NLDS Game 3: Cardinals @ Cubs

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Regular season records: Cardinals (100-62), Cubs (97-65)

Series: Cardinals (1-1), Cubs (1-1)

First pitch: 5:07 pm CT

TV/Radio: TBS, 1120 KMOX, ESPN Radio

Cardinals lineup: Matt Carpenter (3B), Stephen Piscotty (1B), Matt Holliday (LF), Jason Heyward (RF), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Tommy Pham (CF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Michael Wacha (RHP)

Cubs lineup: Dexter Fowler (CF), Jorge Soler (RF), Kris Bryant (3B), Anthony Rizzo (1B), Starlin Castro (2B), Kyle Schwarber (LF), Addison Russell (SS), Miguel Montero (C), Jake Arrieta (RHP)

Reading material:

  • Why do Cards believe they can beat Jake Arrieta? Because they’ve made their last four postseason runs by beating the best (link)
  • Can Michael Wacha rekindle the October magic of 2013? (link)
  • Chicago’s rookies may be getting all the attention, but don’t overlook the contributions the Cards continue to get from their youngsters (link)
  • Matheny keeping his starting pitching options open for Game 4 (link)
  • A look at some of the notable players to be on both sides of this Cubs – Cards rivalry over the years (link)
  • Tale of the tape: Michael Wacha vs Jake Arrieta (link)

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20 Comments

Well MM has given Pham the CF start to jumpstart the offense. Hope it works out, though Holliday is still not at his best by far. Has Arrieta faced Pham or Piscotty before? We know we can get contributions from up and down the lineup, but hope the defense is less porous today to bolster Wacha as best as possible.

Grichuk has pop in his bat, when he’s not wiffing (which he seems to do more than Pham lately).
I actually think Holliday’s fine. Just getting into his groove. (Remember to keep in mind that he’s primarily a line-drive hitter.)
Ripken (MLBTV) had a good idea, which I trust the Cards have already BEEN doing? Take all the videos of every batter who’s gotten a hit off Arrieta, put ’em all in a loop….then keep playing it over & over. Maybe there’ll be some little trick in there our guys can see & use???
If Wacha gets in trouble early tonite, can’t find the zone & starts walking guys? I wonder who MM will put in. Waino? Lynn? Or I’m thinking Lyons….at least until HE messes up.
“Houston we have a problem….oops, no we don’t!” Hahaha.
Looks like the Astros will advance.

Jays bat off to a hot start – 3-0 in the first with 2 home runs – looks like there may not be an all Texas ALCS after all. But there is a ways to go yet,

Yeah, I saw the score. Now it’s 4-zip. How ’bout it. The Jays look like they’ve perked up. With the momentum of a win today? The Blue Jays make just manage to take the series! Woo-hoo!
But the the Royals have pulled ahead late. No telling now who’ll win.

6-0 Jays now; what a collapse for the Astros. I am not sure whether to fear the Royals or welcome them since Cards fans could be a majority at Kaufman if they meet inthe series. Hated how many Cubs fans were in place lasty game at Busch and hope we can return the favour tonight.

As for your earlier question, Bob? It looks like Piscotty hasn’t faced Arrieta yet. The stats say Pham’s faced him twice, and has a .500 against Arrieta, with no HR’s or RBI’s. So I guess that means he had 1 on-base hit but was stranded?
And you ain’t kiddin’! Busch looked almost half red & half blue the Cubs’ last game here.

Toronto’s torturing Texas! : )

Pretty good stuff, even if we don’t win. : )

So since the beginning of September the rotation which dominated the league all summer essentially disintegrated. Lynn and Wacha ran down, Martinez blew out and Garcia doesn’t have the nerves. They withstood the loss of Wainwright well for so long but ultimately that was the key play of the season as they had to wear out the kids. And you cannot win in post-season with only one starter however good Lackey might be. They are making some good ground against Arrieta so too bad Wacha didn’t hold.

And Yadi is out which cannot be good news going forward.

Well, I have faith in Cruz, if we can go forward. He hits much better, at least. Looks like Lackey’s pitching tomorrow. Unless we can do something tonite.
At least…the Cards still have three at bats left. Nerve-racking….

Geez, sure seems like it’s further along in the game than the bottom of the 6th. Whew.

Hard to believe they would get to Arrieta for some runs and still give up this many runs. Disappointing. Will have to be Lackey on short rest for the first time in a decade.

Yup….

Embarrassing. A record against us for post-season home runs. Hard to imagine given how good the pitchers had been all year. They were close to last in home runs allowed.

Uh maybe not so embarrassing. The Cubs have several great hitters on their team. That’s why they’re in the playoffs.
Besides, we’ve been a little crippled….altho’ it wasn’t because of Yadi.
So, we’re still OK. Lackey for tomorrow’s win…right?
Will see what MM has to say in the post-game interview….

MM officially announced just now, that Lackey’s starting tomorrow.

Our best shot – but a long shot. Hope for the best.

Someone asked on the MLB comments pages if Lyons had faced the Cubs and if he could perform as against Pittsburgh as a bit of an unknown quantity. He is prone to give up home runs though which would not be good in Wrigley. Who will step in if 3 days rest doesn’t work for Lackey?

I am beginning to agree with those who feel Matheny is good for nurturing young players and guiding the team through 162 but lacks the skills and technique required to win in competitive post-season. After this year, they will be weakened as a threat without upgrades or backup at 1st, catcher and left field. His pitching moves First late to replace Wacha, then to Seigrist earlier than usual, then to Maness at start of inning, then Wainwright having to pitch from the stretch with runner in scoring position, produced bad results – which he could not entirely foresee of course.

And the decision not to acquire starting pitching at the deadline has come back to haunt them big time. The youngsters over-achieved for much of the year,but gave a false sense of promise of what could happen in the post season. The steady decline of Martinez, Lynn and Wacha was a slow train wreck waiting to happen for the past 5 weeks or so, so this result is not unexpected. With Yadi hobbled the chances were that much more diminished. Next year some of these problems may compound if some needed small changes (not a firesale) are made.

Some good points. But as for a catcher? Did you see Cruz’ throw to 2nd to get Jackson out? Have you noticed how often Cruz has gotten on base lately (because he’s been batting more regularly.) Cruz is a solid back-up for Yadi. Then either Tartamella or Easley to be prepped for 3rd-string next year. The Cards have greater priorities than that for now.
But yes, clearly some pitching mistakes were made, timing-wise. It was evident that Wacha wasn’t cuttin’ it. Shouldda’ definitely been pulled earlier.
And MM was always counting on Martinez. It was an injury which couldn’t have been forseen. That’s like relying on Kershaw or Arrieta….and counting on them to get cha’ to the playoffs. You simply don’t anticipate something will happen to ’em.
I personally, think it was a mistake NOT to bring up Alex Reyes earlier this season as insurance. Heck, Martinez was brought up as a kid (which he still is). More work with Tuivailala to get him tuned up would’ve been a good idea, as well. We have some pitching options not even explored yet.
I still contend that altho’ Lyons is a bit above average, he isn’t great. As you said, he IS prone to giving up HR’s. He may have just lucked out somehow, pitching against the Pirates.
Holliday is clearly lacking in defensive capabilities. While I do suspect that Holliday’s bat is still decent? MM should just keep Grichuk in for him.
I trust Lackey, and feel he can get it done today. Then…if we luck out & actually win today’s game? I’d think Jaime might be worth another try in game 5? Tho’ MM may wanna’ go with Lynn again. Frankly, I have no idea. I think all the injuries have finally mounted up to be just too much for the Cards to over-come.

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