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Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright to start NLCS opener

Wainwright
Wainwright
Associated Press

St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said rumors that Adam Wainwright is hurt are overblown.

Matheny is sticking with the same rotation that clicked in the first round, and Wainwright, the 20-game winner, is set to pitch Game 1 of the National League Championship Series against the San Francisco Giants on Saturday.

Matheny said before the Cardinals beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLDS Game 4 clincher that Lance Lynn was available if Wainwright couldn’t go.

“I think there were some things taken out of context and blown up probably more than they needed to be when it was a statement of basically the obvious … in case something didn’t look right, feel right,” Matheny said. “He’s fine and we’ll just watch him closely like we watch everybody else.”

Lynn will work Game 2, followed by John Lackey.

Hardy signs new contract

J.J. Hardy signed a three-year contract with the Orioles on the eve of Baltimore’s first appearance in the A.L. Championship Series since 1997.

The contract comes with an option for 2018. Terms were not released. His current deal expires at the end of this season.

Hardy is a two-time All-Star, in 2007 with Milwaukee and last year as a member of the Orioles.

Clearing the bases

Suspended slugger Chris Davis won’t be playing in the A.L. Championship Series for the Baltimore Orioles. Davis was suspended for 25 games by Major League Baseball on Sept. 12 for testing positive for amphetamines associated with the drug Adderall. The first baseman has five games left to serve. … Gerry Davis is going to be the crew chief for the N.L. Championship Series and Joe West is heading the umpires for the ALCS, each reprising the role they held last postseason. … Fans will be able to watch an alternate telecast of Game 1 of the N.L. Championship Series focused on sabermetrics. The main broadcast of Saturday’s opener between the San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals will be on Fox. Fox Sports 1 will also show it, with extended replays and statistical analysis of batter-pitcher matchups, umpiring tendencies and defensive shifts. … The Chicago Cubs have hired John Mallee as their hitting coach after Bill Mueller resigned.

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