The Pirates clinch their 19th straight losing season

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There was a time this summer — maybe for about two weeks — when everyone was high on the Pirates. It was damn nigh magical. Some considered them a contender. I wasn’t quite that optimistic, but I did wonder whether they could at least break .500 and thus break their string of uninterrupted losing seasons dating back to the George H.W. Bush Administration.  It’s sad.  The future is at least a little brighter than it used to be, but it’s still sad.

For the record, the 82nd loss came against the Cardinals, who rode a decent start from Edwin Jackson and got a single, double and a couple of RBIs from Yadier Molina as St. Louis beat Pittsburgh 3-2.  Unfortunately for the Cardinals the Braves won too, taking the Marlins down 4-1 in a game that ended before I even realized that it had begun.  Viva day baseball.

The Braves continue to lead the Cards by four and a half in the wild card. The Braves have 12 games left. The Cardinals have 13.

Albert Pujols hit his 597th career home run

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Angels DH Albert Pujols smacked his 597th career home run, a two-run shot in the top of the first inning during Wednesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Rays. The blast was off of Erasmo Ramirez and marked No. 6 on the season for the future Hall of Famer.

Pujols finished 1-for-3 with the homer and a walk. After Wednesday’s game, he’s hitting a lackluster .244/.296/.378 with 34 RBI and 14 runs scored in 186 trips to the plate.

Pujols currently ranks ninth on baseball’s all-time leaderboard and is three shy of joining the 600-homer club. He’s currently 13 home runs away from tying Sammy Sosa for eighth all-time.

Chris Sale’s streak of starts with at least 10 strikeouts ends

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Red Sox starter Chris Sale entered Wednesday’s outing against the Rangers with at least 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive starts, tying a record he already shared with Pedro Martinez. He failed do break the record, racking up only six strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings. Fortunately, the Red Sox scored seven runs in the bottom of the seventh to put him in line for the win. Sale gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits and a walk.

After Wednesday’s outing, Sale is sitting on a 2.34 ERA with a 101/14 K/BB ratio in 73 innings. So far, so good for the Red Sox, who acquired Sale from the White Sox in December.

Sale previously racked up 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive games between May 23 and June 30 in 2015 with the White Sox. Pedro Martinez accomplished the feat for the Red Sox between August 19 and September 27 in 1999.