And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

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Orioles 6, Red Sox 3; Rays 5, Yankees 2:  Tied. The details sort of don’t matter anymore. All you need to know is that the City of Boston now has permission to vomit. Continuously. Through Wednesday.

Phillies 4, Braves 2: The Braves are just a lousy team right now in every facet of the game. And you know what? I’ve gotten to the point where my love of chaos has overtaken my devotion to the Braves. On one level this sucks. On another level, this is kind of fantastic in some sick and twisted way.

Astros 5, Cardinals 4: But even if the Braves are lousy, the Cardinals still have to capitalize on their lousiness. And they didn’t. Depending on Octavio Dotel to give you two quality innings is the sort of thing that leads to that. Dotel gave up a leadoff double to Brian Bogusevic and then committed an error on Jason Bourgeois‘ sacrifice attempt and couldn’t field a subsequent bunt from Angel Sanchez.

Rangers 4, Angels 3: A lot of people gave me crap yesterday for not including the Angels in posts about the AL wild card. Well, sorry. Now they’re eliminated, however, so I guess it didn’t matter.

Tigers 14, Indians 0: Doug Fister vs. Ubaldo Jimenez in the battle of the mid-season pickups. Advantage: Fister. Eight shutout innings with nine strikeouts. Oh, and the 14 runs on 18 hits didn’t hurt.

Reds 6, Mets 5: I’m not gonna say this game was an exercise in going through the motions, but the Reds and Mets combined to use 34 players.

White Sox 4, Blues Jays 3: Ozzie Guillen was released from his contract as soon as this game ended. When reached for comment, Guillen said “#$&%!” Glad to see he stayed true to form until the end.

Royals 7, Twins 3: Melky Cabrera notched his 200th hit of the season in this one. In other news, the word has gone completely and utterly insane and we’ll all be lucky to survive the damn week.

Giants 3, Rockies 1: Seven shutout innings for Ryan Vogelsong, capping off a pretty doggone good year for him. He went 13-7 with a 2.71 ERA and absolutely no one, except maybe Vogelsong himself, expected it.

Padres 2, Cubs 0: My brother and his co-workers were at this game. The tickets were a reward from their manager at In-N-Out Burger for meeting some summer sales goal. He called me from the ballpark before the game and read the Cubs’ lineup to me.  I told him you get what you pay for. Mat Latos wasn’t impressed with them either (7 IP, 2 H, o ER, 9K).

Mariners 4, Athletics 2: Justin Smoak’s three-run homer broke the tie in the sixth and held up.

Dodgers 4, Diamondbacks 2: Matt Kemp hit a three-run homer which kept him in the lead in that category and extended his RBI lead, but an overall 1 for 4 night pretty much ends his triple crown hopes.

Pirates 9, Brewers 8: And though it was in a loss, Ryan Braun’s pinch hit RBI double allows him to keep whatever small buffer he has over Kemp in the MVP race. I’m a Kemp man, but my sense of it is that more people lean Braun anyway.

Nationals 6, Marlins 4: And we’re one more game closer to the end of them playing games in whatever it is the heck they call that monstrosity of a ballpark in Miami.

Dodgers look to join the Red Sox in the World Series

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One team has punched its ticket to the Fall Classic. Two teams are looking to join them, with the Dodgers carrying the distinct advantage. Los Angeles needs only a split in the final two games of the NLCS while Milwaukee needing to win both games at home. Doable? Absolutely. But to do it, the Brewers are going to have to wake up their sleepy bats.

NLCS Game 6

Dodgers vs. Brewers
Ballpark: Miller Park
Time: 8:39 PM Eastern
TV: FS1
Pitchers:  Hyun-Jin Ryu vs Wade Miley
Breakdown:

The Dodgers will give the ball to left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu, who tossed seven shutout innings in Game 1 of the NLDS but allowed two runs and tossed 72 pitches, failing to get out of the fifth inning, in Game 2 against Milwaukee. Even if he again turns in a short outing Dave Roberts should feel pretty confident, however, as the Dodgers’ bullpen — considered a question mark coming into this series — has allowed only three runs in in 21 and two-thirds innings of work.

For Milwaukee it’s once again Wade Miley, who was the Game 5 “starter,” but who pitched to only one batter. I suppose it’s possible that Craig Counsell will burn him like that again, but it seems more likely that Miley will actually pitch in this game rather than be used as a decoy.

As I noted the other day, though, the Brewers’ pitching gamesmanship has not really been a factor in this series. The real problem for them has been their offense. They’ve scored only 16 runs in five games while batting .219. That’s actually identical to the Dodgers’ run total and average overall, but L.A. has been better at distributing that meager offense. Milwaukee has been cold at the worst times, too, going 5-for-35 with runners in scoring position in the series, including one for their last 11. If that doesn’t change, their season ends tonight.