Adam Wainwright drops some wisdom regarding the need for playoff experience

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Maybe it’s the cold medicine talking, or maybe my mind has just been altered by the Braves loss and I’m willing to accept anything at the moment, but this quote from Adam Wainwright in Jesse Spector’s article previewing tomorrow’s Cards-Pirates showdown makes a lot of sense, regardless of the syntax.

Wainwright, who faces off against the rookie Garret Cole in Game 5, had this to say when asked if playoff experience matters:

“I think it can. Experience is one of those things where if you think it helps you it, does, and if you don’t think it does, it doesn’t. If you don’t have it, and you wish you had it, and you think you’re at a disadvantage because you don’t have it, then you are at a disadvantage.”

Or, as Satchel Paige said of age, experience is a case of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it don’t matter.  And I tend to think it doesn’t matter to Gerrit Cole. If it did, he wouldn’t have shut the Cardinals the heck down in Game 2 like he did.

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.