The balance of power in MLB has shifted in the National League. St. Louis and Pittsburgh are no longer the favorites in the Central, Washington is trying to find an identity in the East, and Arizona is tired of sitting at the bottom of the West.
Forget about the Cubs' 7-0 record against the Mets this season. It doesn’t matter anymore. The Cubs and Mets haven’t faced one another since the July trade deadline, in which the Mets made the move for bomb-hitting, bat-flipping Yoenis Cespedes, who has turned into a superstar since coming to Queens.
Los Angeles Dodgers fans nor New York Mets fans want to think about the implications of either of their teams losing in the National League Division Series. That statement seems rather obvious, doesn’t it? But there is more to that shallow declaration than meets the reader’s eye.
No matter what Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon says, not even an episode of “The Sopranos” can match the drama that is preparing to unfold in the upcoming National League Division Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and his Cubs.
It's a shame that the Cubs and Pirates are only playing a one game, winner-take-all Wild Card matchup instead of the seven-game series this NL Central rivalry deserves. But make no mistake, this game is going to be must-watch television.
Eyes of the collective Chicago media were surely rolling inside The Cubby Bear, Wrigleyville’s most popular bar, when new Cubs manager Joe Maddon proclaimed, “In my mind’s eye I’m going to be talking playoffs this year,” at his introductory press conference.
Clayton Kershaw just pitched his third straight game with 10+ strikeouts, no walks, and no runs allowed. That’s never been accomplished before. He’s pitched 29 straight scoreless innings. It shouldn’t be that surprising that Kershaw is this good, but he’s performing at historic levels. And this year, he’s not even the clear-cut best pitcher on his own team.
Not much has been going right for the Cincinnati Reds this season, but Brandon Phillips may have made one of the top plays of the season. With men on first and second down by one, the Cubs’ Jorge Soler hit a tough grounder right up the middle that could’ve tied up the game. However, Phillips raced to the ball, slid to the ground, and flipped the ball behind his back to the bare-hand of shortstop Eugenio Suarez. Suarez then stepped on the bag to end the inning.