And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

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Cubs 9, Brewers 2: Kyle Schwarber hit two homers and drove in four. In 31 games since his callup he’s hitting .330/.420/.621 with eight homers. It just boggles the mind how many amazing rookies baseball has this year. The Cubs have won seven in a row and stand four and a half games ahead of the next-closest team in the wild card race. Which, in addition to being good for them, is kind of good for us as we may very well get to see two win-or-go-home division title races in the NL East and West given that no wild card may be available to them. Some real old school Thunderdome stuff, baby! Two teams enter, one team leaves! Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls . . . dyin’ time’s here! Bust a deal, face the wheel! Bartertown! Somebody stop me, please!

Reds 10, Dodgers 3: Billy Hamilton had a huge game, going 4-for-4 with a homer, stole a base and scored four times. He and his teammates took former Red Mat Latos to the woodshed, scoring five runs — four earned — in four and two-thirds. The Dodgers are certainly looking like a two-starting-pitcher club. Sadly, it’s gonna be hard to come up with a “Spahn and Sain and pray for rain” kind of slogan for them. I mean, what in the hell rhymes with “Greinke?”

Rangers 6, Twins 5: Mitch Moreland smacked a two-run homer and drove in four. After the game manager Jeff Banister said “We’ve just got to play with the grit every day from here on out that we showed today.” Rare use of “grit” in a game when a dude knocked in four and hit a homer.

Angels 7, Royals 6: The Royals had a 5-1 lead heading into the eighth before the Angels rallied big. And here I thought six runs in the eighth and ninth inning against Royals relievers violates the laws of bullpen thermodynamics. Wade Davis was a bit rusty after not pitching for a week but, still, he’s wade Davis. And the Halos rallied off of Greg Holland too: he allowed four runs and four hits and a pair of walks without retiring a batter. It was a weird game all around, of course: Albert Pujols even played third base.

Mets 12, Rockies 3: The sweep. Curtis Granderson and Kelly Johnson each homered and drove in three and Noah Syndergaard allowed three over seven innings. That’s 11 wins in the last 13 for the Mets who now sport a four and a half game lead over the Nats.

Blue Jays 4, Athletics 2: And the Blue Jays never lost again. Mark Buehrle allowed two runs in seven innings and Ryan Goins hit a three-run homer.

Yankees 8, Indians 6: The Yankees finally break their losing streak and get out of their offensive funk. Brian McCann and Stephen Drew each homered and Brett Gardner drove in three. Their big series in Toronto starts tonight.

Pirates 10, Cardinals 5: Pedro Alvarez hit a two-run homer in a seven-run first inning which helped the Buccos knock Lance Lynn out of the game after only two-thirds of an inning and snap an eight-game losing streak at Busch Stadium.

Giants 3, Nationals 1: Yunel Escobar hit the first pitch of the game for a homer and then the Nats did nothing else the rest of the night. The Nats have lost three in a row and seven of eight. Two teams that need to get moving due to that wild card getting farther and farther away. Remember where you are, guys. This is Thunderdome, and death is listening, and will take the first man that screams.

Angels place Andrew Heaney on 10-day injured list

Andrew Heaney
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The Angels have placed Andrew Heaney on the 10-day injured list with left shoulder inflammation, the club announced Saturday. The move is retroactive to July 17, though it’s not yet certain that he’ll be cleared to pitch again by the end of the month.

It’s an unfortunate development for the 28-year-old southpaw, who has battled inflammation in his pitching elbow on and off since spring training. In fact, his arm issues date back several years, including the shoulder impingement that put him on the shelf in 2017 and the Tommy John surgery he underwent in 2016. With such a complicated medical history, it makes sense that the Angels would want to proceed with caution as they facilitate the lefty’s eventual return to the mound.

Given his ongoing struggles, Heaney has seen mixed results with the club in 2019. Prior to his recent IL assignment, he pitched to a 1-3 record in nine starts with a 5.09 ERA, 3.7 BB/9, and 10.6 SO/9 through 46 innings. Since the end of June, however, his starts have gotten shorter and shorter; he lasted just 4 1/3 innings in his final outing against the Astros, expending a tremendous 103 pitches and issuing two runs, two walks, and five strikeouts during the team’s eventual 7-2 win.

In a corresponding roster move, the Angels claimed lefty reliever Adalberto Mejía off of waivers from the Twins. Mejía, 26, is expected to be activated ahead of Saturday’s game versus the Mariners. Over 13 appearances with Minnesota, he turned in an 8.80 ERA, 7.0 BB/9, and 8.8 SO/9 in 15 1/3 innings.