SPORTS

Baseball Roundup: St. Louis Cardinals Make Playoff Push, Panic in Boston, and More

  • Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo throws to Philadelphia Phillies' Hunter Pence during the first inning of a baseball game, Sunday, Sept. 11, 2011, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

    Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo throws to Philadelphia Phillies' Hunter Pence during the first inning of a baseball game, Sunday, Sept. 11, 2011, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)  (AP)

  • David Ortiz #34 of the Boston Red Sox hits a home run against the Oakland Athletics at Fenway Park on Aug. 27, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

    David Ortiz #34 of the Boston Red Sox hits a home run against the Oakland Athletics at Fenway Park on Aug. 27, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)  (2011 Getty Images)

Cardinals Looking at October

Just a week ago the Cardinals looked out of the playoff picture. St. Louis was 10 1/2 games behind the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central and 8 1/2 games behind Atlanta in the NL wild card race.  But now it's a different story. Yadier Molina had three hits, including a bases loaded double in a five-run third inning as the Cardinals beat the Braves 6-3 Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.

The Cardinals are now six games behind Milwaukee and 4 1-2 behind Atlanta. The Cardinals have 16 games left and begin a three-game series at Pittsburgh on Monday.

Brewers Back to Winning Ways

With their lead in the NL Central slipping away and in the midst of a four-game losing streak, Milwaukee's Yovani Gallardo pitched gave up two runs – pair of homers – in seven innings Sunday as the Brewers rallied back to beat Philadelphia 3-2.

Gallardo, who gave up two homers in the sixth inning, struck out a career-high 12.

None of the Brewers' remaining opponents have a winning record.

Big Papi Aware of Rays

An American League Wild-Card lead of 6 1-2 games for the Red Sox has now gone down to 3 1/2 games after Tampa Bay swept them this weekend.

The Red Sox have lost five straight and seven of their last eight. Their starting pitching is even a mess.

David Ortiz admitted that the team has "to panic at this point."

"You've got to panic at this point. But you're not going to do anything panicking but playing better. Of course you're freaked out," Ortiz told reporters Sunday.

"You go on this road trip 1-6, it's not good. We've got these guys breathing down our neck and we're not in first place either. We've got to come back and play better, though."

Ortiz also said that the Rays look like they are playing with no pressure.

Same OL' Results

Detroit's Jose Valverde saved his 43rd game of the season, a club single-season record, in a 2-1 win over the Cleveland Indians.

Valverde did struggle in saving his 43rd straight game of the season.

He walked Joe Mauer to start the ninth inning and then gave up a single to Luke Hughes. Valverde then got Chris Parmelee to fly out and he retired pinch-hitter Jason Kubel on a groundout that drove in a run. With the tie run in scoring position, he struck out Rene Tosoni.

Velverde's 43rd straight save of the season extended the Tigers' winning streak to nine games. Detroit last won nine straight in 1984, the year they won the World Series.

First and Many to Come

Braves top pitching prospect Julio Teheran picked up his first Major League victory Thursday night over the Mets.

Making his third start in the majors this season, Teheran allowed five hits and one run over 5 1-3 innings in the second game of a doubleheader swept by Atlanta.

Teheran gave up a pair of walks in the sixth inning before being pulled out of the game. He struck out three.

Teheran was the International League's MVP and Rookie of the Year this season. He led the Braves Triple-A affiliate at Gwinnett and the league with 15 wins and a 2.22 ERA.

Adry Torres, who has covered MLB, NFL, NBA and NCAA basketball games and related events, is a regular contributor to Fox News Latino. He can be reached at elpiloto137@gmail.com or follow him on Twitter: @adrytorresnyc.

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