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Tag:On Deck
Posted on: August 10, 2011 4:50 pm
Edited on: August 10, 2011 7:27 pm
 

On Deck: Uggla, Ubaldo and NL Central fight

OD

By Matt Snyder

With two afternoon games already underway, we're still left with 13 night games on this Wednesday. The Yankees have lost three in a row while the Red Sox have won four in a row to open up a 2 1/2 game lead in the AL East. The White Sox are looking to win their sixth in a row while the Twins look to break a six-game losing streak. The Rangers and Angels have a nice race in the AL West while the Diamondbacks are hot on the heels of the Giants in the NL West. Simply put, there's tons of intriguing action coming, so keep those eyes on the live CBSSports.com scoreboard for all game action.

UGGLA GOES FOR 31: Braves second baseman Dan Uggla extended his hitting streak to 30 games Tuesday night, which ties Andre Ethier of the Dodgers for the longest of the 2011 season. If Uggla gets a hit against the Marlins Wednesday night, he'll tie the Atlanta Braves' record for the longest hitting streak, which is currently held by Rico Carty (1970). Uggla and the Braves will face Anibal Sanchez (6-5, 3.73). Uggla has a homer in three at-bats against Sanchez. The Braves, meanwhile, are the NL Wild Card leader and look to extend their winning streak to four. Tim Hudson (11-7, 3.22) gets the nod for the visitors. Braves at Marlins, 7:05 p.m. ET.

UBALDO TAKES ON DETROIT: The Indians acquired Ubaldo Jimenez from the Rockies less than a day before the non-waiver trade deadline in one of the more bizarre deals, because of the timing. He took the mound for one inning for Colorado that Saturday night and was then pulled and hugged all his teammates before departing. He was then knocked around last week in Texas during his Indians debut. Wednesday night will be his chance to win over the home fans. Jimenez will make his home debut for the Indians against the AL Central leaders, the Tigers. The Indians are three games back, so it's a big start for Jimenez. Rick Porcello (11-6, 4.49) starts for the Tigers. Tigers at Indians, 7:05 p.m. ET.

CENTRAL RIVALRY: Tensions have been high between the Cardinals and Brewers for a bit, and they'll square off again Wednesday night. It's still not late enough in the season to call any game a must-win, but the Cardinals really could use the victory here. They now trail the Brewers by four in the Central. As hot as Milwaukee has been playing, it would behoove the Cardinals to stay within a series worth of games in the standings. The pitching matchup is Randy Wolf (8-8, 3.61) for the Brewers against Jake Westbrook (9-5, 4.83) of St. Louis. Brewers at Cardinals, 8:15 p.m. ET.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnBaseball on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 9, 2011 3:35 pm
Edited on: August 9, 2011 3:36 pm
 

On Deck: Central hangs in balance

On Deck

By Evan Brunell


Follow all games live with CBSSports.com's GameTracker.

It's all Central, all night on Tuesday...

FisterMastersonBEST MATCHUP: And by best matchup, we mean pitching matchup, not the best for the ratings. But even past the pitchers, there's a pretty intriguing storyline going on in this game. Detroit is in command of first place in the AL Central, with Cleveland four games back and sliding. If the Indians win tonight, they stay in the hunt. But more intriguing is what happens if they lose, because that could mean a fall to third place if the White Sox win on Tuesday (see below). Doug Fister, making his second start since being added from Seattle at the trade deadline, will go up against Indians ace Justin Masterson (or is Ubaldo Jimenez their ace now?). Masterson has been on a roll all season and struck out nine Red Sox over six innings last time out. The two clubs face each other 12 more times in the last 50 games, so first place is definitely not secure. Tigers vs. Indians, 7:05 p.m. ET

White SoxRISING: Yep, here the White Sox come. Winners of four straight, things are starting to look up in Chicago, even as Adam Dunn and Alex Rios occupy very expensive seats on the pine. At least they can free the bench from splinters. In all seriousness, Chicago deleted one of its better starting pitchers at the trade deadline in Edwin Jackson, but have received contributions from the two players they fetched in return from Toronto. Zach Stewart made a solid spot-start the other day while Jason Frasor has helped stabilize the bullpen. Gavin Floyd will battle Jo-Jo Reyes on Tuesday. Reyes is also an ex-Blue Jay, with Baltimore claiming him off waivers late last week. A win with an Indians loss will vault the ChiSox into second. It's not every day White Sox fans root for the Tigers, but tonight, that will be the case. White Sox vs. Orioles, 7:05 p.m. ET

BrewersCardsRACE FOR FIRST: We're still chatting about the Central division, but let's switch leagues over to the NL, when a four-game winning streak will be snapped. Both Milwaukee and St. Louis have paced each other the last four games out, with the Brew Crew holding a three-game lead for the division title. The Pirates and Reds are for all intents and purposes down and out, leaving a two-horse race down the stretch. Shaun Marcum has been huge for Milwaukee with a 10-3 record and 3.58 ERA, and he'll be going up against Edwin Jackson, who gave up just one run in his Cardinals debut over seven innings against the Cubs, but coughed up eight earned in seven innings against Milwaukee on August 3, as skipper Tony La Russa improbably left him in the game too long, claiming the bullpen needed to be saved. Brewers vs. Cardinals, 8:15 p.m. ET

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: August 8, 2011 5:29 pm
 

On Deck: Wakefield aiming for 200

OD

By C. Trent Rosecrans


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Tim WakefieldGoing for 200:
Boston's Tim Wakefield will take his third chance at winning his 200th game of his career. The 45-year-old knuckleballer has pitched well in his last two starts, but wasn't able to pick up the win. He gave up three runs to both the White Sox on July 29 and to the Indians on Aug. 3, going a combined 13 2/3 innings and 11 strikeouts with just four walks. Baker's looking to bounce back from a three-inning outing against the Angels on Aug. 3. He gave up five hits and four runs (three earned), throwing 77 pitches in the outing. Red Sox at Twins, 7:10 p.m. ET


Perfect timing:
If you're a team just a half-game out of first place, there are few things that can make you happier than seeing a four-game series against the Astros coming up on the schedule. Arizona is 5-5 over its last 10 games but is still just a half-game out in the National League West thanks to San Francisco's recent struggles. The Astros are 40 games under .500. Daniel Hudson starts for the Diamondbacks opposite Houston's best pitcher, Wandy Rodriguez, in the series opener tonight. Watch for Arizona's Justin Upton who is putting up MVP numbers. Upton is hitting .366/.418/..831 with seven homers and 22 RBI over his last 18 games and has a homer in his five plate appearances against Rodriguez. Astros at Diamondbacks, 9:40 p.m. ET

Ryan VogelsongThis one goes to 11?: Pittsburgh has an uphill climb in San Francisco if it wants to stop its 10-game losing streak. While the Pirates will miss Tim Lincecum in the three-game series, they have to face former Pirate Ryan Vogelsong, who is 9-1 with a 2.19 ERA. While Vogelsong's ERA is slightly higher at AT&T Park, batters aren't hitting him as well at home, putting up a .228/.290/.312 line. He's allowed just three homers in his 11 home starts. Pittsburgh's Charlie Morton got the Pirates' losing streak started in Philadelphia by allowing eight runs in four innings. He threw seven shutout innings in his last start, but the Pirates lost a 1-0 game to the Cubs. Pirates at Giants, 10:15 p.m. ET

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 7, 2011 10:51 am
 

On Deck: We're going streaking

OD

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Follow all games live with CBSSports.com's GameTracker.

Winning streak: Roy Oswalt returns from the disabled list and looks to extend the Phillies' winning streak to 10. To reach double digits, Philadelphia will have to top Tim Lincecum. Lincecum set the tone last postseason against the Phillies, topping Roy Halladay in Game 1 of the NLCS, before losing Game 5 in a rematch against Halladay. A little more than a week ago, Lincecum threw six shutout innings in a victory in Philadelphia in a 4-1 Giants victory over Kyle Kendrick. Philadelphia's Roy Oswalt is making his first start since June 23, spending the last six weeks on the disabled list with lower back inflammation and two bulging disks. Phillies at Giants, 4:05 p.m. ET

Losing streak: On the other side of Pennsylvania, the state's other team is looking to avoid a 10-game streak of its own. Pittsburgh has lost its last nine and 11 of its last 12. The Pirates now trail the Brewers by nine games and any shot at making the playoffs seems remote at best. The team may now have to change its focus from the postseason to ending the streak of 18 consecutive losing seasons. The Pirates stand at 54-58, so that's a more realistic goal than the playoffs at this point. All-Star Kevin Correia (12-9, 4.71 ERA) starts for the Pirates opposite San Diego's Mat Latos (5-11, 3.94). Padres at Pirates, 1:35 p.m. ET

Dan UgglaFreddie FreemanHitting streaks: Braves second baseman Dan Uggla extended his hitting streak to 27 games on Saturday, going 3 for 5 with his 24th homer of the season on Saturday in a loss to the Mets, but he's not alone on the Braves' streaking list -- rookie first baseman Freddie Freeman singled in the third inning to extend his hitting streak to 20 games. Uggla's homer was his 12th during the streak and has seen his average rise from .173 to .220 during the streak. He's 2 for 8 against Sunday's Mets starter Dillon Gee. Freeman is 1 for 5 against Gee. Braves at Mets, 1:10 p.m. ET

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 5, 2011 4:56 pm
 

On Deck: Ubaldo makes his Indians debut

OD

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Follow all games live with CBSSports.com's GameTracker.

Ubaldo JimenezJimenez brings the heat: Ubaldo Jimenez makes his Cleveland debut against the Rangers, a team he's never faced. Jimenez was 6-9 with a 4.46 ERA for the Rockies this year, but was much better on the road than at (his former) home -- going 3-4 with a 3.38 ERA away from Coors Field and a 3-5 mark with a 5.55 ERA in Colorado. Jimenez will not only have to face the Rangers and Derek Holland, but also the heat. According to Weather.com, the forecast is for a game time temperature of 106 degrees, which would make it the hottest game in Rangers Ballpark history -- a place with quite the history of steamy weather. Texas had two 105-degree games last month. Indians at Rangers, 8:05 p.m. ET

East showdown: Yes, it's terribly unoriginal to put yet another Yankees-Red Sox game in the preview. Yes, the rest of the country is sick of having the two teams rammed down our throats. And yes, they've already played nine games and have nine more against each other. But the reason this rivalry gets talked about is that it's worth talking about. Entering this three-game set at Fenway Park, the two teams are tied for the best record in the American League at 68-42 and atop the American League East standings. Boston is 8-1 so far this season against their rivals, beating Friday's starter Bartolo Colon twice already. However, in those two starts, Colon has allowed just seven hits and three earned runs over 10 1/3 innings. Lefty Jon Lester is on the hill for Boston. He's allowed 13 hits and seven earned runs in two starts against the Yankees this season, but picked up victories in both starts. Yankees at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET

Aaron HarangJeff KarstensSinking ship?: Piitsburgh's quickly gone from the belle of the ball to, well, the Pirates. Looking to break their streak of 18 consecutive losing seasons, the Pirates have lost their last seven games and are now two games under .500 at 54-56. Pittsburgh will see a familiar foe on the mound in Padres right-hander Aaron Harang, a former Red who has started 23 career games against the Pirates, going 13-6 with a 4.19 ERA. Harang has beaten the Pirates and Astros more than any other teams in baseball. He faces off against Pittsburgh's best starter, Jeff Karstens. Karstens is 8-5 with a 2.49 ERA and has allow two or fewer earned runs in 13 of his last 16 starts. Padres at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. ET

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 4, 2011 2:28 pm
 

On Deck: Kipnis' streak, Bedard's debut

OD

By Matt Snyder

Ten teams get Thursday off while there were two day games, so we're looking at an eight-game slate Thursday night. Remember you can keep up with all the action on CBSSports.com's live scoreboard.

Power surge/BoSox debut: This just in: Indians' rookie second baseman Jason Kipnis is pretty good. He has only been in the bigs for 10 games, but he's now homered in four straight. He's the first player in major league history to go deep four times within his first two weeks of being promoted  and is also the first second baseman in Indians' history to do so (Cleveland Plain-Dealer). He'll put that streak on the line Thursday night against the Red Sox, who will send Erik Bedard (4-7, 3.45) to the mound for his Red Sox debut. This is a pretty big game for both teams, as the Red Sox have a one-game lead over the Yankees in the AL East, while the Indians have fallen to four games back in the AL Central they once owned. They've lost 10 of 13. Justin Masterson (8-7, 2.56) will attempt to turn the tide for the Tribe. Indians at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET.

Honeymoon over? The Pirates have been one of the big stories of the 2011 baseball season, as they were buyers at the trade deadline instead of sellers for the first time in ages. After having lost six straight, however, the Pirates have fallen below .500 for the first time in over six weeks. They're now six games out in the NL Central as the Brewers have really started to fire on all cylinders. Worse yet, the Brewers are in danger of being swept in four games by the Cubs, who came to Pittsburgh with a 42-65 record. James McDonald (7-5, 4.17) will try to get the Pirates off the schneid, while Rodrigo Lopez (2-3, 4.40) starts for the Cubs. Cubs at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. ET.

Rematch: The two teams that faced off last October in the NLCS open a four-game series Thursday night in San Francisco. Both are currently in first place again in their respective divisions, though the Phillies are much more a postseason lock at this point. They have an eight-game lead in the NL East and the best record in baseball. The Giants, meanwhile, are clinging to a one-game lead in the NL West over upstart Arizona. Cliff Lee (10-7, 3.14) -- who saw the Giants in the World Series last year as a member of the Rangers -- gets the nod for the Phillies. Madison Bumgarner (6-10, 3.80) is looking to rebound from a bad last start for the Giants, but the last time he saw the Phillies he threw two scoreless innings in relief as the Giants clinched the National League pennant in Game 6 of the NLCS. Phillies at Giants, 10:15 p.m. ET.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 3, 2011 10:56 am
 

On Deck: Heated races and a hitting streak

OD

By Matt Snyder

We have a full slate of games this Wednesday, but with five day games -- and most of the good storylines coming during the day -- we'll run On Deck early. Remember to keep those eyes glued on the live CBSSports.com scoreboard for all game action.

Eyes on Milwaukee: This series has it all, doesn't it? From Tony La Russa complaining about the scoreboard, to Yadier Molina's bumping and unintentional saliva-spewing -- which definitely brought back memories of the Crash Davis, "you just spit on me!" line from Bull Durham -- to the stars being hit by a pitch, this one has it all. Oh, and the Cardinals could cut the Brewers' NL Central lead to 1 1/2 games with a win Wednesday. This would already be a must-watch, but throw in the fact that these two teams pretty clearly hate each other, and it only gets better. The Cardinals send Edwin Jackson (8-7, 3.78) to the mound. He's still got that new car smell, as it will be his second start with the club. Randy Wolf (7-8, 3.44) gets the ball for the Brewers. Cardinals at Brewers, 2:10 p.m. ET.

Bay area brawl: Don't focus all your attention up in Wisconsin Wednesday, because the Diamondbacks and Giants square off in San Francisco. After the D-Backs took the first two games of the series, the two clubs are tied atop the NL West. The Giants turn to Ryan Vogelsong (8-1, 2.23), who has been brilliant this season, to stop their five-game losing streak. For the Diamondbacks, Jason Marquis (8-5, 3.95) will make his first start since being traded from the Nationals this past weekend. Diamondbacks at Giants, 3:45 p.m. ET.

Uggla streaking: Braves second baseman Dan Uggla will put his 24-game hitting streak on the line Wednesday in Washington. It hasn't been a cheap single-for-five-every-game hitting streak, either, as Uggla's hitting .348 with 10 homers and a 1.146 OPS during the streak. He'll see someone new Wednesday, as he's never faced Nationals starter Chein-Ming Wang (0-1, 9.00). Brandon Beachy (4-2, 3.27) will be the Braves starter, as he looks to stop their three-game losing streak and also break the Nats' four-game winning streak. The Braves trail the Phillies by eight games in the NL East and hold just a 1 1/2 game lead in the NL Wild Card race. Braves at Nationals, 1:05 p.m. ET.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: August 2, 2011 5:13 pm
 

On Deck: Snakes in striking distance

OD

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Follow all games live with CBSSports.com's GameTracker.

Knocking on the door: Everyone has assumed (myself included) the Giants could just walk from the trade deadline to the playoffs, but if you haven't looked at the National League West standings of late, the Arizona Diamondbacks are just a game behind the Giants. Tonight Tim Lincecum tries to put a little breathing room between the Giants and Diamondbacks. Lincecum hasn't allowed more than a run in a game since Independence Day, going 3-1 with a 1.08 ERA in his last four starts. He's faced the Diamondbacks just once this season, throwing eight shutout innings on May 10. Hudson, however, has struggled a little bit the last month, going 1-2 with a 5.04 ERA in five July starts, while batters are hitting .302/.350/.429 against him. He's 0-2 with a 4.97 ERA in two starts against San Francisco this season. Diamondbacks at Giants, 10:15 p.m.

Mat LatosHiroki KurodaBad luck club: Need further evidence against the win statistic as a way to judge a pitcher? How about Tuesday's matchup of San Diego's Mat Latos and Los Angeles' Hiroki Kuroda? The two have a combined 23 losses, despite both pithing too poorly. Over his last five starts, Latos has a 3.69 ERA and batters are hitting just .219/.287/.289 during that stretch. Still, he's 0-2 and the Padres are 1-4 in his five July starts. Four of Latos' five wins on the season came in a five-start stretch from May 15 to June 5, and during that time he gave up more hits and struck out fewer batters than he did in the five starts in July. And then there's 2011 Cy Unlucky in the Dodgers' Hiroki Kuroda, who sports a 3.11 ERA and a 6-13 record. Over his last 12 starts, he has a 3.38 EERA but is 1-10. Dodgers at Padres, 10:05 p.m. ET.

Central showdown: Could Milwaukee be pulling away in the National League Central? Winners of seven in a row, the Brewers have increased their lead in the division to 3 1/2 games, their largest lead of the season. Not only are the Brewers looking to extend a winning streak, so too is starter Shaun Marcum, who has won each of his last three starts. Marcum is 10-3 with a 3.33 ERA, allowing two runs in each of his last three starts. However, the Brewers must contend with Cardinals lefty Jaime Garcia, who is 10-5 with a 3.14 ERA. In his only start against MIlwaukee this season, Garcia threw a two-hit shutout on May 6, striking out eight Brewers. Cardinals at Brewers, 8:10 p.m. ET.

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