Who plays today……
Los Angeles Dodgers @ Washington Nationals (Dodgers lead series 1-0)
Probable Starters: Anderson (10-10, 3.52 ERA) v Strasburg (18-4, 2.66 ERA)
Chicago Cubs @ Colorado Rockies (Cubs lead series 1-0)
Probable Starters: Turner (16-6, 2.83 ERA) v Butler (15-8, 3.19 ERA)
What happened yesterday……
The Orioles and Twins are one game away from play-off elimination as they both lost game two of their ALDS match-ups.
Baltimore held a slender 2-1 lead going into the bottom of the 6th inning, Latos had kept the Blue Jays’ bats quiet to an extent. But Martin and Crawford to run scoring doubles and triples respectively as the Blue Jays took the lead 4-2 and boosted their lead (and victory) to 9-2 with eight runs in the 6th, 7th and 8th innings. Dalton Pompey iced the win with a grand slam of Brandon Beachy, Carlos Gonzalez went five for five, starter Marcus Stroman went 7.1 IP, allowing 4 H, 2 R, 1 BB while striking out 6.
The Rangers got out to an early lead after three innings leading 4-0 and their 5th run in the sixth gave them insurance against a Twins’ comeback. Shawn Tolleson got the win, lasted five innings as the Texas bullpen held Minnesota scoreless after Scheppers had given the home nine hope as Max Keplet hit a two-run home run off the reliever. Alex Claudio’s save wasn’t the prettiest with three walks but striking out Braxton Davidson with the bases loaded to end the game.
Over in the National League, the two divisional series matchups started.
The Dodgers outlasted the Nationals in Washington as David Carpenter allowed a two-run double from Hernan Perez to seal the Dodgers 6-2 win on the road in DC. Clayton Kershaw went 7 innings allowing only two runs on 10 hits and helped his own cause with a run scoring double against losing pitcher Max Scherzer who allowed three runs in six innings. Corey Seager went 4 for 5 from the number two spot in the line-up.
In Colorado the reigning champions fell afoul of an excellent display from the Cubs Jon Lester who threw a complete game shutout holding the Rockies to 6 hits, 2 walks while striking out 8 to guide Chicago to 5-0 win. The Cubs swung and connected early against Wily Peralta knocking him out by the fifth inning trailing 3-0, Kris Bryant connected for a 2 run HR in the second, in the end the Cubs had 13 hits and a 1-0 lead in this NLDS.
Games on tap today……
American League teams on a travel day so all the focus on the Senior Circuit with both the Nationals and Rockies hoping for some home field advantage to level their respective series.
In Washington the Nationals have Strasburg on the mound against Anderson, advantage Nationals. Strasburg has been superb all season, it is first time he faces the Dodgers this season, Anderson had an outing he is trying to forget in June against Washington, 4.1 IP, 9 H, 4 BB, 3 K & 4 ER.
In Colorado the Cubs look to back up after Lester’s superb performance and take a well-rested bullpen into game 2 against the Rockies. A pitching duel is on the cards with the pitchers combining for 31 wins this season. Jacob Turner’s 0.56 HR/9 ratio is certainly by tested in Colorado by the likes of Arenado, Rasmus and Dickerson who have lead the Rockies to a league leading 232 HR in 2017.