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On 09/24/2011 05:14 AM in MLB

National League Game Capsules (Friday, September 23rd)

Final Score: Milwaukee 4, Florida 1

Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) - Ryan Braun stood at home plate for a brief moment, raised his bat high in the air and celebrated a mammoth hit that helped the Brewers clinch their first division title in 29 years. Braun's titanic three-run homer off the scoreboard in center field broke a tie in the eighth inning and sent Milwaukee to a 4-1 win over the Florida Marlins. The victory, combined with St. Louis' 5-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs, secured the Brewers the NL Central title. The Brewers hadn't been division champions since capturing the AL East in 1982, on the way to a World Series appearance. With two outs in the ninth inning, fans went ballistic at Miller Park when the scoreboard flashed that the Cubs took a 4-1 lead over the Cardinals in the eighth inning on the strength of Alfonso Soriano's three-run blast. Moments later, John Axford added to Milwaukee's magical season by fanning Bryan Petersen to notch his 44th save, tying a franchise record held by Francisco Cordero (2007).

Final Score: Arizona 3, San Francisco 1

Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Paul Goldschmidt sliced a two-run triple into right field, cutting a path for the Arizona Diamondbacks into the postseason. Goldschmidt's go-ahead hit in the eighth inning Friday night lifted the Diamondbacks to a 3-1 win over the San Francisco Giants and gave them their first NL West title in four years. The Diamondbacks celebrated their fifth division crown, and first since 2007, in the infield. San Francisco is barely alive in the wild card race, five games behind Atlanta with five remaining.

Final Score: Chicago 5, St. Louis 1

St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) - Alfonso Soriano's tiebreaking three-run homer did more than just lead the Chicago Cubs to a win over rival St. Louis. It put a big dent in the Cardinals' playoff chances. Soriano's blast in the eighth inning snapped a 1-1 tie, and the Cubs held on for a 5-1 victory Friday night that knocked the Cardinals three games behind the Atlanta Braves for the NL wild-card lead.

Final Score: Atlanta 7, Washington 4

Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Stephen Strasburg and the Washington Nationals met a team with something to play for Friday night, and neither fared very well. Dan Uggla accounted for four runs and the Atlanta Braves scored three times against Strasburg in the first inning, holding on for a 7-4 victory over red-hot Washington. The Braves won for just the fifth time in 13 games, pushing their NL wild card lead over St. Louis to three games with just five to play.

Final Score: Pittsburgh 4, Cincinnati 3

Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Pinch-hitter Ryan Ludwick posted the game- winning hit in the bottom of the ninth inning, sending the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 4-3 win over the Cincinnati Reds. Pinch-hitter Jason Jaramillo ripped a double to left with one out off Reds reliever Bill Bray (5-3) before Ludwick came through with the walkoff single to center against Nick Masset, allowing pinch-runner Chase d'Arnaud to easily score from second.

Final Score: Houston 11, Colorado 2

Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Carlos Lee finished with two hits and drove in four runs as Houston sent Colorado to its ninth straight loss with a 11-2 decision in the second edition of a four-game set. Angel Sanchez knocked in two runs and scored three times for the Astros, who have won four of their last six. Matt Downs added two RBI, Clint Barmes homered and J.B. Shuck went 3-for-4 with a triple and scored three runs.

Final Score: Los Angeles 2, San Diego 0

San Diego, CA (Sports Network) - Ted Lilly threw 6 1/3 innings and Matt Kemp homered on his 27th birthday as the Los Angeles Dodgers turned back San Diego, 2-0, to start a three-game series. Lilly (11-14) allowed four hits and fanned seven to move to 10-4 lifetime against the Padres. Mike MacDougal, Kenley Jansen and Javy Guerra combined on the four-hit shutout. Guerra notched his 20th save in the Dodgers' sixth victory in seven games.

Philadelphia at New York, postponed

Flushing, NY (Sports Network) - Friday night's series opener between the NL East-champion Philadelphia Phillies and New York Mets at Citi Field has been postponed due to rain. It will be made up as part of a day-night doubleheader on Saturday, with the first game scheduled for 1:10 p.m (et) and the second game set for 7:10 p.m.

09/24 01:08:06 ET