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Braves, Cardinals lineups for NLDS Game 4

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The Cardinals have a simple task: win or go, er, stay home. The Braves are sending out Dallas Keuchel on short rest in order to make that happen. I put the over/under on the TBS announcers saying “sinkerballers actually have an advantage on short rest” at three, and that’s the case even though I’m pretty sure that bit of conventional wisdom is BS.

No matter what Keuchel’s feeling, though, the Cardinals, who have scored one run in the past two games, have to score some runs. The Braves haven’t exactly been tearing up the pea patch themselves, but their runs have come at opportune times.

Here are the lineups, each of which is seeking to break out:

Braves

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. Dallas Keuchel (L) P

Cardinals

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

 

Donaldson ejected for kicking dirt on plate after home run

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
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Minnesota’s Josh Donaldson managed to get ejected while hitting a home run.

Donaldson barked at plate umpire Dan Bellino for the second time in the sixth inning of a 4-3 loss to the Chicago White Sox on Thursday.

With the score 2-2, Bellino called a strike when the 2015 AL MVP checked his swing on a 2-0 pitch from Reynaldo Lopez.

Manager Rocco Baldelli came out to speak with Bellino, and Donaldson homered down the left-field line on the next offering. After rounding the bases, Donaldson kicked dirt at home plate as he crossed it.

Bellino ejected him immediately, and Donaldson, realizing he had missed home plate, returned to the plate to touch it and then argued as he kicked more dirt on it.

Donaldson also had argued with Bellino on a 1-1 breaking ball in the first inning that appeared to be high but was called a strike, leading to a strikeout.

“We need Josh on the field, out there playing, and at third base,” Baldelli said. “That’s when we’re at our best. And so that’s really the end of it. I think we can move past it at his point, and go from here.”

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