It was yet another victorious slate of games for the cream of the crop in the National League Central.
The division-leading Cardinals cruised to an easy 6-2 win over the visiting Marlins, with Mark Reynolds slugging a three-run home run and John Lackey pitching into the eighth inning. The second-place Pirates came out on top 5-3 in a 14-inning affair with the Mets, the go-ahead RBI coming from the bat of backup catcher Chris Stewart. And the third-place Cubs took care of the crosstown White Sox by a score of 6-3 for their ninth straight win. That’s the longest current winning streak in the major leagues and it has given the Northsiders a big 4 1/2 game cushion for the second National League Wild Card spot.
All three of those NL Central clubs are currently locked into postseason spots.
And they will all be looking to complete series sweeps on Sunday.
Your box scores and AP recaps from Saturday …
Yankees 4, Blue Jays 1
Mariners 10, Red Sox 22
Athletics 3, Orioles 4
Cubs 6, White Sox 3
Angels 4, Royals 9
Phillies 2, Brewers 4
Indians 1, Twins 4
Diamondbacks 8, Braves 4
Tigers 4, Astros 2 (11 innings)
Marlins 2, Cardinals 6
Pirates 5, Mets 3 (14 innings)
Rays 4, Rangers 12
Padres 7, Rockies 5
Reds 3, Dodgers 8
Nationals 6, Giants 12
Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale has been placed on the 10-day injured list with left elbow inflammation, the club revealed Saturday. The assignment is retroactive to August 14. In a corresponding roster move, right-handed reliever Ryan Brasier was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket.
It’s an alarming development for the 30-year-old ace, who has been remarkably injury-free after dealing with a lingering case of shoulder inflammation last summer. While he hasn’t replicated the career-high results he delivered over the last two seasons, he still leads Red Sox pitchers with 3.6 fWAR and will head to the IL with a 6-11 record in 25 starts, a 4.40 ERA, 2.3 BB/9, and league-best 13.3 SO/9 through 147 1/3 innings. A timetable has not been given for his return, nor has the severity of his injury been disclosed. Per Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski, Sale has been experiencing pain in his elbow since Wednesday and will undergo further evaluation in the days to come.
Brasier, 31, was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket in mid-July after pitching to mixed results in the majors. He currently holds a 4.46 ERA, 2.7 BB/9, and 8.0 SO/9 with the Red Sox, though his results in Triple-A — one run, one walk, and 13 strikeouts over 9 1/3 innings — suggest that he might be capable of even sharper results when he rejoins the big league club.