The Dodgers decided to shake things up with another lefty on the mound in Game 5 Wednesday. Cody Bellinger hits in the leadoff spot, while Max Muncy starts at second base.
NLCS Game 5 lineups
|P||Miley (L)||P||Kershaw (L)|
After only one hit in 21 plate appearances entering Tuesday, Bellinger went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles, including the game winner. With Wade Miley on the mound for the Brewers on short rest, it’s somewhat surprising that Bellinger and Muncy are in the lineup at the start of the game.
“I like Cody’s at-bats against Miley,” Roberts said as he explained the change. “I think that the quality of contact and I like him there. Going forward how we could combat what they do, it made sense to us.”
Muncy started at second base 13 times during the regular season, the last coming on September 11. For what it’s worth — which is absolutely nothing — the Dodgers are 11-2 when Muncy starts at second.
The plan remaining the same for the left-handed starters the Brewers are throwing their way, the Dodgers will at some point go to the bench again. This means Muncy won’t be at second for long, sliding over to first for David Freese.
“Don’t know how long it’s going to be him over there, depending on how the game unfolds,” Roberts said. “David (Freese) is at first base and at some point in time in the game we see Max going over to first base. But to start the game and get his bat and to produce some offense, I think it’s a good thing.”
The Dodgers are hoping Muncy gets going in this series after a 2-for-11 in each of the NLDS and the NLCS so far. Their leader in homers this season (35), the 28-year-old has zero extra-base hits against the Brewers in the first four games.
The Brewers made the move that was expected after Tuesday night, adding right-hander Zach Davies to the roster in place of the injured Gio Gonzalez. It was a comebacker to start the second inning that caused Gonzalez to come down awkwardly on his left ankle. It’s officially a high ankle sprain.
Davies was not on the postseason roster for the Division Series either, after going 2-7 with a 4.77 ERA in 13 starts for Milwaukee this year.
“Zach was under consideration kind of at the beginning of the series, manager Craig Counsell said. “We’ve kept him, we feel like, prepared and going pretty good here. And so today and for the rest of the series he’s a length option, really. Having been a starting pitcher, having started on the last week of the season, he’s capable of throwing a lot of pitches. There’s certainly a chance he’s in the game today.