College of Sports Media Game of the Night:
There are only four teams left in the ‘Hunt for October’ and two of them battle tonight. The National League Championship Series opens tonight in LA as the Dodgers host the Philadelphia Phillies. This is the second straight year these two teams have met in the NLCS. Last season the Phillies won the series in five and then went on to take out the Tampa Bay Rays to capture the World Series title. The Dodgers are hoping to avoid a repeat. Big difference for LA is they have home field advantage this time and rather then throwing a bunch of right-handers at the Phillies, manager Joe Torre has a couple of southpaws at his service. Getting the call for game one will be 21 year old lefty Clayton Kershaw. Kershaw pitched very well against the St Louis Cardinals in the NLDS, but he’s 0-2 with a 5.23 ERA in two starts against Philadelphia this season. Torre hopes having a lefty on the mound will make the night difficult for Philly’s left-handed power hitters Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez and Chase Utley. Howard and Ibanez had combiner for 11 RBIs in their series with Colorado Rockies and Utley had a blistering .429 batting average. Reigning World Series MVP Cole Hamels gets the ball for the defending champs. Hamels struggle din his first postseason game against the Rox. He allowed four earned runs in five innings of work of a 5-4 loss. Although Dodger slugger Manny Ramirez has been far from being Manny, Hamels will have to deal with Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier. The two outfielders torched the Cards in the NLDS, combining for three home runs and five RBIs. This series should be a great one and at least one thing is for sure. Whoever wins and represents the NL in the World Series will start on the road, thanks to the 4-3 AL win at this years All Star game.