Rangers Look To Avoid 3-1 Deficit As Favorites In Game 4 Of The World Series
October 23, 2011 – By Scott
In the first two games of the 2011 World Series, producing runs was scarce as the St. Louis Cardinals and Texas Rangers combined for just eight runs in the two games. It was only a matter of time before this changed and Saturday’s Game 3 would be the breakout game for both teams.
However, the Cardinals had a much better night at the plate as hey blew out the Rangers 16-7. Albert Pujols, who was held hitless in the first two games, exploded at the plate and went 5 for 6 with 6 RBIs and 3 homeruns to propel the Cardinals and give them a 2-1 lead in the series heading into Game 4 on Sunday night.
Pujols put himself in an elite group as he is now only the third player to hit 3 homers in a game and joins Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson. And he realizes that his team must not let off the gas as they go into Sunday night’s game.
“We need to come out (Sunday) and do the same thing,” said Pujols.
“All it takes is one good game.”
And now Rangers’ manager Ron Washington is faced with a difficult decision as to whether or not he chooses to pitch a little differently to Pujols for the remainder of the series.
“I just hope that we can make him chase some stuff, not put stuff in the wrong spot,” Washington said. “When the opportunity presents itself to put him on the bag, I’m not going to let him swing the bat.”
Derek Holland will get the start for Texas on Sunday night as he looks to at least tame the Cardinals’ bats. Holland pitching bodes well for the Rangers as he has won all three starts this postseason. But in last year’s World Series against San Francisco, he did not have very good performances in two outings as he allowed three runs in one inning over two relief appearances.
“I really want to win this,” Holland said. “I feel like I’ve got a lot to prove after what happened last year, but it’s obviously not going to take me out of my game or what I have to do for this next start.”
St. Louis will send Edwin Jackson who is making his first World Series appearance. Like Holland, he has also won all three of his postseason starts this year but struggled a little in his last outing where he gave up four runs in two innings when the Cardinals beat Milwaukee to win the NLCS.
“I was kind of tentative last game,” Jackson said. “I’ll come out this game being aggressive from the first pitch. I plan on definitely not having a start like last time.”
MLB Sportsbooks feel that Texas will rebound from Saturday’s defeat and have them favored in Game 4 on Sunday night against St. Louis.