same can't be said of reliever Jim Henderson, who has undergone shoulder surgery after a difficult season in which he has never really been able to find his form or his health.
The Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday by the score of 4-3. The win improved the Pirates to 65-62, six games behind the Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Central. The Pirates remain in the thick of the wild card race and have a shot to make a run at the Brewers. They need a pitching staff, that is ranked 18th in the league in ERA, to step it up. A concern is the health of starter Charlie Morton, who is out with a hip injury and now has been diagnosed with a sports hernia.
The Los Angeles Dodgers fell to the San Diego Padres last night by the score of 4-1. Even with the loss, the Dodgers sit at 71-57, three games ahead of the San Francisco Giants in the National League West. The Dodgers have been carried by a staff that is 5th in the Major Leagues in ERA. There is a bit of concern on the injury front, as pitcher Zack Greinke had his start pushed back from tonight to Saturday to rest his ailing elbow.
The Kansas City Royals fell to the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday by the score of 5-2. The loss dropped the Royals to 70-56, a game ahead of the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central. Alex Gordon and Erik Kratz knocked in the only runs for the Royals. Kratz was starting for the injured Salvador Perez, out with a knee injury. Perez is scheduled for an MRI on his knee.
Before Wednesday's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Washington Nationals manager Matt Williams expressed confidence that third baseman Ryan Zimmerman, out since July 23 with a strained right hamstring, could return "sometime in September", reports Mark Zuckerman of Nats Insider.
The Seattle Mariners fell to the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday by the score of 4-3. The loss was the second in three games to the Phillies to drop to 68-58, seven and a half games back in the American League West. The Mariners were without left fielder Dustin Ackley in the starting lineup, due to a stiff back. Chris Denorfia started in place of Ackley and went 1-for-4.
The Cleveland Indians entered Wednesday's game against the Minnesota Twins with a record of 63-61, third in the National League Central. At just six and a half games back, the Indians still have a chance to make a run down the stretch for a playoff spot. They will have to do so without veteran outfielder Nick Swisher, who had knee surgery yesterday and is out for the rest of the season.
The Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday by the score of 9-5. The win improved the Blue Jays to 65-62, second in the American League East. The Blue Jays, ranked 9th in the Major Leagues in runs scored, got home runs by Jose Bautista and Colby Rasmus. But for the Blue Jays to contend down the stretch, they will need better performance from a staff that is 24th in ERA. One pitcher who may help is Brandon Morrow, who could return as a reliever in September.
Although Michael Cuddyer certainly showed his bat was back to major league standard when he hit for the cycle on Sunday, his fitness might not have been, as he had to sit out on both Tuesday and Wednesday with hamstring tightness. In other Rockies news, it may be a while before Carlos Gonzalez is ready to play, while Rafael Betancourt could actually return from his Tommy John surgery this season.
In the bottom of the second inning, with runners on first and second, Brock Holt hit a ground ball to the first baseman Albert Pujols
. Pujols threw to second, and Angels pitcher Garrett Richards ran over to cover first base. As he ran to cover first, his knee buckled and he fell to the ground.
The Yankees have scratched RF Carlos Beltran from tonight's lineup. Beltran had just recently returned to playing the field for the first time since May 12th. Beltran rejoined the Yankees from a DL stint on June 5th, and had been the everyday DH since.
The Pirates were able to add 23 year old Gerrit Cole back into their rotation today, activating the right handed pitcher from the DL. Cole last pitched on the fourth of July against the Phillies, recording the win with five innings of one hit ball.
The Chicago White Sox enter the final game of a series against the Baltimore Orioles coming off a 5-1 loss on Tuesday. With a record of 59-67, the White Sox are fourth in the American League East, 11 1/2 games behind the Kansas City Royals. The White Sox, ninth in the league in runs scored, got their only run on a home run by Jose Abreu, his 32nd of the season. There is a bit of concern about Abreu, who is dealing with a sore ankle.
The Tigers received good news on Tuesday, as Justin Verlander is set to throw a bullpen session on Thursday in Tampa. If all goes well, Verlander could return on Saturday, as the Tigers play the Twins at Target Field, reports Lynn Henning of the Detroit News.
The Atlanta Braves improved to 66-60 on the season following a 11-3 blowout of the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday. Aaron Harang allowed nine hits and three earned runs in 8 1/3 innings to get the win. Justin Upton lead a 14-hit offensive attack with five RBI, including a home run. There was a bit of concerning news as shortstop Andrelton Simmons had to leave the game with a sore hip after going 1-for-3. Ramiro Pena replaced Simmons and went 1-for-1.
The Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the San Diego Padres on Tuesday by the score of 8-6. The win improved the Dodgers to 71-56, four and a half games ahead of the San Francisco Giants in the National League West. Kevin Correia got the win despite allowing four earned runs and eight hits in five innings of work. There is some concerning news on the injury front, as right-handed pitcher Zack Greinke could miss his next start due to an elbow issue.
The Cleveland Indians improved to 63-61 on the season following a 7-5 win last night over the Minnesota Twins. Trevor Bauer allowed five runs in the first, but an 11-hit offensive attack lead by Yan Gomes, who went 3-for-4 with a home run, sealed the win for the Indians. On the injury front, the Indians placed outfielder Ryan Raburn on the disabled list with a sore wrist.