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NLDS, Reds vs. Giants: How they match up

Game 1: Saturday, 6:30 p.m., TBS

Cincinnati (RHP Johnny Cueto 19-9, 2.78) at San Francisco (RHP Matt Cain 16-5, 2.79)

Game 2: Sunday, 6:30 p.m., TBS

Cincinnati (RHP Bronson Arroyo 12-10, 3.74) at San Francisco (LHP Madison Bumgarner 16-11, 3.37)

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Game 3: Tuesday, 2:30 p.m., TBS

San Francisco (TBA) at Cincinnati (RHP Mat Latos 14-4, 3.48)

Game 4*: Wednesday, TBA, TBS or MLBN

San Francisco (TBA) at Cincinnati (RHP Homer Bailey 13-10, 3.68)

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Game 5*: Thursday, TBA, TBS or MLBN

San Francisco (TBA) at Cincinnati (TBA)

*-if necessary / All times PDT

Projected Lineups

Pos; Cincinnati; Avg.; HR; RBI

2B; Brandon Phillips; .281; 18; 77

SS; Zack Cozart; .246; 15; 35

1B; Joey Votto; .337; 14; 56

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LF; Ryan Ludwick; .275; 26; 80

RF; Jay Bruce; .252; 34; 99

3B; Scott Rolen; .245; 8; 39

CF; Drew Stubbs; .213; 14; 40

C; Ryan Hanigan; .274; 2; 24

Projected Lineups

Pos; San Francisco; Avg.; HR; RBI

CF; Angel Pagan; .288; 8; 56

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2B; Marco Scutaro; .362; 3; 44

3B; Pablo Sandoval; .283; 12; 63

C; Buster Posey; .336; 24; 103

RF; Hunter Pence; .253; 24; 104

1B; Brandon Belt; .275; 7; 56

LF; Gregor Blanco; .244; 5; 34

SS; Brandon Crawford; .248; 4; 45

Keys to the series

The series mainly pivots on the pitching matchup and it’s a good one, starting with each team having a pitcher who tossed a no-hitter this year (Homer Bailey for the Reds and Matt Cain for the Giants, whose no-no came in the form of a perfect game). Both teams’ rotations also are deep; the Reds’ staff had a combined earned-run average of 3.34, third lowest in the National League behind the Nationals and Dodgers. But the Reds were only ninth in run production in winning the NL Central, and slugger Joey Votto hasn’t had a home run since returning from knee surgery Sept. 5. NL batting champion Buster Posey (.336) heads San Francisco’s lineup, and look for Angel Pagan and Marco Scutaro to frequently be on base when Posey steps to the plate.

Pick: Giants in five.


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