Milwaukee Brewers v San Francisco Giants

Angels acquire Zack Greinke from the Brewers


UPDATE: Morosi confirms that it’s Greinke for Segura, Hellweg and Pena.

By the way, Segura, Hellweg and Pena were ranked as Angels’ second, fourth and ninth best prospects by Baseball America coming into the season.

7:38 PM Nothing official yet, but Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register writes that prospect right-handers Ariel Pena and Johnny Hellweg are most likely being sent to Milwaukee along with Jean Segura. If so, that’s a pretty nice haul for a two-month rental who can’t be offered arbitration.

7:24 PM ET: Things just got very interesting in the American League West.

According to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of, the Angels have acquired right-hander Zack Greinke from the Brewers.

The Brewers are getting prospect shortstop Jean Segura and two Double-A pitchers in return. Rosenthal writes that the deal is done, but the “finishing touches” are still being applied.

Greinke, an impending free agent, wraps up his tenure with the Brewers with a 3.67 ERA in 49 starts over two seasons. The Brewers recently offered him a contract extension, reportedly in the range of five years and $100 million, but the two sides weren’t able to make progress on an agreement.

With Greinke, Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson as their big three, it’s safe to say the Angels could go toe-to-toe with anyone if they make the playoffs. They could be even more dangerous if Dan Haren and Ervin Santana get back on track.

The AL West-leading Rangers might have had a bigger need for the starter than the Angels did, so it will be interesting to see whether they intensify their efforts to land Josh Johnson from the Marlins or possibly James Shields from the Rays.

NL Wild Card Game: Cubs vs. Pirates lineups

Jake Arrieta

Here are the Cubs and Pirates lineups for tonight’s Wild Card game in Pittsburgh:

CF Dexter Fowler
RF Kyle Schwarber
LF Kris Bryant
1B Anthony Rizzo
3B Tommy La Stella
2B Starlin Castro
C Miguel Montero
SS Addison Russell
SP Jake Arrieta

Cubs manager Joe Maddon wanted Tommy La Stella in the lineup over Jorge Soler or Chris Coghlan, so he starts at third base and Kris Bryant shifts to left field. Bryant started just four games in left field all season, compared to 136 starts at third base. Also of note: After batting Addison Russell ninth–behind the pitcher–116 times this season Maddon has him in the more traditional eighth spot tonight.

RF Gregory Polanco
3B Josh Harrison
CF Andrew McCutchen
LF Starling Marte
C Francisco Cervelli
2B Neil Walker
SS Jordy Mercer
1B Sean Rodriguez
SP Gerrit Cole

Pedro Alvarez started 119 games at first base for the Pirates and with right-hander Jake Arrieta on the mound he was the presumed starter tonight, but instead manager Clint Hurdle has benched the 27-homer slugger in favor of utility man Sean Rodriguez. Alvarez is vastly superior to Rodriguez offensively, especially versus a righty, but he’s also very shaky defensively. During the regular season Rodriguez started a grand total of one game at first base against a right-hander, so this qualifies as a hunch by Hurdle.

The Cardinals are optimistic about Yadier Molina’s status

St. Louis Cardinals' Yadier Molina celebrates as he arrives home after hitting a solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the San Francisco Giants Monday, Aug. 17, 2015, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
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Jenifer Langosch of reports that Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina‘s bum thumb responded well after participating in baseball activities Tuesday, including catching, hitting, blocking balls and the like.

This morning Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said that he’s now even more optimistic that Molina will be on the NLDS roster. The Cards’ first game will be Friday against the winner of tonight’s Cubs-Pirates tilt.

Having Molina would obviously be a boon for the Cardinals on the field. For a look at what Molina means to the Cardinals off the field, however, take some time to go read Derrick Goold’s excellent story about what Molina’s teammates think of him. Short version: the world. It’s worth your time, even if you’re not a citizen of Cardinals Nation.