The best team in baseball is in grave danger of their worst finish since 2010 when they missed the playoffs. Michael Wacha struggled mightily in his Game 3 start, and the Cubs bats powered out a record-setting six home runs. Both Dexter Fowler and Kyle Schwarber homered again after both hitting long balls against Pittsburgh. Starlin Castro added one, Jorge Soler got his second in as many games, and the beasts of Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo finally awakened and launched dingers.
The Cardinals were actually able to get to Jake Arrieta, tagging him for four runs, but Michael Wacha and the Cardinals bullpen couldn’t hold up their end. The bats of Matt Holliday, Matt Carpenter and Jhonny Peralta continue to be ominously quiet, as all production for the Cards is coming in the form of Jason Heyward and Stephen Piscotty, who’s having a marvelous playoff debut.
With the backs against the wall, St. Louis will turn to ace John Lackey to send the series back to Busch Stadium. The former Angel stymied the Cubs in Game 1 and will have to do the same if the Cardinals want to stay alive. If he can’t, then the Cubs will find themselves back in the NLCS.