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Cardinals Fall To Giants, Cubs Clinch NL Central Division ~ First In The MLB For Both Leagues

Jedd Gyorko puts the Cardinals on the board to cut the Giants led to one run in the third.
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

St. Louis Cardinals hosted by the San Francisco Giants, both teams in the NL Wild Card race; along with the New York Mets. The Chicago Cubs had played earlier in the evening and handed a 5-4 loss by the Milwaukee Brewers. The northenders of Chicago had to wait for the results of Game One on the West Coast. All they needed was the Giants to hand the Cardinals a loss to be the first MLB team, in both leagues, to clinch their division title. In the wee hour of this morning; yes, the Cubs clinched the NL Central Division. The Giants, indeed, got the win over the Cardinals, 6-2.  The Giants are back to a one game lead over the Mets and a two game lead over St. Louis. The Mets did not play last night. There are sixteen games left to be played for the Cardinals to make their charge. 

Adam Wainwright, coming off a start of 8 IP, only giving up one earned run. Last night was not a repeat performance against Giants Johnny Cueto. He went 5.2 IP/1 HR/4 ER, issuing three walks and only two strikeouts. Hunter Pence, who had been out for 48 games earlier this season due to a hamstring strain, did not face the Cardinals back in June. However, returning at the end of July, he was back in the line-up. In the first, with two outs and one runner on, Pence sends the pitch out over the left wall for a two-run homer to give the Giants an early 2-0 lead. 

The Cardinals chipped away at the lead in Cueto's third and fourth. It was Jedd Gyorko who struck first against Cueto who had his two outs, but two runners on. Gyorko sends a line drive right up the middle over Cueto's head for a RBI single. 

In the fourth, with one out, two runners on, Randal Grichuk smokes out a line drive right over Cueto up the center for RBI single to tie, 2-2. 

Well, Tim McCarver (Fox Sports Midwest commentator), Cueto may not "know where to go" being up the infield; but, he went the complete game only giving up those two earned runs, while fanning seven for his win. The Giants would go on to score two more runs on Wainwright, by Cueto with a RBI sac-fly and Angel Pagan's RBI single in the fourth to put the Giants in the lead for the remainder of the game. Zach Duke relieved Wainwright in the sixth and got the final out with a great sliding catch by Brandon Moss.

Behind Duke, returning in the seventh, Gyorko and Kolton Wong get the "roll and stretch". With a 'first base stretch' Wong holds steady to give him his first out in the inning. 

Duke had his two outs, but two runners on. Matt Bowman took over with David Span sending the two-seamer to right for a 2-RBI single to give the Giants their final 6-2 win. Cueto earned his 16 win handing Wainwright his ninth loss. The Giants had been swept by the San Diego Padres in the previous series at home. They were determined not to begin against the Cardinals with a loss. 

GAME TWO OF THE FOUR GAME SERIES, ONCE AGAIN 'LATE NIGHT BASEBALL' FOR CARDINALS FANS AT HOME

First pitch will be at 9:15 CST. Cardinals rookie Luke Weaver (1-2/3.48 ERA) will face Giants LHP Matt Moore (10-11/4.08 ERA). Weaver is 0-2 on the road with a 4.74 ERA in 19 innings pitched, 4 HR/10 ER/24 SO giving up a .295 BA. Lefties have hit him, .304 BA; on the right, he has held them to a .222 average. This will be Moore's first appearance, in his five years in the majors, to face the Cardinals. He was acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays at the end of July at the trade deadline; and, made his first start with the Giants, August 4. He is 3-4 since being with San Francisco. In August, he closed the month with a 3.16 ERA. His two games in September, he has struggled to the tune of 7.45 giving up 2 HR/6 ER with 12 strikeouts. He is 1-2 at AT&T Park. 

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