Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Dodgers Likely To Go With Same Lineup For NLCS

SoSG reader Dusty Baker will be happy to know that he will likely be able to cut and paste the Dodgers lineup for NLCS Game 1. According to Doug Padilla in the LA Daily News:

Whomever the opponent in the National League Championship Series, the Dodgers are not expected to make changes in the lineup.

It isn't broken, so manager Joe Torre doesn't figure to fix it, which means Ronnie Belliard will be the second baseman over Orlando Hudson, Matt Kemp hits in the No. 2 hole and Manny Ramirez continues to bat cleanup.

What really is making the lineup click more than anything right now is Rafael Furcal's production at the top of the order. He not only had a .500 batting average (6 for 12) in the three-game National League Division Series, he had a .667 on-base percentage. He also is a threat on the basepaths with 12 steals.

"I have good hitters after me, and they hit better when I'm on base in front of them," Furcal said. "The pitchers care about me, they worry about me stealing a base, and I'm trying to make something happen.

Says Keith Law of ESPN, this lineup is still pretty potent, especially when Furcal is firing on all cylinders:

The Dodgers' lineup has also been one of the league's best, ranking behind only the Phillies and Rockies, two teams playing in great hitters' parks, in runs scored. Rafael Furcal appears to be healthy, at least at the plate (he was slow to get his feet going in the field when I saw the Dodgers play), and while his swing is flat, he's very short to the ball and has good hand-eye coordination to foul pitches off -- and he's probably the second- or third-worst hitter in the lineup. Assuming they don't play Ronnie Belliard, every regular in the Dodgers' postseason lineup will have drawn at least 50 walks, and they have three power threats in the middle of their lineup with Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier and Manny Ramirez.


koufax said...

while the blue are going with the same lineup, i am changing up the avatar for this series.

Fred's Brim said...

anybody else nervous yet? My ire for the Phils has waned in the last few months, mostly because we haven't played them in a while, but I know it will be off the charts soon enough.

Kyle Baker said...

Furcal SS
Kemp CF
Ethier RF
Manny LF
Loney 1B
Blake 3B
Belliard 2B
Martin C
Wolf? Kershaw? P

I feel better now.

Kyle Baker said...

We could always go this way, too:

S Sax 2B
M Hatcher 1B-LF
K Gibson LF
M Marshall RF
J Shelby CF
M Scioscia C
J Hamilton 3B
A Griffin SS
O Hershiser P

berkowit28 said...

"Whomever the opponent"?


karina said...

Whatever lineup, all I want is blood and revenge against the Phillies.

I also changed my avatar to my playoff face, Obi Wan will return on Tuesday.

Steve Sax said...

karina! Good to see you again, where have you been?

Kyle Baker said...

Karina, are you also growing a playoff beard? It's the custom, you know.