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Cubs, Brewers both win, forcing NL Central tiebreaker

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The Cubs and Brewers both entered Sunday tied for the NL Central lead at 94-67. Both won their games on Sunday, forcing a tiebreaker game on Monday to determine the division winner.

The Cardinals jumped out to an early 2-0 lead over the Cubs, but the Cubs hung a four-spot in both the third and fifth innings. They went on to win 10-5. Anthony Rizzo picked up four hits and a walk, and Willson Contreras homered.

The Brewers blanked the Tigers 11-0 behind five shutout innings from Gio González. The offense put up two runs in the first on RBI singles from Jesús Aguilar and Mike Moustakas. Aguilar drilled a solo homer in the fourth and Manny Piña added a sacrifice fly in the sixth. The Brewers put the game out of reach with a six-run seventh.

The extra game is useful for Brewers outfielder Christian Yelich, who is vying for the Triple Crown in the National League. Stats accumulated in Monday’s tiebreaker will count. Yelich leads the league in batting average (.323), is one homer off the NL lead (37 to 36), and is two RBI off the leaad (111 to 109).

There will be two tiebreakers on Monday, in fact. The Dodgers and Rockies entered Sunday tied for the NL Central crown and both won their games. The loser of both of tomorrow’s tiebreaker games will meet in the NL Wild Card game. The winner of that will play the winner of tomorrow’s NL Central tiebreaker.

Koji Uehara has retired

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Jim Allen of Kyodo News reports that Koji Uehara has retired from baseball.

Uehara, 44, has spent the past two seasons with the Yomiuri Giants, which is the where he began his career way back in 1998. He spent eight years there as a starter, winning 20 games in his rookie season, then one year as a closer and one year in swingman duties before coming to the United States.

Once in the majors he pitched for four different major league teams over nine seasons — the Orioles, Rangers, Red Sox and Cubs — from 2009-2017. In that time he posted an excellent 2.66 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, and 572/78 K/BB ratio in 480.2 innings and notched 95 saves. He won a World Series ring with the Red Sox in 2013 and was an All-Star in 2014. Uehara’s last big league stint in America with the Cubs in 2017, for whom he posted a 3.98 ERA (111 ERA+) in 49 games.

Happy trails to an excellent reliever.