|PITTSBURGH ( COLE )|
ST LOUIS ( WAINWRIGHT )
|NL Division Series - Best of 5 - Game 5 - Tied 2-2|
|951||PITTSBURGH||+135||Ov 6.5,-120||+145||Ov 6.5,+100|
|952||ST LOUIS||-145||Un 6.5,+100||-155||Un 6.5,-120|
|vs Right-handed Starters||79-57||+21.7||59-73||3.8||0.241||0.301||3.5||0.233||0.298|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+3.4||5-2||4.6||0.258||0.315||3.1||0.187||0.270|
|vs Right-handed Starters||79-43||+22.8||63-54||5.1||0.274||0.333||3.6||0.247||0.303|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+2.8||4-2||4.6||0.241||0.327||2.3||0.192||0.244|
|9/25/2013||LIRIANO(L)||@ CHICAGO CUBS||ARRIETA(R)||2-4||L||-160||6.5 un||U||6||8||1||9||8||2|
|9/27/2013||BURNETT(R)||@ CINCINNATI||BAILEY(R)||4-1||W||120||7 un||U||6||8||0||6||4||0|
|9/28/2013||MORTON(R)||@ CINCINNATI||ARROYO(R)||8-3||W||110||7.5 ov||O||13||5||0||5||11||1|
|9/29/2013||CUMPTON(R)||@ CINCINNATI||REYNOLDS(R)||4-2||W||115||8 un||U||10||8||0||6||4||1|
|10/3/2013||BURNETT(R)||@ ST LOUIS||WAINWRIGHT(R)||1-9||L||130||6.5 ov||O||4||3||1||10||7||0|
|10/4/2013||COLE(R)||@ ST LOUIS||LYNN(R)||7-1||W||110||7 ov||O||10||9||0||4||5||1|
|10/6/2013||LIRIANO(L)||ST LOUIS||KELLY(R)||5-3||W||-160||7 un||O||8||6||0||7||6||1|
|10/7/2013||MORTON(R)||ST LOUIS||WACHA(R)||1-2||L||+105||7.5 un||U||1||2||0||3||5||0|
|10/9/2013||COLE(R)||@ ST LOUIS||WAINWRIGHT(R)|| |
|9/27/2013||LYNN(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||WOOD(L)||7-0||W||-165||7 un||P||10||9||0||7||8||1|
|9/28/2013||WAINWRIGHT(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||JACKSON(R)||6-2||W||-205||7 un||O||10||7||0||7||6||0|
|9/29/2013||WESTBROOK(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||SAMARDZIJA(R)||4-0||W||-150||7.5 un||U||9||5||0||5||5||0|
|10/6/2013||KELLY(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||LIRIANO(L)||3-5||L||150||7 un||O||7||6||1||8||6||0|
|10/7/2013||WACHA(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||MORTON(R)||2-1||W||-115||7.5 un||U||3||5||0||1||2||0|
|PITTSBURGH: HITTING: The Pirates' two-month casual flirtation with competitiveness was cute while it lasted, before this team fizzled to a 72-win season. This team is still years away. But don't blame OF ANDREW McCUTCHEN, who might be the best all-around player in the division. Of all the ballyhooed outfielders from the 2005 draft, he's the one GMs would most want to build around. OF JOSE TABATA, not so much. He's serviceable and has plus speed, but the six-year extension the Pirates gave him was absurd. 2B NEIL WALKER has settled into a respectable place short of stardom. 3B PEDRO ALVAREZ has a lot of uphill climbing to do if he wants to wake up old expectations. He'll compete with 3B CASEY MCGEHEE for a starting role, but it's most likely that Alvarez moves to first base to back up 1B GARRETT JONES. OFs NATE McLOUTH and ALEX PRESLEY are underwhelming choices for the starting left-field spot. SS CLINT BARMES and C ROD BARAJAS would like to thank the Pirates for wildly overpaying them. |
STARTING PITCHING: JEFF KARSTENS looked pretty decent for much of last year. But that's what happens when you get to log 14 percent of your innings against the lowly Astros. Better teams exposed him for the replacement-level guy he is. Contrary to what a lot of bored, lazy sportswriters wanted you to believe last year, CHARLIE MORTON doesn't pitch like Roy Halladay. At all. JAMES McDONALD could still be special if he cut down his walk rate. ERIK BEDARD was a respectable signing. Even if his shoulder acts up, he cost only $4.5 million for a year. If he's healthy, he's still well above-average. KEVIN CORREIA may only be slightly more effective at striking out hitters than a batting tee, but the Pirates are grateful for the innings he eats. BRAD LINCOLN is the designated fill-in if any of the other starters get hurt (cough, Bedard). In the meantime, he's a swing man.
RELIEF PITCHING: Closer JOEL HANRAHAN has been outstanding since first donning a Pirates uniform in 2009, converting 40-of-44 saves with a 1.83 ERA last season. It makes sense for the rebuilding Pirates to move him, but they'll probably keep the hand they were dealt. There isn't another qualified ninth-inning pitcher in this bullpen though. EVAN MEEK was bit by the shoulder bug. His early season was an unqualified disaster, but he turned it around and regained his form once he came back in September. He should be fully healthy again, and a quiet source of a few saves. CHRIS RESOP is another primary set-up man, but he posted a 4.39 ERA and 1.48 WHIP in 2011. DANIEL McCUTCHEN won't be so lucky with his ERA this year if he doesn't lower his walk rate. He's just not a guy to put much faith in.
|ST LOUIS: HITTING: Alienate and trade your talented young centerfielder for bullpen scraps and a middling, impending free-agent starter. Justify your ludicrous pitching changes by blaming crowd noise and your innocent bullpen coach'and you too could win a World Series! This was Tony La Russa baseball. But he's gone now, as is the all-world Albert Pujols. SS RAFAEL FURCAL liked his short stint in the Show Me State enough to sign up for more. OF CARLOS BELTRAN will hit second after an impressive 2011 campaign during which he produced solid numbers in pitchers' parks amidst weak lineups. 2Bs TYLER GREENE and DANIEL DESCALSO are the latest plucky 'gamer' to play infield at Busch. Resuscitated slugger 1B LANCE BERKMAN shifts to a much more suitable defensive position. OF MATT HOLLIDAY's OPS remains as strong as ever. 3B DAVID FREESE will never have to buy a drink in Missouri again after his postseason heroics. C YADIER MOLINA is a defensive whiz behind the plate and an underrated hitter. OFs ALLEN CRAIG and JON JAY are more suited to platoon roles, but Jay will be starting in center on Opening Day. |
STARTING PITCHING: His stuff isn't nearly what it used to be, and he's more than earned his reputation within the game as a towering crybaby. But on the mound, CHRIS CARPENTER remains ruthlessly effective when he's healthy. But he'll miss the first couple of months of the 2012 campaign due to shoulder problems. ADAM WAINWRIGHT should be ready to go on Opening Day, and has shown every reason to think he'll be his old brilliant self. JAIME GARCIA cannot sustain a sub-2.00 ERA for a full season. He's a mid-rotation starter, but one of the better ones in all of baseball. Did KYLE LOHSE really register a 1.17 WHIP over an entire season? Really? He just doesn't miss enough bats to keep that going. JAKE WESTBROOK stayed healthy for a full season again, which is a relief given his past dalliances with the DL. He's an innings eater who's capable of another dozen wins. LANCE LYNN gives the Cardinals enviable depth in the rotation. He'll probably slide back to the bullpen once Carpenter returns. Uber-prospect SHELBY MILLER could be a second-half call-up.
RELIEF PITCHING: It doesn't look pretty when JASON MOTTE winds up and delivers a pitch, but in the end, results are results. The converted catcher has finally nailed down the closer role that many predicted would be his a few years ago. The only way he loses it this time is if he hurts himself with that painful delivery. FERNANDO SALAS can more than hold his own if that happens. He'll slot into the eighth-inning role, but he provides more of the pitching depth that is a hallmark of this Cardinals team. KYLE McCLELLAN, like Lynn, is serviceable both in relief or in the rotation. But he's better in the former role.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (PITTSBURGH-ST LOUIS) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
(Updates. With AP Photos.)
*Pirates-Cardinals Preview* ===========================
By R.B. FALLSTROM AP Sports Writer
Pittsburgh (94-68) at St. Louis (97-65), 8:07 p.m. EDT
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Heading into Game 5 of their NL division series against Pittsburgh, the Cardinals can take comfort in this: They're 7-1 the last three years when facing postseason elimination.
Manager Mike Matheny said poise comes from a mind-set of sticking to routine that is established during spring training.
"We saw it in Pittsburgh, and I anticipate seeing it tomorrow," Matheny said Tuesday after most players attended an optional workout. "They show up like it's another - it's another great day."
Starter Adam Wainwright was loose and playful on the podium, joking that he got knocked out early on purpose in last year's division series finale at Washington to "get the mojo flowing." He tore a page from the Tony La Russa quote book, declining to discuss possible wrinkles for Game 5, turning to Matheny and asking, "Is that a scouting report? That's a scouting report."
Though this is the Pittsburgh Pirates' first playoff appearance since 1992, they've looked seasoned, too.
"This is obviously an exciting time, a high-pressure situation, and you know, this is what you prepare for all year," rookie starter Gerrit Cole said. "Yeah, it's extremely exciting, and I can't wait."
The Pirates will be facing an opponent they all know too well. It'll be the 24th meeting of the season, with strong stretches on both sides and the Pirates holding a 12-11 edge.
"You've got to meet the demands of the game," manager Clint Hurdle said. "I don't think I've been in a game where somebody just didn't show up."
Runs figure to be at a premium. Michael Wacha flirted with a no-hitter for the second straight game on Monday, holding Pittsburgh hitless until Pedro Alvarez's eighth-inning homer, and St. Louis held on for a 2-1 win that brought the series back to Busch Stadium.
Wainwright allowed a run in seven innings in the opener and is 5-0 in his last six starts. The 19-game winner became the third pitcher in franchise history to twice lead the league in victories, joining Dizzy Dean and Mort Cooper. Wainwright embraces the role of ace he inherited from injured Chris Carpenter.
Last season was Wainwright's first year back from reconstructive elbow surgery, and he described his stuff as "hit or miss." He allowed six runs in 2 1-3 innings in Game 5 of the division series against the Nationals, then rebounded to beat San Francisco in Game 4 of the NL championship series.
"This year I have all the confidence in the world in my stuff," Wainwright said. "It's a completely different situation."
Wainwright leans on advice injured closer Jason Isringhausen gave him in 2006 - just breathe. Then a rookie, Wainwright got the final out in the NLCS and the World Series. He said the bullpen experience taught him the "urgency of each pitch."
"Going out there and getting a guy out one time like it's going to be the last time you ever face him, that's the mentality I took into starting," Wainwright said. "I have to give it everything I've got every pitch until they take the ball from me."
Cole made a dazzling postseason debut in Game 2, when he retired 11 consecutive hitters. Now that they've seen him, the Cardinals expect to have more success against him.
"I think it's going to help big-time," Matt Adams said. "We're going to know how the ball's coming out of his hand and know what his tendencies are."
Of course, Cole has seen them, too.
"So it's just going to come down to executing a handful of pitches, being able to hit the spot or execute the pitch when I need to," Cole said.
Statistically, the series is almost dead even. The Pirates are batting .236 with 14 runs, while the Cardinals are hitting .192 with 15 runs.
Matheny said leadoff man Matt Carpenter, in a 1-for-15 slide with six strikeouts, has been trying too hard.
"Looks like he's seeing the ball better," Matheny said. "What he's guilty of is carrying too much and feeling like he's got to do something extra special."
Alvarez has three homers and five RBIs for the Pirates, and NL MVP candidate Andrew McCutchen is batting .357. But leadoff man Starling Marte 1 for 15 and Neil Walker is hitless in 16 at-bats.
Hurdle said he wasn't contemplating changes for Game 5.
"These men are both capable and they have done it in the past," Hurdle said. "We have been pitched effectively in a couple different spots. I have every confidence that tomorrow night will be the night that they get going."
|Last Updated: 9/21/2017 12:55:42 PM EST|