A look at what’s happening around the majors Monday:
The Cubs are sending star slugger Anthony Rizzo for an MRI after he sprained his right ankle Sunday, hoping the first baseman can still help with their postseason push. Rizzo was injured fielding a bunt at first base in the third inning during a 16-6 win over Pittsburgh. He had to be helped off the field and could not put pressure on the leg. X-rays taken at Wrigley Field showed no fractures, but Chicago will get a clearer prognosis from the MRI. Chicago’s postseason pursuit has already been hindered by an injury to shortstop Javier Báez, who is out for the rest of the regular season with a hairline fracture of his left thumb.
Eugenio Suárez takes aim at the major league home run lead as the Reds open a series at Wrigley Field. Suárez connected twice Sunday and has 47 for the season, tying him with Mets slugger Pete Alonso for best in the majors. The 28-year-old Suárez has eight homers this month. The last Cincinnati hitter to lead the majors in home runs was George Foster, who hit 52 in 1977.
STILL STEADY HANDED
Even in a late-season slump, Ryan Braun has been a timely hitter for the Brewers. The 35-year-old hit a go-ahead grand slam to sink St. Louis on Sunday, a few days after hitting a tiebreaking homer against Miami. The six-time All-Star entered Sunday with a .133 average in September. “I’m not as good as I was,” he said. “But in big moments, I’m the guy still.” With Christian Yelich done for the season, the Brewers need a clutch Braun for their postseason push. They enter a home series against San Diego trailing the Cubs by one game for the second NL wild card.
The A’s return home after a 6-1 trip with a 1 1/2-game lead over Tampa Bay for the top AL wild card and a series on deck with the struggling Royals. Right-hander Tanner Roark (4-1, 3.40) starts the opener against Kansas City. Since being acquired from Cincinnati on July 31, Roark has allowed two earned runs or fewer in five of his seven starts. With the Rays taking Monday off, Oakland can stretch its lead before Tampa Bay opens a two-game set at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday.
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