World Series Game 3 Preview!!

Posted: October 21, 2011 in MLB playoffs, Texas Rangers

By Chris Bates

      One of the best games that Major League Baseball has had in a while was witnessed by millions of people around the globe.  The 2-1 victory the Texas Rangers had over St. Louis Cardinals was an instant classic type game.  It was exactly what postseason baseball is all about, great pitching and great defense.  The Rangers were 3 outs away from going back to Texas down 2 games to no games but the experience the team gained from last year’s World Series paid dividends in the ninth inning.  The Rangers scored 2 runs on 2 sacrifice flies rallying them to the win.

Game 3 Preview

      Rangers manager Ron Washington made a surprise announcement when he announced that Matt Harrison  will start Game 3 over Derek Holland.  If you look at the numbers, Harrison has been a much better pitcher than Holland this postseason.  Harrison has gone 5 innings in both of his starts this postseason, giving up 2 earned runs in each.  Harrison was 14-9 with a 3.39 ERA in 185 2/3 innings pitched.  This postseason he is 1-0 with a 4.22 ERA with 12 strikeouts in 10 2/3 innings pitched.  Holland has not gone more than 5 innings in any of his starts this postseason. 

Despite the Rangers lack of hitting so far in this series, their defense has been what has kept them in games.  There were 2 instances in last night’s game where the Cardinals could have added 1 or 2 more insurance runs after the Allen Craig pinch hit go-ahead RBI single.  Cardinals shortstop Rafael Furcal hit a scorching line drive up the middle that Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus snagged on one hop and flipped to second baseman Ian Kinsler for the final out of the inning, saving at least 1 run.  In the bottom of the 8th, Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols hit a fly ball he thought was out but it went to the warning track where Nelson Cruz caught it right in front of the wall. Great defense.

What I think will happen in Game 3

     The Rangers have the advantage in starting pitching in Game 3.  Kyle Lohse has not been good in the postseason (0-2, 7.45 ERA).  He gave up 3 earned runs in 4 1/3 innings in his last start versus Milwaukee.  So far this series, it has been clear that both teams pitching is the strong point.  Two high-powered offenses coming into this series, both have been shut down by the opposing teams pitchers.  Colby Lewis once again continues to impress in the postseason.  He has been the Rangers best pitcher in October the last 2 seasons.  If the Rangers can get their bats going then I think it will be a long Game 3 for the Cardinals.  I don’t see St. Louis scoring more than 3 runs in this game.  I think the Rangers will score at least 4 runs and yet again there will be another close game as these are two evenly matched teams.  Game 3 is tomorrow night at 7:05 at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.  FOX will carry coverage of the game and it can be heard on ESPN Radio 103.3 FM locally.

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Comments
  1. Eli Jordan says:

    Great work and congrats on the website. I think the Rangers will have a distinct advantage in game three because most of the lineup has seen Lohse before. Garcia was very “Madison Bumgardner” against us last night, as the Rangers weren’t familiar with him. On the flip side, Harrison has been solid at home and pitching well as of late. I like the Rangers in this one in an offensive explosion. Gimme Texas 8-2.

  2. Chad says:

    Your analysis has been “spot on” so far in the post season! Great insight. I love how you back up your thoughts with tangible statistics!

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