Cubs’ Andrew Cashner pulled from start with shoulder tightness

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Potentially bad news from Wrigley Field: Cubs’ starter Andrew Cashner was pulled from today’s game against the Diamondbacks due to tightness in his right shoulder. He had thrown 72 pitches in five and a third innings at the time, and had allowed two hits, one of which was a homer. The game is still going on — the Cubs led the Dbacks 4-1 when Cashner was yanked — so we don’t have any additional details yet. Updates as we get ’em.

This was Cashner’s first major league start. The former first round pick had 53 relief appearances as a rookie last year, but had spent three years in the minors primarily as a starter.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.