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Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said Rojas will remain an infielder through the end of the season, Jose M. Romero of the Arizona Republic reprots. Rojas has had recent defensive issues and was held out Friday's starting lineup for the third straight game -- two against a lefty and one against a righty. The recent lineup decisions appear to be more about the defensive issues than a lefty-on-lefty matter, but Rojas has not started the last four against lefties. Lovullo said he'll continue to use him as an infielder, but there will be discussions in the offseason about what may be the best fit for Rojas, who has experience in the outfield and at multiple infield positions. Next season's outfield appears well stocked, so he would be unlikely to get 500 plate appearances if limited to outfield. Pending any offseason acquisitions, Rojas could move back to being a super utility player, but that would also cap his opportunities.
DENVER (AP) — Manny Machado and Brandon Drury hit back-to-back home runs in a five-run eighth inning, Wil Myers also went deep, and the San Diego Padres beat Colorado 13-6 in the Rockies’ final home game of the season. Jake Cronenworth tripled and drove in three runs and Juan Soto, Jurickson Profar and Luis Campusano had two hits each for the Padres. Robert Suárez (5-1) pitched one inning of relief for the win. San Diego increased its lead over Philadelphia to 1 1/2-games for the second NL wild card and increased its lead on Milwaukee to three games. The Brewers lost 2-1 to Cincinnati on Sunday and trail the Phillies by two games for the final wild card. “It’s crunch time,” Drury said. “Every game from here on out is a must win. We’re focused on what we have to do to win but we know what’s going on, too. As long as we take care of what we’ve got to take care of we trust we’re going to be where we want to be.”
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Ronald Acuña singled home the go-ahead run in the 11th inning and the Atlanta Braves stayed close in the NL East race, outlasting the Philadelphia Phillies 8-7 Sunday in a game that took over six hours to complete because of a two-hour rain delay. The Braves split the four-game series and remained 1 1/2 games behind the division-leading New York Mets. They’ll play three games next weekend in Atlanta, with the Mets needing one win to secure the tiebreaker advantage of head-to-head wins. Kyle Schwarber extended his National League-leading home run total to 42 with a pair of solo drives while scoring three times for the Phillies. Philadelphia holds a 1 1/2-game lead over the Brewers for the third NL wild card spot and a head-to-head tiebreaker over Milwaukee based on a 4-3 season series advantage. Acuña hadn’t played since feeling back tightness before Thursday night’s series opener. He pinch-hit for Vaughn Grissom in the eighth, was issued an intentional walk and remained in the game.
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PHOENIX (AP) — Pinch-hitter Evan Longoria had a go-ahead, two-run single in the eighth inning and the San Francisco Giants went on to beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 3-2 on Sunday. Brandon Crawford led off the Giants eighth with a single against Luis Frias (1-1) and advanced to second on Cooper Hummel’s passed ball. One out later, Jason Vosler walked, and another passed ball moved the runners to second and third. Pinch-hitter Wilmer Flores walked to load the bases and Reyes Moronta relieved Frias. Longoria’s line single to left scored the Giants’ first two runs after they had left 10 runners on base without scoring in the first seven innings. Camilo Doval pitched the ninth for his 26th save, giving up a run, a walk and a hit. He struck out rookie Corbin Carroll to end it, throwing one pitch at 104 mph to match his fastest of the season on Friday.
Tovar will start at shortstop and bat eighth Friday against the Padres, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports. The 21-year-old was added to Colorado's active roster Thursday and will make his big-league debut a day later. Tovar posted a .921 OPS with 14 home runs and 17 stolen bases in 71 games between the Double-A and Triple-A levels this season, and he should see regular playing time down the stretch as the Rockies take a look at their top prospect.
Merrifield went 2-for-4 with two home runs and three RBI in Thursday's loss against the Rays. After Teoscar Hernandez led off the second inning with a homer, Merrifield came up two batters later and crushed a solo shot of his own to tie the game at 3-3. The second baseman then crushed a two-run homer in the ninth, though the game had already gotten away from the Blue Jays by that point. Merrifield hasn't gotten a whole lot of playing time recently, though he is 5-for-14 (.357) in his last 16 plate appearances with two homers, five RBI, and four runs scored while also drawing two walks in that span.
Bard (6-4) struck out two and walked one across two scoreless innings to earn the win Friday against the Padres. Bard entered the game with the score knotted at two in the ninth inning, and he stayed in the game to pitch a scoreless 10th frame. He's turned in 10 consecutive scoreless appearances, during which he's maintained a 12:3 K:BB while racking up six saves and three wins. Bard now has a 1.88 ERA and 0.99 WHIP for the season.
Escobar went 1-for-5 with a grand slam and an additional run in a 9-2 win against the Athletics on Friday. Escobar connected on a two-out grand slam in the fifth inning off Oakland starter Cole Irvin and later tacked on New York's final run in the seventh. The long ball is the seventh of September for the 33-year-old who continues to rake with a .329/.388/.671 slash line, 15 runs and 17 RBI in 21 games this month.
Arozarena went 3-for-4 with two doubles, two RBI, two runs scored, one walk and one steal in Thursday's 10-5 victory over Toronto. Arozarena drove home Manuel Margot with a double to deep right in the first inning before stealing third and coming around to score himself on a wild pitch from Jose Berrios. The left fielder knocked in Margot again with a single in the second inning and went on to reach base four times in the game. Arozarena has recorded three multi-hit games in his last five contests, with three RBI and three runs scored over that span.
Knight cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Durham on Sunday, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Knight was designated for assignment by the Rays on Friday but will remain in the organization after he passed through waivers unclaimed. The 32-year-old has appeared in six MLB games this year and has a 5.73 ERA, 1.36 WHIP and 9:4 K:BB across 11 innings.
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Polanco is still feeling issues with his left knee and may not return this season, Do-Hyoung Park of MLB.com reports. Polanco hasn't played in nearly a month due to left knee inflammation. Given that the Twins have endured a late-season collapse and are out of the playoff picture, there's now little reason to rush Polanco back if he's anything short of 100 percent.
Taylor is not in the lineup for Sunday's game versus the Cardinals, Kirsten Watson of SportsNet LA reports. Taylor started the past two games and will take a seat after he went 1-for-6 with two walks and three strikeouts. Joey Gallo is starting in left field and batting seventh in Sunday's series finale.
Cousins was optioned to Triple-A Nashville on Friday. Cousins was called up by the Brewers on Monday and struck out five in 3.1 scoreless innings over three appearances following his promotion. However, he'll head back to the minors after Eric Lauer (elbow) was reinstated from the 15-day injured list prior to Friday's start against Cincinnati.
Springs allowed four runs (three earned) on six hits and a walk while striking out six across five innings Friday against the Blue Jays. He did not factor into the decision. Springs held Toronto scoreless through four innings, but he allowed a pair of doubles and singles in the fifth inning to account for all of the runs against him. He managed 11 swinging strikes on only 83 total pitches and now has at least six strikeouts in five of his last seven starts. Springs has an impressive 2.56 ERA, 1.10 WHIP and a 136:30 K:BB across 126.1 frames on the campaign.
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Pujols went 2-for-4 with two home runs, two runs and five RBI in an 11-0 win against the Dodgers on Friday. Pujols plated Tommy Edman with homer 699 off Andrew Heaney in the third inning and took reliever Phi Bickford deep to left the very next inning to make history with his 700th career home run. The 42-year-old's .250/.324/.583 September slash line has dipped from the vintage lines of August and July, though Pujols is still raking against left-handers with a .358 average, and his .868 OPS is his highest by far since 2011.
Wentz completed 25 of 43 passes for 211 yards against Philadelphia on Sunday. Wentz didn't throw any interceptions, but he lost a fumble and took nine sacks and 17 hits in a dreary game where Washington was dominated from almost start to finish. Washington has called a pass-happy offense with Wentz and his first two games were much more successful, so he has a shot to get himself together and bounce back against Dallas in Week 4.
Minor (shoulder) may retire this winter, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Minor will be 35 years old next season, and while players can certainly play well beyond that age, it would certainly make some sense if he calls it quits. For one, he hasn't recorded an ERA south of 5.00 since 2019. More importantly, pitching in the majors since 2010 has taken a toll on his arm. Shoulder issues cost him two months to start this season and sent him back to the injured list Friday. It may not be worth pushing through the pain next season, in which case the 2009 seventh overall pick would end his career with an 83-90 record and a 4.25 ERA over more than 1,400 big-league innings.