Dodgers Look to Greinke to Get Even in Game 2

The veteran says it would be tough losing to the Cardinals for the second straight year, if that does happen

Dodgers manager Don Mattingly will hand the ball to Zack Greinke Saturday night in Game 2 of the National League Championship Series in hopes he can even the series after Friday's crushing loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Greinke was the Dodgers' saving grace against the Cards in last year's NLCS, going 1-0 in two starts with a 2.40 ERA with 14 strikeouts in 15 innings pitched.

Greinke says, sure, he was good but he doesn't take the Cardinals hitters lightly.

"They're a smarter team than most but because I've faced them a lot, I kind of know some of their holes and where I like to pitch them. But they have a couple of guys who are really smart hitters, who can make adjustments," Greinke said.

His catcher, A.J. Ellis, says he and Greinke has their game plan down.

"Just like Clayton (Kershaw), when Zack's out there on the mound, I have total confidence in them because they are totally prepared.

And Zack especially, with his cerebral side of the game, I can trust that when he shakes to a pitch or he wants to throw something different, he's got a reason behind it," Ellis said.


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He singled out Cardinals outfielder Jon Jay as one hitter who he'll have to pay special attention to given his success against Greinke. Jay's hitting .364 (8-for-22) against the Dodgers' righty in his career.

In two starts against St. Louis this season, Greinke was 1-1 with a 3.55 ERA, although he held Cardinals hitters to a .217 batting average.

Greinke will be opposed by the Cardinals 6-foot-5-inch, 250 pound right-hander Lance Lynn.

The Indianapolis native made a name for himself in last year's NLCS, pitching two scoreless innings of relief to get the win in Game 1 and lasting 5 1/3 innings in Game 4 to beat the Dodgers a second time.

Lynn says he looks at this year's playoffs as his chance to take the next step forward in the evolution of his career.

"You look at some of the great pitchers in the game, they do that and that's where I want to be," he said.

His manager Mike Matheny says a lack of composure has been Lynn's downfall during his first three big league seasons, but he's turned that around in 2014.

"The execution of his stuff the last couple of years has fluctuated with some of things that he couldn't control. Whether it was a defensive play that wasn't made, or not, same things with calls made behind the plate, and his execution suffered because of the distractions. He was able to harness that this year and that's just part of that maturing process," Matheny says.

Lynn is coming into the postseason after one of his most productive seasons. The 27-year-old went 15-10 with a 2.74 ERA in a career-high 203 2/3 innings.

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