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Cardinals Trounce Astros, Push Wild Card Lead to 3.5 Games

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via i.imgur.com Courtesy of VEB Community Member tomsteele

Today was a good day in Cardinaldom. The Redbirds added to their Wild Card lead. Here's a look at the National League Wild Card standings after Monday's games:

Club

Wins

Losses

Winning %

GB of 2nd

Homefield GB

Last 10

Streak

Braves

88

65

.575

--

--

7-3

W2

Cardinals

83

71

.539

--

5.5

7-3

W3

Dodgers

79

74

.516

3.5

9.0

5-5

W1

Brewers

79

74

.516

3.5

9.0

7-3

L1

D-Backs

77

76

.503

5.5

11.0

6-4

L1

Phillies

77

76

.503

5.5

11.0

5-5

L2


After the Dodgers' Sunday Night Baseball win and the Brewers' Monday afternoon loss to the Nationals, Los Angeles and Milwaukee are now tied at 3 1/2 games back to the Cardinals in the competition for the one-game Wild Card play-in.

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

The Nationals' 12-2 mauling of the Brewers in D.C. on Monday afternoon gave the Cardinals a golden opportunity to pad their lead in the race for the National League's second Wild Card berth. On Monday night night in Houston, they seized upon that opportunity by manhandling the pathetic Astros 6-1. After a hairy first inning, starter Lance Lynn settled in to pitch seven innings, allowing one run on five hits and two walks while notching nine strikeouts. The offensive attack was led by warlock shortstop Pete Kozma who went two for three with a home run, two RBI, and two runs scored. Matt Holliday provided a two-out, two-run RBI single in the seventh that put the game out of reach for the feeble Astros.

Probable Pitchers:

Jaime Garcia (108 IP, 4.25 ERA, 3.15 FIP, 3.51 xFIP) vs. Lucas Harrell (182 2/3 IP, 3.89 ERA, 3.77 FIP, 3.86 xFIP)

Magic Number: 6

LOS ANGELES DODGERS

With ace Clayton Kershaw returning to action on Sunday night, the Dodgers dispensed of the Reds, allowing L.A. to end their road trip on a high note before their transcontinental flight west to face the resurgent Padres. With the Brewers' loss on Monday afternoon, the Dodgers find themselves tied with Milwaukee at 3 1/2 games behind the Cards.

Probable Pitchers:

Josh Beckett (158 2/3 IP, 4.88 ERA, 4.22 FIP, 4.26 xFIP) vs. Edinson Volquez (171 2/3 IP, 4.30 ERA, 4.10 FIP, 4.21 xFIP)

Elimination Number: 6

MILWAUKEE BREWERS

The Brewers were the victims of a ten-running in Washington D.C. this afternoon. The loss meant a two-two split against the Nationals. With the Cardinals' win against the Astros, the Brewers' elimination number fell from eight last night to six tonight. That's great news for the Cardinals. Next up for the Brew Crew are the Reds in Cincy, which is not an easy draw by any means. The series begins on Tuesday with an excellent pitching match-up.

Probable Pitchers:

Mike Fiers (117 1/3 IP, 3.38 ERA, 2.90 FIP, 3.60 xFIP) vs. Johnny Cueto (203 IP, 2.84 ERA, 3.26 FIP, 3.71 xFIP)

Elimination Number: 6