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.

Houston’s Yordan Alvarez leaves game with ankle discomfort

Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Houston slugger Yordan Alvarez left the Astros’ game against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the fifth inning with left ankle discomfort.

Alvarez, who is tied for second in the American League with 37 home runs, rolled his ankle running out of the box on a single in the first inning.

He looked to be in some pain as he jogged to first base and was checked on briefly by manager Dusty Baker and a trainer before remaining in the game. Serving as the designated hitter, he struck out in the third inning before being replaced by pinch-hitter David Hensley for his at-bat in the fifth.