Giants take a 2-0 lead in the second inning of NLCS Game 1

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The Giants loaded the bases with no outs in the second inning against Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright and were able to push across two runs to take an early lead in the opener of the NLCS.

Pablo Sandoval led off the frame with a double to right field which was very nearly caught by Randal Grichuk in right field. Wainwright then walked Hunter Pence and Brandon Belt dropped a single in front of left fielder Matt Holliday to load the bases. After Brandon Crawford struck out, Travis Ishikawa blooped an RBI single down the right field line, out of the reach of a triangle of Cardinal defenders.

Wainwright was nearly out of the jam after getting Madison Bumgarner — who hit two grand slams during the regular season — to line out to shortstop. However, another run scored when third baseman Matt Carpenter was unable to cleanly field a Gregor Blanco grounder. Joe Panik, the eighth batter of the inning, hit a sharp grounder back to Wainwright for the 1-3 out to end the frame.

Wainwright struggled in his previous start in Game 1 of the NLDS against the Dodgers, allowing six runs in 4 1/3 innings. He complained of elbow discomfort, but went out of his way recently to allay any concerns that he may be in poor health.

Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.