CHICAGO — One after another, the starting pitchers for the Chicago Cubs are delivering every night.It was Jake Arrieta’s turn on Wednesday. ADVERTISEMENT Arrieta pitched two-hit ball into the seventh inning, and the Cubs beat the Chicago White Sox 8-3 to move into first in the NL Central. After a disappointing start to the season, the Cubs (53-47) are roaring again. The reigning World Series champions moved a season-high six games over .500 and a half-game ahead of Milwaukee after trailing the Brewers by 5 1/2 games just two weeks ago. “We expect to remain in first place throughout the remainder of the way,” Arrieta said. “We know it’s going to be a tough task, but that’s kind of what you deal with at the highest level of sports.” If their starting pitchers continue their recent roll, they should be in great shape at the end of wholesale mlb jerseys the season. The rotation of Arrieta, Jon Lester, Jose Quintana, John Lackey and Kyle Hendricks is 9-0 with a 2.50 ERA in the last 12 games. “I just want to be able to have all my pitches available regardless of the situation,” Arrieta said, “and that’s kind of how tonight worked out.” Anthony Rizzo had three hits and four RBI, helping the Cubs improve to 10-2 since the All-Star break. Jon Jay drove in a run and robbed Melky Cabrera of a hit with an outstanding diving catch in left-center. After finishing their series against the last-place White Sox on Thursday night, the Cubs visit Milwaukee for a three-game set this weekend. Top prospect Yoan Moncada hit his first career homer and Alen Hanson also went deep, but the White Sox lost for the 11th time in 12 games. Moncada came over from Boston in the Chris Sale trade. “It means a lot because it’s the first one of many that are coming. I’m happy.” Moncada said through a translator. Third baseman Yolmer Sanchez committed a costly error for the South Siders, and James Shields (2-3) lasted just four-plus innings. The White Sox (39-59) played without All-Star outfielder Avisail Garcia, who is expected to miss a couple weeks after an MRI revealed a strained ligament in his right thumb. He went 0 for 5 in Tuesday’s 7-2 loss to the Cubs. “It’s been like this one week and getting worse, worse, worse,” he said. “So that’s why I decided to stop because my swing is not the same and I don’t want to keep playing like this. Try to get this thing better and try to get back on the field soon.” Arrieta (10-7) departed after Moncada’s solo shot made it 6-2 with two out in the seventh. The 2015 NL Cy Young Award winner struck out five and walked two while improving to 3-1 with a 2.25 ERA in five July starts. “When the fastball is going where he want to, he’s going to be successful,” manager Joe Maddon said, “and then off that’s going to be the confidence, then off that you’re going to see the cutter and the curveball working better because he’s just going to be a more confident pitcher.” Kyle Schwarber singled in Rizzo in the fourth, and the Cubs broke it open with four runs in the fifth at Guaranteed Rate Field. With no outs and runners on first and second, Sanchez misplayed Kris Bryant’s grounder for an error that loaded the bases. Rizzo followed with a drive to the base of the wall in center, making it 4-0 with a three-run double. SHIPPED OUT The White Sox traded reliever Anthony Swarzak to the Milwaukee Brewers for minor league outfielder Ryan Cordell. The 25-year-old Cordell, an 11th-round draft pick by Texas in 2013, hit .284 with 10 homers and 45 RBI in 68 games with Triple-A Colorado Springs this year. TRAINER’S ROOM Cubs: LHP Brett Anderson (lower back strain) was activated from the 60-day disabled list and designated for assignment. He went 2-2 with an 8.18 ERA in six starts with the Cubs. White Sox: RHP Jake Petricka was activated from the 10-day DL after being sidelined by a right elbow strain. He also spent time on the disabled list this season with a right lat strain. “Ideally this is the last time we have to go through this,” he said. “It just feels good to be back with the guys.” UP NEXT Cubs left-hander Jon Lester and White Sox right-hander Mike Pelfrey face off in the series finale. Lester (7-6, 3.95 ERA) is trying for his third straight win since he recorded only two outs in the shortest start of his career July 9 against Pittsburgh. Pelfrey (3-7, 4.46 ERA) is looking for his first victory since he pitched six effective innings in a 5-2 win against Toronto on June 17.
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CHICAGO — Another quality start by Chicago Cubs righty Jake Arrieta on Wednesday night, against the crosstown White Sox, further cements the notion that his team isn’t in any desperate need of a trade-deadline hurler to complete its rotation.Arrieta took a no-hit bid into the fifth inning and gave up just two hits overall before giving way to reliever Mike Montgomery in the seventh. The Cubs rolled into first place in the National League Central with a 8-3 victory over the White Sox. In Arrieta’s previous four starts, opponents were hitting just .174 off him, and that number took another dive as he gave up very little hard contact in this one. A one-out double in the fifth and a solo home run to uber-prospect Yoan Moncada in the seventh were all he surrendered. Arrieta looks closer to the 2015 version of himself who won the Cy Young Award than he has in a long time. At the very least, he’s pitching as well as he did during portions of 2016, when he won 18 games. Although the Cubs could still grab a starter such as Justin Verlander, who can help them in the coming years, they have enough in the rotation right now to win the division. With Wednesday’s victory, they unseated Milwaukee to take sole possession of first place for the first time since May 26. “We expect to remain in first place throughout the remainder of the way,” Arrieta said. But that doesn’t mean the Cubs are finished dealing. Their needs continue to center on the bullpen, which has shown cracks at the time when the rotation has carried them. Montgomery gave up a home run and cheap jerseys was in trouble in several innings Wednesday. Monday’s trade deadline is fast approaching, but right now, the Cubs can celebrate their return to first place, as they’ve made up six games on the now-second-place Brewers since the All-Star break. A series in Milwaukee looms this weekend. The Brewers will miss Arrieta, and that might be the best news they receive.
NEW YORK — Luis Severino is pitching like an ace for the New York Yankees, a year after his severe sophomore slump.Severino dominated reeling Cincinnati for seven innings,Didi Gregorius and Todd Frazier homered and the Yankees beat the Reds 9-5 on Wednesday for a two-game sweep. New York has won consecutive series after going 0-8-2 in series after sweeping Baltimore from June 9-11. The Yankees, one game behind AL East-leading Boston, have stabilized by winning eight of 12 following a 7-19 slide. “Every good team needs that guy that goes out there every fifth day and gives us a chance to win, and cheap jerseys he’s been that guy for us,” CC Sabathia said. Severino (7-4) did not allow a runner past second base until the seventh, when he allowed a pair of unearned runs after Gregorius misplayed Scott Schebler’s leadoff grounder to shortstop. Severino struck out nine — eight swinging — many on a devastating slider. He threw 48 fastballs, 43 sliders and 21 changeups. And he made a nifty barehand grab to throw out Jose Peraza on a chopper for the final out in the seventh. “I thought he threw an outstanding game, and I thought he had command of everything today,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “Maybe some of the best stuff he’s had all year long.” Severino was 5-3 with a 2.89 ERA in the final two months of the 2015 season but was demoted to the minors for long stretches last year and even sent to the bullpen, finishing 3-8 with a 5.83 ERA with the Yankees. Mixing his pitches and showing better control, he has allowed one earned run in 21 innings since the All-Star break. “If there’s a guy that I haven’t seen before that looks like an ace, it’s that kid,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “I mean it’s a quick arm, three pitches for strikes, he’ll throw them all in any count, and he throws `em with command. That’s a difference maker. That’s certainly a guy you can build a rotation around.” Gregorius hit his fourth homer in three games for the Yankees, who have won five of six heading into a series against AL rival Tampa Bay. Acquired last week from the Chicago White Sox, Todd Frazier hit a solo homer against Tony Cingrani that capped a five-run seventh , opening a 9-2 lead. “In the pinstripes, hitting a home run on your home turf, basically — you live an hour away. It’s pretty memorable,” said Frazier, who is from Toms River, New Jersey. “I know I’ll be getting a lot of texts from all my Yankee fan friends. It was cool. My parents are happy. Everybody’s happy.” Cincinnati has lost three straight and is 2-11 since the All-Star break. Homer Bailey (2-5) lost his third start in a row, giving up seven runs — five earned — and 10 hits in six-plus innings. Rookie Clint Frazier, taking advantage of playing time while Aaron Hicks recovers from an oblique strain, hit RBI singles in the third and fifth innings, and Chase Headley hit an RBI single in the sixth and scored on Ronald Torreyes’ groundout. Throwing errors by shortstop Jose Peraza and first baseman Joey Votto made the runs unearned. Eugenio Suarez stopped Severino’s scoreless streak at 17 innings with an RBI double in the seventh and scored on Tucker Barnhart’s groundout. Adam Duvall added a three-run homer in the eighth against Luis Cessa.
With the San Francisco Giants out of the playoff hunt, it wouldn’t be a shock to see Jeff Samardzija’s name in trade chatter. But the pitcher likely won’t be on the move, especially because he has a say in the matter.Rumor CentralAndrew Baggarly of San cheap jerseys mlb Jose’s Mercury News reports that Samardzija is unwilling to lift his no-trade clause, which allows him to reject any trade to 22 teams. “Obviously it hasn’t gone the way we wanted it to, which has put some people in some trade talks,” Samardzija said. “But we also know that we have a great core of guys here [and] as long as we do our jobs and have confidence and momentum and excitement, we’re going to do really well.” He added to Baggarly that he loves being in San Francisco. Samardzija, 32, is in the second year of a five-year, $90 million deal that brought him to San Francisco last season after a year with the Chicago White Sox. He has struggled to a 5-11 record this season with a 4.85 ERA. One thing the right-hander can provide to any team is innings, as he has topped 200 frames each of the past four seasons. Of the eight teams that Samardzija can be traded to without his permission, the Los Angeles Dodgers, Washington Nationals and New York Yankees all are in the market for starting pitching but seem to be focused on higher-end options. It remains to be seen if a market will develop around Samardzija, but he maintains some control of his destiny.
The Colorado Rockies are “aggressively searching” for a right-handed reliever, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today.Rumor CentralPer Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller, Miami Marlins closer AJ Ramos is a top Rockies target. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that Colorado and Miami are in ongoing discussions regarding Ramos. Ramos has a 3.76 ERA and 1.28 WHIP cheap mlb jerseys in 39 games this season, recording 46 strikeouts over 38⅓ innings. The 30-year-old is 19-for-21 in save opportunities. The Rockies — who entered Wednesday atop the National League wild-card standings — aren’t likely to look to Ramos to be their ninth-inning man, as Greg Holland has posted excellent numbers as the team’s closer (1.72 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, 31-for-32 in save opportunities). Holland was placed on Colorado’s paternity list Wednesday. Ramos is eligible for arbitration for the first time in his career in the upcoming offseason and is set to reach free agency in 2019. Colorado was linked to Ramos earlier this month. Other clubs which have expressed interest in the reliever include the Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees, although New York has since traded for former Chicago White Sox closer David Robertson.