NL Wild Card Game Preview
For only the second time since 2012 — the first MLB season to include the one game Wild Card game — there is a 100-win team playing.
The defending World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers (106-56), who came up just short of winning the NL West, are set to host the surging St. Louis Cardinals (90-72) at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday, Oct. 5 at 8:10 p.m. EST. The game will be streamed on TBS.
RHP Adam Wainwright will get the nod for the visiting Cardinals, while RHP Max Scherzer will get the start for the Dodgers.
Both teams enter the “do-or-die game” playing good baseball, as the Dodgers closed out its 2021 season on a seven-game winning streak, while the Cardinals have won 19 of their past 22 games.
The teams met seven times over the course of the regular season, with Los Angeles winning the series four games to three. For history’s sake, the teams last met in the postseason in 2014, when the Cardinals defeated the Dodgers in the NLDS, four games to one.
Let’s take a closer look at both of this year’s squad.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The 106-win Dodgers are a great baseball team. They do not belong in the Wild Card game, but the San Francisco Giants ended up winning 107 games.
In addition to having Cy Young candidate Max Scherzer on the mound, the defending World Series Champions have a load of superstars in the starting lineup, including infielders Corey Seager and Trea Turner, who both hit over .300 in 2021. They also have power-hitting first baseman Max Muncy, who hit 36 home runs. The Dodgers are tough, and that’s all there is to it.
St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals worked their way up from right around .500 for most of the year, ending up being one of the best teams in baseball.
Winning 16 consecutive games is an impressive feat, and something that rarely happens in Major League Baseball. This team got hot at the right time and has yet to look back. With Adam Wainwright on the mound, and prominent hitters including first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and outfielder Tyler O’Neill, the Cardinals have enough talent to make a deep postseason run if they can get past the Dodgers.
The Dodgers have arguably the best roster in baseball, and the Cardinals just don’t seem to lose these days.
Despite the Cardinals having one of the best finishes to an MLB season of all-time, the 106-win Dodgers will end up prevailing as manager Dave Roberts should have his club ready to play in front of its home crowd. Expect a close, low-scoring affair due to two of the best pitchers going at it. But Max Scherzer will ultimately outlast Adam Wainwright, which will lead a Dodgers to victory.
Dodgers 2, Cardinals 1