Chicago Cubs (0-1) at St Louis (1-0)
When: Saturday, October 10th, 2015
Where: Busch Stadium, St Louis, MO
Time: 5:35 ET
TV: TBS Radio: XM 183, 89, 80
John Lackey and the Cardinals cooled of the Chicago Cubs last night to take a 1-0 series lead in their National League Division Series. Lackey pitched 7.1 shutout innings surrendering only 2 singles. Kevin Siegrist and Trevor Rosenthal closed out the game and the Cardinals pitchers struck out 10 Cubs batters. Jon Lester was terrible for the Cubs, but homeruns by rookies Stephen Piscotty and Thomas Pham did him in. Piscotty also drove home a run with a double. The Cubs just couldn’t get anything going after winning their previous nine games. Kyle Schwarber, who homered in the Wild Card game, had two of the Cubs three hits.
That sets up a pivotal game 2 when the Cubs send Kyle Hendricks to the mound. Hendricks was great in his final two regular season outings pitching 12 scoreless innings and striking out 17 against the Brewers and Royals. Both of those games ended in 1-0 Cubs wins, so he’s probably hoping for a little more run support tonight. Hendricks is 0-1 with a 3.97 ERA in 4 career starts against St. Louis and gave up four runs and six hits in five innings in a no-decision on May 5th in his only outing against them this season. The Cardinals will counter with the red-hot Jaime Garcia. He’s 0-2 with a 4.23 ERA in 6 career postseason starts, but he’s pitched very well in his 20 starts this season coming back from a series of arm injuries. He’s more of a command pitcher now as evident of his strikeout rate going down, but his ERA is also going down. He had a career best 2.43 ERA this season and finished 10-6. He relies heavily now on his sinker and changeup.
Just when you count out the Cardinals, they seem to always come back. The Cubs were red-hot entering this series, but were quickly cooled off. I think Garcia has a similar outing as Lackey had last night. The Cardinals, I think, will hit Hendricks and take a 2-0 series lead.
Pick: Cardinals -130