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Cardinals vs. Phillies preview

Game 1: Saturday, 2 p.m., TBS

St. Louis (RHP Kyle Lohse, 14-8, 3.39) at Philadelphia (RHP Roy Halladay, 19-6, 2.35)

Game 2: Sunday, 5 p.m., TBS

St.. Louis (RHP Chris Carpenter, 11-9, 3.45) at Philadelphia (LHP Cliff Lee, 17-8, 2.40)

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Game 3: Tuesday, TBA

Philadelphia (LHP Cole Hamels, 14-9, 2.79) at St. Louis (LHP Jaime Garcia, 13-7, 3.56)

Game 4: Wednesday, TBA*

Philadelphia (RHP Roy Oswalt, 9-10, 3.69) at St. Louis (RHP Edwin Jackson, 12-9, 3.79)

Game 5: Friday, TBA*

St. Louis (TBA) at Philadelphia (RHP Roy Halladay, 19-6, 2.35)

*-if necessary | All times PDT

Projected lineups

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Pos. / ST. LOUIS / Avg. / HR / RBI

SS / Rafael Furcal / .231 / 8 / 28

CF / John Jay / .297 / 10 / 37

1B / Albert Pujols / .299 / 37 / 99

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LF / Matt Holliday / .296 / 22 / 75

RF / Lance Berkman / .301 / 31 / 94

3B / David Freese / .297 / 10 / 55

C / Yadier Molina / .305/ 14 / 65

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2B / Skip Schumaker / .283 / 2 / 38

P / Kyle Lohse / .175 / 0 / 3

::

Pos. / PHILADELPHIA / Avg. / HR / RBI

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SS / Jimmy Rollins / .268 / 16 / 63

2B / Chase Utley / .259 / 11 / 44

RF / Hunter Pence / .314 / 22 / 97

1B / Ryan Howard / .253 / 33 / 116

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CF / Shane Victorino / .279 / 17 / 61

LF / Raul Ibanez / .245 / 20 / 84

3B / Placido Polanco / .277 / 5 / 50

C / Carlos Ruiz / .283 / 6 / 40

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P / Roy Halladay / .122 / 0 / 3

Keys to the series

On paper this looks like the biggest mismatch of the postseason. The Phillies, with their vaunted pitching staff, spent all but one day atop the National League East this season, setting a franchise record by winning 102 games while cruising to their fifth consecutive division title. The Cardinals were 10½ games back in the NL Central as late as Sept. 5 and didn’t secure their playoff berth until the Braves lost in the 13th inning on the final night of the regular season. But looks can be deceiving because the Cardinals led the NL in scoring, batting and on-base percentage. And that’s with Albert Pujols hitting a career-low .299 with 99 runs batted in, the first time in his career he’s driven in fewer than 100. St. Louis was one of two NL teams to take the season series from Philadelphia, winning six of the nine meetings. The midseason trade that brought Hunter Pence from Houston made the Phillies stronger on defense and deeper on offense. Philadelphia won 30 games decided by five or more runs — and 28 others that were decided by only one.


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