Contact | Home | Advertise | Submit Editorial

Currently
41°
Kewanee, IL

Find us on....


Hughes Auto Sales
Advanced Rehab Kewanee

Cards, Dodgers Game 2 Today on WKEI

Two pitchers will take the hill on Saturday in Game 2 of 
the  National  League Championship Series.  One has been nearly unhittable the 
last two times he's pitched. And the other is Clayton Kershaw. 

Runs  figure  to be at a  premium tonight, as  Michael Wacha and the St. Louis 
Cardinals  try  to go up two  games to none on  the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 
best-of-seven series at Busch Stadium. 

Wacha  has  been the early  story of this postseason,  as he nearly no-hit the 
Pittsburgh  Pirates in a  season-saving win for the Cardinals in Game 4 of the 
NLDS.  The 22-year-old righty  took a no-hitter into the eighth in a stellar 7 
1/3-inning,  nine-strikeout  performance to  help the Cards  force a fifth and 
deciding game. 

"Why  he's been able  to be successful so far is that he has trusted himself," 
Cards  manager Mike  Matheny said of Wacha. "He's trusted the game plan that's 
put in front of him. He's trusted his catcher. He's trusted his stuff. Then it 
comes down to taking the distractions and minimizing them." 

Of  course, Wacha came within an out of no-hitting the Washington Nationals in 
his final start in the regular season. 

"I'm  definitely looking forward to pitching in front of this home crowd. It's 
going  to be a lot of fun," said Wacha, who has never faced the Dodgers. "Just 
watching  them on TV, it's a great ballclub and definitely a dangerous lineup. 
I'm just going to have to go out there and make pitches." 

Kershaw,  meanwhile, is likely headed toward another NL Cy Young Award after a 
remarkable regular season that saw him go 16-9 and lead the major leagues with 
a minuscule 1.83 ERA and an NL-best 232 strikeouts. 

It  was  the fourth  consecutive  season  that  Kershaw  tallied 200  or  more 
strikeouts.  He  also allowed a  .195 batting  average -- .202 to right-handed 
hitters and .165 to left-handed hitters. 

The postseason spotlight hasn't fazed him one bit, as Kershaw went 1-0 against 
the  Atlanta Braves  in the NLDS and pitched  to a 0.69 ERA in two starts, the 
last  one, of course, came on three days' rest and secured the Dodgers' series 
win. 

"You  guys  make a big  deal about three  days' rest," he  told a room full of 
reporters before the NLCS opener. "I never made a big deal out of it. (Dodgers 
manager  Don Mattingly)  never made  a big  deal  out of  it. ...  I mean,  no 
offense, but I'm just kind of tired of it." 

Over  his last  11 starts, including his two postseason starts, Kershaw is 6-2 
with a remarkable 1.46 ERA. 

Kershaw,  though,  lost both  of his  starts to the  Cardinals this season and 
pitched to a 4.15 ERA in doing so. 

Kershaw  will need to  be aware of St. Louis' Carlos Beltran, who drove in all 
three runs in the Cardinals' thrilling 3-2 win in 13 innings in Game 1. 

Of  the five previous  times the Cards won the first game of the NLCS (home or 
away), they advanced to the World Series three times. 

"We  have had our fair share of extra-inning games, but none more special than 
that  one," second  baseman  Matt Carpenter  said. "Winning  Game  1 is  huge, 
especially in that fashion. Whether they want to admit it or not, winning that 
game in that kind of scenario, that's a tough way to lose a game." 

Beltran had tied the game with a two-run double in the third inning, but hours 
later  stroked a  one-out hit toward the right field corner off Dodgers closer 
Kenley Jansen to score Daniel Descalso from second base with the winning run. 

"It  was a good team win," shortstop Pete Kozma said, before slightly altering 
his wording. "A good team Carlos win today." 

They  weren't the  only heroics for Beltran,  who also gunned a runner down at 
home for an inning-ending double play in the 10th. 

Perhaps  the  best postseason hitter of  this generation, Beltran now has four 
game-winning  postseason RBI  in his  career. He  also has  nine RBI  in these 
playoffs. 

"He's basically built up a resume as one of the greatest postseason hitters of 
all  time,"  Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis  said of Beltran. "We knew that coming 
in.  When you  compound that by giving him  two 3-1 counts to hit in, he knows 
what to do." 

Juan  Uribe,  who hit the  homer Monday that  got the NL West-champion Dodgers 
into  the NLCS, had a two-run single in the third inning for LA's only runs in 
Game 1. 

Lance Lynn (1-0) threw two innings to get the win and Chris Withrow (0-1) gave 
up a pinch-hit single to Descalso and walked Matt Carpenter in the 13th. 

"It  feels great coming back to the ballpark and knowing you've got Clayton on 
the  mound,"  Ellis said.  "We're going  to do  everything we  can to earn the 
split." 

The  Dodgers were  4-3 against the Cardinals this season, including three wins 
in four games in St. Louis. Not having homefield advantage for this series may 
not matter, as Los Angeles was tied with Texas for the best road record in the 
majors in 2013, at 45-36. 

This series will shift to Los Angeles for Game 3 on Monday. 

Comments

 



RSS Feeds Make us Your
Homepage

EEO Report - Click Here To View Regional's EEO Report
Advertising Info
Employee Use Only
This site was created by RiverBender.com
Click HERE for Contest RulesCopyright © 2014 Regional Daily News
*Quad Cities Office*
1020 Lincoln Rd.
Bettendorf, IA 52722
Office: 563.345.6454

*Kewanee Office*
133 E. Division St. PO Box 266
Kewanee, IL 61443
Office: 309.853.4471