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Cardinals, Braves lineups for NLDS Game 2

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Last night was pretty ugly for both teams in Atlanta. Far uglier for the Braves, obviously, as they lost the dang game. Both sides are hoping for some crisper play this afternoon and evening, and here are the lineups they’re trotting out to do it:

The Cardinals provide no surprises. It’s identical to last night, save for a Wong/DeJong flip-flop:

1. Dexter Fowler (S) RF
2. Tommy Edman (S) 3B
3. Paul Goldschmidt (R) 1B
4. Marcell Ozuna (R) LF
5. Yadier Molina (R) C
6. Kolten Wong (L) 2B
7. Paul DeJong (R) SS
8. Harrison Bader (R) CF
9. Jack Flaherty (R) P

Contrary to what angry “play the game the right way” fans on Braves message boards were yelling for them to do last night, the Braves have made the savvy decision not to bench their best player, Ronald Acuña Jr.:

1. Ronald Acuna Jr. (R) CF
2. Ozzie Albies (S) 2B
3. Freddie Freeman (L) 1B
4. Josh Donaldson (R) 3B
5. Nick Markakis (L) LF
6. Matt Joyce (L) RF
7. Brian McCann (L) C
8. Dansby Swanson (R) SS
9. Mike Foltynewicz (R) P

The more apt question is whether they can bench their bullpen because those guys, and not Acuña, had way more to do with Atlanta losing that game last night.

Things get underway in the Atlanta suburbs at 4:37 PM Eastern.

Ex-Angels employee charged in overdose death of Tyler Skaggs

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A former Angels employee has been charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl in connection with last year’s overdose death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs, prosecutors in Texas announced Friday.

Eric Prescott Kay was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, and made his first appearance Friday in federal court, according to Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kay was communications director for the Angels.

Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in the Dallas area July 1, 2019, before the start of what was supposed to be a four-game series against the Texas Rangers. The first game was postponed before the teams played the final three games.

Skaggs died after choking on his vomit with a toxic mix of alcohol and the powerful painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone in his system, a coroner’s report said. Prosecutors accused Kay of providing the fentanyl to Skaggs and others, who were not named.

“Tyler Skaggs’s overdose – coming, as it did, in the midst of an ascendant baseball career – should be a wake-up call: No one is immune from this deadly drug, whether sold as a powder or hidden inside an innocuous-looking tablet,” Nealy Cox said.

If convicted, Kay faces up to 20 years in prison. Federal court records do not list an attorney representing him, and an attorney who previously spoke on his behalf did not immediately return a message seeking comment.