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11 more wins!!!

 

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Saturday, October 10, 2015
Friday's Top 5: Mets' Jacob deGrom (13 K's) outduels Clayton Kershaw



What a fun day of baseball. We had a tense 14-inning game with an obscure hero for the Rangers, a comeback victory for the Royals, a shutdown performance from John Lackey and then the expected pitching duel in the finale from Dodger Stadium.

1. Jacob deGrom, New York Mets. The pitching line says it all: 7 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 13 SO. Except it was even better than that: Two of the hits were Michael Cuddyer misplays in left field and the walk was intentional. DeGrom is one of my favorite pitchers to watch: He generates power from his slight frame, and he's able to hold his velocity deep into games; that big mop of hair that flows out from his cap is either a trait you joyously get a kick out of or annoyingly want to cut off.

The 13 strikeouts tied Tom Seaver for a Mets postseason record and were the most ever in a playoff game at Dodger Stadium. At times, deGrom simply threw his fastball past hitters. Overall, he induced 24 swings-and-misses, tied for the second-most in a postseason game since 2009. (Tim Lincecum had 31 in a 1-0 shutout over the Braves in 2010.) Fourteen of those misses were fastballs. The Dodgers simply had trouble catching up to it. It was a brilliant performance.

As for Clayton Kershaw, let's just say he was good, but not good enough, and I think it's absolutely fair that the narrative about his postseason history will continue, despite the attempts of many on Twitter to dismiss the idea. Look, Kershaw was great for six innings, allowing only a home run on a 2-0 fastball that Daniel Murphy -- who had homered just once against a left-hander all season -- crushed to right field. But in the seventh inning -- the same inning in which the Cardinals beat him twice last year, you may recall -- he walked Lucas Duda. He walked Ruben Tejada with one out. After deGrom sacrificed, he walked Curtis Granderson, a terrific seven-pitch walk by Granderson. Don Mattingly then went to Pedro Baez, and David Wright lined a 3-2 fastball into center field for a two-run single.

Was it the right call to remove Kershaw? I think so. I get that you let the best pitcher on the planet work out of his own mess, but Kershaw had walked three guys in the inning, including two lefties and a light-hitting shortstop. He looked done and had thrown 27 pitches in the inning. I'm not going to knock Don Mattingly there and I wouldn't have knocked him if he'd left Kershaw in. (You can argue that with the game was on the line that Mattingly should have used closer Kenley Jansen, but no manager would have brought in his closer in the seventh inning, which is more a discussion about bullpen roles than Mattingly's decision.) Kershaw struck out 11, but he walked four and he couldn't get the last out he needed. We still await a signature postseason game from him.

Originally Posted by Nehru:
Originally Posted by RiffRaff:

Game 5

It will be more enjoyable whipping them at their home ground.

It's all business, we had to create some excitement so we lost the first two and whip the Rangers at home, the Blue Jays coming home for the fifth game is sweet music, this game will be a blow-out, the Jays will win BIG!!!

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