From Dodger Stadium
GAME 4 STARTER
* In a tight spot, the Dodgers are going back to Derek Lowe for Monday's Game 4. Lowe, who started Game 1, will be working on three days' rest for just the second time this year. So optimists, pessimists -- pick your stat: Would you rather know that Lowe has gone 7-2 with a 1.55 ERA in his last 12 starts? Or that he got lit up for seven runs and 10 hits in five innings in the only other time this year he worked on short rest?
We'll find out tomorrow how this affects Lowe, but Lowe has at least convinced his manager that this won't be a challenge at all. He wanted the ball. When Manager Joe Torre spoke to Lowe about the possibility of starting Game 4, Lowe said, without hesitation, that "there's no problem; I'll pitch whenever."
Torre, at least publicly, had said days earlier that either Greg Maddux or Clayton Kershaw, could take the mound for Game 4. But several factors changed his mind. He didn't want Kershaw, a lefty, facing the righty/switch-heavy Philadelphia lineup. He wanted Chad Billingsley, the Game 2 starter, "out there as soon as possible again," and going to back to Lowe, the Game 1 pitcher, meant restarting the rotation. Perhaps most important, if Lowe pitched Game 4, he could pitch again in a potential Game 7 on full rest.
"He's got the mindset and the experience that makes him raise his hand any time you think about doing something like this," Torre said. "And it certainly makes my job easier as opposed to trying to talk somebody into pitching on short rest... Plus, if he maybe is a little tired, a sinkerball pitcher is probably the one guy that's not going to feel the effects of it."
* The home team has won all 10 games between these two teams this year.
TRIVIA(L?), PT II
* The last NLCS game at Dodger Stadium was exactly 20 years ago -- October 12, 1988. Orel Hershiser shut out the Mets, 6-0.
* Nomar Garciaparra is getting the start tonight at 1B, bumping James Loney to the bench for the Dodgers. Part of Torre's thinking is based on history: Garciaparra is 15 for 36 lifetime (.417) against Philadelphia pitcher Jamie Moyer.
AND NOW, A REAL MOYER TORMENTOR
* For his career, Moyer has allowed 464 home runs. But no player has more of them than Manny Ramirez (10). Here is the lifetime batter-pitcher match-up between baseball's oldest player and its ... um... highest-numbered.
Ramirez: 53 AB, 18 H (.340 AVG), 3 2B, 10 HR, 20 RBI, 6 BB, 20 K
Rollins - 6
Victorino - 8
Utley - 4
Howard - 3
Burrell - 7
Werth - 9
Feliz - 5
Ruiz - 2
Moyer - 1
Furcal - 6
Ethier - 9
Ramirez - 7
Martin - 2
Garciaparra - 3
Blake - 5
Kemp - 8
DeWitt - 4
Kuroda - 1
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