With just under a fortnight of the MLB season left the playoff race is intensifying, particularly in the National League. Ben Steele previews three of tonight's games.
The six year veteran is having one of the best seasons of his career and backed by Eduardo Escobar in the batter's box, who is also having a career year, Ray will expect a comfortable win.
Davies will keep the Brewers in the race
San Diego Padres @ Milwaukee Brewers
Thursday 00:40 BST
The Milwaukee Brewers won last night in dramatic fashion to keep themselves firmly in the wildcard race, tonight they host the San Diego Padres looking to keep the run going. Ryan Braun hit a grand slam home run in the top of the ninth to lift the Brewers to a 7-6 win over St Louis. The Brewers who, along with the Cubs, are chasing St Louis in a tight NL Central pennant race will hope Braun can carry his heroics in to tonight's game and provide support for pitcher Zach Davies.
Davies is 3-0 in his five career starts against the Padres but struggled in his last appearance against them. Expect runs, particularly with the Brewers' boom or bust batting lineup, as Milwaukee continue their late season run.
Runs at a premium in St Louis
Washington Nationals @ St Louis Cardinals
Tuesday 00:45 BST
A real pitching duel in St Louis as the Cardinals host the Washington Nationals. Stephen Strasburg and Dakota Hudson have a combined record of 32-13 this year and both have posted ERAs below 3.50, so runs could be scarce tonight. Hudson will know that earning his 16th win of the year will help the Cardinals that little bit closer to securing the NL Central title but it is Strasburg who comes in to the game with more pressure on his shoulders.
The Nats hold a 1.5 game lead in the National League wildcard race, but are being hunted down by five teams who are all within five games of each other. As an incredibly tight race continues I expect tonight's game to be low scoring, with St Louis covering the spread.
Friendly schedule will help Arizona
Miami Marlins @ Arizona Diamondbacks
Tuesday 02:40 BST
The Arizona Diamondbacks are the absolute outsider in the NL Wildcard race but a series against the Miami Marlins could help their standing. The Marlins are 52-96 and among the worst teams in the league, so a three game series is a good opportunity for the D-backs to make a charge. They start the series with pitcher Robbie Ray on the mound as he looks to recover from a minor thumb issue that affected his last start. The six year veteran is having one of the best seasons of his career and backed by Eduardo Escobar in the batter's box, who is also having a career year, and will be expecting a comfortable win.