For the Reds it’ll be Homer Bailey in Game 3

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Johnny Cueto only threw eight pitches in Game 1 of the NLDS on Saturday because of back spasms. Because of the nearly non-outing, there was hope that he could come back to pitch Game 3.  That’s not happening, though: last night Dusty Baker announced that it would be Homer Bailey.

The Reds are being cautious with Cueto, wanting to make sure that he doesn’t have another short, bullpen-taxing outing.  Also at work here: the luxury of having a two-game lead in a five-game series allowing the Reds this extra room to operate.

Oh, and of course the guy who will be getting the ball threw a no-hitter ten days ago, so there’s that.

Report: Rays sign Brandon Lowe to six-year, $24 million contract extension

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Rays and infielder Brandon Lowe have agreed on a six-year, $24 million contract extension. Lowe has just 58 days of service time, so this will cover his three years of pre-arbitration as well as three arbitration years.

Lowe, 24, earned a promotion to the majors in early August last year, playing mostly at second base but also logging time in both outfield corners. Through the end of the season, he hit .233/.324/.450 with six home runs and 25 RBI in 148 plate appearances. Lowe also performed well this spring, batting .359/.405/.692 with a pair of homers and 14 RBI in 39 at-bats.

MLB Pipeline rates lowe as the No. 10 prospect in the Rays’ system. He is in line to see regular starts at second base, but the Rays will certainly be keen to utilize his versatility throughout the year.