Cardinals expect a "heavyweight bout" against Pirates in NLDS
ST. LOUIS, MO - MAY 29: Reliever Edward Mujica #44 of the St. Louis Cardinals celebrates after beating the Kansas City Royals at Busch Stadium on May 29, 2013 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) By Dilip Vishwanat
(BaseballStL) -- When you play a team a grand total of 19 times over the course of a season it’s only natural for there to be some familiarity when they face each other in the postseason.
Or, as third baseman David Freese says, it adds to the craziness.
“I think it just makes it that much more nasty,” Freese said. “I think when you look back at playing the Brewers (in the 2011 NLCS) it’s kind of like a heavyweight bout so to speak just because we know each other so well. It’s just going to be an unreal and exciting battle.”
The Pirates took the regular season series 10-9 over the Cardinals but do not have the playoff experience that the Cardinals do. The Cards not only won the World Series in 2011 but have made the postseason four of the last five years.
However, there is still a little bit of a sting from losing last year’s NLCS to the Giants in seven games, creating some sort of unfinished business.
“We really can’t worry about what happened last year,” Daniel Descalso said. “It’s unfortunate that we were up two games to one in that series (against the Giants) and we couldn’t win one more but we’re playing the Pirates right now and they present a major challenge for us.”
“We’re a great club. We all came together and we all had each other’s backs,” Matt Adams said. “You learn a lot about yourself when you have a tough stretch and we were able to find a way to get out of there quickly and got back to our winning ways like we’re used to.”
Mike Matheny announced former closer Edward Mujica would be on the 25-man roster for the series but declined to say who else made it. He also did not say what the lineup would be.