NLDS Elimination Game(s), 2016

Nationals at Dodgers, 2:00PM PT, TV: FS1

To extend their season the Dodgers have decided to go with Clayton Kershaw on short rest. He’s done this three other times in the postseason and put up a 1.89 ERA. However, those other times he hadn’t spent two months of the season on the DL with a bad back. We shall see. His opponent will be RHP Joe Ross (7-5, 3.43 ERA). More preview here from ESPN.


Cubs at Giants, 5:30PM PT, TV: FS1

The Cubs go with RHP John Lackey (11-8, 3.35 ERA) against the Giants’ LHP Matt Moore (13-12, 4.08 ERA). Lackey is a postseason veteran who’s got an 8-5 record with a 3.11 ERA over 127 1/3 postseason innings. This will mark the 16th playoff series for him. Moore has given up two runs or fewer in six of his last eight starts, so he’s on his game.

318 thoughts on “NLDS Elimination Game(s), 2016

      • Stripling sounds sensible, then I guess it would be Maeda – 2 and then Kershaw – 3.

        • Kershaw on Sunday would have normal (four-day) rest. Hill on Tuesday (Game 3) would also be on normal rest (presuming he pitches tomorrow).

          • Yeah, I missed a finger in counting. Kershaw would be fine for Sunday. I do think that Maeda is a good candidate for the first game, however. Not his normal rest, but he did only throw 63 pitches. Brock does have 5 strong innings under his belt against the Cubs, but won’t have the element of surprise this time out.

          • We shall see how Honeycutt and the trainers assess the situation and whether the kid has a “tired arm” or not. Brock, Stripling or Urias are options, with Brock requiring a roster move.

    • Since we are counting chickens in any event, you got me thinking. If they want Clayton to be available for three starts in a seven game series, what is the best set up? One option would be Clayton on Saturday on three days, then again on Weds with four days rest and then on Sunday with three days rest. Such a sequence might mean Maeda for the second game with his normal five days rest.

  1. Apart from Justin, the Dodgers aren’t hitting a lick yet are tied 2-2. Makes me feel bad and good at the same time.

  2. I woke up this morning before daylight, and used the time to watch every pitch of the Gnats’ gninth. Schadenfreude remains fun!

  3. wow, just checked back in, I cant believe they lost that one. I bet the crowd went really quiet.

    • And the crowd goes silent has less of a ring to it than the crowd goes wild. But in this case, it sounds beautiful!

  4. So – for those scoring at home: Last year’s champ won’t win (KC), 2014 (and 2012, 2010) champ won’t win (SF), 2013 champ won’t win (Boston), 2011 champ won’t win (St. Louis).
    You have to go back to the 1992-1993 Blue Jays repeat winners to find the last time one of the remaining playoff teams won! New faces, teams, cities for the World Series!!

    • The 1st game of the NLCS is Saturday — October 15 . . . one of the greatest dates in Dodger history. Sure hope the Dodgers are still playing!

      • If they are, they will be in playing in the (perhaps not too) friendly confines of Wrigley Field. But yeah – let’s be there!

  5. It was an incredible postseason run by the Giants — 10 victories in postseason elimination games — but glad it’s over.

  6. I haven’t been paying much attention, but it sounds as if this could be a Grant classic.

    • Jinx, you owe me a Coke (Zero) — kind of.
      But since it’s your birthday, it’s on the house. 🙂

  7. Giants bringing in 5th pitcher of the INNING . . . let’s hope their bullpen continues with what they’ve done so far in the 9th . . .

  8. Cubs get a break — bunt goes to pitcher who gets the out at 2nd, but Crawford throws it away . . . go-ahead run at 2nd, 1 out.

  9. Meanwhile, SF up 5-2 in 9th . . . Chicago has but 2 hits. I believe they were hit by lack of hitting last year as well.

  10. David Ross is trying to Murph the Giants — sac fly gets one back, now 3-2 SF, top of 5th.

  11. Missed DP to get out of it because Lackey’s foot came off the bag covering 1st.
    3-1 SF

  12. Matt Moore helps his own cause with a basehit to give SF the lead, with bases still loaded.
    C’mon, Cubs!

  13. Was soo nice to know that cheers today meant good things for the Dodgers.
    Now rooting for the Cubs but cheers are from SF fans and therefore bad for Cubs.

  14. Turner’s route efficiency on Turner’s flyball (exit velocity 76 mph) He began 66 feet from where ball landed, ran 69 feet & was 4 feet late

  15. tied up at 1. I know there is still a long was to go, but a best of 7 series with the cubs would make for some fantastic baseball

  16. Great game by Kersh, tho the 7th inning is once again his kryptonite.
    The thinking that he would go deeper and thus need less of the bullpen than Urias was accurate. The fact that the bullpen was needed more than expected is on them.
    But the team won and that’s the bottom line!

  17. Wasn’t 8 – 2 but and my pre-game peace was challenged, that was a good game. Thank you Dodgers and Nats.

    • April bullpen was overcome by September offense — let’s hope at least the latter is seen again on Thursday!

  18. The crowd is yelling “Blue you suck! Blue you suck!” And booing him at every opportunity.

  19. I did like that Kersh stayed in and he just missed on a couple of pitches that would have been strike 3 on Harper but maybe his biggest weakness is not being able to say okay to the Manager and come out of a game. That might be one of Greinke’s better traits.

  20. You get the feeling they wanted him for 2 batters, then Baez. Hope he didn’t overplan this.

  21. I wanted more there but since I predicted an 8 – 2 win it will be more fun to score a few times in the upcoming innings.

  22. Ross has lost the ability to find the strike zone all of a sudden. And it is giving Kershaw a breather in the dugout.

  23. He treated the bottom of the order appropriately, and pitch count looks manageable all of a sudden.

    • Could still use another few low pitch innings. 27 pitches in one inning is a lot to make up for. But yes – great job in the second. Perhaps the smoothest he has looked this series. Even better than striking out the side in the first inning of game one.

        • Bob – the hitters were better then but Kershaw looked smoother this inning. Less stress and fewer pitches. His release point looked more on this time.

    • I like your positivity. Me? Nauseous right now. I need to calm down and enjoy the sunshine or something.

      • We are going to score runs off of Joe Ross today. 6 is my guess.

        Then Hill will out pitch Roark on Thursday – but I’m getting ahead of myself… 🙂

      • I have a friend/colleague who is literally becoming sick over the Cubs. Her son is telling her ‘it’s not like it’s something about grandma, it’s just a game.’
        Intellectually, she agrees.
        Emotionally, the Cubs have been a wonderful diversion this year from “real life.”

        • Among position players, the worst hitter by far was Bill Bergen, an outstanding defensive catcher with the Brooklyn Dodgers in the early 20th Century. During the 1909 season, Bergen went hitless in 46 at-bats;, the longest slump among position players. His 1909 batting average was only .139, the lowest in history among full time players.

  24. Making things worse for Kersh, he may no longer feel as confident that it’s not up to carry the team. I’m sure he has confidence in the bullpen, but the bats the last two weeks have been suspect.

      • I left out “to him.”

        Referring to his quote that in years past he felt he had to carry the team but felt this year’s team was more complete and it wasn’t all on his shoulders.

  25. I am here. It’s my Beatles birthday (Will you still need me, will you still feed me?”). I have a brand new foam finger. Kershaw.

    How can we lose?

    But I forgot my battery pack for my aging iPhone, so will only check in very occasionally.

    Let’s win this one for Vin, shall we?


    • Have a great time, RBI, and hopefully a happy drive home.
      May your screen name be noted next to many Dodger players today!

    • You rock RBI! October’s a great month for a birthday – and Dodger victories! Hope you have lots to celebrate today!

  26. Once Stripling was used last night I thought Kershaw would pitch today. Urias for 4 and stripling for 3 or 4 I think would have worked. Maybe it will in game 5.

  27. I would have gone with Urías, but I’ll try not to second-guess people who know more than I. More often than not this season, improvisation has meant success.