In his first extensive play since a spate of injuries began to curtail his career in 2010, Sizemore compiled a .233/.299/.354 stat line with Boston and Philadelphis this season. He ended the season on a 3-for-37 slide.
Cuddyer is coming off an injury-plagued year, but still batted .332 with 10 home runs in 49 games. However, he hit .400 with six homers and 23 RBI in hitter-friendly Coors Field and .282 with four home runs and eight RBI on the road. Citi Field is considered far more of a pitcher's park.
Blanco opened the game by running Royals starter Yordano Ventura to a full count before crushing a ball over the right-field fence to give the Giants an early lead, but the Royals evened the score in the bottom half of the first and didn't trail for the rest of the night. Blanco has hit just .176/.276/.255 in 51 postseason at-bats but has turned it up since Game 3 of the NLCS, going 5 for 15 with three walks, the home run and three RBI. The two teams head to San Francisco Friday tied 1-1 in the series.
Bell split the first 10 games at designated hitter and first base, where he has already committed four fielding errors. His unfamiliarity with the position has proven problematic.
"Getting to feel overall comfortable has been the biggest challenge," Bell told MLB.com. "I'm sure that will come with reps. When I get more playing time, I'll be able to just run with it, react. It's definitely something different. You're a lot more active. It keeps you more in the game, always on your toes."
Bell is coming off another strong year offensively, batting .325 with nine home runs, 60 RBI and nine stolen bases at the Class A Advanced and Double-A levels combined.
Pence delivered a monster blast to center field in the first inning to put his team up 3-0, and the Royals would have little answer for another excellent performance by Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner. It was the first home run of October for Pence, who has hit .286/.388/.452 in 42 postseason at-bats.
"I'm sure I'll talk to them soon or they will talk [to the media]," Zimmerman said. "I think Anthony [Rendon] is the future third baseman. Obviously, he played great there. He played some second and some third. If he goes into Spring Training knowing that he is playing third base, he has a chance to be a very good third baseman.
"Obviously, I love playing third base. But some of the injuries over the last two or three years made it tougher for me to be an above average third baseman. It's hard to accept that, but I think that's the truth. Sometimes, the truth hurts sometimes. But Anthony has a great chance to be very good over there. I could be an above average first baseman if I work at it during Spring Training and the rest of this offseason. But that's not just my decision. Obviously, I'll talk with [general manager] Mike [Rizzo] and Matt and see what their plans are. I'm sure we'll find out in the next week or two."
The Nationals have first base open due to the impending free agency of 2014 starter Adam LaRoche.
"Center field (for 2015) right now is Jon Jay’s, based on how he played," general manager John Mozeliak said at a news conference Monday, per the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "I think he played a much better center field than he did a year ago.
“Peter Bourjos is someone we have under control and certainly envision him being a part of this club. How we create more playing time for him is something we strategize over this offseason. But, clearly, Jay’s performance and how he played the second half frankly is altering how we look at him moving forward."
Mozeliak added Jay will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his left wrist Wednesday. He is expected to need 6-8 weeks of recovery, but he will be ready for spring training.
He missed the NLDS with an oblique injury, but hit a tying homer in Game 5 of the NLCS.
"I’m a little heavy; I’ve gained a few pounds," Taveras said. "But I’m working on that, and physically I feel good." There's some speculation that Taveras came into the year about 20 pounds heavier than normal. Taveras has stressed that he won't make the same mistake twice. "When this [season] is over, I’m really going to prepare myself," he said. "I’m going to come back [to St. Louis] less heavy and ready for next year."
Taveras has also expressed a desire to play winter ball, but general manager John Mozeliak said he would prefer Taveras to undergo a training regimen in the United States.
Pence struck in the first inning. With two men on, Pence doubled to right, driving in a run. He would later come around to score during the inning. Pence finished 1 for 4, with one run scored and one RBI.