Game of the day: Pittsburgh at San Francisco, 10:15 p.m. Pittsburgh has fallen out of the postseason conversation with its baffling 10-game losing streak, and now the Bucs have to face a rejuvenated former Pirate to try to end the skid. Giants right-hander Ryan Vogelsong went 10-19 with a 6.00 ERA for Pittsburgh between 2001 and 2006, but Vogelsong is 9-1 with a 2.19 ERA this year in his first major league season since then. Right-hander Charlie Morton (8-6) is the scheduled starter for Pittsburgh, and Morton pitched well enough to end the Pirates’ slide in his last start on Wednesday. Morton tossed seven scoreless innings, but Pittsburgh lost 1-0 to the Cubs and the Pirates have been outscored 42-16 since.
Other game to watch: Houston at Arizona, 9:40 p.m. The Diamondbacks have been chasing the Giants atop the National League West all season, and this four-game series against the worst team in the majors could finally get them over the hump. Arizona enters Monday a half-game behind San Francisco, which has three games this week against Pittsburgh before an off day Thursday. Right-hander Daniel Hudson (11-7) will start the series opener for Arizona, coming off a strong performance in a win over the Giants in his last start Tuesday. Left-hander Wandy Rodriguez (7-8) is the scheduled pitcher for Houston. Rodriguez leads the lowly Astros in wins even though he only has one victory since June 30.
Games you should have seen:
Oakland 5, Tampa Bay 4 (10 innings) . Josh Willingham homered in the top of the 10th inning to lead Oakland to a close win over Tampa Bay. Evan Longoria had forced extra innings when he homered in the bottom of the seventh for the Rays, and neither team could punch across another run in the eighth or ninth. The Rays had two runners on with one out in the bottom of the 10th, but Andrew Bailey got the last two outs to earn his 13th save. The A’s won two out of three to clinch their first road series win since May.
Cincinnati 8, Chicago Cubs 7 . Todd Frazier and Ryan Hanigan each had RBI hits in the top of the eighth inning as Cincinnati came from behind to beat the Cubs and snap Chicago’s seven-game winning streak. Marlon Byrd’s ground-rule double had been the big hit in Chicago’s three-run seventh inning that gave the Cubs a 7-6 lead. Frazier, Drew Stubbs and Edgar Renteria all homered for Cincinnati, while Starlin Castro and Blake DeWitt both went deep for the Cubs. The Reds had lost four of their previous five games.
Stat you should know: 28. Braves second baseman Dan Uggla’s hitting streak is halfway to DiMaggio’s after he went 1 for 5 Sunday in Atlanta’s 6-5 win over the New York Mets. Uggla has raised his batting average from .173 when the streak began on July 5 to .220 through Sunday.
Star of the night: White Sox right-hander Jake Peavy allowed three hits over eight scoreless innings Sunday, striking out six and walking none in Chicago’s 7-0 win over Minnesota. Peavy (5-5) earned his first win since June 25 as the White Sox completed a three-game sweep of the Twins.
Chatter: “I never thought we’d throw up a doughnut at home.” – Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle after Pittsburgh completed its seven-game homestand Sunday with its 10th consecutive loss. The Pirates have dropped from 1 ½ games out of first place to nine games out during the streak.