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NL Notes: Dodgers, Astros gear up for an epic clash

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Your NL Notes for World Series Week

World Series - Workout Day - Dodger Stadium Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

He was down and out, and now he’s back.

The Dodgers will see the return of Corey Seager for the 2017 World Series against the Houston Astros. Seager missed some of the NLDS and all of the NLCS with a back sprain suffered during a routine slide against the Diamondbacks in Game 3 of the NLDS.

It’s been two weeks since Seager took an epidural shot to alleviate the pain, and the relief is right on schedule. Seager will join an L.A. offensive barrage that is fresh off an 11-run outburst that put the Cubs away in Game 5 of the NLCS.

Here’s what else is happening around the National League:

The wait is over, Mets fans. Mickey Callaway has been hired as the Mets’ 21st manager. Callaway, who signed a three-year deal with New York, comes to Queens from Cleveland, where he served as pitching coach for a throwing corps that has become one of the best in baseball. The Mets will rely on Callaway as they look to rejuvenate a pitching staff that has struggled through the last two seasons.

Happy trails, Dusty Baker! The Nationals skipper was fired last week after a second consecutive NLDS exit. You can’t really be surprised about this one —the Nats have put together too many 95-100-win seasons to have never gotten past the Division Series. Here’s an ugly reality for Baker: he’s managed in the playoffs nine times, and seven of those squads were ousted in the Division Series or Wild-Card game.

One great part of October is the concept of the unexpected hero. For the Dodgers, it was Kike Hernandez, who was an unknown until he broke loose for three homers in Game 5 of the NLCS. Hernandez hit three homers and drove in seven runs, setting a record for the most runs driven in in a playoff game. Hats off to Dave Roberts for bringing this guy in.