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October 7, 2013

Playoff Prospectus

NLDS Game Three Recap: Pirates 5, Cardinals 3

by R.J. Anderson


Game Three of the NL Divisional Series between the Pirates and Cardinals was the first competitive game of the bunch. It was worth the wait.

The previous two games were defined by the starting pitchers: Adam Wainwright and Gerrit Cole pitched well, A.J. Burnett and Lance Lynn did not. Neither Francisco Liriano nor Joe Kelly can be easily surmised. Both had their moments, but both had to battle throughout. Kelly managed to walk four batters despite an at-times expansive strike zone to his arm side. Liriano walked two of his own, and saw his control evaporate as the game endured.

Pittsburgh struck right away: Andrew McCutchen, whom Clint Hurdle called "the baddest dude in the league" before this series, walked in his first at-bat to give the Pirates a baserunner with two outs. The inning could have ended on the next ball in play, a hopper from Justin Morneau, but the play was slow-developing and Pete Kozma could neither square up with his target nor deliver an accurate throw. The ball out of play and, after a Marlon Byrd single to left field, the Pirates led 2-0.

It stayed this way until the fifth inning, when Liriano was nearing his end. St. Louis' seventh- and eighth-place hitters reached via single and walk, and waited while Kelly tried to get a bunt down t

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL... (10/07)
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Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL... (10/07)
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Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL... (10/07)
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Premium Article Playoff Prospectus: NL... (10/07)

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