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MLB: St. Louis vs. L.A. Dodgers Divisional Series2009-10-07
The pressure, the intensity and the drama all ratchet up in the Major Leagues with post-season baseball. The National League picture has really changed in the last 45 days. It has finally settled into divisional series matchups pitting the Dodgers versus the Cardinals, and the Rockies vs. the Phillies. Here is a look at that St. Louis-Los Angeles matchup from a betting perspective. When youíre through reading it, head over to the LIVE ODDS page on Sportsbook.com to see all of the available game, series, and prop wagering options.
The Los Angeles Dodgers were thought to be a lock to win the National League West, when they seemingly lost interest. From August 28 on, the Dodgers only played nine of last 34 games against teams with winning records and yet didnít clinch NL West crown until the next to last day of the regular season. In fact, Los Angeles had six straight days to wrap up the division and lost five in a row before finally defeating Colorado this past Saturday. The Dodgers were less than inspiring 19-14 against the below average competition to finish the regular season and are +123 underdogs despite home field advantage.
How could that be one might wonder, itís because they are playing St. Louis. Most baseball experts are saying forget the fact they lost six of last seven games, that was just a team setting up rotation and preparing for the playoffs. No team in baseball was more aggressive before the trade deadline in adding quality players to their roster. Matt Holliday was really the most important acquisition, as he brought a potent bat to help Albert Pujols batting cleanup. From July 24 until Sept.22, St. Louis was baseball best 37-17.
The Cardinals appear to also have two distinct advantages in this series, superior starting pitching and better bullpen. Chris Carpenter (17-4, 2.24 ERA) would have two starts in this series if it goes the distance. Carpenter led the National League with the lowest ERA and heís been ridiculous of late with sick 0.45 earned run average in his last three starts. Adam Wainwright (19-4) was fourth in ERA at 2.63. Only once in 18 times did Carpenter and Wainwright lose back to back games and that hasnít happened in over three months.
Offensive Ė National League
Runs scored Dodgers 4th St. Louis 7th
Home Runs Dodgers 11th St. Louis 6th
Slugging Pct. Dodgers 7th St. Louis 6th
Walks Dodgers 4th St. Louis 12th
On base Pct. Dodgers 1st St. Louis 10th
Pitching & Defense
ERA Dodgers 1st St. Louis 4th
Bullpen ERA Dodgers 1st St. Louis 4th
Strikeouts Dodgers 2nd St. Louis 14th
Walks Dodgers 8th St. Louis 1st
On base Pct. Dodgers 1st St. Louis 3rd
Putouts Dodgers 1st St. Louis 10th
Errors Dodgers 4th St. Louis 9th
Key Numbers- The Cardinals have won five of seven this season and is 5-4 at Dodger Stadium the last three years. With the Dodgers having to face two stud pitchers in the first two games, note they are 8-16 vs. a starting pitcher whose throws more than 6.5 innings per start this season.
Sportsbook.com Series Odds: Cardinals -150, Dodgers +130