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Giants defeat Dodgers, punch their ticket into the Wild Card game

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The Cardinals won on Sunday afternoon, but it didn’t matter as the Giants took care of their own business, taking down the Dodgers 7-1 to clinch the second Wild Card in the National League.

Dodgers starter Kenta Maeda didn’t stand a chance on this particular afternoon, surrendering five runs on nine hits and two walks with three strikeouts before departing with two outs in the third inning. Buster Posey opened the scoring with a two-run single in the first. Denard Span brought home two runs with a triple in the second and would come around to score on another Posey single shortly thereafter, staking the Giants to an early 5-0 lead.

Yasmani Grandal put the Dodgers on the board with an RBI single off of Matt Moore in the fourth, but that would be it the rest of the way. The Giants tacked on two more runs in the eighth inning on RBI singles by Hunter Pence and Brandon Crawford.

Moore went eight innings, yielding the one run on three hits and two walks with six strikeouts on 107 pitches. Sergio Romo came on in the ninth to seal the deal. He worked around a leadoff single by Andre Ethier by getting Austin Barnes to line out, striking out Yasiel Puig, and inducing a game-ending fly out from Rob Segedin.

The Giants will travel to New York to face the Mets in the National League Wild Card game.

Report: White Sox acquire Yonder Alonso from Indians

Yonder Alonso
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The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.

Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.

While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.