Date/Time: October 14th, 8:00 PM ET
Probable Starters: Wainwright (St. Louis) vs. Ryu (Los Angeles)
Moneyline: Cardinals -122
The time is definitely here for the Los Angeles Dodgers to panic. They’re down 2-0 to the St. Louis Cardinals in the NLCS, and they are going to be needing a major pick-me-up from a rookie when they face off with the Cards in Game 3 of this series.
The truth of the matter is that the pitching has been there for LA. The Cardinals have scored just four runs in this series, and in 22 innings, that’s tremendous. The problem is that there have only been 16 hits to show for their work, and six of those have come from LF Carl Crawford and 2B Mark Ellis. There hasn’t been a single home run hit in this series, and if you take out the 2-run hit that 3B Juan Uribe had in Game 1, there hasn’t been a single RBI to show for anyone’s work. That’s why LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu literally has to be perfect in this game. Ryu had one great start against the Cardinals this year, as he threw seven innings in a win against them back in August in which he allowed just five hits and one unearned runs. However, against the Braves in his first career postseason start, he allowed six hits and four runs before getting the hook. The rookie hasn’t really had a good start since September 24th, but he has had plenty of rest for this one, having not pitched since Game 3 of the ALDS.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals know that they are in the driver’s seat. They knocked off LHP Clayton Kershaw and found a way to take down RHP Zack Greinke, and now, they are going to have two relatively weak pitchers in a row to deal with. Yes, they are on the road, but if they can take just one of these three games, this series is basically going to be over with going into two games at Busch Stadium at the end of the week. The chance is there to make it so LA’s season ends here at Dodger Stadium, though, and a lot of it has to do with the man that is on the mound on Monday, RHP Adam Wainwright. Wainwright has been a terror to try to hit in the postseason in his career, and he proved it by allowing just one run in each of his two starts against the Pittsburgh Pirates last week in the NLDS. His wins both came at home though, which does allow for some speculation as to how well he will do on the road with 50,000+ screaming fans wearing Dodger Blue, but we have a good feeling that the good times are going to keep rolling for the righty.
However, we really don’t think that it is going to be enough. Ryu was a beast at home this season, and though he hasn’t pitched all that well here in his last two starts, we do think that this is the day that things turn around. The Cards haven’t exactly been blistering the baseball either, and we think that they are going to be forced back into a series here in Game 3.
St. Louis Cardinals @ Los Angeles Dodgers Pick: Los Angeles Dodgers +118
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.