Posted on: October 15, 2011 6:43 pm
MILWAUKEE -- This NL Championship Series simply cannot end on Sunday, in Game 6, without the Cardinals and Brewers extending it to Game 7, can it?
Until St. Louis blasted the Brewers in Game 5, the two teams for the year (including this series) were 11-11 against each other. Total runs were almost as close: Milwaukee was edging St. Louis 90-88.
Now, the Cardinals lead the series 12-11 and have outscored the Brewers 95-91.
The teams went 9-9 against each other during the regular season.
"We've both got good teams," Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina says. "The numbers don't lie.
"They have good hitters, and we have good hitters. They have good pitchers, and we have good pitchers."
The Cardinals, who will send Edwin Jackson to the mound for Game 7, have history with them: According to the Elias Sports Bureau, in a best-of-seven series that was tied at 2-2, the winner of Game 5 has gone on to win 36 of 52 series -- including 10 of 13 in the LCS.
The Brewers, who will start Shaun Marcum, have home-field advantage with them: Including the playoffs, they're 61-25 in Miller Park this year. Close the roof, as MLB says it will do for Game 6 because a chilly afternoon/night is expected, and the Brewers are 26-12.
St. Louis infielder Ryan Theriot says he "loves" the atmosphere in Milwaukee, and while acknowledging that these two teams probably deserve to go seven games ... you can guess which way he's leaning overall.
"I don't want to go to Game 7," Theriot says. "You want to get that win as soon as you can. Momentum is a big deal."
Likes: We've got a chance to have a Game 7 in an LCS for the first time since 2008 (Boston-Tampa Bay). ... Last time we had two Game 7s? Try 2003: Yankees-Red Sox and Cubs-Marlins. ... Chuck Berry in St. Louis participating in the national anthem the other day. ... Autumn colors now in Technicolor in Milwaukee and St. Louis both. ... Culver's frozen custard in Milwaukee. Did I mention this? I'm sure I have. But man, their concretes with ground up Twix bars are terrific.
Dislikes: A short flight of only about an hour ... delayed for two hours. Talk about feeling like you're going backwards. ... The very nice waitress at breakfast in the St. Louis airport Saturday morning who crossed over the line when joking that when she turned 51, she got a mustache for her birthday. ... Those hideous uniforms in Saturday's Michigan-Michigan State game. Man, between all this conference shifting and gawdawful uniforms, college football is starting to go to the hounds. ... Aw, they canceled Charlie's Angels so soon? I've been on the road so long I never even saw it.
Rock 'n' Roll Lyric of the Day:
"Deadlines and commitments
"What to leave in, what to leave out"
-- Bob Seger, Against the Wind
Posted on: November 30, 2010 9:50 pm
Shortstops fell quickly from the board Tuesday, which likely will lead to more urgency in Tampa Bay's trade talks surrounding Jason Bartlett over the next few days.
Meanwhile, even after striking a deal with Tejada, the Giants, according to sources, are one of several clubs engaging the Rays in conversations regarding Bartlett.
With Reid Brignac ready to play shortstop every day for the Rays and Tampa about to be decimated by the free agent market, general manager Andrew Friedman is investigating multiple scenarios. While All-Star outfielder Carl Crawford is expected to leave, the Rays also expect gaping holes in their bullpen.
Already this winter, set-up man Joaquin Benoit has signed with Detroit. Closer Rafael Soriano is expected to leave (for the Angels, perhaps?) and Grant Balfour, Randy Choate and Chad Qualls each declined arbitration on Tuesday.
Consequently, the Rays are said by rivals to be casting a wide net for relief help.
Aside from the Giants, the Orioles and Padres have expressed interest, according to sources. The Cardinals kicked the tires as well before nabbing Theriot for Hawksworth, who would have fit one of the areas the Rays are attempting to re-load.
San Diego could offer closer Heath Bell, who is eligible for free agency after 2011 and is expected to be moved sometime between now and the July trade deadline. Having lost Tejada to the Giants on Tuesday and having declined to offer arbitration to David Eckstein, the Padres are down to Everth Cabrera, Jerry Hairston Jr. and rookie Matt Antonelli as serviceable middle infielders.
Bartlett is eligible for arbitration for the third consecutive season before he can become a free agent after the 2011 season.
Posted on: July 30, 2010 1:57 pm
Seven games behind San Diego in the NL West and at a clear crossroads in their season, the Dodgers continue to pound the phones searching for starting pitching and are looking at all options.
The latest on Friday involved discussions with the Cubs on a couple of different fronts: One involving a package that would send left-hander Ted Lilly and infielder Ryan Theriot to the Dodgers, the other a deal that would only involve Lilly, according to CBSSports.com sources.
The Dodgers are not overly enamored with Lilly in that, at 34, he is not the same pitcher he was a few years ago. But, the trade market is what it is and, with Roy Oswalt, Cliff Lee and Dan Haren off the board, contenders looking for starting pitching are left to sort through the Lillys, Jake Westbrooks and Jeremy Guthries.
Any deal sending Lilly, or Lilly and Theriot, to the Dodgers would have to include the Cubs shipping cash as well. One other factor that makes Lilly less attractive is that he's owed about $4 million for the rest of the summer. And given the Dodgers' precarious financial situation -- the divorce trial between owners Frank and Jamie McCourt is expected to kick off in August -- they cannot take on much salary.
A Lilly-Theriot package certainly would be more attractive to the Dodgers at this point in that Theriot, who has a .285 batting average and .321 on-base percentage, would give them more options. Bench depth has become an issue for the Dodgers, who acquired outfielder Scott Podsednik on Wednesday to help get them through Manny Ramirez's third disabled list stint of the season.
The Dodgers -- or, more likely if a deal is consummated, the Cubs -- would owe Theriot a pro-rated portion of his $2.6 million 2010 salary.
While Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti -- among the more creative GMs -- is determined to find a way to add a starting pitcher, he did note earlier this week that he would not jump at something undesirable in July because there are always ways to add help in August as well.
"We'd like to get it done by Aug. 1," he said Wednesday. "But sometimes other people come available."
Remember, the Dodgers last August alone acquired starting pitchers Vicente Padilla and Jon Garland, pinch-hitter Jim Thome and infielder Ronne Belliard. And two years ago, they added starting pitcher Greg Maddux in August.