World Series Game 4 Preview/Cowboys Recap

Posted: October 24, 2011 in MLB playoffs, Texas Rangers

By Chris Bates

     Rookie running back DeMarco Murray set a Cowboy all time record when he rushed for 253 yards on 25 carries in his first career NFL start.  The game Murray had was unbelievable but it was against the league’s worse rushing defense so time will tell what he does against a better defense.  A running back controversy may be brewing in Dallas with the breakout game of Murray.  The record was 9th all time in NFL history, the must rushing yards in an NFL game is 296 set by Adrian Peterson in 2007.  Murray definitely has warranted more carries going forward.

World Series Matchup

        C.J. Wilson takes the ball for the Rangers in what is a must-win game.  Texas cannot afford to go down 3 games to 2 games heading back to St. Louis for games 6 and 7.  Wilson needs to have a great start for the Rangers, he is due.  Wilson’s best postseason game came in Game 1 in St. Louis when he allowed 2 runs in 5 2/3 innings pitched.  The Rangers still lost the game however, it is time for C.J. to show up and pitch like the pitcher he is capable of being.  A 16 game-winner in the regular season proves he certainly has the stuff to do it, it is just a matter of putting it all together.  Wilson is the first pitcher in Major League Baseball history to lose an All-Star Game, league division series game, league championship game and potentially a world series game in the same season.  Wilson was the Rangers best pitcher in the regular season going 16-7 with a 2.94 ERA.  In the postseason, he has been a different pitcher going 0-3 with a 7.17 ERA.  The Rangers need a big game from him tonight.

St. Louis sends to the mound there ace, Chris Carpenter.  Carpenter was wild in Game 1 but only gave up 2 earned runs on a 2 run home run to Mike Napoli.  Carpenter certainly has the stuff to shut down the Rangers but he has a tendency to get off focus, which is where he gets in trouble.  Carpenter started the season off 1-7 but finished the season strong going 10-2 to finish 11-9 in 2011.  This postseason he is 3-0 with a 3.52 ERA.  The Cardinals have the right guy on the mound to give them momentum back in the series.

Keys to the Game

     For Texas, the keys are to keep the Cardinal hitters off-balance by mixing up their pitches.  This was not the case in the Cardinals Game 3 route of the Rangers.  Most of the Ranger pitchers threw fastballs in that game and the Cardinals are a great fastball hitting team.  In Game 4, more inside pitches and pitches out of the strikeout were pitched effectively by Derek Holland.  The Cardinals do swing at pitches out of the strike zone, the Rangers certainly have pitchers that can change speeds and movements on their pitches.  Continuing to hit the ball is always a key but the Rangers have been doing a better job of that in the last 2 games, putting pressure on the Cardinals pitchers to make good pitches and not chase balls like they were doing in the first 2 games.  Continuing to get guys on and force the issue will go along way in how Game 5 turns out.

     For St. Louis, their keys to the game are continuing to make the pitches when they count.  The Cardinals have done an excellent job this season limiting the runs with runners on base.  St. Louis must continue to do this if they want to have a chance to win this game.  The Cardinals lineup has been doing an excellent job of getting runners on base and making them count, this is a thing to watch out for in Game 5.

Prediction

    I see C.J. Wilson coming out and pitching the best game of the season in what could potentially be his last start in a Texas Rangers uniform.  He must establish himself to the Rangers organization as being their dominant pitcher they thought he could be when they let Cliff Lee go.  Wilson is 0-7 in his last 8 postseason starts, the Rangers have lost the last 5 postseason games Wilson has started but I see that changing tonight.  Look for Wilson and the Rangers players to seize control of the series tonight and head back to St. Louis just 1 win shy of their first ever World Series title. 

TEX: 5 STL: 3.

http://espn.go.com/mlb/

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