Flushing, N.Y. – On a sparkling Wednesday night, Max Scherzer battled Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmit, and the St. Louis Cardinals in front of a crowd of 32,798. The 3-time Cy Young winner, “Mad Max” and the Cardinals have recent memories with one another. In last year’s NL Wild Card game, an elite pitching matchup made history in the record books. Scherzer took the mound for the Dodgers as Los Angeles battled Adam Wainwright and St. Louis for a spot to advance to the NLDS. This marked the oldest starting pitching matchup in wild card game history.
NL Wild Card Pitching Matchup with Age: October 6th, 2021
RHP Adam Wainwright (40 years, 37 days) vs. RHP Max Scherzer (37 years, 73 days)
Now in the orange and blue at Citi Field, Scherzer is that bulldog caliber player who fits well in the Mets clubhouse with Francisco Lindor and Pete Alonso. Not to mention the Cooperstown-like numbers on the mound. Scherzer ranks 4th in strikeouts across MLB this season. In his first eight starts this year, he has totaled 59 strikeouts in 49.2 innings pitched.
During the 6th inning with two outs, Scherzer left the game with discomfort in his left side. He indicated to the Mets dugout that he was done for the night and rather “get ahead of something serious,” said manager Buck Showalter during postgame. In 5.2 innings pitched, Scherzer allowed 7 hits, 2 runs overall (1 earned; 1 unearned) with 4 strikeouts.
Showalter added “If we have to make the adjustments, we make them. Max is a really good pitcher, obviously… We’d like to have him. If we don’t, the season keeps going. They don’t wait for us.”
4-Game Series between STL Cardinals vs. NY Mets – Results and Probable Matchups
Tuesday May 17th – (Doubleheader)
Game 1: Mets win 3-1, Game 2: Cardinals win 4-3
Wednesday, May 18th
Mets win 11-4
Thursday, May 19th @ 1:10pm
RHP Dakota Hudson (3-2, 3.06 ERA) vs. RHP Chris Bassitt (4-2, 2.34 ERA)
Team Ranks across MLB – St. Louis Cardinals (20 – 17) vs. New York Mets (25 – 14)
*(Stats below are based from before play on Wednesday, May 18th)*
Offense – Batting Average, On Base Percentage, Hits Per Game
Cardinals: .246 BA (Tied 8th in MLB) – Mets: .248 BA (Tied 4th in MLB)
On Base Percentage
Cardinals: .319 OBP (7th in MLB) – Mets: .326 OBP (5th in MLB)
Hits Per Game
Cardinals: 8.2 Hits (Tied 7th in MLB) – Mets: 8.3 Hits (Tied 4th in MLB)
Pitching – Earned Run Average, Walks/Hits Per Inning Pitched, Runs Allowed Per Game
Earned Run Average
Cardinals: 3.45 ERA (8th in MLB) – Mets: 3.33 ERA (5th in MLB)
Walks/Hits Per Inning Pitched
Cardinals: 1.22 WHIP (16th in MLB) – Mets: 1.10 WHIP (Tied 3rd in MLB)
Runs Allowed Per Game
Cardinals: 3.5 Runs Allowed (Tied 5th in MLB) – Mets: 3.4 Runs Allowed (4th in MLB)
Albert Pujols visits New York for the final time in his MLB career
Pujols will receive the phone call of his dreams from Cooperstown once eligible to be voted into the Hall of Fame. The 9-time solo Latino Sports MVP award winner has accomplished nearly every milestone possible throughout his 22-year career (two-time World Series Champion, 10x All Star, 3x MVP, 6x Silver Slugger, 4x co-winner of Latino Sports MVP). From 2003-2011, he earned the historic Latino Sports MVP award and remains the record holder of the massive achievement. Pujols has totaled over 100 RBIs in 14 of the 22 seasons played. What likely will be his last appearance in New York, Pujols provided some time during pregame to discuss his experiences playing against the Mets at Shea Stadium as well as Citi Field.
Pujols stated: “Obviously, a great history going back and forth with the Cardinals, coming through here, I think although it’s not in the same division, we almost felt like it was always a rivalry… Those are great memories that you’re obviously going to take with you.”
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS – PLAYERS TO WATCH
Albert Pujols, Designated Hitter – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Career Batting Statistics vs New York Mets: 78 games played
93 hits, 23 home runs, 68 runs batted in
On Wednesday night in the second inning, Pujols slashed a two-run single to right field. With that hit, Pujols surpassed Eddie Collins for 10th all-time on MLB’s career hit list (3,314). The speed of Pujols was on display in the top of the 4th inning. Following a single to center field, Pujols advanced to second on a stolen base. This marked the 117th stolen base of his career. When it’s all said and done, don’t forget the impact the legend Albert Pujols has made on MLB and the sport overall.
Edmundo Sosa, Shortstop – Panama City, Panama
The Panama native contains a surplus of talents in defensive metrics. In 113 games last season, Sosa showcased his versatility in playing an array of positions such as 3B, SS, 2B and centerfield. The 26-year old is a complementary piece to an elite infield in Nolan Arenado, Tommy Edman and Paul Goldschmidt (Arenado, Edman and Goldschmit are 2021 NL Gold Glove Award winners). The Cardinals finished with a .986 fielding percentage, which tied 7th among MLB teams in the 2021 season. On offense last season, Sosa clipped a .346 on base percentage with 78 hits and 27 runs batted in.
Genesis Cabrera, Relief Pitcher – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
2022 Season Statistics (14 games): 2.30 earned run average, 12 strikeouts, 11 hits allowed in 15.2 innings pitched
Yadier Molina, Catcher – Bayamon, Puerto Rico
Yet another soon-to-be Cardinal voted into the Cooperstown Hall of Fame, the incredible Yadier Molina. Similar to Pujols, once “Yadi” is eligible to be listed on the voting ballot, he will receive much more than what the required percentages are to be named a Hall of Famer (Minimum: 75%). Molina, who received the NL Latino Sports MVP award in 2013, has sketched his name as one of the greatest catchers in MLB history. The 10x All-Star has recorded a .274 on base percentage or higher in each season of his 19-year career. Behind the plate, “Yadi” has been recognized as one of the elites in the position with nine Gold Glove awards.
Giovanny Gallegos, Relief Pitcher – Obregon, Mexico
Gallegos was a finalist for the 2021 NL Latino Sports Relief Pitcher Award. Last season, he tallied a 3.02 earned run average, 95 strikeouts and 14 saves in 80.1 innings pitched.
2022 Season Statistics: 3.46 earned run average, 12 strikeouts, 7 saves in 13.0 innings pitched
Perhaps, Gallegos has advanced his pitching repertoire in hopes of winning the 2022 Latino Sports NL Relief Pitcher.
The Cardinals and Mets conclude their season series at 1:10pm today. Dakota Hudson will take the bump for St. Louis as Chris Bassitt gets the start for the Metropolitans. The bad blood between the two franchises will surely not go unnoticed. In a multitude of confrontations and hit by pitches on both sides, the Cardinals and Mets have the makings of a long term rivalry. Tune into SNY @ 1:10pm for the series finale.
Robert Rizzo writes for Latino Sports
Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/robert.rizzo.1042
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