NLCS Game 4 lineups: Brewers vs. Cardinals

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Here are the lineups for Game 4 of the Brewers-Cardinals series:

   MILWAUKEE BREWERS            ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
1. Nyjer Morgan, CF          1. Rafael Furcal, SS
2. Mark Kotsay, RF           2. Allen Craig, RF
3. Ryan Braun, LF            3. Albert Pujols, 1B
4. Prince Fielder, 1B        4. David Freese, 3B
5. Rickie Weeks, 2B          5. Matt Holliday, LF
6. Jerry Hairston, 3B        6. Yadier Molina, C
7. Yuniesky Betancourt, SS   7. Ryan Theriot, 2B
8. George Kottaras, C        8. Jon Jay, CF

SP Randy Wolf, LHP           SP Kyle Lohse, RHP

Changes galore for both teams.

Last night Ron Roenicke benched Nyjer Morgan for Mark Kotsay in center field with ugly results, so tonight he’s benching Corey Hart in order to keep Kotsay in the lineup in right field while starting Morgan in center field. Hart was the team’s third-best hitter this season, batting .285 with 26 homers and an .866 OPS in 130 games, but apparently because he’s struggled in eight playoff games and has a poor track record in a very limited sample size of at-bats against Kyle Lohse he sits.

Allen Craig lost his starting spot when Matt Holliday returned, but he’s back in the lineup tonight in place of Lance Berkman, who’s struggled since homering early in the postseason and typically fares much worse against righties than lefties. Tony La Russa has also opted for Ryan Theriot over Nick Punto at second base while moving David Freese up into the cleanup spot with Holliday dropping down to No. 5.

Hyun-Jin Ryu will open season in Dodgers’ rotation

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Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu will open the regular season in the starting rotation, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports.

Ryu, 30, missed the entire 2015 season and made only one start last season due to shoulder and elbow injuries. The lefty has looked solid in three spring appearances, however, yielding a lone run on five hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in nine innings.

With Scott Kazmir likely to begin the season on the disabled list, that leaves Alex Wood and Brandon McCarthy to battle it out for the fifth spot in the Dodgers’ rotation.

Jorge Soler diagnosed with strained oblique, Opening Day in doubt

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Royals outfielder Jorge Soler has been diagnosed with a strained oblique, making it likely that he begins the regular season on the disabled list, Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star reports.

The Royals acquired Soler from the Cubs in December in exchange for reliever Wade Davis. Over parts of three seasons with the Cubs, Soler hit .258/.328/.434 with 27 home runs and 98 RBI in 765 plate appearances.

When he’s healthy, Soler is expected to find himself in the Royals’ lineup as a right fielder and occasionally as a designated hitter.