Here are the lineups for Game 4 of the ALCS between the Yankees and Tigers, in Detroit:
NEW YORK YANKEES DETROIT TIGERS
1. Ichiro Suzuki, LF 1. Austin Jackson, CF
2. Nick Swisher, RF 2. Omar Infante, 2B
3. Robinson Cano, 2B 3. Miguel Cabrera, 3B
4. Mark Teixeira, 1B 4. Prince Fielder, 1B
5. Raul Ibanez, DH 5. Delmon Young, DH
6. Eric Chavez, 3B 6. Jhonny Peralta, SS
7. Russell Martin, C 7. Andy Dirks, LF
8. Brett Gardner, CF 8. Avisail Garcia, RF
9. Eduardo Nunez, SS 9. Gerald Laird, C
SP CC Sabathia, LH SP Max Scherzer, RH
Both managers are sticking with the same lineups they chose last night before the game was postponed by rain, which means Alex Rodriguez and Curtis Granderson are still on the bench against right-hander Max Scherzer. Nick Swisher goes from benched in Game 3 to batting second, Brett Gardner replaces Granderson in center field while dropping to the No. 8 spot, and Robinson Cano is hitting third despite being 3-for-36 (.083) in the playoffs.
Detroit is going with its standard lineup versus left-handed pitching, so Gerald Laird and Avisail Garcia get to face CC Sabathia in place of Alex Avila and Quintin Berry. Omar Infante is in the lineup despite injuring his thumb late in Game 3.
and the Tigers are going with their standard group versus left-handed pitching.
The Astros avoided arbitration with pitcher Mike Fiers, agreeing on a $3.45 million salary for the 2017 season, per Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle. The right-hander was in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility.
Fiers, 31, made 30 starts and one relief appearance for the Astros in 2016. He finished the year with a 4.48 ERA and a 134/42 K/BB ratio in 168 2/3 innings.
Fiers had a much better showing in 2015 as well as in limited action in 2014, so the Astros are hoping he rediscovers that effectiveness going forward. He’ll slot into the back of the starting rotation.
There is little if any controversy to be had about the caps this year’s inductees will wear on their Hall of Fame plaques, but in case there was any doubt at all, it was put to rest this afternoon at the Hall of Fame press conference: Tim Raines will wear a Montreal Expos cap and Ivan Rodriguez will wear a Rangers cap. Jeff Bagwell, of course, never played for a team other than the Houston Astros at the big league level.
Though Raines had some good seasons with the Chicago White Sox and though he helped provide a nice kick start to the Yankees dynasty in the mid-1990s, his best seasons, by far, took place while he was an Expo. It’s also the case that the bulk of his Hall of Fame push came from Expos fans. He was particularly boosted by Jonah Keri, who recently wrote a book detailing the history of the Expos. So, yeah, that’s easy.
Rodriguez played 13 of his 21 years with the Texas Rangers, including his MVP 1999 season. He did have some notable years elsewhere, particularly in Detroit where he remains a fan favorite, but it was always going to be the Rangers for him, one would think. Maybe a slight, slight chance that he’d do the blank cap thing, Greg Maddux-style, but smart money was on the Rangers.
With Bagwell, the only question is which Astros cap he’ll wear. There are a couple of applicable ones: the brick red star, which he wore to the World Series in 2005. There’s also the shooting star cap he wore during his best seasons and which Craig Biggio’s plaque displays. He was around for the classic “H” over the star look, but he was just a kid then, so I doubt he’d wear it.
Anyway, sorry to the Marlins fans who wished that Raines and Pudge would wear the fishy-F.