By the Associated Press
A look at what is happening around the big ones today:
Maybe faster than many baseball fans would, but the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers meet in a winning game 5 of the NL Division Series at Oracle Park.
Logan Webb, who was dominant in winning the opening for the Giants, meets Julio Urías, who led the majors with 20 victories and won the victory in Game 2.
At this point, both teams have 109 wins this season. Maybe this match would be even better in the NL Championship Series with a trip to the World Series at stake – anyway, Mookie Betts and the defending champion Dodgers will take care of Buster Posey and the Giants.
“I think it’s just right,” said Dodgers pitcher Walker Buehler.
The longtime rivals who began playing each other in 1884 share a star-studded story of meeting in all-of-nothing games.
In the crucial Game 3 of a NL1 pennant tiebreaker from 1951, Bobby Thomson beat what many consider the most famous home run ever when he connected to “Shot ‘Heard Round the World”, a three-lap ride at the bottom of the ninth that lifted New York Giants over Jackie Robinson and Brooklyn Dodgers 5-4 at Polo Grounds.
The franchisees had moved to the West Coast when they played a best-of-three matchup for the NL pennant from 1962. After topping Los Angeles ace Sandy Koufax in the opening, San Francisco lost the next day. Mays then entered a four-run collection in the ninth round to win 6-4 in Game 3 at Dodger Stadium.
Kiké Hernández, JD Martinez and the Red Sox train at Minute Maid Park, a day before they start the AL Championship Series against the Houston Astros.
Wild-card Red Sox and AL West champion Astros each ended their Division Series game in four games. Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and their teammates in Houston beat Boston 5-2 in the season series.
Neither team has announced their tournament for the best-of-seven series.
Boston manager Alex Cora will surely attract a lot of attention ahead of Game 1 on Friday night.
Cora was Houston’s bench coach when it won the 2017 World Series, then became the Red Sox manager and guided them to the championship in 2018. Cora was fired by the team and suspended by Major League Baseball in 2020 for her role in the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal and re-employed for this season.
Fresh from a mid-of-the-pack performance on the plate, Phillies hired Kevin Long as his coach. This move reunites him with both manager Joe Girardi and star player Bryce Harper.
Philadelphia fired coach Joe Dillon on the final day of the regular season. Phillies finished second in the NL East at 82-80 and ranked seventh in the NL in races and ninth in stroke average.
The 54-year-old Long worked with Harper on the Nationals in 2018. Long was under Phillies manager Joe Girardi for seven years when they were with the Yankees and won the World Series in 2009.
“I have had a long-standing relationship with Kevin and have seen his work up close and personal for many years,” Girardi said. “I really believe he is the best in the business and will have a big impact on our crime.”
Girardi and Long were not quite so cordial during a game at Citizens Bank Park in late June. After then-Nationals star Max Scherzer was checked by the referees for sticky substances, Girardi and Long got into a shouting match.
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