Potent quotables: 12 pieces of bacon and a Red Bull

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“We’ll show up [Sunday], do what we always do on early games, have 12 pieces of bacon, a Red Bull and go get ’em.”

– Terry Francona reveals how the Red Sox will prepare
for a do-or-die matinee with the Angels on Sunday. Clay Buchholz will
attempt to save the season against Scott Kazmir. Kazmir was 2-2 with a
1.73 ERA in six starts with the Angels this season.

“This game can be really weird. I
never would have guessed that we would have swept those guys.”

– Casey Blake comments on his team’s unlikely sweep of the Cardinals.
Though the Dodgers had the better record during the regular season,
they had to face two legitimate Cy Young candidates to start the
series. The Dodgers managed to pull out both games. They carried that
momentum to Game 3 with a dominant effort by Vicente Padilla, who
tossed seven scoreless innings.

“I don’t like the stigma of our club getting swept. We’re a better club than that, and the series was more
competitive than that. But that’s what it is. But today wasn’t a real
good competition.”

– Tony La Russa knows his team is better than the one that showed up for the NLDS. This season marks the first time that the Cardinals have ever been swept in a Division Series or League Championship Series.

“He wasn’t a bad guy at all, as far as I was I was concerned. I didn’t
feel like he stole our money. … I went down with him. He took a lot
of crap, and so did I. I never lost my perspective on what really
happened. It was a move that didn’t work because he didn’t stay
healthy. Do I blame him for it? No I don’t I don’t think he laid down
on us.”

– Yankees general manager Brian Cashman reflects on the much-maligned Carl Pavano signing. Pavano will seek redemption against his former team on Sunday night as the Twins try to keep their season alive.

Report: Kyle Schwarber will return to the Arizona Fall League on Saturday

CHICAGO, IL - AUGUST 16:  Injured player Kyle Schwarber #12 of the Chicago Cubs is seen in the dugout before a game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Wrigley Field on August 16, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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Cubs’ outfielder Kyle Schwarber will return to the playing field on Saturday, per a report by the Chicago Tribune’s Mark Gonzales. The club’s prized left fielder suffered a season-ending injury when he collided with Dexter Fowler back in April, tearing both his ACL and LCL and undergoing intensive knee surgery later that month.

While no nerve damage was discovered during the surgery, the Cubs have kept a close eye on Schwarber during his recovery and put a kibosh on any part-time or full-time role with the team until the spring of 2017. Getting a few reps in during the Arizona Fall League appears to be the last step in the 23-year-old’s rehab process. He will be part of the Mesa Solar Sox’ ‘taxi squad,’ making him eligible for games on Wednesdays and Saturdays only.

Schwarber batted .246/.355/.487 with 16 in 69 games with the Cubs during his debut season in 2015. He will be added to the Mesa Solar Sox roster in advance of their set against the Salt River Rafters on Saturday evening.

Playoff Reset: Cubs vs. Dodgers NLCS Game 6

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 16:  Clayton Kershaw #22 of the Los Angeles Dodgers stands on the pitcher's mound during game two of the National League Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on October 16, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
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The Game: Los Angeles Dodgers @ Chicago Cubs NLCS Game 6
The Time: 8:00 PM EDT
The Place: Wrigley Field, Chicago
The Channel: FS1
The Starters: Kyle Hendricks (Cubs) vs. Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers)

The Upshot:

We’re pulling out the big guns for this one. The Cubs took Los Angeles by storm again in Game 5, closing out their road trip with an eight-run spread over the Dodgers, and tonight they’ll try to clinch the NLCS on home turf in Game 6.

Pitching-wise, it’s a rematch of Game 2 with Kyle Hendricks (16-8, 2.13 ERA) and Clayton Kershaw (12-4, 1.69 ERA) on the mound. Kershaw took the first set against the Cubs, going seven scoreless innings with six strikeouts in Game 2 while Hendricks held the Dodgers to a single run over 5 1/3 innings. Adrian Gonzalez was the only Dodger to capitalize on Hendricks’ cutter, going yard in his first at-bat to generate a 1-0 lead.

The Cubs’ biggest strength so far this series has been an electric offense, something the Dodgers have struggled to replicate against left-hander Jon Lester and Joe Maddon’s airtight bullpen. While they’ve already beaten Hendricks at Wrigley Field once this October, they’ll need Kershaw to go the distance in another playoff gem if they intend to keep the Cubs’ championship hopes at bay with a 3.4-run average. Should Kershaw and his crew knot the series again, the tiebreaker will fall to Rich Hill and Jake Arrieta in Game 7.