Who’s Favored?

Series tied, 1-1; scene shifts to Busch Stadium for Game 3 this evening.  Which team has the edge?

Well, there are numbers that favor the Phillies and numbers that favor the Cardinals.  Some numbers are of substance, some are just numbers and perhaps none apply because we are in a new five-game season.

Anyway, here we go:

Cardinals are dead even at home and on the road, 45-36.

Phillies have the best road record in the majors, 50-31, a club record for wins.

Cardinals are 3-2 at home vs. the Phillies, who are 15-11 in the history of Busch Stadium.

Cardinals are at their best on Tuesdays, 16-10; Phillies are 13-13.

Cardinals are at their worst on Wednesdays, 10-15; Phillies, their best, 21-5.

Hamels was 0-1, 5.14 ERA vs. St. Louis this year (one September start); 2-3, 3.26 in his career.  His last win was September 8 (0-2, one no decision, one relief appearance since).

Garcia was 0-0, 0.00 with one earned run in 15 innings vs. the Phillies this year; 2-1, 1.20 in his career.  He was 3-0, 2.64 in September.

Hamels is tied with Steve Carlton for the most career postseason wins for the Phillies, 6.  ERA is 3.33.  Game 3 start ties Lefty for most by a Phillie, 13.

Garcia is making his first postseason start.

Phillies have scored just three runs in Hamels last three starts (0-2).

Garcia ranks first in the NL in highest support average, 5.92 runs per game.

Convinced or confused?  Best idea is to print this brilliant piece and put the paper in the bottom of your bird cage or the kitty litter box.

Phillies Postseason History
October 4 (2-4 record)
1950 WS #1 at Shibe Park: Because Robin Roberts started four times in the last eight games, manager Eddie Sawyer surprises everyone by naming relief ace Jim Konstanty the starter.  Konstanty allows one run over eight innings but Vic Raschi blanks the Phillies on two singles for a 1-0 Yankees win.

1977 NLCS #1 at Los Angeles: Greg Luzinski’s booming two-run homer gives the Phillies a first-inning lead over the Dodgers but Ron Cey’s grand slam off Steve Carlton ties it in the seventh.  Singles by Bake McBride, Larry Bowa and Mike Schmidt produce two ninth-inning runs and a 7-5 win.
1978 NLCS #1 at Veterans Stadium: Steve Garvey’s three-run homer triggers a four-run third inning.  Dodgers win, 9-5, as reliever Bob Welch allows only one run over 4.1 innings.

1983 NLCS #1 at Los Angeles: Mike Schmidt homers as the third batter of the game and Steve Carlton (7.2 IP) and Al Holland (1.1) combine to blank the Dodgers on seven singles, 1-0.

2007 NLDS #2 at Citizens Bank Park: Jimmy Rollins hits a lead-off homer and a second-inning triple giving the Phillies a 3-2 lead over the Rockies.  Colorado rebounds with 4-run innings in the fourth (Kazuo Matsui’s grand slam) and sixth en route to a 10-5 win.  Rockies lead Series, 2-0.

2008 NLDS #3 at Milwaukee: Playing their first postseason home game since 1982, the Brewers beat the Phillies, 4-1, behind David Bush.  Phillies lead the Series, 2-1.

Alumni Postseason Memories
What is your favorite memory of postseason baseball as a child? . . . What is the biggest change from the regular season? . . . What is your fondest personal postseason memory?

Clay Dalrymple (C, 1960-68)
“I was a Red Sox fan growing up and Ted Williams was my idol.  Back then you either listened to the games on radio or watched on TV.

“The postseason (1969, Orioles) is much different.  It seems like everything is going a million miles an hour.  Before your first at-bat, you need to have a little conversation with yourself because your heart is breathing so fast.  Need to settle down.

“I only had two at-bats in the World Series but I have two hits, a single off Nolan Ryan and another one off Tom Seaver two Hall of Famers.  Can’t get any better than that.”


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