Game 1 Pregame (Again)
It’s Cards vs. Mets at 8:19 p.m. ET. Aaron Neville will perform the national anthem at Shea Stadium. Darryl Strawberry will throw out the first pitch. Constantine Maroulis will sing "God Bless America."
The big news in pregame is that Cardinals manager Tony La Russa has moved up Chris Carpenter to start Game 2 on Friday night — instead of Game 3 in St. Louis. "We decided we’re going to pitch Chris," La Russa just said in the interview room. "He’s our best pitcher, and that’s his fifth day." Jeff Suppan will go in Game 3, Anthony Reyes in Game 4, Jeff Weaver in Game 5.
Willie Randolph said the Mets’ pitching plans are the same despite the rainout. When asked about the possibility of playing five in a row, he said, "It’s just like the regular season" — citing the fact you sometimes play two weeks in a row without an off-day.
Remember, if you’re coming out here tonight (and the weather is beautiful), you have to have "NLCS Game 2" tickets. For Friday’s game, the "NLCS Game 1" tickets will be used because of the rainout on Wednesday night. MLB also announced that Game 2 of this series will be at 8:05 p.m. ET on Friday, with the Oakland at Detroit ALCS game moved up to 4:30 ET that day due to cold weather.
We’re back to talking about baseball today. Yesterday was one of the worst and saddest days I can remember in 22 years of covering pro sports. There obviously have been more devastating events — the 1989 World Series earthquake included, incidents with major loss of life — but it was just the circumstances, coming to the ballpark and everyone talking about a plane crash in the same city and then suddenly realizing it was a baseball player. It was just surreal. The rainout was very fortunate; I don’t know a lot of people who were thinking at all about baseball here at Shea last night.
One other pregame note that is pertinent to this city: Tiffany & Co. will salute Major League Baseball and commemorate the postseason with a window display featuring the 2006 World Series Trophy. It will be displayed starting on Monday in the famous 57th Street windows of its flagship store along Fifth Avenue. MLB first commissioned Tiffany & Co. to create the trophy, officially named "The Commissioner’s Trophy," in 2000. Stop by and take a good look if you’re around the area. There is still a chance it will remain locally visible beyond Oct. 22, if the Mets win it all. There are three other cities interested in displaying it soon.
Darryl Strawberry throwing out the first pitch? Did I really just read that? That’s almost as absurd as Tony LaRussa’s assertion on Wednesday night that he WOULD NOT move Chris Carpenter up in the rotation and pitch game 2.
I guess the Cardinal brain trust got together on Thursday afternoon and got it right. You have to move CC up and make sure you have a better chance to have your ACE pitch 2 games in the NLCS. Jim Leyland is showing baseball fans what REAL baseball genius is all about. Leyland knows his players and relies on his experience and baseball knowledge to guide him. He doesn’t need a computer, a sidekick and notebook full of useless statistics.
Maybe we can look forward to Doc Gooden throwing out the first pitch for game 2? Only if Darryl springs him from the pokey.