Here are the lineups for Game 1 of the NLCS between the Giants and Phillies, set to begin shortly after 7:30 p.m. ET.
SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
1. Andres Torres, CF 1. Shane Victorino, CF
2. Freddy Sanchez, 2B 2. Placido Polanco, 3B
3. Aubrey Huff, 1B 3. Chase Utley, 2B
4. Buster Posey, C 4. Ryan Howard, 1B
5. Pat Burrell, LF 5. Jayson Werth, RF
6. Juan Uribe, SS 6. Jimmy Rollins, SS
7. Mike Fontenot, 3B 7. Raul Ibanez, LF
8. Cody Ross, RF 8. Carlos Ruiz, C
9. Tim Lincecum, P 9. Roy Halladay, P
Nothing too surprising here, as each manager pretty much sticks with their standard lineup from the first round.
Mike Fontenot gets the start at third base over Pablo Sandoval once again. All things being equal, Sandoval is probably the superior option to Fontenot offensively, but he batted just .208/.266/.299 with four homers, 23 RBI and a 565 OPS away from AT&T park during the regular season. Giants manager Bruce Bochy told Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News that there’s a good chance Sandoval will start at third base later in the series, possibly as soon as tomorrow.
Craig Mish of MLB Network Radio is reporting that Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto has requested a trade out of Miami. Jon Heyman is characterizing it as Realmuto telling the team that he “wouldn’t mind” a trade.
Either way, Realmuto has no power to force a trade. This isn’t the NBA or something. Still, it’s evidence of just how dreary a prospect remaining in Miami is for Marlins veterans in the wake of trades that sent Giancarlo Stanton to New York, Marcell Ozuna to St. Louis.
Realmuto, who will turn 27 just before the 2018 season, hit .278/.332/.451 with 17 homers, 65 RBI, and eight steals over 141 games this past season. He only has three years of service time and is arbitration eligible for the first time this offseason. He made just $562K in the 2017 and will get a big raise this year, but he’s still going to be underpaid based on his production. If the Marlins wanted to trade him, they’d get a nice return. Why they would want to trade him, I have no idea.
Expect more of this sort of thing as the Marlins slash payroll and make it clear that their immediate priorities are more about saving money and less about winning baseball games. Which may or may not be a valid goal for the team’s new owners, but is certainly a letdown for baseball players and fans.