St. Louis Cardinals (71-67 SU, 67-71 RL, 72-58-8 O/U) vs. San Diego Padres (62-77 SU, 75-64 RL, 71-60-8 O/U)
MLB: Thursday, September 7, 2017, Petco Park, San Diego, California, 9:10 pm ET
Lines: St. Louis -125, San Diego +115; Over/Under: 8.5
It’s the conclusion of a set between a team in the playoff picture and one out of it down in Southern California. The St. Louis Cardinals play the final game of a four game series with the San Diego Padres Thursday night. St. Louis won the first two games of the series, taking a 2-0 win Monday afternoon and following that up with an 8-4 win Tuesday night. The pitching matchup for the third game of the series Wednesday night saw Jack Flaherty pitch for the Cardinals against the Padres’ Dinelson Lamet. First pitch in the game was set for 10:10 pm ET.
St. Louis Cardinals Tightening Up Playoff Races
St. Louis took the first two games of the series and in the process, made a move in the playoff picture. The Cardinals entered Wednesday four games behind the Cubs in the NL Central and within three games of the Rockies for the second wild card spot. Jose Martinez (three runs, three RBI) had three hits for St. Louis while Harrison Bader (two runs, three RBI) added two in the win. Martinez (his 12th and 13th) and Bader (his third) homered for the Cardinals in the victory while Yadier Molina and Stephen Piscotty drove in the other runs. Michael Wacha (11-7) picked up the win despite allowing four runs (three earned) on seven hits with three walks and six strikeouts over six innings.
Lance Lynn takes the mound for his 29th start of the year for the Cardinals here. He is 10-6 with a 2.99 ERA, a 1.147 WHIP, 65 walks and 136 strikeouts over 165.2 innings of work this season. Lynn recorded a no-decision in his last start, which came against the Giants on the road Saturday. He threw eight innings, allowing no runs on one hit with four walks and four strikeouts in a game the Cardinals lost, 2-1, in 10 innings. Lynn has no record with a 2.57 ERA, a 1.00 WHIP, eight walks and 16 strikeouts over 21 innings in his last three starts. He is 3-2 with a 3.25 ERA and a 1.306 WHIP over 36 innings in six career starts against the Padres. Lynn lost his lone career start at Petco Park, which came on July 29, 2014: he allowed two runs (one earned) on four hits with three walks and six strikeouts over six innings in a 3-1 Cardinals loss.
San Diego Padres Try to Salvage Finale
San Diego had their chances in each of the first two games but couldn’t get things done. The Padres, with little to play for but pride, try to pick up a win in this contest. Jose Pirela (run) and Matt Szczur (run) each had two hits for San Diego in the losing effort. Travis Wood hit his second homer of the year for the Padres while Wil Myers knocked in a run for the Padres: the fourth scored on a throwing error. Wood (2-2) took the loss on the mound as he allowed seven runs (six earned) on seven hits with one walk and one strikeout in two plus innings of work.
Clayton Richard gets the call for his 29th start of the year for the Padres in this contest. He is 6-13 with a 4.94 ERA, a 1.526 WHIP, 51 walks and 128 strikeouts over 173 innings of work this year. Richard has just one win in 14 starts as he recorded a no-decision in his last start, which came at home against the Dodgers in the first game of a doubleheader Saturday. He allowed three runs on eight hits with three walks and four strikeouts over six innings in an eventual 6-5 San Diego win. Richard is 0-1 with a 5.79 ERA, a 1.50 WHIP, six walks and 17 strikeouts over 18.2 innings in his last three starts. He faces the Cardinals for the 14th time in his career and makes his seventh start: he is 3-1 with a 4.39 ERA and a 1.515 WHIP over 41 innings of work. Richard is 28-26 with a 3.33 ERA and a 1.261 WHIP over 71 appearances, 69 starts, totaling 427.1 innings at Petco Park in his career.
- Cardinals are 1-4 in Lynn’s last 5 starts vs. a team with a losing record
- Cardinals are 0-4 in Lynn’s last 4 starts
- Cardinals are 0-4 in Lynn’s last 4 starts on grass
- Padres are 4-1 in Richard’s last 5 starts
- Padres are 4-1 in Richard’s last 5 starts on grass
This one looks like the battle of starters that are destined to hang a ND, or no-decision, next to their names. Lynn is unbeaten in his last 10 starts but he’s only 3-0 in that span: in the seven no-decisions he’s logged, the Cardinals are 2-5. Richard has one win in 14 starts but has pitched better of late and he’s been tough at Petco Park in his career. San Diego is playing hard despite having nothing to play for. Sometimes you get lucky when that happens: this is one of those times as the Padres win the finale.