Listen, we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage, and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day. Trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk just isn’t easy. It’s okay, though, we’re going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning, and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end, or at least until after you subscribe to the newsletter.
* * *
Both the Blue Jays and Cubs faced elimination on Wednesday, and only one of the two managed to avoid it. The Blue Jays forced a series return to Kansas City and a Game 6 by defeating the Royals 7-1, rebounding from the beating they took in Game 4 that put them on the brink in the first place.
The offense deserves credit for waking up again, but starter Marco Estrada -- who also pitched well in Game 1 but to no avail -- was the real start of the day. Thanks to Estrada, David Price gets to take the mound again, and if he pitches like David Price instead of like he has in the postseason in his career, then Marcus Stroman is waiting for another chance at a series-winning start.
The Cubs get no such chances, as they were swept by the Mets in an NLCS in which they never once had a lead. Daniel Murphy continued to be an unstoppable force at the plate, and this time around, he was joined by Lucas Duda. With Steven Matz followed by most of the better portions of the Mets' bullpen, the Cubs had no chance from the start.
It feels too soon to say goodbye to this Cubs' team, but at least the Jays survived to give us more baseball until next week's World Series start. Toronto and Kansas City will face off on Friday night, so we also managed to avoid a situation where the American League pennant is won during an afternoon game. Great work all around, everyone. The one major downside of early starts was bypassed, and we all get a breather on Thursday with the threat of elimination on Friday and, if we're lucky, Saturday, too.
- Daniel Murphy won the NLCS MVP after a record-setting series that saw him best Carlos Beltran's consecutive homer streak.
- If you believe his Wikipedia page, Murphy is not only MVP and the new "Mr. October," but also a Supreme Court Justice.
- It took some work to open this celebratory bottle, but the Mets eventually got it.
- The Cubs gave David Wright third base in honor of the longtime Met making it to his first World Series.
- Two catchers managed to get hit by one foul ball on Wednesday. There's always something new in baseball.
- Yoenis Cespedes is expected to be okay after aggravating his AC joint while performing push-ups, which he was only doing because Wrigley Field does not have a standard weight room.
- Jose Quintana deserves celebration for his quiet but productive four years on the White Sox.
- Lance Lynn is set to work on his secondaries for 2016, so what can we expect him to look like if they improve?
- Prepare for a whole lot of Giants free agent rumors, mostly focusing on the rotation.