The Dodgers lowered their magic number to five with a win over the Giants, and re-took sole possession of the No. 2 seed in the National League thanks to the Cardinals' loss to the Brewers. St. Louis is now tied atop the National League Central with the surging Pirates.
Comedian Rob Delaney, who sang the national anthem at Dodger Stadium on April 26, summed it up best:
No shit. RT @MLB: Whoever wins more games over the next 2 1/2 weeks wins the NL Central.— rob delaney (@robdelaney) September 13, 2013
Here is a recap of Thursday's relevant action.
Dodgers 3, Giants 2 (10): Even though Kenley Jansen blew his first save in over two months, the Dodgers beat the Giants in extra innings. Adrian Gonzalez singled home Carl Crawford with the winning run in the 10th inning to lower the Dodgers' magic number to clinch the NL West to five.
Pirates 3, Cubs 1: Jeff Locke allowed just one run in seven innings for his first win in nine starts. Pittsburgh won its fourth straight game to draw even with the Cardinals atop the NL Central.
Brewers 5, Cardinals 3: Somebody named Sean Halton homered and drove in three runs for Milwaukee, snapping St. Louis' winning streak at five games.
Braves 6, Marlins 1: Atlanta got six quality innings out of Freddy Garcia, while Freddie Freeman homered and Chris Johnson had three hits. The Braves' lowered their magic number to clinch the NL East to six.
Nationals 7, Mets 2: Old friend Aaron Harang allowed three home runs in his Mets debut, as Washington completed a four-game sweep and won its sixth straight game. Tanner Roark improved to 6-0 as the Nationals crept to within 5½ games of the Reds for the second wild card.
The Diamondbacks open a weekend series at home against the Rockies, while the Reds are in Milwaukee to face the Brewers. The Braves return home to face the Padres, and Atlanta sends David Hale to the mound in the series opener making his major league debut. Here is a look at relevant games on Friday (all times PT):
- 4:05 p.m. - Philadelphia (Kyle Kendrick) at Washington (Stephen Strasburg)
- 4:05 p.m. - Chicago (Jake Arrieta) at Pittsburgh (Charlie Morton)
- 4:35 p.m. - San Diego (Ian Kennedy) at Atlanta (David Hale)
- 5:10 p.m. - Cincinnati (Mat Latos) at Milwaukee (Kyle Lohse)
- 5:15 p.m. - Seattle (Hisashi Iwakuma) at St. Louis (Adam Wainwright)
- 6:40 p.m. - Colorado (Tyler Chatwood) at Arizona (Brandon McCarthy)
- 7:10 p.m. - San Francisco (Madison Bumgarner) at Dodgers (Clayton Kershaw)