The Phillies have clinched their first losing season since 2002

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Cole Hamels gave up six runs over seven innings last night as the Phillies lost 6-4 to the Mets at Citizens Bank Park. They fell to 71-82 on the year with the loss, clinching the franchise’s first losing season since 2002.

The Phillies finished 80-81 in 2002, which was followed by the best stretch of baseball in franchise history. This includes five straight NL East titles from 2007-2011, two World Series appearances, and one title. With an aging core and Charlie Manuel no longer at the helm, the Phillies find themselves in a period of transition, but interim manager Ryan Sandberg told John Finger of CSNPhilly.com that he is optimistic that the franchise will get back on the right track soon.

“It’s all part of going through this,” interim manager Ryne Sandberg said after the loss. “Sometimes it takes a losing season to build and start the process, and with that a lot of these guys have had a chance to play and gain experience and that’s where you start the rebuilding process. I think there are a lot of good things that have been going on the last few weeks.”

The Phillies are 18-15 since Sandberg replaced Manuel last month. He is expected to get the full-time job, though he may have a familiar face with him in the dugout next season.

Jake Arrieta to return to Cubs’ rotation on Thursday

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Cubs starter Jake Arrieta has been out over two weeks with a strained right hamstring, but he’s ready to return to action. The right-hander threw a bullpen on Tuesday and it went well, so he will start in Thursday’s series opener against the Brewers in Milwaukee, MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat reports.

Arrieta, 31, returns with a 14-9 record, a 3.48 ERA, and a 157/53 K/BB ratio in 160 1/3 innings. If he stays on schedule, he’ll make three starts through the end of the regular season, including the regular season finale on October 1 against the Reds.

Arrieta is expected to max out at 75-80 pitches on Thursday and will ramp up through the end of the month.

Cardinals activate Adam Wainwright from the disabled list

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The Cardinals announced ahead of Tuesday’s series opener against the Reds that pitcher Adam Wainwright has been activated from the 10-day disabled list.

Wainwright, 36, has been absent since mid-August due to a right elbow impingement. The Cardinals plan to use him out of the bullpen through the end of the season. Prior to the injury, the right-hander posted a disappointing 5.12 ERA with a 96/44 K/BB ratio in 121 1/3 innings.

Wainwright is under contract for one more year at $19.5 million before becoming eligible for free agency.