Duda, Conforto back in lineup; Coghlan starts

Duda, Conforto back in lineup; Coghlan starts

Immediately after National League Championship Series Game 1, in which Mets third baseman David Wright finished 0-for-3 to fall to 1-for-19 this postseason, manager Terry Collins considered dropping his captain down from the No. 2 hole.

"Here's my question: Who hits there?" Collins quipped. "Who the heck do you replace him with?

"Syndergaard's not swinging real well right now either," Collins said, referring to Game 2 (Sunday, 7:30 p.m. ET air time, 8:07 first pitch on TBS) starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard.

Game Date Matchup
Gm 1 Oct. 17 NYM 4, CHC 2
Gm 2 Oct. 18 NYM 4, CHC 1
Gm 3 Oct. 20 NYM 5, CHC 2
Gm 4 Oct. 21 NYM 8, CHC 3

When he ultimately came up with a blank, unwilling to shift right-handed Travis d'Arnaud or rookie Michael Conforto up in the order against Cubs righty Jake Arrieta, Collins settled on his usual lineup for Game 2 at Citi Field.

Lucas Duda, who slumped throughout the Mets' NL Division series against the Dodgers, returns to the lineup at first base in place of Michael Cuddyer. Duda went 2-for-18 with 11 strikeouts in the NLDS.

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Conforto is back in the lineup in left field after being replaced by Juan Lagares in Game 1.

For the Cubs, Chris Coghlan, who homered off Syndergaard in the Mets' rookie's Major League debut in May, got the start Sunday night, batting sixth, after Jorge Soler got the start in Game 1.

"He did hit a home run against this guy earlier in the season," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "Let's put him back out there and see if history repeats itself."

After David Ross caught Jon Lester on Saturday night, Miguel Montero will be behind the plate Sunday to catch Arrieta.

Arrieta led the Major Leagues with 22 wins and posted a 14-1 record and 1.49 ERA in 19 road starts, including his one postseason start away from Wrigley Field.

This will be the second meeting this season between Arrieta and Syndergaard, who were matched up in the May 12 game at Wrigley. Besides Coghlan's homer, Kris Bryant had three hits in the game, just missing the cycle by a double. Coghlan also started Game 1 of the NL Division Series against the Cardinals' John Lackey and went 0-for-3.

Kyle Schwarber is in left field and batting second, and he is one home run shy of joining Evan Longoria as the only rookies to hit more than four homers in the postseason.

The full Game 2 lineups:

Mets:
1. Curtis Granderson, RF
2. David Wright, 3B
3. Daniel Murphy, 2B
4. Yoenis Cespedes, CF
5. Lucas Duda, 1B
6. Travis d'Arnaud, C
7. Michael Conforto, LF
8. Wilmer Flores, SS
9. Noah Syndergaard, RHP

Cubs:
1. Dexter Fowler, CF
2. Kyle Schwarber, LF
3. Kris Bryant, 3B
4. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
5. Starlin Castro, 2B
6. Chris Coghlan, RF
7. Miguel Montero, C
8. Javier Baez, SS
9. Jake Arrieta, RHP

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.