2021-09-19
San Diego Padres
St. Louis Cardinals
League : MLB

St. Louis Cardinals vs San Diego Padres Prediction & Preview



 

 

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

The San Diego Padres are trying to get into the playoffs as they are currently on the outside looking in with a 76-71 record. They will have veteran Jake Arrieta pitching and he is coming off a loss against the San Francisco Giants where he went 3.2 innings and gave up three runs on five hits with two walks and three strikeouts.

If the playoffs started today, the St Louis Cardinals would be in the postseason as their six-game winning streak has boosted them into the second NL Wild Card spot with a 77-69 record. They will have veteran J.A. Happ on the bump and he is coming off a victory over the Cincinnati Reds where he threw 5.1 shutout innings allowing just two hits with a walk and four strikeouts.

 

Slam Diego Not Showing Up

The San Diego Padres have been an average offensive team as they are 18th in the majors with a .719 OPS thus far. The offense has been hitting well as they are scoring 4.51 runs per game up to this point. Looking at the Padres offense in the last 30 days, they have the worst OPS in that span (.622) while scoring just 3.4 runs per game. Shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr has been hitting extremely well as he has a .995 OPS with 39 homers and 91 RBI with 25 stolen bases in 28 attempts. If the Padres can hit at an average level for the rest of the season, they can find a way into the playoffs.

 

Jake Arrieta has been struggling this season according to his Baseball Savant page as he is in the second percentile in whiff percentage, fourth percentile in xERA, fifth percentile in chase rate, and seventh percentile in xBA. His 9.4 barrel percentage is the highest of his career. Arrieta has a four-pitch arsenal (sinker, slider, curveball, changeup) and his sinker has been his worst pitch as it has a .378 batting average and a .651 slugging percentage. He has not faced the Cardinals since 2018 so it will be interesting to see how he attacks this lineup.

 

Cardinals Flying High

The St Louis Cardinals are right behind the San Diego Padres as they are 19th in MLB with .13 OPS this year. They are in a five-way tie in team batting average as the Cards are hitting .240 as a team. St Louis is doing decent at the plate at home this year as they have a .241/.311/.280 slashline while scoring 3.77 runs per game. Left fielder Tyler O’Neill has been leading the offensive charge as he has posted an .866 OPS with 28 homers and 65 RBI with 12 stolen bases in 16 attempts. If the Cardinals can figure out how to hit better as a whole, they can extend their NL Wild Card lead.

 

 

J.A. Happ has been struggling this season as well according to his Baseball Savant page as he is in the fourth percentile in whiff percentage, fourth percentile in barrel percentage, fourth percentile xSLG, and ninth percentile in xERA. His 11.8 barrel percentage is the highest of his career. Happ throws five different pitches (fastball, sinker, slider, changeup, curveball) and his heater has been his best pitch as it has a .280 batting average and 68 strikeouts. It has almost been a decade since Happ faced the Padres so it will be interesting how he fares here.







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