Phillies at Cardinals Game 3 MLB Playoffs 2011: St. Louis Cardinals Manager Tony LaRussa knew exactly who he wanted as his Game-3 starting pitcher in the National League Divisional Series today at Busch Stadium (5:07 P.M. ET). Jaime Garcia (13-7, 3.56 ERA) was held back from pitching in either games 1-or-2 in Philadelphia to be the starter for Game-3, as the 2011 NLDS debuts in St. Louis. The Cardinals drew even with the Phillies at 1-1 on Sunday and have hopes of getting another win with Garcia.
Something about home cooking appeals to the young Cardinals right-hander as his superb 2011 record of 9-4 with a 2.55 ERA indicates. Not only that but went 2-1 against the Phillies with a 1.20 ERA. The Phillies counter Garcia and the Cardinals with left-hander Cole Hamels (14-9, 2.79 ERA). The Cardinals roughed up Hamels the last time they faced Hamels getting to him with two home runs in a 5-0 loss Sept. 18 in Philadelphia. The Phillies are listed at Justbet.cx as -135 MLB Odds moneyline favorites versus the Cardinals with a 7-run total.
Garcia has been very successful against the Phillies, who have a rougher time against left-handed pitchers than right-handers in general. He's also much more effective at Busch Stadium than on the road. Hamels, who is 6-4 with a 3.33 ERA in 12 career postseason starts, lost his only outing against the Cardinals this season, allowing seven hits and four runs in seven innings Sept. 18 in St. Louis.