NLDS Game Three Snapshot

The series is tied 1-1

Game two featured Jack Flaherty and Mike Foltynewicz in a perceived mismatch. That, though, was not the case as the Braves and Cardinals remained locked into a postseason pitchers dual for all nine innings.


The Braves bested JFlare, though, and Folty pitched masterfully, nearly eliminating his fastball all together and frustrating the Cardinals hitters with slider after slider after slider. That was enough to hold the Cardinals to just six total hits on the night, and to eliminate the rare threats to break up the shutout.


And so, the Cardinals left SunTrust Park with the split, and headed back to the comforts of home field advantage.


Game three, though, doesn't get any easier.


Tonight's Starters

Mike Soroka 29 starts, 174.2 IP, 2.68 ERA, 3.85 xFIP, 20.8 K%, 5.8 BB%, 5.1 Barrel%

Vs Cardinals (2019): 2 Starts, 13 IP, 8 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, 8 SO

Small Sample Size Warning:

  • Matt Carpenter 5 AB, 2 H, 1 RBI, 1 SO

  • Paul Goldschmidt 4 AB, 2 H, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 SO

  • Marcell Ozuna 6 AB, 0 H, 0 BB, 1 SO


What you'll see (from Ben Cerutti)

"The Cardinals have hit similar fastballs really well (.436 xwOBA), and thus I give the Cardinals a good chance at beating up on Soroka. What I am worried about is that Cardinals have not seen an offspeed pitch similar to Soroka's and he doesn't throw a curve."

Adam Wainwright 31 starts, 171.2 IP, 4.19 ERA, 4.39 xFIP, 39.2 Hard Hit%, 6.9 BB%, 8.6 Barrel%

Vs Braves (2019): 1 Start, 4 IP, 5 H, 5 ER, 5 BB, 2 SO Small Sample Size Warning:

  • Freddie Freeman 21 AB, 5 H (2 2B), 5 BB, 6 SO

  • Adam Duvall 11 AB, 2 H, 2 BB, 4 SO

  • Nick Markakis 9 AB, 5 H, (3 2B) 2 BB

What you'll see (from Ben Cerutti)

"When it comes to similar fastballs and curve balls to Adam Wainwright's, the Braves have been carved up. Their xwOBAs of .216 and .000, respectively, make me feel like Wainwright could give the Cardinals a real shot in this game despite the overall numbers of the two starting pitchers seemingly giving the Braves quite a large edge."


Fun Facts

Mark Melancon

On the season, Melancon's strand rate is a reasonable 78.3%. (Gerritt Cole's strand rate is the best in the game at 83.3%. But, he's not human... so I'm not sure that counts!) With runners in scoring position, though, it collapses to 12.9%. His strikeout rate drops to 18.8% (from 23.9%), and his walk rate goes up to 8.7% (from 6.3%). Melancon has been an effective closer for years, but if there's pressure, he can crack.


Carlos Martínez

The closer for just half a season (and mostly out of necessity). He has an elite arsenal of pitches, and despite the occasional command issue, he can use any of them however Yadi wants. That said, according to Baseball Savant, Martínez threw 222 sliders in the regular season -- only 5 resulted in hits. He has a 40.4% wiff rate on that pitch, and the only thing he's thrown more is the four seamer.

Good Reads

Benjamin Hochman on the Cardinals valuable vets

"Sometimes I’ll just step back and watch them being together. It’s fun. Looking forward to (the game). . . . Such elite competitors and such a kinship.- Mike Shildt"


Jeff Jones on Adam Wainwright

"Enshrinements and celebrations will come, as will the end. This Sunday, though, Adam Wainwright will be on the pitcher’s mound in the postseason.

He will be — is — back."


Joe Trezza with even more on Wainwright and Molina

"...based on how he holds his hands, I know what he’s going to call before he puts his fingers down. I can already start shaking or agreeing because I know what the shape of his hand looks like before he even calls it."


Social Scene