This Weekend in Sports: MLB Divisional Series & Presidents Cup
Major League Baseball will feature four interesting matchups in its next round of postseason play. Here’s what to watch this weekend:
Friday, October 4
Presidents Cup — Unites States vs. Internationals
Muirfield Village Golf Club, Dublin, Ohio; 1 p.m. (ET) on Golf Channel
The best U.S. golfers face international, non-European players in this match play event. The first team to record 17.5 of the 34 match points wins. Tiger Woods and Brandt Snedeker lead the 12-man U.S. team, and Adam Scott and Jason Day pace the world squad. The final round airs on Sunday at noon on NBC.
NLDS Game 2 — Pittsburgh Pirates at St. Louis Cardinals
Busch Stadium, St. Louis; 1:07 p.m. (ET) on MLB Network
The Pittsburgh Pirates face the St. Louis Cardinals in the second game of their National League Divisional Series. The Pirates will send rookie Gerrit Cole (10-7, 3.22 ERA) to the mound to face the dangerous Cardinals’ lineup. St. Louis will start Lance Lynn (15-10, 3.97 ERA) against a potent Pittsburgh batting order. Game 3 is Sunday at PNC Park in Pittsburgh.
ALDS Game 1 — Tampa Bay Rays at Boston Red Sox
Fenway Park, Boston; 3:07 p.m. (ET) on TBS
The MLB playoffs return to historic Fenway Park when the Red Sox host the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 1 of the American League Divisional Series on Friday. Ace Jon Lester (15-8, 3.75 ERA) gets the nod for Boston, while Tampa sends Matt Moore (17-4, 3.29 ERA) to counter the Red Sox lineup of bearded wonders. Game 2 is set for Saturday in Boston.
NLDS Game 2 — Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves
Turner Field, Atlanta; 6:07 p.m. (ET) on TBS
The Los Angeles Dodgers were among baseball’s hottest teams from June forward. They’ll send Zack Greinke (15-4, 2.63 ERA) to face the Atlanta Braves in the second game of the National League Divisional Series. Atlanta will start Mike Minor (13-9, 3.21 ERA) against a Dodgers’ lineup loaded with power hitters like Adrian Gonzalez and Yasiel Puig. Game 3 is set for Sunday in Los Angeles.
ALDS Game 1 — Detroit Tigers at Oakland Athletics
O.co Colisuem, Oakland; 9:37 p.m. (ET) on TBS
The Detroit Tigers and Oakland A’s will meet in the MLB playoffs for the second straight year. The teams will have a difficult time replicating 2012′s dramatic five-game American League Divisional Series. Detroit starts Max Scherzer (21-3, 2.90 ERA) against the A’s ‘Moneyball’ bats, while Oakland sends veteran Bartolo Colón (18-6, 2.65 ERA) out to face Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and the rest of the Tigers’ lineup. Game 2 is Saturday night in Oakland.
Saturday, October 4
(25) Maryland at (8) Florida State
Doak Campbell Stadium, Tallahassee, Fla.; 12 p.m. (ET) on ESPN
Maryland (4-0) faces the eighth-ranked Seminoles (4-0) and budding star quarterback Jameis Winston. As incredible a season as Winston is having for Florida State, Maryland quarterback C.J. Brown leads the ACC in total offense with 331.5 yards per game.
(4) Ohio State at (16) Northwestern
Ryan Field, Evanston, Ill.; 8 p.m. (ET) on ABC
Fourth-ranked Ohio State (5-0) will face another conference test on Saturday, as the Buckeyes travel to 16th-ranked Northwestern (4-0). Ohio State QB Braxton Miller will be the most explosive player on the field, but Northwestern running back Venric Mark could be a factor as he makes his return from injury.
(15) Washington at (5) Stanford
Stanford Stadium , Palo Alto, Calif.; 10:30 p.m. (ET) on ESPN
The 15th-ranked Huskies (4-0) can take control of their destiny in the Pac-12 field by beating fifth-ranked Stanford (4-0), but they’ll have to win on the road. Washington running back Bishop Sankey leads the nation with 151.8 yards rushing per game. Cardinal QB Kevin Hogan is 9-0 as a starter.
Sunday, October 6
Hollywood Casino 400
Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, Kan. 2 p.m. (ET) on ESPN
Matt Kenseth still leads NASCAR’s 2013 Chase for the Sprint Cup championship, but five-time circuit champ Jimmie Johnson has closed within eight points of first place. The field will race at Kansas Speedway this Sunday, as the Chase rolls toward its late November conclusion.
Denver Broncos at Dallas Cowboys
AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Tex.; 4:25 p.m. (ET) on CBS
Quarterback Peyton Manning and unbeaten Denver (4-0) travel to Texas to face Dallas (2-2) in an inter-conference match-up. Cowboys’ quarterback Tony Romo will have to step up his passing game to allow Dallas to keep pace with Manning and the high-scoring Broncos’ offense.
Houston Texans at San Francisco 49ers
Candlestick Park, San Francisco; 8:30 p.m. (ET) on NBC
The Texans (2-2) visit the 49ers (2-2), as two pre-season Super Bowl contenders meet to avoid a losing record five games into the 2013 campaign. Quarterback Matt Schaub is under fire in Houston, and counterpart Colin Kaepernick has experienced struggles in San Francisco this season.