Hanley Ramirez will start Game 6 of the NLCS after all

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In the words of Dodgers manager Don Mattingly, shortstop Hanley Ramirez is “worse today”, tweets Jayson Stark. Ramirez has been playing with a cracked rib caused by a 95 MPH Joe Kelly fastball in the first inning of the first game of the NLCS. Ramirez has just two hits (both singles) in 16 trips to the plate in NLCS play after hitting Braves pitching at a .500 clip during the NLDS.

Mattingly was resigned to hoping Ramirez could pinch-hit at some point during Game 6, as Ramirez — at the time — didn’t  “feel like he can swing the bat right now”. Nick Punto was initially in the lineup to start in Ramirez’s place at shortstop, batting eighth, but Ramirez was added back into the lineup late.

The updated Dodger lineup for Game 6:

Carl Crawford, LF

Mark Ellis, 2B

Adrian Gonzalez, 1B

Hanley Ramirez, SS

Andre Ethier, CF

Yasiel Puig, RF

Juan Uribe, 3B

A.J. Ellis, C

Clayton Kershaw, P

The Cardinal lineup remains unchanged.

Report: Nationals sign reliever Brandon Kintzler to a two-year deal

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Both a Kinsler and a Kintzler made headlines at the Winter Meetings. After the Angels acquired second baseman Ian Kinsler from the Tigers, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Nationals have inked reliever Brandon Kintzler to a two-year contract, pending a physical. Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the deal is worth $10 million and includes a third-year option worth $6 million.

Kintzler, 33, spent the latter half of his 2017 campaign with the Nationals after the Twins traded him. Between both clubs, he put up an aggregate 3.03 ERA with 29 saves and a 39/16 K/BB ratio in 71 1/3 innings.

Sean Doolittle will handle save situations for the Nationals. Kintzler and Ryan Madson will bridge the gap to him in the seventh and eighth innings.