(BaseballStL) — The Cardinals and Cubs meet Friday night, for the first time since September 29. The two clubs have a long-standing rivalry, one that seems to transcend record and roster. The Cubs lead the regular season series all time, 1,180 - 1,126, but the Cardinals have won the last five meetings.
Despite the recent disparity in success rate, both clubs’ fan bases greet the series with excitement, adding an energy to the proceedings often absent in early season games.
“It’s a great atmosphere whenever we play these guys,” Mike Matheny said. There just seems to be that extra excitement that you do feed off of.”
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With the first meeting coming over a weekend, many Chicago faithful will make the trip down to St. Louis for the series. As Busch Stadium gets spattered with a touch of blue, the Cardinal manager says the buzz is hard to ignore.
“We’ve all been kind of conditioned to try to make every game a rivalry; to be consistent no matter who it is,” Matheny said. “But you can’t help but feed off the life that the fans have. Some Cubs fans show up here just like our Cardinal fans show up in Chicago.”
Joe Kelly will start the series on the mound for the Cardinals. He has held Cub hitters to a .209 average over seven appearances against them.