Matt Carpenter continues to do it all for St. Louis.
Carpenter just hit a leadoff homer against Hyun-Jin Ryu in the bottom of the third inning to give the Cardinals an early 1-0 lead over the Dodgers in Game 3 of the NLDS. He has now homered in three straight games to begin the postseason. Albert Pujols (2004) is the only other player in franchise history to homer in three straight postseason games.
Carpenter hit eight home runs in 159 games during the regular season, with only two of them coming against southpaws. All three of his home runs this postseason have been against lefties. As for Ryu, he gave up just one home run to a left-handed batter during the regular season.
John Lackey pitched out of some trouble in the first and second innings, but he’ll carry a 1-0 lead into the top of the fourth inning at Busch Stadium.
2019 has been one long nightmare for the Pirates. They’re in last place in the NL Central, have had multiple clubhouse fights, and can’t stop getting into bench-clearing incidents. The embarrassment continued on Sunday as the club lost 16-6 to the Cubs, suffering a three-game series sweep in Chicago.
One of those 16 runs the Pirates allowed was particularly noteworthy. In the bottom of the third inning, with the game tied at 5-5, the Cubs had runners on first and second with two outs. Tony Kemp hit a triple to right field, allowing both Ben Zobrist and Jason Heyward to score to make it 7-5. The Pirates thought one of the Cubs’ base runners didn’t touch third base on their way home. Reliever Michael Feliz attempted to make an appeal throw to third base, but it was way too high for Erik González to catch, so Kemp scored easily on the error.
The Pirates lost Friday’s game to the Cubs 17-8 and Saturday’s game 14-1. They were outscored 47-15 in the three-game series. According to Baseball Reference, since 1908, the Pirates never allowed 14+ runs in three consecutive games and only did it two games in a row twice before this series, in 1949 and in 1950. The Cubs scored 14+ in three consecutive games just one other time, in 1930.