Diamondbacks score 3 in 8th to rally past Rockies, 5-3
PHOENIX (AP) — Carson Kelly is looking more and more like the big-hitting catcher the Arizona Diamondbacks have sought for some time.
Kelly's tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning was part...
Nationals DFA Montero, reinstate Wieters, put Eaton on DL
WASHINGTON (AP) — Catcher Miguel Montero was designated for assignment by the Washington Nationals on Wednesday after going 0 for 11 in four games this season — and just 24 hours after he returned from paternity leave.
"The hardest thing for me is letting guys go like that," manager Dave Martinez said before the Nationals hosted the Atlanta Braves. "I've known Miggy for a long time, personally. Know his family. So it was tough. But he gets it."
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Nationals have put catcher Miguel Montero on the paternity list and designated left-handed reliever Enny Romero for assignment.
Montero has been starting while Matt Wieters is on the disabled list. So third-stringer Pedro Severino moved into the lineup against the New York Mets on Saturday, while Jhonatan Solano's contract was selected from Triple-A Syracuse so he can serve as the backup catcher.
Nats make roster moves before facing Mets
The Washington Nationals made two roster moves Saturday but neither one involved outfielder Adam Eaton, who left the home opener Thursday after five innings after tweaking his ankle during a slide into home.
The Nationals called up infielder/outfielder Matt Reynolds and selected the contract of catcher Jhonatan Solano, both from Triple-A Syracuse of the International League.
National League East capsules
Capsules of National League East teams, listed in order of finish last year:
2017: 97-65, first place, lost to Cubs in NLDS.
Manager: Dave Martinez (first season).
He's Here: 1B-OF Matt Adams, C Miguel Montero, RHP Jeremy Hellickson, RHP Joaquin Benoit, INF Matt Reynolds.
He's Outta Here: Manager Dusty Baker, LF Jayson Werth, 1B-LF Adam Lind, C Jose Lobaton, RHP Matt Albers.
Max Scherzer needs to end as dominant as he begins
WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. It was the first team workout of spring training for the Washington Nationals a voluntary one, pitchers and catchers but Max Scherzer was in midseason form.
He stood on the mound and barked out orders to catcher Miguel Montero about pitches, situations. "Keep the glove right there," he yelled, and then fired a fastball right at the target.
Scherzer comes out firing as Nationals try to get over hump
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Long after the other pitchers in his group were finished, Max Scherzer was the only one left on a bullpen mound, still firing away and working hard on specific game situations.
"Got two more hitters," he called out to Washington catcher Miguel Montero.
"One more righty. ... Little too much plate. ... I'll throw a change-up off that."
NL East teams at the start of spring training
A team-by-team look at the National League East entering spring training, including key players each club acquired and lost, and dates of the first workout for pitchers and catchers, and the full squad:
Manager: Dave Martinez (first season).
2017: 97-65, first place, lost to Chicago Cubs in NLDS.
Nationals add Montero to compete for backup catcher role
WASHINGTON (AP) — Free-agent catcher Miguel Montero has agreed to a minor league deal with the Washington Nationals with an invitation to major league spring training.
Montero would get a $1.3 million, one-year contract if added to the 40-man roster and would have the chance to earn $1.7 million in performance bonuses. He is expected to compete with Pedro Severino for a backup job behind starting catcher Matt Wieters.
Cubs acquire LHP Wilson, C Avila in trade with Tigers
CHICAGO (AP) — The rolling Chicago Cubs got a big lift Monday when they acquired reliever Justin Wilson and catcher Alex Avila in a trade with Detroit, bolstering their chance for another long playoff run.
CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Cubs have acquired reliever Justin Wilson and catcher Alex Avila in a trade with the Detroit Tigers, bolstering their chance for another long playoff run.
The addition of Wilson gives manager Joe Maddon another late-inning option in front of All-Star closer Wade Davis. The World Series champions had been searching for backup catcher since they cut Miguel Montero a month ago, and Avila is having one of the best seasons of his career at the plate.
Now with Blue Jays, Montero wants to put Cubs parting behind
NEW YORK (AP) — Wearing his new Toronto Blue Jays jersey, Miguel Montero wanted to put his petulant parting from the Chicago Cubs behind him.
"It wasn't the perfect departure, but it is what it was. I live the moment, and I just really don't look back at the past right now," he said Tuesday after reporting to his new team. "It happened already. It's over. So I'm just worried about today, and whatever happened, happened. Time to forget."
NEW YORK (AP) — Cast off by the World Series champions, Miguel Montero has a new home north of the border.
The veteran catcher was traded by the Chicago Cubs to the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday, six days after he blamed Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta for allowing seven stolen bases in a 6-1 loss to Washington.
Toronto acquired the two-time All-Star and cash for a player to be named or cash. Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said Montero will join the team Tuesday at Yankee Stadium.
CINCINNATI - Jake Arrieta was shutting 'em down and the Cubs' offense was piling up the hits. The defending World Series champions felt a little more like their old selves for one game. Next challenge: Keep it going into the All-Star break. Arrieta pitched one-hit ball for seven innings without allowing a stolen base on Sunday, and Ian Happ homered twice in the ballpark where he played as a college star, leading Chicago to a 6-2 victory over the Cincinnati Reds. The Cubs (41-41) salvaged the...
Arrieta sharp, Happ homers twice as Cubs beat Reds 6-2
CINCINNATI (AP) — Jake Arrieta pitched one-hit ball for seven innings without allowing a stolen base, and Ian Happ homered twice in the ballpark where he played as a college star, leading Chicago past Cincinnati 6-2 on Sunday.
LEADING OFF: All-Stars revealed, Arrieta vs speedy Hamilton
A look at what's happening all around the majors today:
Strasburg, Nats bats power past Cubs 8-4
WASHINGTON (AP) — Stephen Strasburg and the Washington Nationals put a perfect finish on another rough day for the sputtering Chicago Cubs.
Strasburg struck out 13 in seven innings, Bryce Harper had two doubles and two RBIs, and the Nationals beat the Cubs 8-4 on Wednesday night.
Anthony Rendon and Matt Wieters hit back-to-back homers against John Lackey (5-9) during Washington's four-run second inning. After the Cubs pulled within three at 6-3, Daniel Murphy went deep in the fifth.
Cubs cut Montero after critical comments
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Chicago Cubs cut ties with Miguel Montero on Wednesday after the veteran catcher blamed pitcher Jake Arrieta for allowing seven stolen bases in Tuesday's loss to the Washington Nationals.
Montero, who turns 34 on July 9, was designated for assignment, and the World Series champions recalled catcher Victor Caratini from Triple-A Iowa. Montero is batting .286 with four homers and eight RBIs in 44 games.
Cubs catcher Montero blames Arrieta for Nats’ 7 stolen bases
WASHINGTON (AP) — Chicago Cubs catcher Miguel Montero blamed pitcher Jake Arrieta for allowing seven stolen bases in a 6-1 loss to the Washington Nationals on Tuesday night.
Montero unloaded on Arrieta for his slow delivery not giving him a chance to throw out baserunners.
Russell homers, Cubs end Rockies’ 7-game winning streak, 7-5
CHICAGO (AP) — Stuck in a season-long slump, Addison Russell helped the World Series champions get back to the .500 mark.
Russell had a go-ahead home run for his first big contribution since an absence in the wake of a Major League Baseball investigation into domestic abuse allegations, and the Chicago Cubs stopped the Colorado Rockies' seven-game winning streak, 7-5 Sunday.
Rizzo homers twice as Cubs beat Giants 5-4
CHICAGO (AP) — Anthony Rizzo provided more power for the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday night, and they needed every bit of it when their perfect closer nearly let an easy opportunity slip away.
Rizzo homered twice, Kyle Hendricks tossed seven strong innings and the Cubs hung on to beat the San Francisco Giants 5-4 after closer Wade Davis gave up a two-run homer in the ninth inning.
Rizzo hits 1 of Cubs’ 3 HRs in 7-4 win over Red Sox
BOSTON (AP) — The Chicago Cubs adjusted quickly to Steven Wright's knuckleball.
Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run homer, and Miguel Montero had a solo shot off Wright, helping the Cubs rebound from a series-opening loss with a 7-4 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Saturday.
"I thought we did a nice job. It's just awkward hitting against the knuckleball," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "There is no real training ground for it. You don't necessarily get a guy out there throwing a knuckleball in BP."
Arroyo stops Cubs 7-5 on 3-hitter as Reds avoid series sweep
CINCINNATI - With his high leg kick and below-the-radar breaking balls, Bronson Arroyo showed the Cubs a little old-style pitching. Who needs to throw 90 mph to beat the World Series champions? The 40-year-old righty gave his best performance yet in his long comeback from elbow problems, pitching three-hit ball over six innings on Sunday, and the Cincinnati Reds salvaged a 7-5 victory. Arroyo worked fast, varied the angles of his deliveries, and kept 'em guessing with his minimalist pitches. ...
Bronson Arroyo goes 6 innings, leads Reds over Cubs 7-5
CINCINNATI (AP) — With his high leg kick and below-the-radar breaking balls, Bronson Arroyo showed the Cubs a little old-style pitching. Who needs to throw 90 mph to beat the World Series champions?
Schwarber, Cubs rally past Brewers to snap 4-game skid
CHICAGO (AP) — Despite a large early deficit against a surging offense, Kyle Schwarber had little doubt the Chicago Cubs would rally.
"Crazier things have happened," he said. "I just think it shows the character of our team. We're not gonna give up just because we're trading blows."
Cubs’ Schwarber not ready to let go of catching dream
MESA, Ariz. (AP) — Kyle Schwarber made it known early in camp he was 100 percent healthy and wanted to return to catching, even in a limited role.
The Cubs have the 23-year-old slugger projected to play left field, yet he's not quite ready to give up the facemask, chest protector and leg guards.
Miguel Montero prepares for another season as Cubs backup
MESA, Ariz. (AP) — Miguel Montero produced one of the biggest hits of the Chicago Cubs' championship run in the game that decided it all, and now he's preparing again for life as a backup catcher.
It's not easy — this competitor wants nothing more than to play every day.
Cubs drop slumping Heyward from lineup for Game 3 of NLCS
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Cubs manager Joe Maddon has made some changes in Chicago's starting lineup for Game 3 of the National League Championship Series, dropping slumping outfielder Jason Heyward.
The Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers are tied at 1-all going into Tuesday's game.
Heyward is 1 for 6 in the first two games of the series. He has been replaced by Jorge Soler, who is 0 for 2 in the NLCS.
Montero’s PH slam lifts Cubs over Dodgers 8-4 in NLCS opener
CHICAGO (AP) — Miguel Montero delivered a memorable swing, Javier Baez stole home with his daring dash down the line and Jon Lester turned in another steady performance on the mound.
It all added up to another dramatic victory for the Chicago Cubs, who are off and running in the NL Championship Series.
Roberts’ decision to stay with Blanton backfires for Dodgers
CHICAGO (AP) — Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts made all the right moves in the previous playoff round. Sticking with Joe Blanton backfired in the NL Championship Series opener.
CHICAGO — Miguel Montero snapped an eighth-inning tie with the third pinch-hit grand slam in postseason history, and the Chicago Cubs beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 8-4 in their NL Championship Series opener Saturday night.
Pinch-hitter Chris Coghlan was intentionally walked with two outs in the eighth, loading the bases and bringing up closer Aroldis Chapman’s spot in the batting order.
Leaving in Blanton backfires for Roberts in opening loss
CHICAGO (AP) — After making all the right moves in the NL Division Series, Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts' decision to leave in Joe Blanton quickly backfired in the Championship Series opener.
Adrian Gonzalez had just tied the score with a two-run, two-out single in the eighth inning on one of the 100 mph-plus darts from Chicago Cubs closer Aroldis Chapman.
Joe Maddon tweaks Cubs lineup with chance to clinch NLDS
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Right fielder Jason Heyward is out of the Cubs' starting lineup for Monday night's NL Division Series Game 3 as manager Joe Maddon aims to give Chicago more offensive power against San Francisco ace Madison Bumgarner.
Reds blow lead in 9th, finish season by losing to Cubs 7-4
CINCINNATI (AP) — The Reds saw this ending way too many times all season.
One strike away from finishing off the Cubs, Raisel Iglesias gave up a go-ahead double by Matt Szczur and a homer by Miguel Montero as Chicago rallied for a 7-4 victory on Sunday, ending Cincinnati's season in a fitting way.
The bullpen has let them down right from the start.
Cubs rally in 9th to beat Reds 7-4 for 103rd win of season
CINCINNATI (AP) — Matt Szczur doubled home two runs with two outs in the ninth inning, and Miguel Montero followed with a homer as the Chicago Cubs finished one of their most successful seasons with a flourish, beating the Cincinnati Reds 7-4 on Sunday.
With victory No. 103 in the books, the Cubs headed back to Wrigley Field for their first playoff game on Friday against the winner of the NL wild-card game.
Cubs sweep Reds with 9-2 victory
CHICAGO (AP) — John Lackey was cruising along when Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon hit for the right-hander in the eighth inning.
Finding some work for his bullpen is Maddon's biggest problem these days.
Lackey got his first win in six weeks and Miguel Montero drove in three runs, helping the Cubs sweep the Cincinnati Reds with a 9-2 victory on Wednesday night.
"I definitely felt like I got better as the game went along," Lackey said.
Cubs celebrate first NL Central title in 8 years
CHICAGO (AP) — Carl Edwards Jr. pulled a "W'' flag over his shoulders and danced in the middle of the clubhouse. Ben Zobrist wiggled from side to side as ice cubes tumbled down his back to the drenched floor. David Ross closed his eyes as a bottle of beer was poured over his head.
The Chicago Cubs had to wait until Friday to celebrate their NL Central title, but they quickly made up for lost time.
Brewers lose 5-4 to Cubs on Montero’s homer
CHICAGO (AP) — First, Milwaukee lost outfielders Keon Broxton and Kirk Nieuwenhuis to injuries. Then the Brewers blew a late lead and lost on a game-ending homer, kicking off a big party for the Chicago Cubs.
It was another rough day in a long season.
Ryan Braun, Orlando Arcia and Scooter Gennett homered for Milwaukee on Friday, but the Cubs got to Carlos Torres for two runs in the ninth and celebrated their NL Central title with a 5-4 win on Miguel Montero's seventh homer in the 10th inning.
Montero homers as Cubs rally for 5-4 win over Brewers
CHICAGO (AP) — Miguel Montero and the Chicago Cubs were going to celebrate no matter what happened in Friday's game against the Milwaukee Brewers.
One sweet swing by the veteran catcher turned it into one raucous party.
Montero homered in the 10th inning, and the Cubs celebrated the NL Central title with a dramatic 5-4 victory over the Brewers.
"It all worked out pretty good," a champagne-soaked Montero cracked.
Cubs LF Soler leaves with right side tightness
CHICAGO (AP) — Cubs left fielder Jorge Soler has left their game against the Milwaukee Brewers with tightness on his right side.
Soler was replaced before the Brewers batted in the fourth inning Friday. Miguel Montero came in to play catcher and Willson Contreras moved out to left field.
Soler grounded into a double play in the first in his only at-bat. It was unclear when the injury occurred.
Davies has strong showing in Milwaukee’s 7-2 loss to Cubs
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Zach Davies pitched well enough to win. But beating the Chicago Cubs these days isn't so easy.
The right-hander matched Cy Young candidate Kyle Hendricks for six innings, yet was done in by a few well-placed hits Monday in the Milwaukee Brewers' 7-2 loss to the Cubs.
Pirates lose 8-7 to Cubs in 13 innings
CHICAGO (AP) — Jeff Locke, Francisco Cervelli and Josh Harrison gave the Pittsburgh Pirates a chance. Miguel Montero finished them off.
Harrison hit a sacrifice fly in the 13th inning, but the Chicago Cubs got to Locke for two runs in the bottom half and won 8-7 on Montero's game-ending RBI single Monday night.
Cubs rally for 8-7 win against Pirates in 13 innings
CHICAGO (AP) — Miguel Montero waited for five hours before he got a chance to play. And then he had to face a crafty left-hander with the bases loaded.
One soft liner made it all worth it.
Montero hit a game-ending RBI single in the 13th inning, and the Chicago Cubs rallied for a wild 8-7 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday night.
Hammel, Chapman pitch Cubs past Fernandez, Marlins 3-2
CHICAGO (AP) — Cubs manager Joe Maddon's decision to lift a dominant Jason Hammel for a pinch-hitter in the sixth inning looked dubious when Miguel Montero struck out and Pedro Strop got into trouble in the seventh.
All it took was a big play in the outfield and some 104 mph heat from Aroldis Chapman to give Maddon and the Cubs another win.
Hammel threw six scoreless innings, Dexter Fowler had three hits and Chicago beat Miami ace Jose Fernandez and the Marlins...