Adam Cartwright won 19 games this season. Image courtesy of skysports.com
It doesn’t happen often but the two best teams in baseball will face off in the World Series starting Thursday morning (AEST). The Boston Red Sox and St Louis Cardinals won their respective divisions and led the league in wins. But that’s where the similarities end; the Sox have a veteran team which is based on offence, while the Cards feature the best young pitching rotation in the Majors.
It is no surprise to see both outfits going to their weapons in game one of the series with the Cards’ most experienced man Adam Wainwright going up against Jon Lester at Fenway Park. Both pitchers are coming off their worst performance in the post-season last start, but those efforts were an exception to the norm and this should still be a low-scoring affair.
Something else that went against the grain was how well the St Louis line-up fared against the Dodgers’ star southpaw Clayton Kershaw in game six of the National League Championship Series. The Cards tore the best pitcher in baseball apart with Kershaw getting pulled in the fifth inning as St Louis wiped Los Angeles out with a 9-0 victory. The Cards are only hitting .242 on the season against lefties, though, compared to .278 against right-handers, so Lester should be able to keep the run tally down, even though he can be a little erratic at times.
Wainwright has never thrown against the Red Sox before. He went 19-9 this season and has given up just four runs in his three post-season starts across 23 innings with an ERA of 1.57. He was a phenomenal 10-3 on the road during the regular season, but he was far less effective at night going 10-7 in 22 starts.
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