But maybe something’s started to click? Coming into Friday night’s series opener against the Yankees, Profar for the month of August was hitting .235/.385/.510 with more walks than strikeouts. Then in the Bronx, he went 2 for 5 with a home run and a double. He also made a pretty nifty ranging play to end it: 
As for his Mets, they padded their lead with a total of 10 runs after the seventh (Todd Frazier had a pair of three-run homers in the late innings) and wound up winning for the first time in more than a week. Zack Wheeler twirled six strong innings. 
Also in this one, Marcus Semien hit his 25th home run of the season and 100th home run of his career. The A’s are now 4-0 against the Yankees this season, and they’ve out-scored them 25-11 over that span. More important, Oakland maintains its one-game lead over the Rays for the second AL wild-card spot. They’re also now only a half-game behind the Indians for the top wild-card spot. 

Baseball schedule/scores for Friday, August 30


Castellanos slugs two more homers for Cubs

Coming off an authoritative sweep at Citi Field, the Cubs opened maybe their most important series of the regular season (to date) on Friday afternoon. The NL Central rival Brewers are visiting Wrigley Field for three games this weekend. The Cubs sit in the second wild-card spot with Milwaukee four games back coming into the series.
The Royals have little to be pleased about in 2019, and they had little to be pleased about on Friday night, as they got wrecked by the similarly horrid Orioles. A pleasing exception on both those fronts has been 27-year-old slugger Jorge Soler, who tied the franchise record for home runs in a season on Friday:  Coming off a crushing sweep at the hands of the Cubs and having lost six in a row overall, the Mets picked up a sorely needed win in Philly on Friday night. They were down 1-0 against a cruising Aaron Nola in the seventh when pinch-hitter Wilson Ramos came up with a clutch knock: 
Castellanos added a second two-run home run in the second inning. He has 11 home runs in 27 games with the Cubs after hitting 11 home runs in 100 games with the Tigers earlier this season. Chicago needed a shot in the arm offensively and Castellanos has certainly provided that since coming over at the deadline.

Profar heating up for A’s

As noted above, Soler is now tied with Mike Moustakas (2017) for the single-season record. Barring the drastically unexpected, Soler will soon own the record by himself and then become the first 40-homer man in Royals history. 
As for the Brewers, they have now lost four of their last five games and seven of their last 11 games. Chase Anderson put them in an early hole Friday and they were unable to escape. Milwaukee is now five games behind the Cubs for the second wild-card spot and six games behind the Cardinals in the NL Central.  Labor Day weekend begins with a full 15-game slate of big league action, including series with postseason implications in the Bronx, Philadelphia, St. Petersburg, and on Chicago’s north side. Now here’s what you need to know. 
It did not take the Cubbies long to take control of Friday afternoon’s game. Three pitches into the bottom of the first inning, they led 2-0. Ian Happ smacked a first pitch double and Nicholas Castellanos followed with a two-run home run.

Mets snap losing streak; Ramos extends hit streak

Infielder Jurickson Profar enjoyed a breakout season in 2018 in terms of both production and health, and that’s why expectations were high after the A’s acquired him from the Rangers this past December. For much of the 2019 season, though, Profar has been a disappointment for Oakland.  Who wins every MLB game? And what underdogs can give you a huge victory tonight? Visit SportsLine now to see the exact score of every MLB game, plus get full player stat projections, all from the model that simulates every game 10,000 times. Soler also doubled against Baltimore, and on the season he’s now slashing .253/.344/.540 with 265 total bases. He’s flashed these kinds of skills before, but never has he done in tandem with health and consistent playing time. Soler has indeed taken the next step.

Nats walk it off

Given the tight margins in the NL wild-card fray, that’s a big win for the Nats. As for Rendon, he went 3 for 4 with a double and a walk, and he’s now batting .333/.412/.619 with 69 extra-base hits in 119 games. A hot September for Rendon could put him squarely in the NL MVP discussion along with Cody Bellinger and Christian Yelich. More importantly, the Nats keep their grip on playoff position. The Sean Doolittle-less Washington bullpen coughed up two runs and the lead in the ninth inning against the Marlins on Friday night, but fortunately for the Nationals their magma-hot offense came through with two runs of their own in the bottom half. Here’s Anthony Rendon with the decisive hit: 

Soler ties franchise home run record

Like the tweet says, that single extends Ramos’ hitting streak to 23 games. His was already the longest hit streak of 2019, and Ramos is now tied for the fifth longest hit streak in Mets franchise history. On the season, Ramos is now batting .293/.356/.421 with more than 850 defensive innings behind the plate. Profar’s long had star upside, and he’s still just 26 years of age. If he could thump down the stretch for Oakland while manning an up-the-middle position, then he’ll greatly aid their playoff aspirations. 
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