After giving up a ninth inning lead and letting the Rangers down, the D-backs have their own cleaning up to do in Game 2 on Saturday night. Even in a game that has conditioned its athletes to forgive and forget and move on to the next one, the Rangers’ 6-5, 11-inning victory was a gut punch that made it interesting to see how this mostly young -on and especially. the feisty Snakes squad replied.
“We didn’t have a lot of time to think about that,” veteran D-back Evan Longoria said after the loss. “I think the message should be, for eight innings and one out, we won the game. If we continue to do that, we have success in this series.”
The D-backs dropped not only Game 1 but also Game 2 of the National League Championship Series against the Phillies, and we all know how that goes. In the best-of-seven series with the current 2-3-2 format, clubs leading 1-0 at home, as Rangers did, have finished in the top 65 98 times (66%).
With both clubs diving deep into their bullpens in the first extra-innings game this postseason, the pitch will come from Rangers starter Jordan Montgomery and D-backs starter Merrill Kelly, though one looming off-day Sunday means no stone will be left unturned. not denied by Texas manager Bruce Bochy and Arizona manager Torey Lovullo.
Game 1 was a beauty of a ballgame between two strong teams with contrasting styles. In the end, the Rangers’ hug outscored the D-backs’ small ball. But the stands are clean, the sun is fresh, and we’ll see what Game 2 brings.
When is the game and how can I watch it?
First pitch is set for 8 pm ET (7 CT) on Saturday at Globe Life Field, which will be televised on FOX.
The Fall Classic is available in the US on MLB.TV with authentication by a participating Pay TV provider. Games are available live internationally (except Canada). Full game archives will be available approximately 90 minutes after the game.
Who are the starting pitchers?
D-backs: RHP Merrill Kelly
Kelly has pitched well overall this postseason, posting a 2.65 ERA in three starts. He struggled with command at times, issuing multiple walks in each of those outings and serving up three homers in Game 2 of the National League Championship Series against the Phillies. That said, each of Kelly’s first three starts have come on the road as well, so don’t expect the atmosphere at Globe Life Field to be too much for a guy with eight strikeouts in five innings of one run. ball during Arizona’s game on the line in Game 6 of the NLCS in Philadelphia.
“Trying to treat it like a normal game as much as I can,” Kelly said. “Obviously, once I got out there, it was probably pretty obvious to me that it wasn’t.”
Rangers: LHP Jordan Montgomery
Montgomery wasn’t the biggest name the Rangers acquired at this year’s Trade Deadline, but he was undoubtedly the most consistent. The lefty — acquired from the Cardinals for a package of prospects — posted a 2.79 ERA in 11 regular-season starts at Texas, earning his spot at the top of the rotation.
Montgomery has started Game 1 or 2 of every series for the Rangers this postseason. He also worked 2 1/3 scoreless innings of relief in Game 7 of the American League Championship Series to improve to 3-0 with a 2.16 ERA in five appearances.
What is the planned start lineups?
D-back: With Texas starting a left-hander, Arizona will likely flip to Corbin Carroll and Ketel Marte at the top of the order as it usually does when facing a southpaw. Another significant change from Game 1 could leave left-handed hitting Alek Thomas out of the starting lineup. When the D-backs faced Phillies lefty Ranger Suárez in Game 7 of the NLCS, Lovullo moved Carroll to center, with Tommy Pham starting in right, Longoria serving as the DH and Emmanuel Rivera starting at third.
Rangers: With another right-hander on the mound for Arizona, Bochy appeared in his usual lineup, with rookie Evan Carter in the three-hole and DH Mitch Garver in the fifth spot. Bochy has consistently said he won’t change the top of the lineup, despite leadoff hitter Marcus Semien’s continued struggles this postseason.
How will the bullpens line up after the starter?
D-back: Arizona’s bullpen blueprint failed for the first time this postseason in Game 1, but Lovullo’s usage plan is unlikely to change for Game 2. Left-hander Joe Mantiply appears to be the first option against big lefty bats in top of the Rangers ranks. in Seager and Carter. Andrew Saalfrank was used as another high-leverage lefty this postseason, but he struggled with command and was not called upon in Game 1. However, fellow lefty Kyle Nelson threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings, including – prompted a key groundout from Seager in the bottom of the 10th.
Meanwhile, right-handers Ryan Thompson and Kevin Ginkel will fill in the other gaps before handing the ball to Paul Sewald, whose blown save in Game 1 was his first of seven this season. postseason. Ginkel (28 pitches) and Nelson (24) had heavy workloads in Game 1, but with Sunday’s off-day coming up, expect Lovullo to stay aggressive with his relievers.
Rangers: With Game 1 starter Nathan Eovaldi going just 4 2/3 innings, the Rangers relied on a trio of converted starters in Dane Dunning, Cody Bradford and Jon Gray to eat innings late in the Game 1 victory. Gray, who pitched 1 2/3 frames, will likely miss Game 2, but Dunning and Bradford could still go if needed after throwing each.
The one hiccup was that closer José Leclerc threw the 10th and 11th innings. Bochy has been aggressive in his use of the bullpen, and Leclerc’s 26 pitches haven’t been particularly laborious, but Josh Sborz and Aroldis Chapman will likely be the high-leverage options in Game 2.
Any injuries of note?
D-back: Outfielder Jake McCarthy was removed from the roster before Game 1 of the NL Wild Card Series after suffering a strained right oblique. He was not expected to return.
Rangers: Garver returned to the lineup after being removed from Game 7 of the ALCS after being hit by a 97 mph fastball from Astros reliever Bryan Abreu in the sixth inning.
Reliever Jonathan Hernández has been out of the roster for each postseason series because of a right lat strain, an injury Bochy said he suffered during Game 162, when Hernández threw a perfect inning with two strikeouts in Texas’ 1-0 loss to Seattle.
Who’s hot, who’s who no?
D-back: Marte has recorded a hit in all 13 games this postseason — and in each of his 17 career postseason games. His 17-game hitting streak is tied with Manny Ramírez, Derek Jeter and Hank Bauer for the longest in postseason history.
Walker, meanwhile, is just 1-for-19 (.053) with eight strikeouts over the past six games, including going 0-for-4 with three K’s and a walk in Game 1.
Rangers: García continued his hot stretch after earning ALCS MVP honors, going 3-for-4 with a walk-off homer, a walk and a hit-by-pitch in Game 1. Seager won a 1-for-4 with a game-tying home run and two walks.
Much of the Rangers’ offense was clicking, though Semien’s struggles continued with a 1-for-6 night.