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Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Over his last seven outings, Cubs reliever Carl Edwards Jur. had pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings with 12 strikeouts. Today he faces three batters -- a Matt Carpenter double, and walks to Tommy Pham and Dexter Fowler -- and leaves the bases loaded with nobody out. Hector Rondon is on to face Jedd Gyorko. Cubs are clinging to a 3-2 lead.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

The Cubs' string of strong starts was continued today by Jake Arrieta. In six innings, he allowed two runs and five hits with six strikeouts and zero walks. This marks just the third start without a walk for Arrieta going back to the beginning of last season.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Jason Heyward is batting leadoff for the Cubs for the first time all season. That last time he started off in the top spot was June 25 of last season. Before the game, Chicago manager Joe Maddon said that Kris Bryant's absence played into his decision to bat Heyward first.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

The Cubs break on top of the Cardinals early thanks to Willson Contrera's two-run shot into the left-field bleachers off of Carlos Martinez in the first. Martinez is slumping. His 16 homers allowed this year are a career high and he's allowed 14 earned runs in 18 innings so far in July, per ESPN Stats & Info.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Carson Kelly is in the Cardinals' lineup today after all. Catcher Yadier Molina was a late scratch because of right ankle discomfort. Molina is available to come off the bench if needed.

Ian Begley ESPN Staff Writer 

Marlins second-round draft pick Joe Dunand has had plenty of coaching and instruction during his path to pro baseball. That comes with the territory when you are Alex Rodriguez's nephew. In addition to soaking in advice from A-Rod, Dunand has learned from great coaches at some of the top amateur programs in the country (Gulliver Prep in Miami in high school and N.C. State in college). But there's also a hitting instructor in the Bronx who helped Dunand along the way. Jose Martinez, a youth coach in New York City, helped Dunand with his swing as a young teen and has helped countless other young players perfect their swing. Martinez, a former scout who runs The Art of Hitting program, is proud to see Dunand reach his goal of playing professionally. "I'm so happy for him," said Martinez, who has also worked with MLBer Pedro Alvarez.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

The Cardinals recalled catching prospect Carson Kelly on Friday morning, though he is not in the starting lineup for this afternoon's game against the Cubs. Kelly went 2 for 13 in his first shot at the majors last season. The converted third baseman was hitting .283/.375/.459 at Triple-A Memphis. He slotted as the No. 27 overall prospect in the game in Keith Law's midseason rankings.

Christina Kahrl MLB Staff Writer 

Seeing the Cardinals trade Marco Gonzales ( ranked No. 12 in Keith Law's preseason Cards prospect rankings) for the Mariners' Tyler O'Neill (just missed the top 100, M's No. 2 prospect preseason) is a pretty interesting prospect challenge trade. Gonzales could help the Mariners' rotation right now.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Did the breather that comes with the All-Star break help the surging Cubs hit the reset button? Maybe, maybe not. But Joe Maddon loves the way his team has played over the last week.

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Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Kris Bryant is not in the lineup today for the Cubs and remains day to day. Here is manager Joe Maddon giving an update on the MVP.

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Christina Kahrl MLB Staff Writer 

You can consider the A's decision to re-unite with former Athletic and current Yankees discard Chris Carter (and send him to Triple-A Nashville) as a preliminary to their getting a Yonder Alonso trade done by the deadline. Despite the Yankees connection, quite KC A's-era contemptible.