If the Giants are going to prevail tonight, they’ll have to duplicate the Cardinals’ comeback from Game 5 of the NLDS.
David Freese and Carlos Beltran homered Sunday as the Cardinals built a 6-0 lead over the Giants in the NLCS opener.
Freese’s two-run homer was the only scoring through three innings, but the Cardinals added to their lead on back-to-back doubles from Daniel Descalso and Pete Kozma in the fourth. Madison Bumgarner rebounded from there to fan opposing starter Lance Lynn and get ahead of Jon Jay 0-2. However, Jay dropped an RBI single into center field and Beltran followed with a two-run blast to make it 6-0.
That was it for Bumgarner, who gave up at least four runs for the seventh time in his last nine starts.
Meanwhile, Lynn is through three scoreless innings as of this writing. The 18-game winner, who entered the postseason in the pen, is starting tonight as a result of Jaime Garcia’s shoulder injury.
Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera didn’t play in the Tigers’ season finale against the White Sox, but he has officially clinched the AL batting title with a .338 average following Sunday’s action. It’s Cabrera’s fourth batting title in his last five seasons.
Marlins second baseman Dee Gordon entered Sunday’s season finale with a bit more pressure. He was in a tight race with Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper for the NL batting title, trailing only by rounding to the fourth place, .3307 to .3306. Gordon went 3-for-4 in a loss to the Phillies while Harper went 1-for-4 in a loss to the Mets. As a result, Gordon officially won the NL batting title with a .330 average. It’s the first batting title of Gordon’s brief career. Hanley Ramirez was the Marlins’ last batting champion, doing so in 2009.
Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels are expected to announce Billy Eppler as their new general manager on Monday. Eppler had been serving as the assistant general manager with the Yankees.
Jerry DiPoto had been the Angels’ GM but he stepped down on July 1. DiPoto later joined the Red Sox in an advisory role, then was named the Mariners’ new GM last week.
The Angels lost to the Rangers in Sunday’s season finale, which eliminated them from contention for the second AL Wild Card spot. They finished 85-77. Most of their regulars are under contract for the 2016 season, but Eppler will have to decide whether to tender contracts to seven arbitration-eligible players while filling in the rest of the roster.