Nats' win means Giants will face Dusty's Reds in NLDS

October 3, 2012, 8:07 pm
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LOS ANGELES -- The Washington Nationals were kind enough to win Wednesday afternoon, clinch the top seed and make the playoff pairings official:

The Giants will play the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Division Series, beginning Saturday at 6:37 p.m. at AT&T Park. The Giants will send Matt Cain against right-hander Johnny Cueto. The Reds are expected to pitch right-hander Bronson Arroyo in Game 2 on Sunday and right-hander Mat Latos when the series shifts to Cincinnati for Game 3 on Tuesday.

Giants manager Bruce Bochy still hasn't announced his rotation past Cain, but Madison Bumgarner remains the odds-on favorite to start Game 2, with a tough choice between Tim Lincecum's past success and Barry Zito's present success in Game 3.

This is setting up to be a heavy weekend for Reds manager Dusty Baker, who has been away from the team after suffering a minor stroke. He's expected to return to the bench for the postseason, and now his club will open at AT&T Park -- a place where he has a lot of memories.

Giants fans might have scratched that World Series itch in 2010, but Baker is still seeking his first as a manager.

Heading down to the clubhouse now to collect some thoughts about the Reds. The Giants have their usual lineup against a lefty as they try to beat Clayton Kershaw for the fourth (!!) time this season and finish up with 95 wins overall.

Pagan CF, Scutaro 2B, Sandoval 3B, Posey C, Pence RF, Nady LF, Belt 1B, Arias SS, Vogelsong RHP.

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