Found October 10, 2013 on
Scott Van Slyke
Los Angeles Dodgers
St. Louis Cardinals
The Dodgers head into the 2013 NLCS against the Cardinals looking to be a much better team than they were earlier in the week during the NLDS. While the squad’s NLCS roster should look almost identical to the NLDS roster, there should be a couple tweaks, as the club hopes to get Andre Ethier back healthy and perhaps will add more depth to their battered pen.
Hobbled Hanley Ramirez was kept indoors, but healing Andre Ethier was running down fly balls in the gap Wednesday as the Dodgers worked out at Dodger Stadium in preparation for Friday’s start of the National League Championship Series.
As he did throughout the NL Division Series, Ramirez is expected to be in the starting lineup at shortstop for Game 1 in St. Louis. And Ethier is a good bet to be in center field if he feels as well Friday as he looked Wednesday, turning and sprinting full speed to chase fly balls while the Cardinals-Pirates game was being shown on the video boards.
“It feels good,” Ethier said. “We’ll see where I am tomorrow.”
Pitching single innings in the simulated game were Brandon League, Carlos Marmol, Edinson Volquez and Chris Withrow. Only Withrow was on the NLDS roster.
League, Marmol, Volquez, Jerry Hairston, Peter Moylan, Nick Buss and Drew Butera continue to work with the club. They were not on the NLDS roster. Mattingly wouldn’t reveal if there would be any changes to the roster for the NLCS.
So factoring that information into my choices, here’s what I came up with:
Hyun Jin Ryu
No changes from the NLDS here. Some concern about Hyun Jin Ryu‘s health and Ricky Nolasco‘s efficacy, but I’m honestly not fretting over either at this point. Just cautious.
I add Edinson Volquez here. Only Michael Young and Ethier pinch-hit in the NLDS, and if Don Mattingly is going to use his bench that way, they might as well add another arm. This is especially true with the slightly increased risk of short outings from Ryu and Nolasco, in addition to now potentially needing Chris Capuano as a shutdown LOOGY out of the pen with Paco Rodriguez scuffling.
Right now the order of reliever confidence has to be: Kenley Jansen -> Brian Wilson -> J.P. Howell -> Chris Withrow -> Everybody Else.
That’s … a concern.
Carl Crawford – LF
Yasiel Puig – RF
Adrian Gonzalez – 1B
Hanley Ramirez – SS
Andre Ethier – CF
Juan Uribe – 3B
A.J. Ellis – C
Mark Ellis – 2B
I think Ethier will be back in center to start over Skip Schumaker. Reasons to be skeptical? Yes, but I think they played it right in the NLDS and at the end of the season, as they were patient in waiting for him to get healthy when there was every temptation to rush him back.
Given that, I think you move Yasiel Puig to the top and flip-flop Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez. Besides the handedness advantage to that batting order, Mark Ellis finally gets to hit where he should be hitting, especially against the Cardinals’ all right-handed rotation. Speaking of which, that means there’s no need to platoon Ethier in the starting lineup, so Scott Van Slyke can be saved for a pinch. Will Mattingly use him when Ethier is facing Randy Choate with the bases loaded? That’s the question.
Skip Schumaker – 2B/OF
Michael Young – 3B/1B
Nick Punto – IF
Scott Van Slyke – OF
Tim Federowicz – C
It’s a shallow bench now, but Mattingly only used Young and Ethier extensively anyway, so it’s clear he has little intention of removing regulars during the postseason. The Dodgers have cover at every position, the platoon of Young and Schumaker likely first off the bench to pinch-hit, and Van Slyke saved for power opportunities (I hope).
Missing Dee Gordon is a risk if Ethier or whoever else isn’t 100% to run, but if that were to happen there are bigger problems than can be fixed by using a roster spot on a pinch-runner. There’s an argument to be made for Dee, but he has little-to-no utility outside of his speed at the moment, so I see more use in having an extra pitcher, particularly with the potential of playing seven games in nine days.
Overall, not much changed here, but swapping Schumaker for Ethier in the starting lineup and helping out the pen by swapping Dee and Volquez are two upgrades. One’s significant and one’s minor, but they’re upgrades nonetheless, and heading into a series with the impossible-to-kill Cardinals, I’d prefer all the advantages the Dodgers can get.
BEST OF MAXIM
The Dodgers released their roster for the 2013 NLCS just moments ago, and … uh … I have no idea what they just did.
Suffice to say that my NLCS roster prediction was completely wrong, as they left off two left-handers against a team that can’t hit them.
Hyun Jin Ryu
*Click To Enlarge*
I did player panic ratings for the Dodgers before the NLDS, so I figured why not do they for the NLCS too?
See, while fans go nuts at players during the regular season, they absolutely lose sanity during the postseason. I understand that, because there’s more at stake, but sane people let it go after they calm down, while insane people let it dictate their perception...
The Los Angeles Dodgers included outfielder Andre Ethier on their roster for their opening-round playoff series against the Atlanta Braves. However, Ethier was only available to pinch-hit as he continued to struggle with an ankle injury. Manager Don Mattingly told reporters — including Ken Gurnick of MLB.com — that he’s expecting more out of Ethier in the NLCS, which could...
I hope that everyone has seen this, but if not, I would be remiss in not sharing this with the Crew...
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NO MORE BUNTING! LISTEN TO ME DON MATTINGLY!
This is interview is full humorous honesty... everything from Greinke's fantasy team to jabbing at the early season Dodger woes to Danny DeVito to white-boy dance moves.
The Dodgers are set to play the Cardinals in the 2013 NLCS, which is interesting because it’s not interesting. In other words, the media hasn’t really figured out a narrative here. Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports gave it a go, but it was sort of a half-hearted rich/poor thing.
So maybe, just MAYBE, the baseball can speak for itself? Here’s hoping, but I doubt it. Something about...
After failing to lay down a bunt in two consecutive attempts, Los Angeles’ Juan Uribe joined a long list of unlikely postseason heroes Monday night by catapulting the Dodgers into the National League Championship Series with an eighth-inning go-ahead two-run home run, which scored the Division Series-clinching run for L.A.
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Some of the game’s...
Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw has been selected the winner of the 2013 Warren Spahn Award.
The award is presented by the Oklahoma City Bricktown Rotary Club and the Jim Thorpe Association to the top left-handed pitcher in the Major Leagues. It's named for Hall-of-Famer Warren Spahn, whose 363 career wins are the most by a left-hander.
Kershaw was named the...
National League Championship Series PreviewLos Angeles Dodgers versus St. Louis CardinalsBoth teams handled their business in the division series though the Dodgers had a much easier time against the Atlanta Braves. The Cardinals went the distance against a very formidable Pittsburgh Pirates team. The Dodgers won the regular season series with the Cardinals four games to three. Below...
1. Starting lineup
Both teams are strong offensively, not because of their power but because of their depth. The Cardinals finished third in the National League in team batting (.269) and had three hitters in the top 15, led by MVP candidate Yadier Molina and second baseman Matt Carpenter (.318). But St. Louis lacked punch in its division series win over the Pirates, hitting just...
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- After two days of waiting, the Los Angeles Dodgers found out they will play St. Louis in the National League championship series.
The Dodgers worked out Wednesday just as the decisive Game 5 between Pittsburgh and St. Louis began. The team went through hitting sets with the game shown on the stadium's video boards, although there was no noticeable reaction...
2013 National League Championship Series
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. St. Louis Cardinals
Location: Busch Stadium, St. Louis (Games 1-2, 6-7 if necessary); Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles (Games 3-5 if necessary)
2013 record vs. Cardinals: 4-3
Last postseason meeting: 2009, Dodgers won 3-0
*- Denotes not on NLCS roster
Game 1: Zack Greinke vs. Joe ...
Game 1 of the NLCS begins Friday. The Cardinals and The Dodgers are set to square off. Yet around the internet today, people seem to be favoring The Dodgers in this series. Maybe it is the way they disposed of The Braves, a very strong team. Maybe it’s the hype around Puig and Ramirez. Maybe it’s the extra rest from playing less games. At best this is an even series. And here...
Game 1 of the ALCS starts at 8:07 p.m. ET. All ALCS games are on FOX.
Check out the full schedules for the ALCS and National League Championship Series below (ET time).
Saturday, Oct. 12, 8:07 p.m., FOX: Detroit/Oakland at Boston
Sunday, Oct. 13, 8:15 p.m., FOX: Detroit/Oakland at Boston
Tuesday, Oct. 15, 4:07 p.m., FOX: Boston at Oakland/Detroit
Wednesday, Oct. 16, 8:07 p...
In case you weren’t aware, the MLB playoffs are currently underway. Sadly, the Angels are not part of the October festivities. Equally as sad, the Dodgers ARE taking part in said festivities.
Battling in the NLCS, the Dodgers have made it to the pinnacle of the National League while the Angels ended the season third in their division, 14 games out of even wild card contention...