NLCS, Game 2: Giants vs. Cardinals lineups

8 Comments

Here are the starting lineups for Game 2 of the NLCS on Sunday night at Busch Stadium in St. Louis …

GIANTS
CF Gregor Blanco
2B Joe Panik
C Buster Posey
3B Pablo Sandoval
RF Hunter Pence
1B Brandon Belt
SS Brandon Crawford
LF Travis Ishikawa
SP Jake Peavy

The Giants have made no changes to the starting lineup that beat Adam Wainwright and the Cardinals 3-0 on Saturday night. Michael Morse (oblique) will again be available off the bench as San Francisco tries to take a 2-0 lead in the National League Championship Series before the action shifts to AT&T Park.

CARDINALS
3B Matt Carpenter
CF Jon Jay
LF Matt Holliday
1B Matt Adams
SS Jhonny Peralta
C Yadier Molina
2B Kolten Wong
RF Randal Grichuk
SP Lance Lynn

Cardinals manager Mike Matheny will roll with the right-handed Grichuk against the right-handed Peavy despite having a far better option in Oscar Taveras, a left-handed hitter. Grichuk is just 3-for-20 this postseason and batted .250/.308/.354 against right-handers during the regular season. It doesn’t make much sense.

Astros talking to Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole about extensions

Justin Verlander
Getty Images
1 Comment

It’s extension season and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Astros — who already agreed to an extension with Alex Bregman — are discussing contract extensions with Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole.

Funny thing about Verlander, by the way: when he got his current $180 million deal, most people fell into the “oh, there’s an overpay!” column. What’s more, this past winter, when everyone was talking about how bad it is to give guys big long term deals, Verlander’s name was notably absent in the conversation despite the fact that his deal has turned out to be quite good. I suppose that says something about how good the anti-long-term deal folks are at cherrypicking.

That being said, Rosenthal says “it would be an upset” if either Verlander or Cole signed extensions. I can see that. Verlander is locked up this year and has a vesting option for 2020, and a lot can happen in a year or two. Cole is a Scott Boras client and Boras clients tend to hit the market rather than sign extensions. Perhaps their former teammate, Dallas Keuchel‘s, terrible experience on the free agent market this winter will alter that calculus. Hard to say.