Dodgers starter Zack Greinke made his best start of the season tonight, blanking the Rockies over nine innings as the Dodgers provided the bare minimum run support in a 1-0 victory. Greinke allowed just two hits and one walk while striking out nine — and he didn’t record his first strikeout until the fifth inning. The lone run came on a Hanley Ramirez RBI groundout in the bottom of the second inning.
Rockies starter Tyler Chatwood was nearly as good, allowing just the one run in an eight-inning complete game. He allowed four hits and walked two while striking out four, lowering his ERA to 2.56 over 12 starts. Chatwood snaps the Rockies’ streak of 299 consecutive starts without a complete game, tweets Tracy Ringolsby.
The win is the Dodgers’ sixth in their last seven games and they are finally above .500 for the first time since April 15. The first-place Diamondbacks, leading the Dodgers by a meager two games now, play the last-place Padres tonight.
The Cubs soundly defeated the Cardinals on Monday night, 10-2, sending their magic number down to one. They will try to clinch the NL Central on Tuesday with another win against the Cardinals. Alternatively, if they lose, they can still clinch if the Brewers also lose on Tuesday.
The Cubs, of course, won the Central last year en route to winning their first World Series since 1908. It wasn’t nearly as easy this year as the club was below .500 entering June and was exactly at .500 entering July. A 16-8 July, 17-12 August, and 15-8 September have helped put the Cubs back in position to return to the postseason.
Not to be forgotten, the Cardinals were eliminated from NL Central contention with Monday’s loss. Now they have their sights set on the second NL Wild Card slot and currently trail the Rockies in that race.
The matchups for Tuesday’s action:
Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune reports that Padres pitcher Carter Capps will undergo surgery this offseason to address thoracic outlet syndrome, which doctors believe caused the right-hander’s blood clots. The Padres hope to have him ready by spring training next year.
Capps, 27, underwent Tommy John surgery last year and didn’t debut this season until August 7. He made 11 relief appearances, yielding nine runs on 12 hits and two walks with seven strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings. He went back on the DL on September 12 due to the blood clot issue.
The Padres acquired Capps from the Marlins last July in the Andrew Cashner trade which ended up having a lot of moving parts. Capps will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility this offseason. It’s quite possible the Padres choose to non-tender him.