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"It freakin' sucks" says one Cardinal while watching Cubs celebrate

Before the game, Maddon wouldn't be prodded into placing added weight on Lackey's performance tied to a spot in the postseason rotation.

Chicago Cubs catcher Alex Avila reacts after center fielder Leonys Martin robbed St. Louis Cardinals' Paul DeJong of a potential game-tying home run with two outs in the 11th inning to preserve a one-run lead during a baseball game Thursday, Sept.

Not only was the catch a spectacular grab, but it also served as a massive dagger to the Cardinals.

It's that time of year in Cleveland - the Indians are chasing a World Series, LeBron James is gearing up for another season, and Trevor Bauer is talking about his drones. The Cardinals counter with righty Carlos Martinez (12-11, 3.63), who gave up seven runs to the Cubs in a start against them September 15.

The Cubs, whose magic number was one over the Milwaukee Brewers last night needed either a win or a Brewers loss to the Reds to clinch the National League Central division.

WHITE SOX 6, ANGELS 4 (10) Nicky Delmonico hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the 10th inning to give host Chicago a victory that eliminated Los Angeles from playoff contention.

Cubs are back at it tomorrow for the season series finale. The Cardinals only run came on a Dexter Fowler ground out in the sixth inning that scored Tommy Pham.

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If last season was about the wait for the Cubs, this one is about the grind.

Jedd Gyorko got a run back for the Cardinals in the second with a one-out home run, the first of his three hits, into left field to cut the lead to 5-1. Davis, who had struck out in his first three at-bats, came through at the flawless time.

Cardinals Manager Mike Matheny didn't watch the Cubs' celebration.

With the National League Central title now secure, the immediate pressure is off as the Chicago Cubs look to the postseason while concluding the regular season with three weekend home games against the Cincinnati Reds.

The defending World Series victor is back in the playoffs for the first time since 2012, as the Chicago Cubs clinched the National League Central division with a 5-1 win over the Cardinals on Wednesday night.

John Lackey headed into Thursday's matchup with a bit of uncertainty for his future as the playoffs near. Prior to the start tonight, Wacha had an ERA of 6.32 against the Cubs and that would seem surprising, given the way his fastball had been spot on all night. Still, there was an argument to be made that the series loss was an isolated incident, and the Cardinals future remained bright.

"I think it's been fantastic", said Matheny. Lynn will test the free agency market in the offseason. Just wasn't getting balls into lefties and away from righties. "Get guys off their feet and get it off their minds".

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