Randy Wells and Chris Carpenter will go at it in game one of the series. Wells hasn’t won a game since April 30th and has allowed 19 runs in his last 31 innings. He’s definitely going to have to up his game if he wants to hang with Carpenter.
Carpenter’s 5-1 this season with a 3.09 ERA. He has been one of the best pitchers in baseball throughout his career when healthy. If the Cubs hope to win this game, they’re going to need to find a way to put some runs on the board. Carpenter has allowed four runs in two of his last three starts, so there is hope.
In game two of the series, Carlos Silva will take on youngster Adam Ottavino. Silva has definitely been a pleasant surprise this year with his 6-0 record. St. Louis’ lineup is definitely nothing special other than Albert Pujols who seems to be getting his groove back at the plate. Silva should have the upper hand in this game.
Tony LaRussa hasn’t formally announced Ottavino as his starter for Saturday, but all indications point in that direction. If this is indeed the case, the Cubs should look to tee off against this kid. He’s started eight games this year for the Memphis Redbirds and has a 4-3 record with a 4.17 ERA. In my eyes, this is a must win for the Cubs. If they can somehow manage to beat Carpenter in game one, they could be looking at an opportunity for a sweep come Sunday.
The Cubs will throw Ryan Dempster in the series finale. Dempster’s last outing finally got him off of a four game losing streak. He looked great in that start and will hopefully carry that momentum into Sunday’s matchup.
LaRussa hasn’t yet announced who he will go with in game three, but as long as it’s not Wainwright, Dempster and the Cubs should have a good chance. I definitely like the Cubs matchups in these series other than Wells and Carpenter in game one.
If the Cubs can somehow manage to beat Carpenter, they may find themselves just a game back by series end. In my book, games two and three should be victories, so hopefully they can gain some ground either way. The main thing for the Cubs is going to be getting their offense clicking on all cylinders. Despite winning two straight series against tough opponents, the offense hasn’t really been consistent. If and when they put it together, this team will no doubt be Central Division contenders.
Regardless, it’s going to be an exciting series and I can’t wait for it to get started.