A tough blow for the Dodgers - Hanley Ramirez will not be in the starting lineup for Game 6 in St. Louis. It'll be Nick Punto playing short instead and hitting eighth.
Nothing against Punto, but he obviously doesn't have nearly the impact bat that Ramirez has. I don't think anyone does. As we saw in the NLDS against the Braves, even a banged up Ramirez can carry a team, hitting .500. After getting beaned in the ribs in Game 1, he's just not the same player, hitting only .167. For once he's just not able to overcome all of the injuries.
Don Mattingly has set his lineup, and it'll feature Adrian Gonzalez hitting third, Yasiel Puig in the cleanup spot, and Andre Ethier hitting fifth. I like this move because Puig should hit in front of Ethier, as I stated on a post yesterday. If there's two outs in the ninth and the #4 spot up, I'd much rather see Puig than Ethier.
If you're Clayton Kershaw, you feel a lot more pressure to put up blanks now. He's definitely up to the task, but hopefully he doesn't have to be perfect to win. Tonight is a game where it would be great to see someone like Juan Uribe drive in runs to get to Saturday night.
One other factor that may help the Dodgers is the weather. As of now, there's possible rain in the forecast around 9 p.m. It'll also be in the 40s, so bundle up! A rainout will only help get Ramirez back in the lineup, so maybe Mother Nature will assist them a bit.