Cardinals news from a Sabermetric point of view

Game 3 Recap: Cardinals 7, Reds 6

Players of the Game

  1. Lance Lynn: Kept composure after yielding two home runs and struck out seven, while walking only one.
  2. Todd Frazier: Almost singlehandedly rescued the Reds with two home runs.
  3. Matt Adams: Reached base 3-of-5 times and bagged five total bases.

Plays of the Game

  1. Todd Frazier hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning (-.198): With the Reds’ win expectancy dwindled to 8.8%, Frazier promptly greeted Pat Neshek with another long ball to bring it up to 28.6%.
  2. Jay Bruce homered, scoring Joey Votto in first inning (-.194): Bruce’s dinger on the sixth pitch of the at-bat was a no-doubter, put Reds up 2-0 early.
  3. Matt Holliday doubled to left, scoring Kolten Wong (+.174): Holliday compensated for running into Jay two innings earlier.

Notes

  • The Cardinals’ winning percentage is now .667. Having won or lost all of their first three games by one run, their pythagorean winning percentage is .566.
  • To each of the first batters he has faced in two games, Pat Neshek has now given up a walk and a home run, respectively. It doesn’t portend well for the mellow submariner.
  • Cardinal starters have now posted three straight strong outings. Since Lynn was victimized by a 29% HR/FB rate Thursday, his ERA and FIP numbers — 5.40 and 5.96, respectively — are poor. But his expected FIP of 2.30 was on-par with fellow rotation hosses Adam Wainwright (2.73) and Michael Wacha (2.26).
  • Joey Votto tested Matt Holliday in the first inning again, slicing a flare down the line. Unlike in Wednesday’s game, Holliday played it safe, yielding a double. But with Jay Bruce up next, the conservative approach may’ve cost the Cardinals a run. After all, if Holliday dives, Votto likely ends up on third but wouldn’t score. And a catch ends the inning. The same principle as Wednesday applied, but perhaps Holliday was once bitten, twice shy.
  • We love seeing Matt Adams going opposite-field. With Jhonny Peralta, a true run-scoring threat, behind him, Adams can afford to focus on getting on base rather than trying to drive himself in every at bat.
  • Holliday collided with Jay in the third, and the error went to Jay, unfairly in our opinion, as Jay appeared to be calling for it.
  • Speaking of opposite field, Jay stroked a beautiful double in the fourth to tie the game.┬áThen he got himself out trying to steal third. We really want to cheer for you, Jon Jay, but you make it harder than necessary.
  • Nifty slide by Wong to go outside and sneak his hand onto the back edge of the plate to score the go-ahead run in the fifth.
  • Joey Votto is a pleasure to watch, both on offense and defense. A true all-around player.
  • We’re not sure why ballparks aren’t designed so that we no longer see problems like Holliday’s hit off the top of the wall. It’s not that hard: If a ball goes over the wall, it’s a home run. If not, it’s in play.
  • Even though he’s 0-for-3 in pinch hit opps, Shane Robinson is a much better right-handed option off the bench than Ty Wigginton was at this time last year.
  • Mike Matheny provided the first look at a ninth-inning defensive outfield. After Matt Holliday ended the Cardinals’ half of the eighth, Matheny double switched reliever Trevor Rosenthal to his spot, summoned Peter Bourjos into the pitcher’s spot to play center. He then flipped right fielder Allen Craig to left and pushed erstwhile center fielder Jay into right. The Reds tested Craig, as two of the remaining four batters flew to him in left.

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