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Consider the ‘red ass’

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There are a handful of colorful expletives that are unique to baseball or, at the very least, appear overwhelmingly in a baseball context and hardly anyplace else.

One of those is “horse s**t.” Most of the world uses the bovine version of that notion, but baseball almost exclusively uses the equine. I don’t know why.

Last year we learned about “ass in the jackpot,” which is a phrase no one involved in the conversation at the time seemed to find funny or novel — it was as if that’s something people say all the time — but it made all of us laugh. Again: it’s baseball lingo that we outsiders just aren’t privy to.

Maybe the most famous one, however, is “red ass.” It’s a term that, if you’re around ballplayers or baseball writers who talk to ballplayers you hear fairly often. Today Marc Carig of The Athletic does a deep dive into “red ass” to try to explain to the non-initiated what it truly means. It’s a harder task than you might think, as it can describe a single instance of rage or anger or, more generally, the temperament of a person over time. “Jones has the red ass” vs. “Smith is a red ass” communicate related but distinct concepts, after all. Sometimes it’s complimentary. Sometimes it’s disparaging. Nuance matters, man.

Carig goes over the term’s history and interviews some of baseball’s more famous recent red asses. And talks about guys who famously had the red ass. Again: different things. But also, totally worth a click and read today.

Nationals, Astros lineups for World Series Game 2

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The Nationals, believed by oddsmakers to be big underdogs in the World Series against the Astros, won arguably their toughest matchup last night by plating five runs against Gerrit Cole in a 5-4 win in Houston. They’ll take a 1-0 series lead into Wednesday night’s action featuring a duel between Stephen Strasburg and Justin Verlander. Here are the lineups for the two sides.

Nationals

SS Trea Turner
RF Adam Eaton
3B Anthony Rendon
LF Juan Soto
DH Howie Kendrick
2B Asdrúbal Cabrera
1B Ryan Zimmerman
C Kurt Suzuki
CF Victor Robles

SP Stephen Strasburg

No changes here. Manager Dave Martinez is rolling out the same exact lineup as he had in Game 1.

Astros

CF George Springer
2B José Altuve
LF Michael Brantley
3B Alex Bregman
1B Yuli Gurriel
DH Yordan Álvarez
SS Carlos Correa
C Robinson Chirinos
RF Josh Reddick

SP Justin Verlander

Likewise, Astros skipper A.J. Hinch has hardly changed his lineup. The only difference is Chirinos is doing the catching tonight as opposed to Martín Maldonado.

Springer notably did not give maximum effort on an RBI double he hit off of the wall in right-center field, thinking it was a home run. He could’ve had a triple. Springer and Hinch discussed it over the phone late last night, Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller reports. Hinch didn’t seem too concerned about it.