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Jake Peavy, SP, SFG10/18/2014 7:33:00 PM
Description: Giants starter Jake Peavy will be on the hill in Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday against the Royals.
Insight: Peavy followed his Game 2 NLDS gem with a disappointing Game 2 start in the NLCS. Peavy will start in Kansas City on Wednesday. He has never made it out of the sixth inning in his seven postseason starts.
Yordano Ventura, SP, KAN10/18/2014 7:23:00 PM
Description: Royals starter Yordano Ventura will start Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday according to royals.com.
Insight: Ventura left Game 2 of the ALCS with right shoulder tightness, but the Royals are confident he is ready to go. He has a 4.85 ERA in 13 innings this postseason.
Madison Bumgarner, SP, SFG10/18/2014 7:19:00 PM
Description: Giants ace Madison Bumgarner will start Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday.
Insight: Surprise, surprise. Bumgarner finished the Cardinals in Game 5 of the NLCS on Thursday, so he will have regular rest. Bumgarner will face "Big Game" James Shields from Kansas City.
James Shields, SP, KAN10/18/2014 3:44:00 PM
Description: Royals starter James Shields will start Game 1 of the World Series.
Insight: Manager Ned Yost made the announcement on Saturday, and it should come as no surprise. Yordano Ventura will get the nod in Game 2, and will likely be followed by Jason Vargas and Jeremy Guthrie.
Tony Cruz, C, STL10/16/2014 5:33:00 PM
Description: cardinals catcher Tony Cruz will start for Game 5 of the NLCS.
Insight: A.J. Pierzynski started in Game 4, but Cruz is back behind the plate in St. Louis' do-or-die game. One other change to the lineup is Jhonny Peralta and Matt Adams have been swapped in the lineup, with Peralta batting cleanup and Adams hitting in the five-hole.
Greg Holland, RP, KAN10/15/2014 7:11:00 PM
Description: Royals closer Greg Holland selaed the deal for Kansas City in Game 4 of the ALCS.
Insight: He saved all four games of the series, and has six saves throughout the entire postseason. Kansas City's biggest strength is their bullpen, and they head into the World Series, yet to lose a game in the playoffs.
Jason Vargas, SP, KAN10/15/2014 7:08:00 PM
Description: Royals starter Jason Vargas pitched the Royals into the World Series.
Insight: He gave up only one run over 5 1/3 innings of work, while allowing two hits and three walks. Vargas struck out six Orioles, and will most likely start Game 4 of the Fall Classic.
Miguel Gonzalez, SP, BAL10/15/2014 7:05:00 PM
Description: Orioles pitcher Miguel Gonzalez pitched well but took the loss in Game 4 of the ALCS.
Insight: He gave up only two runs (one earned) in the first inning, but it was enough for the Royals to advance to the World Series. Gonzalez went 5 2/3 innings, allowing four hits and four walks, while striking out four. He will be a pitcher to target late in drafts in 2015.
A.J. Pierzynski, C, STL10/15/2014 4:34:00 PM
Description: Cardinals catcher A.J. Pierzynski will get his second start behind the plate for injured Yadier Molina.
Insight: Pierzynski is a career .300 hitter with five home runs in over 30 playoff games, but he went 0-for-4 on Tuesday in Game 3.
Gregor Blanco, CF, SFG10/15/2014 3:48:00 PM
Description: Giants outfielder Gregor Blanco will lead off once again in Game 4 of the NLCS on Wednesday against the Cardinals.
Insight: There are no changes to the Giants lineup in Game 4.
Delmon Young, LF, BAL10/15/2014 2:17:00 PM
Description: Delmon Young will start at designated hitter in Game 4 of the ALCS against the Royals on Wednesday.
Insight: That's assuming one counts the DH as starting. Baltimore manager Buck Showalter obviously wants to shake things up a bit and put his best lineup on the field. Nelson Cruz is in left field and Steve Pearce will bat second. Alejandro De Aza begins the game on the bench.
Eric Hosmer, 1B, KANHot10/15/2014 2:12:00 PM
Description: Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer is batting clean up in Game 4 of the ALCS against the Orioles on Wednesday.
Insight: With the Royals on the verge of its first World Series trip in nearly 30 years, manager Ned Yost is not changing a thing. He is sticking with the exact same lineup that has won the first seven playoff games this postseason.
Nick Markakis, RF, BAL10/15/2014 2:09:00 PM
Description: Orioles plan to decline outfielder Nick Markakis his $17.5 million option for 2015 according to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman.
Insight: Markakis will receive a $2 million buyout and will become a free agent. The Orioles are still interested in signing him, just not for the amount of money included in his option.
Matt Carpenter, 3B, STLHot10/15/2014 10:35:00 AM
Description: Cardinals third baseman Matt Carpenter is a career .500 hitter Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong.
Insight: Carpenter has five hits in 10 at-bats versus Vogelsong. He also has a triple and RBI. Carpenter has seven extra-base hits, including four home runs, in seven postseason games this year.
Hunter Pence, RF, SFG10/15/2014 10:32:00 AM
Description: Giants outfielders Hunter Pence and Travis Ishikawa have home runs in their careers against Cardinals starter Shelby Miller.
Insight: Neither have very many at-bats versus Miller, but both have gone deep. Pence is 1-for-5 and Ishikawa is 1-for-2 against the Cardinals Game 4 starter. The two outfielders accounted for all the RBI on Tuesday in Game 3.
Adam Jones, CF, BALCold10/15/2014 10:27:00 AM
Description: Orioles center fielder Adam Jones is just 2-for-27 (.185) against Royals starter Jason Vargas.
Insight: Jones has struggled this postseason, hitting just .200 (5-for-25) with one home run and three RBI. Two of those five hits, including the home run, came in Game 2 of the ALCS. Jones had a bad matchup on Tuesday versus Jeremy Guthrie and went 0-for-4. He has another bad matchup in Vargas, so avoid Jones again.
Nelson Cruz, LF, BAL10/15/2014 10:23:00 AM
Description: Orioles left fielder Nelson Cruz is 10-for-30 (.333) in his career against Royals starter Jason Vargas.
Insight: Cruz has four home runs, two doubles and eight RBI versus Vargas. Despite going 0-for-4 on Tuesday in Game 3, Cruz is hitting .400/.423/.680 with two home runs and seven RBI this postseason. Before Tuesday, Cruz had two hits in every playoff game.
Salvador Perez, C, KAN10/15/2014 10:19:00 AM
Description: In the Royals lineup, catcher Salvador Perez has had the most success against Orioles pitcher Miguel Gonzalez.
Insight: No one on the Royals has more than 10 at-bats against Gonzalez in their career, but in a small sample size, Perez is 4-for-9 with a home run. Outfielder Norichika Aoki is 1-for-3 versus Gonzalez, however, everyone else that has faced him is hitting below .200.
Alex Rios, RF, TEX10/15/2014 10:06:00 AM
Description: CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports the Rangers will decline right fielder Alex Rios' $13.5 million option for 2015.
Insight: This was expected. Rios will receive $1 million in a buyout and become a free agent. Rios hit .280/.311/.398 with four home runs in 131 games this year. He missed most of September with a thumb injury.
Greg Holland, RP, KAN10/15/2014 10:03:00 AM
Description: Royals closer Greg Holland made quick work of the Orioles in the top of the ninth in Game 3 of the ALCS for his third save of the playoffs.
Insight: It took Holland just six pitches to put the Orioles down in order. It was even more impressive given the fact Holland faced Adam Jones, Nelson Cruz and Steve Pierce. The perfect ninth just put a exclamation point on a superb performance from the Royals pitching staff. Kansas City retired the last 17 batters of the game and did not allow a hit after the third inning.
Jeremy Guthrie, SP, KAN10/15/2014 9:57:00 AM
Description: Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie pitched five strong innings, allowing one run on three hits in the Game 3 victory over the Orioles.
Insight: Two of the three hits Guthrie allowed came in the second, and Baltimore scored on J.J. Hardy's double. Nick Markakis led off the third with a single and that was the final Orioles hit of the game. Kansas City is one win away from its first World Series appearance in three decades.
Wei-Yin Chen, SP, BAL10/15/2014 9:53:00 AM
Description: Orioles starter Wei-Yen Chen pitched well in Game 3 of the ALCS but with a lack of run support, it was not enough as the Orioles fell, 2-1, against the Royals.
Insight: Chen went 5 1/3 innings and allowed two runs on seven hits, struck out four and walked one. Baltimore was able to get its first lead of the series, but with only three hits, the Orioles could not tack on. Kansas City leads the series, 3-0, with Game 4 on Wednesday.
Lorenzo Cain, CF, KAN10/15/2014 9:49:00 AM
Description: Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain went 2-for-4 with a run scored in Game 3 of the ALCS against the Orioles.
Insight: Cain scored on Alex Gordon's ground-ball out in the fourth inning. That tied the game at one. The Royals scored again in the sixth on a sacrifice fly and won, 2-1.
J.J. Hardy, SS, BAL10/15/2014 9:46:00 AM
Description: Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy had the lone Orioles RBI in Game 3 of the ALCS on a double in the second inning to drive in Steve Pierce.
Insight: The Orioles finally jumped out to a lead against the Royals, but Kansas City tied the game in the fourth. Baltimore lost, 2-1. Hardy and the Orioles will have to become the second team in baseball history to comeback from a 3-0 series deficit in order to reach the World Series.
Oscar Taveras, RF, STL10/14/2014 9:25:00 PM
Description: Cardinals outfielder Oscar Taveras admitted Tuesday that he has "gained a few pounds" according to MLBlogs.com.
Insight: Sources have speculated Taveras has gained close to 20 pounds since undergoing ankle surgery last August. General manager John Mozeliak said he hopes the fact Taveras is not starting in the playoffs is a wake up call for him. The team plans to give the outfielder a conditioning plan for the offseason.
John Lackey, SP, STL10/14/2014 8:07:00 PM
Description: Cardinals starter John Lackey had a rocky start to Game 3 of the NLCS, giving up four runs in the first, but settled down to keep St. Louis in the game.
Insight: Lackey allowed the Giants to rally with two outs in the bottom of the first. Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval singled, Hunter Pence doubled to score Posey, and Brandon Belt walked to load the bases. Travis Ishikawa then hit a double to right field to clear the bases. Lackey allowed just one hit over the next five innings. The Cardinals rally, however, fell short in extra innings.
Tim Hudson, SP, SFG10/14/2014 8:03:00 PM
Description: Giants starter Tim Hudson pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing four runs on seven hits, struck out five and walked none in Game 3 of the NLCS.
Insight: Manager Bruce Bochy made his first big playoff mistake in a long time when he left Hudson in for a seventh inning. The Giants jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first, and the Cardinals slowed chipped away at the lead. In the seventh with a one-run lead, Bochy left Hudson in the game to face the bottom of the Cardinals order. Eight hitter Randal Grichuk hit a solo home run to tie the game. Despite the blown lead, San Francisco won, 5-4, in the 10th.
Kolten Wong, 2B, STL10/14/2014 7:59:00 PM
Description: Cardinals second baseman Kolten Wong continued his playoff hot streak as he went 2-for-4 with two RBI in Game 3 of the NLCS.
Insight: Wong followed up his walk off home run from Sunday night with a double and triple on Tuesday. He hit the double in the second with two outs and did not advance. Then in the fourth, he hit a two-RBI triple for the Cardinals first two runs of the game. St. Louis rallied to tie, but San Francisco won, 5-4, in the 10th.
Travis Ishikawa, 1B, MIL10/14/2014 7:52:00 PM
Description: Giants left fielder Travis Ishikawa was 1-for-3 with a bases-clearing double in the first as the Giants defeated the Cardinals in 10 innings, 5-4, in Game 3 of the NLCS on Tuesday.
Insight: Ishikawa remained in left field despite the fact Michael Morse is on the roster. Ishikawa came up with the bases loaded in the bottom of the first, and the Giants already ahead, 1-0. The left fielder broke the game open with a double. Although the Cardinals were able to comeback and tie the game, San Francisco won in extras on a throwing error.
Jon Jay, CF, STL10/14/2014 7:49:00 PM
Description: Cardinals center fielder Jon Jay recorded three hits in five at-bats and scored two runs in a losing effort against the Giants in Game 3 of the NLCS.
Insight: Jay had three singles and scored runs in the fourth and sixth innings. The Cardinals erased a 4-0 lead, but the Giants scored on a throwing error in the 10th to win.
Gregor Blanco, CF, SFG10/14/2014 7:46:00 PM
Description: Giants outfielder Gregor Blanco did not have a hit in Game 3 of the NLCS, but the winning run scored on his bunt in the bottom of the 10th.
Insight: Blanco put a nice bunt down towards the third baseman, in which Cardinals pitcher Randy Choate had to field. Probably rushed by Blanco's speed, Choate's throw went up the right field line, and Brandon Crawford scored from second. The Giants lead the series, 2-1.
Miguel Gonzalez, SP, BAL10/14/2014 6:12:00 PM
Description: Orioles pitcher Miguel Gonzalez will start for Baltimore in Game 4 of the ALCS on Wednesday.
Insight: The Orioles hope it will not be an elimination game. He has not started yet in October, but he posted a 3.23 ERA in 159 innings this season. Gonzalez will face off against Royals starter Jason Vargas.
A.J. Pierzynski, C, STL10/14/2014 1:14:00 PM
Description: Cardinals catcher A.J. Pierzynski will get the start behind the plate for injured Yadier Molina.
Insight: Pierzynski had a poor season, but is a career .300 hitter with five home runs in over 30 playoff games. He's 5-for-18 (.278) in his career against Giants starter Tim Hudson.
Matt Holliday, LF, STL10/14/2014 12:13:00 PM
Description: St Louis left fielder Matt Holliday is a career .346 hitter against Giants right-hander Tim Hudson.
Insight: Holliday is hitless in the first two games of the series, but was 4-for-15 in the NLDS.
Jeremy Guthrie, SP, KAN10/13/2014 11:58:00 AM
Description: Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie put together an average season, going 13-11 with a 4.13 ERA and 1.303 WHIP.
Insight: He was 0-1 in two starts with a 3.60 ERA and 1.067 WHIP against Baltimore this season. Weather could delay or cancel the game this evening.
Wei-Yin Chen, SP, BAL10/13/2014 11:52:00 AM
Description: Orioles starter Wei-Yen Chen is a career 1-1 with a 4.17 ERA and 1.418 WHIP in six starts against the Royals.
Insight: Those aren't very exciting numbers for a team down 2-0 in the series. There is also going to be a weather factor with rain in the forecast.
Adam Jones, CF, BALCold10/13/2014 11:48:00 AM
Description: Orioles center fielder Adam Jones is just 1-for-12 (.083) against Royals right-hander Jeremy Guthrie.
Insight: Jones is just a career .149 hitter in the postseason, versus a lifetime .280 hitter in the regular season. Avoid this matchup.
Eric Hosmer, 1B, KANHot10/13/2014 11:44:00 AM
Description: Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer is 7-for-17 (.444) with a pair of home runs against Orioles left-hander Wei-Tin Chen.
Insight: Hosmer only had 58 RBI in 131 games during the regular season and has two homers and seven RBI in 23 postseason at-bats.
Billy Butler, DH, KAN10/13/2014 11:42:00 AM
Description: Royals 1B/DH Billy Butler is 8-for-18 (.444) with two home runs and a 1.474 OPS against Orioles starter Wei-Yin Chen.
Insight: It's a great matchup, but there are questions if the weather will allow this one to be played.
Matt Adams, 1B, STL10/13/2014 9:19:00 AM
Description: Cardinals first baseman Matt Adams continues to get the big hits, slamming his second home run of the 2014 playoffs.
Insight: Adams deposited a Clayton Kershaw pitch into the right field bullpen in Game 4 of the NLDS and Sunday he took a Hunter Strickland pitch into the right field seats.
Yadier Molina, C, STL10/12/2014 11:49:00 PM
Description: Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina left Game 2 of the NLCS with a strained oblique.
Insight: No telling how serious at this time or how long he might be out, but this is a game-changer.
Jake Peavy, SP, SFG10/12/2014 11:10:00 AM
Description: Giants starter Jake Peavy is 3-0 in six game started, since the beginning of September, including postseason play.
Insight: He has pitched 36 1/3 innings during that span, and has giving up only six earned runs. Peavy has been a solid pickup for the Giants, and will have a tremendous opportunity to send San Francisco home with a 2-0 series lead.
Lance Lynn, SP, STL10/12/2014 11:04:00 AM
Description: Cardinals starter Lance Lynn did not fare well in his only start against San Francisco in 2014.
Insight: He lasted only 3 1/3 innings on June 1, allowing seven runs (four earned), on eight hits and four walks, while striking out two. Lynn will need to pitch much better if St. Louis wants a chance at evening up the NLCS.
Buster Posey, C/1B, SFG10/12/2014 11:00:00 AM
Description: Giants catcher Buster Posey is 4-for-6 lifetime against Cardinals' starter Lance Lynn.
Insight: The most at-bats a Giants' player has against Lynn, is Hunter Pence with nine. Posey has had success in limited at-bats, as he has one homer and four RBI against St Louis' Game 2 starter. Posey is a strong daily play.
Matt Holliday, LF, STL10/12/2014 10:55:00 AM
Description: Out of all the regulars in St Louis' lineup, left fielder Matt Holliday has had the most success against Giants' starter Jake.
Insight: It is nothing to cry home about, as Holliday has a career .286 batting average (8-for-28) against Peavy. He does have one home run and five RBI, throughout his career against San Francisco's Game 2 starter, and may need to show some power if the Cardinals want to pull even in the series, on Sunday night.
Yadier Molina, C, STL10/12/2014 10:50:00 AM
Description: Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina could be in line for a rough night against Giants' starter Jake Peavy.
Insight: He has a career .176 batting average (3-for-17) against Peavy, with no extra-base hits and no RBI. Molina will look to help St. Louis even the NLCS, but will need to break out of his slump against San Francisco's starter.
Madison Bumgarner, SP, SFG10/12/2014 12:55:00 AM
Description: Just another great performance from Giants starter Madison Bumgarner, beating the Cardinals in the first game of the NLCS 3-0.
Insight: It's what we have come to expect from the 25-year-old. Bumgarner threw 7 2/3 scoreless innings yielding four hits and a walk while striking out seven.
Mike Moustakas, 3B, KANHot10/11/2014 8:36:00 PM
Description: Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas hit his fourth home run of the postseason.
Insight: The .212 hitter during the regular season has gotten hot at just the right time, batting .318 in the playoffs with four homers and five RBI.
Eric Hosmer, 1B, KANHot10/11/2014 8:34:00 PM
Description: Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer knocked in two runs Saturday night to bring his 2014 playoff total to seven through six games.
Insight: Hosmer only had 58 RBI in 131 games during the regular season. Talk about getting hot at the right time.
Greg Holland, RP, KAN10/11/2014 8:30:00 PM
Description: Royals closer Greg Holland allowed the tying run to reach the plate, but finished off the Orioles for his second save of the series..
Insight: Baltimore's Nelson Cruz singled with two outs, but Steve Pearce struck out. Holland has gone 178 inning (June 2012) without yielding a home run with a runner on base.
Travis Ishikawa, 1B, MIL10/11/2014 4:27:00 PM
Description: Giants' Travis Ishikawa will start in left field for Game 1 of the NLCS against the Cardinals on Saturday.
Insight: Michael Morse is on the series roster, but he will mostly be used as a pinch hitter. That leaves Ishikawa in left.
Billy Butler, DH, KAN10/11/2014 3:11:00 PM
Description: Royals 1B/DH Billy Butler is the designated hitter and batting fifth in Game 2 of the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: Royals manager Ned Yost is sticking with the exact same lineup for the sixth straight postseason game. Why not? Kansas City has won the first five.
Caleb Joseph, C, BAL10/11/2014 1:52:00 PM
Description: Orioles catcher Caleb Joseph will be behind the plate for Baltimore in Game 2 of the ALCS on Saturday.
Insight: Joseph is starting instead of Nick Hundley, who went 1-for-4 in Game 1. The rest of the starting lineup from Friday is the same for Baltimore.
Michael Morse, LF, SFG10/11/2014 1:10:00 PM
Description: The Giants officially added outfielder Michael Morse to the NLCS roster.
Insight: Morse replaces Gary Brown and that is the only change to the Giants roster from the division series to the championship series. Right now, he will just be used as a pinch hitter.
Buster Posey, C/1B, SFG10/11/2014 9:59:00 AM
Description: Giants catcher Buster Posey is just 2-for-11 (.182) versus Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright.
Insight: Posey may not have good numbers against Wainwright, but he had a terrific September and was 9-for-23 (.391) in the NLDS against Washington.
Matt Holliday, LF, STL10/11/2014 9:57:00 AM
Description: Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday is just .125 (2-for-16) in his career against Giants starter Madison Bumgarner.
Insight: Bumgarner is a difficult matchup for a lot of hitters. Holliday hit .267 (4-for-15) with a home run and three RBI in the NLDS against the Dodgers.
Ryan Flaherty, 2B, BAL10/11/2014 9:54:00 AM
Description: Orioles infielder Ryan Flaherty went 3-for-5 with two RBI in Game 1 of the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: Flaherty came up huge in the fifth with a double that scored two runs and cut the Royals lead to, 5-4. Flaherty also had a single and scored in the 10th before the Orioles rally stalled. The infielder is hitting .357 (5-for-14) with three RBI this postseason.
Greg Holland, RP, KAN10/11/2014 9:50:00 AM
Description: Royals closer Greg Holland allowed the tying run to reach base in the 10th, but Holland did eventually close the door on the Orioles in Game 1 of the ALCS.
Insight: Baltimore did all their damage with two outs. Ryan Flaherty hit a single, Jimmy Paredes walked and then Delmon Young singled to score Flaherty from second. Holland then retired Nick Markakis on a ground out to end the game.
Bud Norris, SP, BAL10/11/2014 9:45:00 AM
Description: Orioles manager Buck Showalter confirmed Friday that Bud Norris would get the ball in Game 2 according to ESPN.
Insight: Showalter was between Norris and Wei-Yin Chen for Game 2. Chen will start Game 3 in Kansas City. Norris pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings to help clinch the ALDS in Game 3 against the Tigers.
Eric Hosmer, 1B, KAN10/11/2014 9:42:00 AM
Description: Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer does not have a hit in his career against Orioles starter Bud Norris.
Insight: Hosmer has just five at-bats against Norris, but has yet to reach base against him. It will be tough taking him out of any playoff fantasy lineups, however, as he has been one of the best Royals hitters this postseason.
Adam Jones, CF, BALCold10/11/2014 9:37:00 AM
Description: Orioles center fielder Adam Jones is hitless in his career against Royals starter Yordano Ventura.
Insight: It's a small sample size, but Jones is 0-for-7 with three strikeouts versus Ventura. Jones is hitting .167 with no extra-base hits in the postseason.
James Shields, SP, KAN10/11/2014 9:31:00 AM
Description: Royals starter James "Big Game" Shields is not really living up to his name this postseason.
Insight: This is Shields' third outing for the Royals this playoffs and for the second time he failed to go past the fifth inning. He gave up four runs on 10 hits and walked a batter against Baltimore on Friday. Shields, however, is 1-0 in those three starts and Kansas City has won all three games.
Chris Tillman, SP, BAL10/11/2014 9:29:00 AM
Description: Orioles starter Chris Tillman had a rough outing in Game 1 of the ALCS.
Insight: Tillman pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed five runs on seven hits. He also walked two, struck out three and tossed up a home run to Alcides Escobar. Tillman will likely get the ball in Game 5 if necessary.
Alcides Escobar, SS, KAN10/11/2014 9:25:00 AM
Description: Royals shortstop Alcides Escobar hit a solo home run in the third inning to help Kansas City take a 4-0 lead and ultimately win Game 1 of the ALCS.
Insight: Escobar's homer was the first of three Kansas City would hit on Friday. The Royals hit two in the 10th and held on to win, 8-6. Escobar was 1-for-5 with a walk in the game.
Nelson Cruz, LF, BAL10/11/2014 9:21:00 AM
Description: Orioles left fielder Nelson Cruz went 2-for-5 with a RBI and run in Game 1 of the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: Cruz hit a RBI-double to score the first run of a four-run fifth inning for the Orioles. He also scored in the frame. Cruz has four hits in all four postseason games this October and is batting .471 with two home runs and six RBI.
Mike Moustakas, 3B, KAN10/11/2014 9:14:00 AM
Description: Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas hit a home run in his second consecutive postseason game to help lift the Royals past the Orioles, 8-6, in extra innings of Game 1 in the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: Left fielder Alex Gordon smashed a solo home run to give Kansas City a one-run advantage in the 10th, and Moustakas added two insurance runs on his home run three at-bats later. Moustakas' homer proved to be the game-winner as Baltimore did rally to score a run in the bottom of the inning. After finishing dead last with 95 home runs during the regular season, Kansas City leads the playoffs with seven bombs.
Nick Markakis, RF, BAL10/11/2014 9:09:00 AM
Description: Orioles right fielder Nick Markakis went 3-for-6 with a run scored in Game 1 of the ALCS against the Royals on Friday.
Insight: Markakis doubled to start off the third inning and came around to score the Orioles' first run on Adam Jones' single. That came right after the Royals scored four runs in the top of the inning, so it stole some of the momentum back in the game. Baltimore forced extra innings but lost in the 10th.
Alex Gordon, LF, KAN10/11/2014 9:06:00 AM
Description: Royals left fielder Alex Gordon went 3-for-4 with a solo home run in the 10th inning to lift Kansas City over Baltimore, 8-6, in Game 1 of the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: Gordon's home run broke a 5-5 tie in the 10th, but the Orioles came back to score in the bottom of the inning, so it was actually Mike Moustakas' two-run blast three at-bats after Gordon's solo shot that won the game. Gordon also had a bases-clearing double in the third on a broke-bat flair down the right field line. He is batting .316 with eight RBI in five postseason games.
Russell Martin, C, PIT10/10/2014 9:00:00 PM
Description: Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that catcher Russell Martin turned down a contract extension from the Pirates during the second half of the regular season.
Insight: Heyman also reported the two sides negotiated in spring training but the Pirates opted not to extend a contract offer at that point. Martin was then not interested in the middle of the season. The catcher batted .290 with 11 home runs and 67 RBI while being a leader behind the plate the last two years for Pittsburgh. He will have many suitors this winter.
A.J. Pierzynski, C, STL10/10/2014 8:56:00 PM
Description: The Cardinals added catcher A.J. Pierzynski to the NLCS roster.
Insight: Pierzynski will replace relief pitcher Sam Freeman. He will be the team's third catcher and be used as a pinch hitter. The catcher had a poor season, but is a career .300 hitter with five home runs in over 30 playoff games.
Danny Duffy, SP, KAN10/10/2014 7:11:00 PM
Description: Royals pitcher Danny Duffy, along with Jason Vargas and Jeremy Guthrie, will be available out of the bullpen for Game 1 of the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: With the weather forecast calling for rain, it is a good idea for both teams to have a lot of arms in the bullpen in case of a delay.
Michael Morse, LF, SFG10/10/2014 7:08:00 PM
Description: Giants coach Bruce Bochy said that Michael Morse will be available off the bench in Game 1 of the NLCS on Saturday according to the Bary Area News Group.
Insight: Morse missed the end of the regular season and the NLDS due to a oblique strain. He will be a nice boost off the bench.
Nick Markakis, RF, BAL10/10/2014 5:22:00 PM
Description: Orioles' Nick Markakis is in right field and batting lead off in Game 1 of the ALCS against the Royals.
Insight: Baltimore is implementing the same lineup they used in Game 1 of the ALDS. They scored 12 runs in that game.
Billy Butler, DH, KAN10/10/2014 5:19:00 PM
Description: Royals 1B/DH Billy Butler is the designated hitter and batting fifth in Game 1 of the ALCS on Friday.
Insight: Royals manager Ned Yost is using the exact same lineup he had in all three games of the ALDS. They will face Orioles starter Chris Tillman.
Alex Rodriguez, 3B, NYY10/10/2014 5:17:00 PM
Description: Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Friday that he is "open to pursuing third base options" according to Newsday.
Insight: CBS' Jon Heyman reported this week that the Yankees were interested in bringing back Chase Headley to play third. There is a high possibility that A-Rod will be playing at the DH spot, if that counts as playing, or possibility even moving to first base. The Yankees cannot count on him staying healthy an entire season at third base.
Chris Tillman, SP, BAL10/10/2014 10:06:00 AM
Description: Orioles Game 1 ALCS starter Chris Tillman was 1-0 against Kansas City during the regular season.
Insight: Tillman pitched a gem, a five-hit, one-walk shutout on May 16. He went just five innings in a win over Detroit in the ALDS so should be well rested.
James Shields, SP, KAN10/10/2014 10:02:00 AM
Description: Royals starter James "Big Game" Shields went 2-0 with a 3.21 ERA and 1.071 WHIP in two starts versus the Orioles.
Insight: Shields beat the Orioles 3-2 back in April and 6-3 in May going seven innings in both outings.
Alex Gordon, LF, KAN10/10/2014 9:58:00 AM
Description: Royals left fielder Alex Gordon is just 3-for-13 (.231) against Baltimore Game 1 ALCS starter Chris Tillman, but two of the three hits were home runs.
Insight: Gordon put together another solid season, batting .266 with 19 HR, 74 RBI and 87 runs scored.
Nelson Cruz, LF, BAL10/10/2014 9:55:00 AM
Description: Orioles left fielder Nelson Cruz is just 4-for-21 (.190) against Royals Game 1 ALCS starter James Shields.
Insight: Cruz has been a force in the playoffs batting .500 with two homers and five RBI. This after a 40-home run and 108 RBI regular season.
Bud Norris, SP, BAL10/10/2014 9:45:00 AM
Description: Orioles manager Buck Showalter confirmed Friday that Bud Norris would get the ball in Game 2 according to ESPN.
Insight: Showalter was between Norris and Wei-Yin Chen for Game 2. Chen will start Game 3 in Kansas City. Norris pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings to help clinch the ALDS in Game 3 against the Tigers.
Omar Infante, 2B, KAN10/9/2014 6:59:00 PM
Description: Royals second baseman Omar Infante may need right shoulder surgery after the season.
Insight: This shouldn't at all affect his status for the playoffs. Infante has been playing the whole season with soreness in his shoulder. The pain got much worse after the All-Star break. Infante will determine after the postseason whether or not he will need the surgery.
Sean Marshall, RP, CIN10/9/2014 5:34:00 PM
Description: Reds reliever Sean Marshall is progressing along in his rehab from surgery on his left shoulder according to MLB.com
Insight: Marshall has made only 31 appearances over the past two years due to shoulder problems. He had surgery in June to repair a torn labrum. Marshall should begin a throwing program in November and plans to be ready for opening day. 2015 is a contract year for Marshall.
Chris Tillman, SP, BAL10/9/2014 5:30:00 PM
Description: Orioles starter Chris Tillman will start on Friday in Game 1 of the ALCS against the Royals.
Insight: That was everyone's best guess, but it was made official on Thursday. Tillman will face 'Big Game Shields' who has not had his best stuff in his two postseason starts for Kansas City. The Orioles have yet to announce a Game 2 starter.
Chris Davis, 1B, BAL10/9/2014 5:23:00 PM
Description: Orioles manager Buck Showalter confirmed Thursday that first baseman Chris Davis will not be on the ALCS roster.
Insight: Not a surprise. Davis can return from his 25-game suspension in Game 6, but Baltimore is not interested in having an unusable player occupy a roster spot for the first five games. Davis should be activated for the World Series should Baltimore advance.
Nelson Cruz, LF, BAL10/9/2014 5:15:00 PM
Description: Orioles left fielder Nelson Cruz told the Baltimore Sun that he and the team have not had "serious" contract extension talks.
Insight: Cruz also added he is concerned with winning the World Series. FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reported Thursday that the Orioles are hoping to sign Cruz long-term but nothing will likely happen until the season is over. Cruz hit .271/.333/.525 with 40 home runs and 108 RBI in 159 games this year while adding two more home runs in the ALDS.
A.J. Burnett, SP, PHI10/9/2014 4:49:00 PM
Description: Phillies right-hander A.J. Burnett is expected to pitch in 2015, according to Jon Heyman.
Insight: He has a $12.75 million player option with the Phillies, and will have five days after the World Series is completed, to decide whether or not to exercise it. Burnett led all of baseball with 18 loses, and combined with a 4.59 ERA and 1.41 WHIP, he will likely not fetch as much money on the open market.
Alex Rios, RF, TEX10/8/2014 6:55:00 PM
Description: The Rangers are expected to decline outfielder Alex Rios' $13.5 million club option for 2015 according to Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish.
Insight: Rios hit .280/.311/.398 with four home runs in 131 games this year. He missed most of September with a thumb injury. Texas can buy out his 2015 option for $1 million.
Stephen Vogt, OF, OAK10/8/2014 6:47:00 PM
Description: Athletics C/1B/OF Stephen Vogt is scheduled to undergo surgery to repair a tear in his plantar plate on October 14.
Insight: Vogt suffered the injury toward the end of the season and also played through a left ankle sprain in September. He will still be ready for spring training.
Adam Wainwright, SP, STL10/8/2014 6:43:00 PM
Description: Cardinals manager Mike Matheny plans to start Adam Wainwright in Game 1 of the NLCS but will have Lance Lynn read as an alternative if Wainwright runs into trouble early in the game according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Insight: Wainwright was bothered by a "dead arm" back in August, but the ace looked like he was over the dead arm when he won all five of his starts in September. It has apparently returned and many have speculated Wainwright has tendinitis in his right elbow. Therefore, Matheny has Lynn ready in case Wainwright does not feel 100 percent. Wainwright did not pitch well in Game 1 of the NLDS, allowing six runs in 4 1/3 innings.
Michael Morse, LF, SFG10/8/2014 6:37:00 PM
Description: Giants left fielder Michael Morse (oblique) will be added to the NLCS roster according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Insight: Morse has been playing in instructional league games in Arizona. Morse would be a big upgrade over Travis Ishikawa and Juan Perez, but manager Bruce Bochy would not say how many games Morse could start in left field.
Jake Peavy, SP, BOS10/8/2014 6:33:00 PM
Description: Giants starter Jake Peavy will start Game 2 of the NLCS against the Cardinals.
Insight: Madison Bumgarner gets the ball for Game 1. Tim Hudson is ready for Game 3. The series begins on Saturday.
Ryan Dempster, SP, BOS10/8/2014 6:30:00 PM
Description: Red Sox pitcher Ryan Dempster is retiring from baseball according to Chris Cotillo of SB Nation.
Insight: Dempster did not pitch at all in 2014 due to a neck injury and decided he would like to spend more time with his family. Dempster played 16 seasons with five different teams. He finishes 132-133 with a 4.35 ERA in 2,387 innings.
Bryce Harper, LF, WAS10/8/2014 9:42:00 AM
Description: Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper does all he can in Game 4 of NLDS.
Insight: He hit a titanic home run into McCovey Cove that tied the game at 2-2, in the seventh inning. However, Washington was unable to take the lead, and lost 3-2. Harper finished the night going 2-for-3 with two RBI and a walk. If he is able to stay healthy in 2015, Harper should be an impactful fantasy player.
Gio Gonzalez, SP, WAS10/8/2014 9:37:00 AM
Description: Nationals lefty Gio Gonzalez lasts only four innings Tuesday against the Giants.
Insight: He actually did not let up any earned runs (two unearned), but was not particulary sharp. Gonzalez gave up four hits and had only one strikeout, before he was lifted for a pinch-hitter. He will look to rebound from a 10-10 season, and should be considered a potential sleeper in 2015, as there is a chance Gonzalez could be overlooked in drafts.
Ryan Vogelsong, SP, SFG10/8/2014 9:32:00 AM
Description: San Francisco right-hander Ryan Vogelsong ptches well in no-decision during Game 4 of NLDS.
Insight: He went 5 2/3 innings and was in line for the win, until Hunter Strickland gave up a game-tying homer to Bryce Harper. Vogelsong allowed one run on only two hits and two walks, while striking out four. Strickland ended up receiving the victory, with Santiago Casilla earning his second save of the series. The Giants will head to St. Louis for Game 1 of the NLCS on Saturday.
Matt Adams, 1B, STL10/7/2014 8:20:00 PM
Description: Cardinals first baseman Matt Adams plays role of hero in Game 4 of NLDS.
Insight: With St. Louis unable to get anything going through six innings, Matt Holliday and Jhonny Peralta led off the seventh with back-to-back singles. Adams then deposited a Clayton Kershaw hanger into the right field bullpen, which resulted in sending the Cardinals to the NLCS.
Shelby Miller, SP, STL10/7/2014 8:17:00 PM
Description: Cardinals right-hander Shelby Miller pitches well in no-decision.
Insight: He went 5 2/3 innings, while allowing two runs on five hits and three walks, while striking out four. The bullpen did their job, as Marco Gonzalez earned his second win of the series, while Trevor Rosenthal nailed down his third save of the NLDS. St. Louis will await the winner between the Nationals and Giants.
Clayton Kershaw, SP, LOS10/7/2014 8:15:00 PM
Description: Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw dominates through six, then blows lead in seventh.
Insight: He had given up only one hit through six innings, but gave up the big three-run homer to Matt Adams in the seventh. Officially Kershaw went six innings (pitched into seventh), allowing three runs on four hits and two walks, while striking out nine. He is now 1-5 during his postseason career.
Juan Perez, LF, SFG10/7/2014 8:00:00 PM
Description: Juan Perez is starting for the Giants in left field for Game 4 of the NLDS against Washington.
Insight: With lefty Gio Gonzalez on the hill for the Nationals, the right-handed Perez gets the nod. Travis Ishikawa started the first three games, but hits from the left side, making the move a relatively obvious one. There are no other changes to San Francisco's lineup.
Andre Ethier, OF, LOS10/7/2014 2:38:00 PM
Description: Los Angeles outfielder Andre Ethier will get a start in Game 4. He'll bat sixth and play center field.
Insight: Ehtier is 2-for-6 with a home run against Cardinals right-hander Shelby Miller. Yasiel Puig (3-for-12) will take a seat.


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