Dodgers vs. Cardinals: National League favorites collide

Dilip Vishwanat

The Dodgers and Cardinals are among baseball's best franchises, and Monday's starting pitchers, Zack Greinke and Adam Wainwright, are among baseball's best hurlers.

It's only August 5th, but the Dodgers at Cardinals matchup could foreshadow playoff action in October. Busch Stadium's legendary ambiance may get overlooked because of two great ball clubs.

Last week, the Cardinals lost three of four against the Pittsburgh Pirates, yet bounced back in grandiose fashion against the Cincinnati Reds. Meanwhile, the Dodgers are searching for their 15th straight road win and 5th win overall. This would be the longest National League road win streak since the Reds 15 consecutive victories in 1957.

In spite of the absence of all-star catcher Yadier Molina, St. Louis has already scored 44 runs in August, accumulating a 3-1 mark. Oddly enough, Los Angeles sports a 4-0 record in August despite scoring a mere 16 runs.

The Dodgers have their own injury concerns with Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig. Ramirez injured his right shoulder Sunday at Wrigley Field by making a tough catch in foul territory and falling into the stands. The slugging shortstop will undergo a MRI Monday and seems doubtful to play.

Puig got Sunday off due to a left thumb contusion, but manager Don Mattingly believes the Cuban sensation will be able to play Monday. After the Mid-July rough patch, Puig batted .405 over his last ten games with three home runs, five RBI, 10 runs and eight walks.

Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright will attempt to set the Dodgers back, and comes in at 13-6 with a minuscule 2.61 ERA. The 6'7" 228 pound right-hander could be Clayton Kershaw's stiffest competition for Cy-Young.

The boys in blue send Zack Greinke to the bump, and he owns a 8-3 record with a 3.43 ERA. During the last nine games, Ricky Honeycut's staff has only allowed 11 runs. Greinke recieved an extra day of rest because of Stephen Fife's return from the DL.

Game info

Time: 4:05 p.m.

Tv: ESPN and KCAL

MLB Gameday

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