Major League Baseball
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National League Game Capsules
(Tuesday, September 23)

Final Score: Pittsburgh 3, Atlanta 2

Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Andrew McCutchen and the Pittsburgh Pirates are headed back to the postseason for the second straight year. McCutchen reached base in all four of his plate appearances and scored twice, including the winning run in sixth inning as the Pirates edged the lifeless Atlanta Braves, 3-2, on Tuesday. Travis Snider hit a solo homer and Starling Marte drove in the deciding run for the Pirates, who have won 11 of 13 and clinched one of the Wild Card spots in the NL thanks to the victory and Milwaukee's loss to Cincinnati. Pittsburgh reached the playoffs for the first time since 1992 last season. Gerrit Cole (11-5) shook off a shaky beginning and wound up retiring the final 16 batters he faced. He allowed two runs on four hits and struck out eight over seven frames. The Braves were limited to six hits and have scored just 17 runs over a horrid 1-10 stretch that eliminated the club from playoff contention.

Final Score: Chicago 4, St. Louis 3 (10 innings)

Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Welington Castillo drove in Anthony Rizzo with the game-winning run in the 10th inning as the Chicago Cubs eked past the NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals 4-3 on Tuesday. The middle test of this three-game series came down to which bullpen blinked first, and Pat Neshek was the unfortunate scapegoat. Rizzo doubled off Neshek (7-2) with one away in the 10th and moved to third on Jorge Soler's groundout. After Luis Valbuena was intentionally walked, Castillo punched a single to right for the walk-off hit. Castillo also hit a two-run homer and Zac Rosscup (1-0) picked up his first big-league victory in relief for the Cubs, who had dropped four of five coming in. The Cardinals lost for just the third time in their last 11 games but saw their division lead shrink to 1 1/2 games over Pittsburgh. The streaking Pirates have won 11 of 13 and have a game in hand on St. Louis.

Final Score: Los Angeles 4, San Francisco 2

Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Justin Turner homered twice off Madison Bumgarner and the Los Angeles Dodgers inched closer to clinching the NL West with a 4-2 win over the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday. Turner led off the game with a homer and hit another solo shot in the eighth inning as the Dodgers bounced back from Monday's 13-inning loss to push their lead over the Giants back to 4 1/2 games atop the division. Matt Kemp added a two-run blast for Los Angeles and Zack Greinke pitched eight innings for the win, his only mistake a slider Bumgarner hit over the wall for a two-run homer in the third inning. The Giants could have clinched a playoff spot with a win after Milwaukee lost in Cincinnati on Tuesday. Instead, they hold the second wild- card spot behind Pittsburgh. The Giants remained five games ahead of the Brewers for the final NL playoff spot. The Dodgers' magic number to win the division is one with ace Clayton Kershaw scheduled to pitch Wednesday's series finale against Tim Hudson.

Final Score: Cincinnati 3, Milwaukee 1

Cincinnati, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Todd Frazier and Devin Mesoraco hit back- to-back homers to back eight solid frames from Johnny Cueto, as Cincinnati picked up a 3-1 win over Milwaukee in the opener of a three-game series. Jason Bourgeois knocked in a key late run for the Reds, who have won two in a row after losing six straight. Cueto (19-9) struck out seven while yielding a run on four hits. Aroldis Chapman closed the door in the ninth for his 34th save. Aramis Ramirez collected two hits and Carlos Gomez added a solo homer for the Brewers, who have dropped five of their last six to slide further out of the NL wild-card race. Mike Fiers (6-4) lasted just five innings and gave up two runs on four hits.

Final Score: Washington 4, New York 2

Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - Adam LaRoche hit a three-run homer and the Washington Nationals continued their dominance against the New York Mets this season, winning 4-2 in the opener of a three-game series. LaRoche in particular has burned the Mets, as Washington improved to 14-3 in 2014 against their division rival. LaRoche has six of his 26 home runs and 18 RBI in 14 games against New York this season. Tanner Roark (15-10) pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on five hits to win his third straight start. The Nationals, who already locked up the NL East, are 10-2 in their last 12 games overall. Mets starter Bartolo Colon (14-13) was charged with four runs on five hits in six innings of work.

Final Score: Miami 2, Philadelphia 0

Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Henderson Alvarez outdueled Cole Hamels to guide the Miami Marlins to a 2-0 win over the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday. Alvarez (12-6) pitched 7 2/3 scoreless innings, yielding just five hits and a walk to help Miami snap a four-game slide. The young right-hander has only lost once since July 19. Hamels is no stranger to the lack of run support his offense gave him in this one. Philadelphia's ace has been given two or fewer runs of support in 13 of his last 22 outings. He fell to 8-5 during that stretch despite a sub-2.00 ERA. Hamels (9-8) was charged with both runs on seven hits in seven innings for Philadelphia, which fell to 2-6 on its 10-game road trip.

Final Score: Colorado 3, San Diego 2

San Diego, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Drew Stubbs' home run in the eighth inning lifted the Colorado Rockies to a 3-2 win over the San Diego Padres on Tuesday. Stubbs greeted Dale Thayer (4-4) with a homer to right on the first pitch of the eighth to give the Rockies the lead. Colorado then made two great defensive plays to keep it a one-run game in the home eighth. Rene Rivera led off the inning by lifting a deep fly to left, where Brandon Barnes leapt up at the wall to snare the extra-base hit. San Diego proceeded to put a pair of runners on with two outs before DJ LeMahieu made a diving stop to his left to get Alexi Amarista for the final out of the frame. LaTroy Hawkins came on in the ninth and worked around a leadoff walk to record his 23rd save of the season.

Final Score: Minnesota 6, Arizona 3

Minneapolis, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Trevor Plouffe went 4-for-4 with a run scored and the Minnesota Twins defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks, 6-3, in the middle test of a three-game set. Kyle Gibson struck out eight and allowed a run on seven hits for the Twins, who snapped a three-game losing streak. Andrew Chafin (0-1) surrendered four runs on seven hits and two walks over three frames for Arizona, which has dropped seven of its last eight games.

09/24 01:44:49 ET

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