Author: Bill Baer

Curtis Granderson
AP Photo/Kathy Willens

Video: Curtis Granderson leaps to rob Chris Coghlan of a home run


Everything’s coming up Mets early in NLCS Game 2. They hung a three-spot on NL Cy Young Award candidate Jake Arrieta in the first inning. In the top of the second, Cubs outfielder Chris Coghlan tried to create a little momentum for his team, sending a Noah Syndergaard 0-2 fastball to deep right-center.

The fly ball just barely had home run distance and would have cut the Cubs’ deficit to 3-1, but Granderson jumped in front of the Citi Field fence and snagged the ball for the second out of the inning.

Mets strike first, take early 3-0 lead over the Cubs in NLCS Game 2

Daniel Murphy
AP Photo/Alex Gallardo
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The Mets had a 3-0 lead before Cubs starter Jake Arrieta was able to record an out in the bottom of the first inning of NLCS Game 2. Curtis Granderson ripped a line drive single through the shift on the right side, and David Wright then smoked a double to right-center field. Granderson scored easily.

The run was the first Arrieta had allowed in the first inning in his last 26 starts. But the Mets weren’t done. Daniel Murphy snuck a line drive just inside the foul pole down the right field line for a two-run home run, his fifth long ball of the post-season, setting a new Mets record.

Arrieta was able to get Yoenis Cespedes to pop up foul near first base, then struck out Lucas Duda and Travis d'Arnaud to end the frame. Noah Syndergaard will head back to the mound with a three-run lead.

If there’s a bright side for the Cubs, they’ll have eight turns at bat to try and make up the deficit.

Cubs tab Kyle Hendricks and Jason Hammel for NLCS Games 3 and 4

Kyle Hendricks
AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh
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Cubs manager Joe Maddon has tabbed Kyle Hendricks for the start in Game 3 of the NLCS against the Mets, and will likely go with Jason Hammel in Game 4, ESPN’s Jesse Rogers reports. Maddon was presumably non-committal for Game 4 because if the Cubs fall behind 3-0, he might prefer to go with Jon Lester in a do-or-die game.

Hendricks allowed three runs on four hits with no walks and seven strikeouts over 4 2/3 innings in his start against the Cardinals in Game 2 of the NLDS. Hammel started Game 4 against the Cardinals, yielding two runs on three hits and three walks with two strikeouts in three innings.

Dusty Baker’s interest in managing the Padres not reciprocated

Dusty Baker
AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar

Per Scott Miller of Bleacher Report, Dusty Baker contacted the Padres about their open manager position but the Padres weren’t interested. Miller adds that Baker is quite intent on managing again.

Baker, 66, has 20 years of managing experience under his belt. He spent 10 years with the Giants between 1993-2002, four years with the Cubs between 2003-06, and six years with the Reds between 2008-13. Baker has an 840-715 (.540) record as a manager.

The Nationals and Marlins reportedly have considered Baker for their vacant manager positions.

The Mets put a bandage on the Home Run Apple where Travis d’Arnaud’s homer landed

Travis d'Arnaud
AP Photo/Kathy Willens
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Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud hit a monster solo homer in Game 1 of the NLCS on Saturday night against Cubs starter Jon Lester. As fate would have it, the ball struck the Home Run Apple in center field at Citi Field, causing a slight amount of damage.

The Mets found humor in the property damage, applying a bandage where the ball landed. Via’s Anthony DiComo: