Saturday, October 19, 2013

Dodgers Lose, Moral Center of Universe Holds

The Cardinals will be in the World Series against either the Detroit Tigers or the Boston Red Sox.  The Cards have played the Tigs 3 times before, winning 2.  In 1934, Paul and Dizzy Dean of "the Gashouse Gang" won two games each defeating the Tigers 4 games to 3.  In 1968, the Tigers beat the Cardinals, 4 games to 3.  The Cardinals were the defending World Series champs, and 1967 MVP Bob Gibson started game 1.  I remember this game, because I was listening to a transistor radio in junior high as Gibby threw a complete game shutout, striking out 17, a World Series record that still stands.  In game 4, Bob Gibson threw another complete game, winning 10-1.  Then, to top that off, he pitched another complete game in game 7, overshadowed by Mickey Lolich's 3rd complete game for a 4-1 Tigers victory to take the series.  Two opposing pitchers throwing 3 complete games each!  Mickey Lolich started games 2, 5 and 7, won by the Tigers by scores of 8-1, 10-1 and 4-1 respectively.  1968 was also the year that Denny McLain of the Tigers won 31 games, only to lose to Bob Gibson in games 1 and 4.

In 2006, the Cardinals took a 2-1 lead in World Series victories over the Tigers.  The Cardinals won in 5 games, with Adam Wainwright won 1 and saved 1 and Justin Verlander lost 2.

St. Louis has also faced Boston 3 times in the World Series, winning 2.  None of those match-ups were the St. Louis Browns against the Boston Braves.  In 1946, the Cardinals beat the Sox 4 games to 3, led by Harry "the Hat" Walker and Enos Slaughter.  In 1967, the Cardinals beat the Red Sox in 7 games.  Guess who pitched 3 complete games for the Cards?  Bob Gibson again threw in games 1, 4 and 7 and allowed a total of 3 runs.  Finally, though, the Red Sox won against St. Louis in their 2004 sweep of the Cardinals, effectively ending the "curse of the Bambino." 

Good thing, I was afraid I was not going to be able to stomach watching at all.


M.C. O'Connor said...

It's nice to be able to watch the Series and have no emotional stake in the outcome. Just hoping for some good games. I'm not sure I would have watched had it been LA.

Very impressed by rookie Michael Wacha--he's this year's version of 2010 Madison Bumgarner. Wacha is a year older, but has half as many starts in his rookie season as MadBum did. We'll see if he and Wainwright and the rest can bring home a ring. If it's Detroit, I think the Cards should be favored. Boston? I don't know--they look like they might be favorites to me.

On paper, it looked to me that both Detroit and LA had better starting pitching. But as we know, starting pitching isn't everything. Teams still have to catch the ball and hit the ball and run the bases and get good relief work. Team game, team effort. I think the Sox will win tonight despite Scherzer starting. Detroit's fielding is just plain bad. Boston's hitting is ridiculous. Boston's starters don't come close to Detroit's, but they do everything else better.

LA had no answer for Wacha (he was the compensatory pick when Pujols left via free agency) or the flame-throwing St Louis bullpen. And how often do you see Clayton Kershaw get pummeled? I guess he can't be awesome all the time. Cardinals seem to do better against him than anyone.

Regardless, I'll be watching with the sound turned down. Tim McCarver? No thanks.

M.C. O'Connor said...

They are talking again about plays at the plate after Alex Avila got blasted:

Mike Matheny article link.

Good. Time to fix that.

nomisnala said...

Being that it is not the dodgers, I will have to root for the National league. Tow really good hitting teams in the WS, but both of those teams have a tendency to have all their hitters go cold at the same time. It is amazing that in 2012 the giants beat both the Cards and Detroit to win the WS. Hopefully they will bounce back in 2014.