What to watch for in today's games

What to watch for in today's games

September is here, which means fall is close. And that means postseason baseball isn't far away. The stretch run is upon us, with teams fighting for division titles and postseason berths. It also gives players a chance to wipe the slate clean from August and start anew. It can be one of the most exciting and pivotal months of the year, so let's get it going.

Here are five things to watch Tuesday:

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Alyson Footer

Pujols, Kershaw team up for Wiffle ball game

Contributions to charities will give bidders chance to play with Los Angeles stars

Pujols, Kershaw team up for Wiffle ball game

Their teams are crosstown rivals on the field, but away from the ballpark, Albert Pujols and Clayton Kershaw have more in common beyond their obvious baseball ability.

They are two of the most charitable players in the Major Leagues, and soon, they'll band together to raise funds for their respective foundations through a fan-friendly, interactive event.

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Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cron's swipe can help fans steal a home

Quicken Loans sweepstakes offers chance to win mortgage payment valued at up to $1,500

Cron's swipe can help fans steal a home

When C.J. Cron cruised into home on Monday night in Oakland, the Angels designated hitter not only extended his club's lead, but also lightened one lucky fan's monthly bill payments.

Quicken Loans Steal A Home
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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Statcast: Kiermaier, Butler cover lot of OF ground

Statcast: Kiermaier, Butler cover lot of OF ground

One of the game's best defensive outfielders -- and thus, a frequent subject of Statcast™ -- was at it again on a highlight-filled Monday night.

Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier's latest gem came when he robbed a home run just shortly after the first pitch against the Orioles. As the night went on, one of his own teammates added an impressive catch, while some of the top plays elsewhere included a strong throw to complete a double play, a runner scoring all the way from second on an infield single and another towering home run from one of the game's top rookies.

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Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Today's starting lineups: Sept. 1

Below are today's starting lineups that have been made public by Major League Baseball's clubs.

A lineup is not official until it is handed to the umpire.

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MLB.com Columnist

Richard Justice

5 intriguing storylines for September

5 intriguing storylines for September

Everything the Kansas City Royals did last season had the feel of a magical ride. Remember that eight-game playoff winning streak? That surely didn't feel real, did it? Did all that 2014 magic mean the Royals would be a one-hit wonder? Some wondered.

How would the Royals handle success and expectations? Turns out, they've handled it just fine. So as September begins, we offer a tip of the hat to Kansas City and its 13-game lead in the American League Central.

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Richard Justice is a columnist for MLB.com. Read his blog, Justice4U. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rookie bats make home run history in August

Rookie bats make home run history in August

The month of August wrapped up as the most prolific home run-hitting month for rookies in Major League history.

The current influx of talented, young hitters was on full display throughout the month, as rookie hitters combined to rack up 155 home runs. That total is the most ever by a rookie class in any single month, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

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Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Clubs #GoGold for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Clubs #GoGold for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, so Major League Baseball clubs will #GoGold in their own unique ways over coming days -- starting with some dramatic examples on Tuesday, from Fenway Park to Dodger Stadium to Tropicana Field to Citi Field. Here are some of the plans:

Boston Red Sox

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Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tribe, Cards, Dodgers make statements as races heat up

Tribe, Cards, Dodgers make statements as races heat up

The penultimate month of the regular season is in the books, and the race to the postseason has arrived.

As we head into head into September, the Cardinals remain the team to beat with the best record in the Majors at 85-46. St. Louis needs to go just 15-16 in the final 31 games to become the first 100-win team since the 2011 Phillies.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Three keys to rebuilt Rangers' playoff push

26-16 second-half record is the third-best mark in American League

Three keys to rebuilt Rangers' playoff push

As late as July 15, the Texas Rangers sat next to last in the American League in MLB.com's postseason probabilities, ahead of only the White Sox. Though they weren't in last place in the traditional standings, it wasn't difficult to see why a team that had lost 95 games in 2014, had lost seven of eight headed into the All-Star break and had sustained such a brutal run of injuries that they used 10 starting pitchers in the first half wouldn't be looked upon with confidence.

That was six weeks ago. Since then, the seemingly buried Rangers have gone 26-16, the third-best record in the AL in that time. They've gone from six games behind the then-leading Angels to 3 1/2 games ahead of them in the AL West, and only four games behind the Astros for the division lead. Texas' playoff odds have shot from 7.2 percent on July 15 to 53.8 percent, even after losing 7-0 in San Diego on Monday night, and if the season ended today, the Rangers would be traveling to New York for the AL Wild Card Game.

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Mike Petriello (@mike_petriello) is an analyst for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB raises awareness, money with Ice Bucket Challenge

MLB raises awareness, money with Ice Bucket Challenge

Last summer's biggest charitable trend struck Major League Baseball again this August, as the Ice Bucket Challenge made its rounds at big league ballparks.

A month-long initiative by MLB in support of ALS awareness concluded Monday at Fenway Park, the same place it began.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

For select group, AFL brings added excitement

Preliminary rosters include prospects who will have eye on parent club's playoff run

For select group, AFL brings added excitement

Teams like the Pittsburgh Pirates and Houston Astros are hoping to play deep into October. Regardless of their big league postseason fortunes, however, a group of select players from those organizations, as well as the other 28 in baseball, are guaranteed to be playing this fall.

That opportunity comes courtesy of the Arizona Fall League, which on Tuesday announced its preliminary rosters for the 2015 season. The campaign, the league's 24th, begins on Oct. 13 and runs through the championship game on Nov. 21. With all 30 organizations sending players to fill the six AFL teams' rosters, the league is once again providing one-stop shopping for prospect fans.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com and writes a blog, B3. Follow @JonathanMayo on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Adrian's walk-off ends clash with Giants in 14th

Adrian's walk-off ends clash with Giants in 14th

LOS ANGELES -- Adrian Gonzalez, who homered eight innings earlier, lofted a single to deep left field with the bases loaded and no outs in the bottom of the 14th inning for a 5-4, walk-off Dodgers win over the Giants in their showdown series opener at Dodger Stadium on Monday night.

The Dodgers now lead the Giants by 4 1/2 games, the largest margin since July 16, but manager Don Mattingly's celebration was muted.

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Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

2015 Postseason Schedule

Wild Card Games to begin playoffs on Oct. 6-7; World Series to start on Oct. 27

The 2015 postseason schedule will begin on Oct. 6, with the 111th Fall Classic to open on Oct. 27 in an American League ballpark, thanks to the AL's 6-3 victory in last month's All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile. The full postseason schedule can be found at MLB.com/postseason.

Following the scheduled regular-season finales on Sunday, Oct. 4, potentially necessary regular-season tiebreaker games would be telecast exclusively by ESPN the next day. Then the postseason will begin that Tuesday, with the AL Wild Card Game presented by Budweiser on ESPN. The National League equivalent is scheduled for Oct. 7, televised exclusively by TBS.

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Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

5 key questions for Cubs down the stretch

5 key questions for Cubs down the stretch

CHICAGO -- A no-hitter at Dodger Stadium? Then a flight home on an airplane full of pajama-wearing ballplayers?

"As perfect nights go," Joe Maddon said, "it's hard to beat.''

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Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kawasaki, Pompey among Blue Jays' callups

Pitchers Loup, Tepera and Francis join Toronto as rosters expand

Kawasaki, Pompey among Blue Jays' callups

The Blue Jays are coming off the best month in franchise history, and they added five players on Tuesday to help bolster the club for the stretch run.

With rosters expanding for the month of September, Toronto recalled infielder Munenori Kawasaki, outfielder Dalton Pompey, left-hander Aaron Loup and right-hander Ryan Tepera, and it selected the contract of lefty Jeff Francis. Left-hander Colt Hynes has been designated for assignment to make room for Francis on the 40-man roster.

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Jamal Collier is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Altuve's record tear helps Keuchel to 16th W

Altuve's record tear helps Keuchel to 16th W

HOUSTON -- There is nothing more automatic in baseball these days than Dallas Keuchel winning at Minute Maid Park. The Astros' All-Star left-hander remained unbeaten at home and became the American League's first 16-game winner by throwing seven strong innings and benefiting from three home runs to beat the Mariners, 8-3, on Monday night.

Keuchel (16-6) held the Mariners to six hits and one run -- a second-inning homer by Mark Trumbo -- to improve to 12-0 at Minute Maid Park this season. He also extended his club record by throwing at least six innings in his 38th consecutive start while throwing a season-high 121 pitches.

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Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB as well as his Mariners Musings blog. Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Salazar shakes off illness with 10-K win

Righty outduels Price, holds Blue Jays to 2 runs in 7 innings

Salazar shakes off illness with 10-K win

TORONTO -- After tossing seven strong innings in a victory over the red-hot Blue Jays on Monday night, Danny Salazar was ready to crawl into bed and hit the hay.

"I just want to go home and sleep right now," the right-hander said following the Indians' 4-2 series-opening victory over the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. Salazar, who lost six pounds in two days after falling ill late last week, missed his scheduled start on Friday and took the mound on eight days of rest in Toronto. He said he was exhausted after he turned in a quality start against the formidable Blue Jays, whom he limited to six hits, two runs and a walk.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rox activate Kendrick; Castro among callups

Logan back from DL; Adames, Brothers, Rosario up from Triple-A

Rox activate Kendrick; Castro among callups

The Rockies reinstated both right-hander Kyle Kendrick, who will start the second game of Tuesday's doubleheader against the D-backs, and left-hander Boone Logan from the disabled list on Tuesday afternoon.

With rosters expanding, Colorado also recalled infielder Cristhian Adames, left-hander Rex Brothers, right-hander Miguel Castro and first baseman Wilin Rosario from Triple-A Albuquerque.

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Jamal Collier is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Roger Schlueter

Stats of the Day: For LA, better late than never

Stats of the Day: For LA, better late than never

Here are four interesting items from around the big leagues on Monday …

Adrian Gonzalez's single in the bottom of the 14th gave the Dodgers a 5-4 win over the Giants at Dodger Stadium. Since this rivalry moved to the West Coast for the start of the 1958 season, this is the latest a walk-off hit has been produced by a Dodgers player against the Giants. On the other side, San Francisco has had three walk-off hits against Los Angeles in the 15th inning or later since 1958. Before Gonzalez's hit, the last walk-off hit in this series to arrive so late came on May 2, 1995, when Matt Williams doubled in Barry Bonds in the 15th to give the Giants a 4-3 victory.

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Roger Schlueter is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Davies joins Brewers, will debut Wednesday

Prospect acquired in Parra trade set to face Pirates; Jungmann, Garza slide back

Davies joins Brewers, will debut Wednesday

MILWAUKEE -- Another member of the Brewers' July prospect haul is on his way to the Major Leagues.

As rosters expanded on Tuesday, the team promoted right-hander Zach Davies from Triple-A Colorado Springs and slated him to start on Wednesday against the Pirates at Miller Park. It will be the Major League debut of Davies, a 22-year-old command specialist acquired in a July 31 trade with the Orioles for Gerardo Parra.

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Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tribe recalls Armstrong, activates Floyd, Johnson

Tribe recalls Armstrong, activates Floyd, Johnson

The Indians recalled right-hander Shawn Armstrong, activated right-hander Gavin Floyd from the 60-day disabled list and activated infielder Chris Johnson from the 15-day disabled on Tuesday as the maximum active roster size expanded to 40.

Armstrong begins his second stint with the Indians this year, having worked two scoreless appearances in August (2 2/3 innings, one walk, four strikeouts).

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mets, Colon continue to dominate Phillies

Mets, Colon continue to dominate Phillies

NEW YORK -- Suddenly the Mets' hottest pitcher, Bartolo Colon delivered eight shutout innings Monday in a 3-1 Mets win over the Phillies at Citi Field, running his streak of scoreless innings to 16 and -- for good measure -- rapping out his career-high seventh hit.

The Mets finished August with 20 wins, achieving that for the first time in any month since August 2000. They also set a franchise record with 45 home runs in the month, including a pair on Monday from Michael Conforto and Curtis Granderson. New York also extended its division lead to 6 1/2 games as Washington was topped by St. Louis, 8-5.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards rally past Nats with 5-run seventh

Cards rally past Nats with 5-run seventh

ST. LOUIS -- Jason Heyward smashed a two-run double off of the left-field wall to highlight a five-run seventh as the Cardinals beat the Nationals, 8-5, on Monday night at Busch Stadium. With the win, the Cards extended their lead in the National League Central to 5 games, while Nats fell to 6 1/2 back in the NL East.

Heyward's double was the only extra-base hit of the night for the Cardinals. All eight position players reached base, and Heyward, Kolten Wong, Mark Reynolds, Brandon Moss and Jhonny Peralta each had a pair of hits.

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Joe Harris is a contributor to MLB.com. Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Colon notches new season high with seven hits

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Colon notches new season high with seven hits

At the beginning of the season, his 18th, Bartolo Colon was a very happy Major League Baseball player. And why wouldn't he be? He was 41 years old and still playing the game he loves. Look at that grin.

Although he's had an up-and-down year, Colon has experienced newfound success at the plate. And during Monday's start against the Phillies, he set a new season high with his seventh hit -- a hard line drive up the middle:

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Play Ball initiative proves to be huge success

Play Ball initiative proves to be huge success

Baseball wound its way through more than 100 cities around the country in August as part of the Play Ball initative, which was enacted by Commissioner Rob Manfred in order to inspire children to stay active and fall in love with the National Pastime.

Cities as far apart as Bridgeport, Conn., and Anaheim, Calif., participated in Play Ball, and mayors from everywhere in between signed on to get their cities involved. The United States Conference of Mayors enthusiastically supported Play Ball, and their communities benefited in ways large and small.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Dodgers use Kershaw, Hatcher as hitters

Dodgers use Kershaw, Hatcher as hitters

LOS ANGELES -- As Monday's slugfest between the Giants and Dodgers dragged on into extra innings, Los Angeles was forced to turn to unlikely hitters in its 5-4, walk-off victory.

Clayton Kershaw came to bat as a pinch-hitter in the 11th with a runner on first, two out and the score tied, 4-4, as the Dodgers were out of position players. Kershaw, a career .153 hitter, came to the plate with a standing ovation and "M-V-P" chants from those remaining at Dodger Stadium.

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Steve Bourbon is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Year of the (near) no-no not for faint of heart

Arrieta became 33rd starter to take a no-hitter through at least six innings this season

Year of the (near) no-no not for faint of heart

Jake Arrieta became the latest starter to throw a no-hitter on Sunday night in what is quickly becoming not only the year of the no-hitter, but also the year of the near no-no.

Though Arrieta was the sixth starting pitcher this season to be successful in his no-hit bid, he was the 33rd to not allow a hit through at least six innings. That's already two more than last season -- and only one shy of the highest total over the last 11 seasons.

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Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers recalling young slugger Gallo

Rookie provides depth at corner infield, outfield spots; Profar, Martin could join club in September

Rangers recalling young slugger Gallo

SAN DIEGO -- The Rangers are calling up third baseman Joey Gallo from Triple-A Round Rock on Tuesday to serve as a September bench player rather than have him finish out his Minor League season.

The Rangers see Gallo as a pinch-hitter as well as providing depth at the corner infield and outfield spots. Round Rock still has a week left in the regular season, but the Express will also likely win their division and advance to the Pacific Coast League playoffs.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.