LEADING OFF: Indians go for 18, Brewers can sweep Cubs
A look at what’s happening all around the majors Sunday:
SUNDAY NIGHT STREAKING
The Indians will play for their 18th straight victory in a nationally televised game against the Orioles. Francisco Lindor homered to help Cleveland win its franchise-record 17th straight on Saturday, the longest run in the majors since Oakland took 20 straight in 2002. The best streak in baseball history belongs to the New York Giants, who had a 26-game run in 1916, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. The Giants’ stretch included a tie, which doesn’t count as a completed game in baseball. Cleveland right-hander Trevor Bauer (15-8, 4.39 ERA) seeks to extend his career-long winning streak to nine games in a matchup against Jeremy Hellickson (2-3, 6.87).
”WE NEED IT”
The Brewers can complete a timely sweep of the NL Central-leading Cubs at Wrigley Field. Milwaukee pulled within three games of the defending World Series champions with a 15-2 win Saturday, riding big hits from Travis Shaw and Orlando Arcia during an eight-run third inning. Zach Davies (16-8, 3.77) goes for the Brewers against Kyle Hendricks (6-4, 3.29). ”We need it,” Shaw said of Sunday’s showdown. ”We’re running out of time. Every game is kind of a must-win at this point.” It wasn’t all rosy for Milwaukee on Saturday, though, as Jimmy Nelson was ruled out for the season because of a shoulder injury.
DAY OF REST
The Nationals can clinch the NL East with a win against Philadelphia and a Miami loss, but don’t expect to see Anthony Rendon, Daniel Murphy and Ryan Zimmerman fighting for the title. Manager Dusty Baker had planned to rest most of his regulars, and he’s standing by that even with Washington’s magic number at two. ”We’ve got some young players that are going to play tomorrow,” Baker said. ”Twenty-one games in 20 days – these guys need a blow and tomorrow is the perfect time to give them one.”
Three postseason contenders could be without key players after they got hurt Saturday: Texas center fielder Carlos Gomez rolled his right ankle on a swing against the Yankees. He didn’t even make it halfway to first base on his groundout and needed help getting off the field. Gomez was on crutches with a walking boot after the game. … Red Sox utility infielder Eduardo Nunez came up limping vs. Tampa Bay after legging out an infield hit. He was replaced at shortstop by regular starter Xander Bogaerts. Acquired from San Francisco in late July, Nunez has provided a spark in Boston’s lineup, batting .312 in 37 games with eight homers and 27 RBIs. … Cardinals center fielder Dexter Fowler bruised his left knee against Pittsburgh when he crashed into the wall trying to catch a long drive by Adam Frazier that turned into an inside-the-park home run. Fowler was replaced in center by Randal Grichuk.
JUST IN TIME
The Astros are at risk of being swept by the Athletics, but first, Oakland will have to solve Houston ace Dallas Keuchel (12-3, 2.88). The A’s took the first three games of a four-game series against the AL West leaders, but Keuchel is 3-0 with an 0.83 ERA in three starts against Oakland this year, including seven scoreless innings during a 3-1 victory on Aug. 18.
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