NLCS Series Preview: San Francisco Giants (94-68) vs St. Louis Cardinals (ugh)

I guess I really should title this SF (3-2) vs StL (4-2), since all regular season stats somehow don't matter anymore. It drives me nuts that all the graphics in the postseason are basically just what a player has done in his last 5 games. It's even more laughable with pitchers.

The Giants got a dose of good luck in the NLDS when Reds ace Johnny Cueto exited game one with an oblique strain after throwing only six pitches. The Reds ended up having to turn to Mike Leake in game four when Cueto still wasn't ready, and the results weren't pretty for the Reds. Leake gave up five runs in four innings and change, and the Reds lost a game that was started by Barry Zito. I repeat, Barry Zito. It was a strange series in that the road team won every game. Maybe I should stop complaining so much about home field advantage (laughing).

The Cardinals played the role of Karma in the NLDS, biting the Nats in the ass for their terrible mismanagement of Strasburg. Though to be fair Strasburg's presence wouldn't have prevented the Nats from leaving approximately 101512 runners on base this series. Gonzalez had two decent starts,and Strasburg replacement Ross Detweiler also pitched well, but Jordan Zimmermann and Edwin Jackson shat the bed. Not to mention Drew Storen and the rest of the Nats pen, who blew a six run lead in the final innings. I can't wait until the Nats go 79-83 next year.

To the Cardinals credit, they lit up the aformentioned starters and their own pitchers did a great job shutting down one of the top offenses in the NL (even if they did get a little help from sequencing…). Chris Carpenter has seemingly been out since forever, but he showed that he didn't have any rust to knock off. They must have stolen whatever mojo was fueling the Orioles this year in their 9th inning comeback against Washington. You were knocked out of the playoffs by the bats of Pete Kozma and Daniel Descalso, Nats /facepalm.

Lineups

Cards Giants
CF Jon Jay CF Angel Pagan
RF Carlos Beltran 2B Marco Scutaro
LF Matt Holliday 3B Pablo Sandoval
1B Allen Craig C Buster Posey
C Yadier Molina RF Hunter Pence
3B David Freese 1B Brandon Belt
2B Daniel Descalso LF Xavier Nady/Gregor Blanco
SS Pete Kozma SS Brandon Crawford

Projected Rotations

Cards: Lance Lynn, Chris Carpenter, Kyle Lohse, Adam Wainwright

Giants: Madison Bumgarner, Ryan Vogelsong, Matt Cain, Barry Zito/Tim Lincecum

I'm guessing that it will probably be another Zito/Big Time Timmy Tim combo start for game 4.

Storylines you may or may not care about

Giants 1B coach took a line drive to the head during BP yesterday on a Buster Posey liner that just cleared the pitcher's mound screen. I'm guessing those are going to be higher next year. He was able to walk of the field with assistance, and was released by the hospital later that day. After what happened to Brandon McCarthy earlier this year, you can't be too careful.

NLDS Game 2 starter Jaime Garcia was diagonsed with a rotator cuff strain after the game, and is probably headed to the surgeon's table.

Predictions

OV Playoff prognonsticator: Cardinals in 5

berselius

About berselius

How appropriate. You fight like a cow.

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