Pitching is in shambles for the Dodgers and Astros as they try to come back against the Braves and Red Sox.
AMERICAN LEAGUE – RED SOX LEAD 2-1
The Red Sox offense is smoking hot.
They are the first team ever to hit three grand slams in a playoff year. They are also the first team to have two in one game. They are tied for the most homers, ever, through eight playoff games with 20 (the 2004 Red Sox).
Kike Hernandez is practically Paste from Bases Loaded.
Enrique is an astounding 18-for-36 leading to a .500-5-9-9 effort over eight games with a 1.541 OPS. Utter insanity. He has six more hits, or fifty percent, than any other player in the post season. Mookie Betts has 12 as does Alex Verdugo. Those two are hitting .387 and .353.
The Astros lost Lance McCullers to an arm issue. Luis Garcia hurt his knee, but it sounds like he could pitch again if the series goes deep. Jake Odorizzi had to pitch in Game 2, after Garcia left, and went four innings so he’s not an option to start Game 4. That leaves Zack Greinke to make his first start since September 19th (he had Covid and strained his neck) The wily veteran had been set to throw 40 pitches, but he might have to go more. Said Greinke – “We’ll see. I haven’t gone real deep recently, but we’ll just see what happens and we’ll be ready and we’ll go from there.” Cristian Javier seems likely to step in to fill the innings void after Greinke. To date, Astros starting pitchers have thrown 5.1 of 26 innings in three games, allowing 14 runs.
NATIONAL LEAGUE – BRAVES LEAD 2-0
In Game 1, the Dodgers used an Opener (Corey Knebel), didn’t have anyone throw two innings, and used eight pitchers to complete 8.1 innings before losing the game.
In Game 2, the Dodgers started Max Scherzer but still lost. Scherzer went 4.1 innings and six others following him to get 4.1 innings of outs.
Let’s add that up.
In two games, the Dodgers use FIFTEEN pitchers to get 17 innings of outs. That is 1.13 innings per pitcher. That’s 2021 baseball. That’s 0-2. Meanwhile, their usage of the winningest pitcher in baseball this season, Julio Urias, out of the bullpen came back to bite them in the ass in that second game as he allowed two runs, and picked up a blown save, in his inning of relief work. I spoke about how I disagree with using a guy who made 32 starts out of the bullpen in this podcast. Will he be able to start Game 4 now? If he does, will his pitches be limited? Really wish teams would play it straight, but that is a pipe dream at this point.
Walker Buehler starts Game 3 against the Braves. In two matchups versus the Braves last year in the NLCS he had a 0.82 ERA.
Remember, the Braves were ahead of the Dodgers last year by two games, and lost the series. In fact, the Dodgers won all three elimination games versus the Braves last year.
The Dodgers are 2-for-18 in the Series with RISP.
Did you see that Max Fried threw 23-straight strikes in his last outing against the Dodgers? That is just remarkable, isn’t it?
THIS AND THAT…
FINALLY, teams will pay for housing for minor leaguers. Read this piece for the details. Shameful it has taken MLB this long to do this. Pro athletes sleeping on air mattresses and living like college freshman in the dorms… shameful.
Mordecai Brown, more commonly known as Three Fingers Brown, was born on this day in 1876. He is in the HOF after posting a 2.06 ERA and 1.07 WHIP… over 481 games. From 1906-11, his average season was 25-9, 1.63 ERA, 0.97 WHIP over 288 innings. Oh yeah, he also led the league in saves in four of those seasons averaging six a year.
Clint Frazier is in contact with the Yankees, but he still has dizziness and fogginess throwing his career into turmoil. He last played June 30th.
Gary Sanchez time with the Yankees could be coming to a close, or at least his time as the primary catcher?
Jameson Taillon will have surgery on his ankle and miss five months putting his ability to be ready on day one next year in doubt.
Gleyber Torres time at shortstop appears to be over.
He played 108 games at shortstop last season and 19 games at second base.