Dodgers Face Formidable Foe In Cardinals

Carlos Beltran and Rafael Furcal have keyed a great St. Louis offense, but they aren't alone.

A pair of division leaders square off at Dodger Stadium this weekend, with the NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals in town to battle the NL West-leading Dodgers. Manager Don Mattingly sees a tough foe in the redbirds.

"They're more of an American League-type club. Up and down the order they have power," Mattingly said. "They can go right or left on you. Their pitching has been good, their bullpen has been good. They're a tough club."

The Cardinals lead the National League in runs scored at 5.45 per contest, and their 124 OPS+ is far and away the best in the league (Atlanta is second at 107, the Dodgers and Mets are tied at 104). The Cardinals are hitting .284/.352/.469 as a team, or essentially nine Ian Kinslers.

Does the National League run through St. Louis?

"They are the World Series champions, so you have to start with them," Mattingly said. "They are a talented club, and they picked up where they left off."

Notes

  • Jerry Hairston Jr. did some straight line running on Friday as he continues to recover from a strained left hamstring. Mattingly said Hairston remains on track to be activated off the disabled list at some point next week, likely within a day or two of Tuesday, his first day eligible to return. "He's progressing baseball wise, and doing more and more," Mattingly said.
  • Juan Uribe will see a hand specialist to examine his left wrist on Saturday.
  • Andre Ethier is first in the National League with 35 RBI this season, three more than Carlos Beltran, in second place. David Freese is in sixth with 29 RBI, and Matt Holliday is tied for eighth with 27 RBI. Matt Kemp, currently on the DL, is in seventh place with 28 RBI.
  • Kemp, though on the DL, is still tied for the league lead with 29 runs scored. Beltran and Rafael Furcal are tied for third with 28 runs, while Holliday is tied for ninth with 26 runs.

Starting Lineups

Cardinals Dodgers
SS Furcal SS Gordon
1B Carpenter 2B Ellis
LF Holliday LF Abreu
RF Beltran RF Ethier
3B Freese 3B Kennedy
C Molina 1B Loney
2B Greene C Ellis
CF Robinson CF Gwynn
P Lynn P Lilly

Game Time: 7:10 p.m.

TV: Prime Ticket

MLB Gameday

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