ALCS Game 4 lineups: Rangers vs. Tigers

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Here are the lineups for Game 4 of the Rangers-Tigers series:

   TEXAS RANGERS                DETROIT TIGERS
1. Ian Kinsler, 2B           1. Austin Jackson, CF
2. Elvis Andrus, SS          2. Ryan Raburn, RF
3. Josh Hamilton, CF         3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
4. Michael Young, 1B         4. Victor Martinez, DH
5. Adrian Beltre, 3B         5. Delmon Young, LF
6. Mike Napoli, C            6. Alex Avila, C
7. Nelson Cruz, RF           7. Jhonny Peralta, SS
8. David Murphy, LF          8. Ramon Santiago, 2B
9. Yorvit Torrealba, DH      9. Brandon Inge, 3B

SP Matt Harrison, LHP        SP Rick Porcello, RHP

Yorvit Torrealba made just his second start of the playoffs behind the plate last night as Mike Napoli moved to designated hitter to get a game off from catching, but today Napoli is back at catcher and Torrealba stays in the lineup at DH despite a .309 on-base percentage and .399 slugging percentage this season. David Murphy returns to the lineup in left field, with Endy Chavez resuming his little-used bench role following his lone start of the postseason. Adrian Beltre will play through his knee injury.

Delmon Young was a last-minute scratch from yesterday’s game because of his oblique injury, but he’s back in there against a left-hander today. Jim Leyland did move him from No. 3 to No. 5, at least. And with a southpaw on the mound Brandon Inge starts over Don Kelly at third base and Ryan Raburn moves into the No. 2 spot. Victor Martinez is playing despite injuring his oblique last night and the 4-5-6 of Martinez, Young, and Alex Avila are all at significantly less than full strength.

The 2019 Hall of Fame Class will be announced this evening

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This year’s Hall of Fame ballot was released just over two months ago. This evening at 6:15 PM Eastern, all of the arguing stops. Well, actually, it doesn’t stop, because it never stops. Not really. It just transforms into something more pointless, because as of then, the 2019 Hall of Fame class will be officially announced live on MLB Network.

The entire ballot can be found here. Two weeks ago I went through it, candidate-by-candidate, in order to determine who I would vote for if, in fact, I had a vote. For what it’s worth, I ended up with Mariano Rivera, Roy Halladay, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Mike Mussina, Curt Schilling, Edgar Martinez, Larry Walker, Manny Ramirez. and Scott Rolen.

No, not all of those guys will be elected. I strongly suspect we’ll get three, with an outside chance at a fourth. Based on the best Hall of Fame voting tracker out there, Mariano Rivera is a lock. So too, it seems, is Roy Halladay. Edgar Martinez — on the ballot for is tenth and final time — likewise seems to have the support to finally make it. He was 20 votes short last year and, so far, he has picked up more than 20 new votes among voters who have revealed their ballots. Assuming that previous Martinez voters who have not released their ballots do not backtrack — a safe assumption — Edgar should, at long last, finally make it into Cooperstown.

The last guy who, at present, is trending above the required 75% is Mike Mussina who, at present, is included on 81% of public ballots. There is a tendency for the non-public voters to be stingier with their support, however, so there’s a pretty decent chance that Mussina will fall just under the threshold and will find himself back on the ballot next year. A jump from last year’s 63.5% support to something in the 70s, however, would bode very well for his 2020 chances. If he somehow makes it this year’s class will rival last year’s four-person BBWAA-elected class as one of the better ones in living memory.

Who will join Harold Baines and Lee Smith on the stage in Cooperstown in July? We find out this evening, just after 6 PM.