Cubs vs. Cardinals Series Thread (Games 29-31)
It's rivalry time, folks! The redbirds come into town with a 20-11 record and the first spot in the division. This is the first time the two teams will face off in 2019. Despite the gap in their records, the two teams should be matched pretty evenly. The Cards come into the series second in the NL in runs scored, but the Cubs are only 4 runs behind them and trail only the Dodgers in WRC+ and actually lead the NL in WOBA. Both teams also bring tremendous production from the SS position, where Paul DeJong and Javier Baez have each contributed to the offensive resurgence of shortstops across the maors. The Cards have had a slightly better bullpen, but the Cubs have had the edge from starting pitchers. See the pitching matchups below.
CHC: RHP Kyle Hendricks (1-4, 5.33 ERA)
STL: RHP Jack Fleherty (3-1, 4.06 ERA)
First pitch 1:20pmCDT
Hendricks got knocked around for 7 earned runs in his start against the D-Backs. 2019 has not yet seen the sharp command that had allowed him to succeed in previous years. Marcell Ozuna had Hendricks's number in the past (1.157 OPS against) and has been showing off his power in the early going this year.
Jack Flaherty has lowered his walk rates and kept his strikeout rate over 10 per nine innings, but he's allowed 7 homeruns already. He faced the Cubs 3 times in 2018 and went 1-1 with 5 earned runs in 12.2 innings.
CHC: RHP Yu Darvish (2-3, 5.02 ERA)
STL: RHP Michael Wacha (2-0, 4.78 ERA)
First pitch 3:05pmCDT
Darvish had his best start of the season last time out. He went 6 innings and allowed only 1 earned run for a win against the D-Backs. He also still gave up 4 walks and another homerun (7 on the season). Most Cardinals will be facing him for the first time.
Wacha missed much of 2018 with one of those pesky oblique injuries. In 2019, it's the base on balls that's nagging at him. Last time out he pitched 5 innings and was good enough to get a win against the Nats (3 earned runs). There are a bunch of Cubs' hitters with gaudy numbers against him. As a group, they have a .997 OPS against him in 163 at bats.
CHC: LHP José Quintana (3-1, 3.48 ERA)
STL: RHP Adam Wainwright (3-2, 3.73 ERA)
First pitch 6:05pmCDT
Quintana has been extremely sharp in most of his starts so far. Last time, he was good enough to get through 5.2 allowing only 5 baserunners, but two of those baserunners got to trot their way around. As a group, the current Cardinals have mashed against him (.979 OPS against).
Adam Wainwright is now in his 15th season as a Cardinal and is recovering from an injury-shortened 2018. His velocity is down a bit, as you might expect of a pitcher in his late 30s. He's been effective against current Cubs, and Javy has a particularly bad 3-17 against him with 5 strikeouts.
Eric S 2 hours 57 min ago (view)
Credit to Mills bouncing back strong - fifth straight quality start by the rotation certainly helps things. Yu for the series win tomorrow
crunch 3 hours 1 min ago (view)
schwarber in the bottom 10th! walkoff homer.
Jackstraw 3 hours 13 min ago (view)
Throws strikes like Chatwood. Holds runners like Darvish.
Eric S 3 hours 21 min ago (view)
This smells like a Chatwood game.
Eric S 3 hours 23 min ago (view)
Almora - what a tool non-play there.
crunch 3 hours 37 min ago (view)
phew...kimbrel is fresh off taking a half season away from the game, but im ready for a bit less drama out of his appearances.
crunch 3 hours 40 min ago (view)
lorenzen is low-key one of the most exciting players in the game, seriously. he's fun on the mound, at the plate, and baserunning.
Eric S 3 hours 44 min ago (view)
Well that settles it: Lorenzen is a better base runner than Brach. Brach haint got nuttin’
crunch 3 hours 45 min ago (view)
rizzo's power outage has been a little alarming. it seems to be bad luck more than anything obvious, though.
Eric S 3 hours 53 min ago (view)
Near warning track power Rizzo not nearly as fun as home run derby Rizzo
Eric S 4 hours 5 min ago (view)
More rare sighting in last few weeks: a Descalso plate appearance or a Rizzo home run? Descalso PA wins by an eyelash
Descalso actually had one his better at bats (even though he should have been rung up on a missed strike three) — a line drive one hopper to the shortstop
crunch 4 hours 28 min ago (view)
they're celebrating the 69 cubs at the park tonight.
they had a bunch of vets (led by billy williams) do the 7th along with a video edited together of ernie banks + ron santo singing the 7th so they could all sing along. great touch.
crunch 4 hours 52 min ago (view)
montgomery is going to be used as a SP for KC. good for him.
also, a.mills has calmed down into a hell of a nice welcome back start. he's back on my xmas card list.
crunch 6 hours 9 min ago (view)
31 pitches, 3 HBP by mills...and only 3 runs given up in 1.2ip so far!
crunch 6 hours 26 min ago (view)
okay, im done with alec mills.
crunch 6 hours 32 min ago (view)
almora picks up a career highlight reel catch in CF.
even heyward was pumped.