Saturday, September 19, 2015

Starlin Castro Deals Cards Loss with 6 RBI in Cubs Win; Carlos Santana's Slam Keeps Cleveland Playoff Hopes Alive

Players of the Day for Friday, September 18, 2015

American League

Castro: 2 HR, 6 RBI
Santana: Grand Slam
With the chance of reaching the playoffs still alive and well, the Cleveland Indians pounded White Sox starter, Chris Sale, with a six-run third inning, all of the runs unearned, capped by a grand slam by Carlos Santana.

Sale eventually worked seven innings and took the loss (12-10), as the Tribe cruised to a 12-1 win in the opener of a three-game series in Cleveland.

The win left the Indians three games behind Houston for the second wild card spot, and just two games behind the twins, the three teams vying for the final post-season berth in the AL.

The Yankees, despite a 5-1 loss to the Mets in the opener of their three-game subway series at Citi Field, have the first wild card in sight, leading Houston by four games.

Cleveland returned to .500 with the victory, at 73-73, and will face the White Sox at Progressive Field in game two, Saturday at 7:10 pm EDT.

National League

Beware the Cubs.

After taking three of four in Pittsburgh, winning the final three games of their four-game series, the Chicago Cubs returned home to welcome in their next victim, the St. Louis Cardinals, greeting the current NL Central leaders with an 8-3 stomping, courtesy of six RBI from second baseman, Starlin Castro.

Helping the Cubs to a 3-0 lead with an RBI single in the first, Castro later broke a 3-3 tie in the fifth inning with a two-run homer, followed the next inning with a three-run blast that put the game away, the Cubs winning their fourth straight, in the process, closing the gap on the Pirates in the wild card race to a mere one game as Pittsburgh lost to Zack Greinke and the Dodgers, 6-2.

The Cubs are just six games behind the Cardinals, the Pirates, five out, though time is of the essence, with just 15 games remaining on the regular season schedule.

The Cardinals used eight pitchers in the game, the Cubs, seven, even though only 15 hits were produced by both teams, the Cardinals getting only five base hits.

Game two of the three-game series will start Saturday at 1:05 pm EDT, the Cubs hoping that later in the day the Dodgers will knock down the Pirates once again, and, with a win, Chicago will be tied for second place in the division and for the wild card.

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