It is a day we have waited patiently to come for two days. The St. Louis Cardinals will finally host the Texas Rangers tonight at 6:00PM MST. The game will take place at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, which will be the location of the World Series Championship ceremony. We just don't know which team will be erupting with jubilation yet.
Trailing the series 3-2, the Cardinals will go with Jaime Garcia to push the 2011 season to its latest possible day. Aside from a disastrous inning in Milwaukee, Garcia has been brilliant in the playoffs, including seven shutout innings against Texas in a Game 2 loss on October 20.
|2011 - Jaime Garcia||13-7||32||32||2||2||0||0||194.2||207||100||77||15||50||156||3.56||1.32|
In an attempt to neutralize the southpaw's effectiveness, Ron Washington has gone with eight right-handed batters in his lineup:
1. Ian Kinsler (R) 2B
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Josh Hamilton (L) LF
4. Michael Young (R) 1B
5. Adrián Beltré (R) 3B
6. Nelson Cruz (R) RF
7. Mike Napoli (R) C
8. Craig Gentry (R) CF
9. Colby Lewis (R) P
As Rob Neyer points out though, Garcia has immunity to the platoon attack. This construction means Mitch Moreland and David Murphy will be on the bench to start, and Yorvit Torrealba loses out on the festivities due to the DH rule. This is more evidence the NL has the rule right.
By the way, the Cardinals lost that Game 2 despite Garcia's seven shutout innings. That prevented a 2-0 series lead for St. Louis, critical in the roadmap draft that puts them on elimination's doorstep. The one reason was Colby Lewis, who allowed just one run on four hits in 6.2 innings as Garcia's opposition. Lewis gets the start tonight with the chance of giving the Texas Rangers their first World Series title in their 51 year history.
|2011 - Colby Lewis||14-10||33||32||2||1||0||0||200.1||187||103||98||35||56||169||4.40||1.21|
Lewis will be facing a the lineup that Tony La Russa seems to like most, the one without Ryan Theriot, Jon Jay OR Colby Rasmus.
1. Rafael Furcal (S) SS
2. Skip Schumaker (L) CF
3. Albert Pujols (R) 1B
4. Lance Berkman (S) RF
5. Matt Holliday (R) LF
6. David Freese (R) 3B
7. Yadier Molina (R) C
8. Nick Punto (S) 2B
9. Jaime Garcia (L) P.
Whoever you are rooting for, this ought to follow the Series' heretofore script with another gripping game. GO BASEBALL!