MLB Playoffs Games for 10/19
The NLCS continues today. Here's a preview of the game.
National League Championship Series Game 5
San Francisco Giants vs. St. Louis Cardinals
8:00 PM ET, October 19
Just a week ago, the Giants were on the brink of elimination before advancing to the National League Championship Series by winning three straight games against the Reds. Now they need to do it again. The Giants are down 3-1 in the best-of-seven NLCS after the Cardinals rolled to an 8-3 win in Game 3 on Thursday. The win moved the Cardinals one victory away from a matchup with the Tigers in the World Series, with the Cardinals’ Lance Lynn slated to face Barry Zito in Game 5. Since the League Championship Series adopted the best-of-seven format in 1985, only four of the 33 teams that fell behind 3-1 have come back to win.
Cardinals right fielder Carlos Beltran sat out Game 4 with a strained left knee, but he’s hopeful that he’ll be able to return to the starting lineup on Friday. Despite Beltran’s absence, the Cardinals outhit the Giants 12-6 with Jon Jay, Yadier Molina and Matt Holliday driving in two runs apiece. Holliday and Molina stepped up after going a combined 6-for-40 in their previous five games, while the Giants’ Buster Posey remains mired in a 6-for-33 postseason slump. Posey, who led the NL with a .336 average this season, went hitless in four at-bats on Thursday and is 2-for-14 with three walks in the NLCS. If the Giants extend the series and send it back to San Francisco, Ryan Vogelsong would start Game 6 and Matt Cain would get the ball for Game 7.
Barry Zito (0-0, 6.75 ERA) vs. Lance Lynn (1-1, 8.59 ERA)
Barry Zito looks to rebound from his shaky outing in Game 4 of the NLDS against the Reds, when he allowed four hits and four walks over 2 2/3 innings. He’s 2-6 with a 4.89 ERA in nine career starts against the Cardinals, including 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA in his one outing this season. Allen Craig is 4-for-10 with three home runs against Zito, who has an 8.20 ERA in four career starts at Busch Stadium.
Lance Lynn finished 18-7 in the regular season and made the National League All-Star team, but he struggled in August and worked out of the bullpen in the NLDS against the Nationals. He started Game 1 of the NLCS against the Giants and cruised through the first three innings before allowing four runs in the fourth and leaving after 3 2/3 frames.
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