And That Happened: Monday’s playoff highlights


Giants 7, Cardinals 1: Apart from the Angel Pagan homer the Giants dinked and dunked their way to the win in Game 2.  The biggest story of the game, however, was the b.s. takeout slide of Marco Scutaro by Matt Holliday in the first inning. X-Rays are negative — Scutaro continued in the game, driving in a couple of runs on a single — but he did have to eventually leave.

Bright side: I let my kids stay up late to watch the first few innings, and the Scutaro-Matt Holliday business created a teaching moment in which I was able to explain to them the politics of plunking and retaliation for dirty play.  Mookie seemed to grasp it pretty well. I know this because when Holliday came up to bat and wasn’t plunked in retaliation for that slide, she yelled “why didn’t they hit him?!”

On to St. Louis for Wednesday’s matchup of Kyle Lohse and Matt Cain.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

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No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.