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Looking ahead to NLCS Game 2: Dodgers-Cardinals

Oct 12, 2013, 10:43 AM EDT

Michael Wacha Getty Getty Images

The Dodgers and Cardinals will have little time to recover from their extra-inning marathon last night, as the two teams will meet in Game 2 of the NLCS this afternoon at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. The game will start at 4 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on TBS.

Here’s a quick look at the pitching matchup and some random notes:

After dropping Game 1, the Dodgers will turn to their ace Clayton Kershaw to even up the series. The National League Cy Young Award favorite had a 0.69 ERA and 18/4 K/BB ratio in 13 innings over two starts during the NLDS against the Braves. He pitched on three days’ rest for the first time in his career in Game 4 on Monday, but he’ll be going on regular rest in this one.

Michael Wacha will get the ball for the Cardinals after he flirted with a no-hitter in Game 4 of the NLDS against the Pirates on Monday. The rookie right-hander ended up giving up one run on one hit over 7 1/3 innings while striking out nine batters and walking a pair. He held the Nationals hitless for 8 2/3 innings during his final regular season start on September 24, so the Dodgers will hope to buck that trend. This will be their first look at Wacha.

With the quick turnaround, it will be interesting to see whether Andre Ethier is back in the lineup for Game 2 or if Don Mattingly decides to go with Skip Schumaker in center field. Coming off a left ankle injury, Ethier wasn’t moving around great last night and was eventually replaced Scott Van Slyke in the 13th inning. Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times notes that Ethier was limping out of the visiting clubhouse after the game and had his ankle taped.

Trevor Rosenthal threw 33 pitches over two innings in Game 1 last night, so Cardinals manager Mike Matheny might have to go in another direction for a possible save opportunity this afternoon. With Kershaw and Wacha on the mound, it looks like we could see another low-scoring nail-biter.

  1. spudchukar - Oct 12, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    Jedi master Matheny saved Seigrist for today’s game, and could go back to Martinez who threw only a few pitches, has Mujica in a pinch, and since the Cards had Thursday off, and will be able to rest again tomorrow a return of Rosenthal isn’t impossible. He is a horse.

    • hustleandflomax - Oct 12, 2013 at 11:49 AM

      I like that Siegrist wasn’t used…he can throw 2 innings of shut-down ball if needed, regardless of L/R match-ups. Cards depth in the bullpen is no joke.

  2. stevequinn - Oct 12, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    After this afternoon, baseball will know about Michael Wacha.

    I think many teams will be knocking at the Cardinals’ door this off-season looking to trade for some of the talent the pitching-rich Cardinals have. It’s almost obscene for one team to have that many young arms. Bodes well for the Cardinals future.

    And it’s not just pitching. The Cardinals also have many everyday players just waiting for the opportunity to play with the “big club.” Next year, CF will be manned by Oscar Taveras not John Jay.

    • hustleandflomax - Oct 12, 2013 at 11:32 AM

      Taveras needs to prove he can stay healthy before anybody gives him a CF job. I think he projects more as a corner OF anyways. As for today’s pitching matchup, most people think it’s a forgone conclusion that Kershaw will win today. Maybe Kershaw will shut down the Cards’ bats, but will they be able to mount any offense against Wacha? Just because he’s not (yet) a household name, folks, doesn’t mean he’s a scrub.

  3. jre80 - Oct 12, 2013 at 11:50 AM

    Wacha IS a STUD. Been projected to be the whole time. Just has to prove he can handle playoff pressure cause he’s gonna have to get used to it. By the way. Don’t believe the birds have any interest in trading any of these arms anytime soon.

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