ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals are on the brink of elimination, while the Braves will look to secure their first playoff series win since 2001 on Monday in Game 4 of the National League Division Series at Busch Stadium.
Cardinals rookie Dakota Hudson, who has a 2.75 ERA at home this year, will face Dallas Keuchel, who started Game 1 on Thursday and allowed one run in 4 2/3 innings.
When is the game and how can I watch it?
All games telecast on MLB Network, TBS, FOX and FS1 will be available to MLB.TV subscribers who are authenticated subscribers to the applicable network through a participating pay TV provider.
What do the starting lineups look like?
Braves: Josh Donaldson’s double to begin Sunday’s three-run rally might have been what the former MVP needed to get rolling. The Braves have a series lead despite Donaldson and Freddie Freeman combining to go 4-for-23.
Cardinals: The Cardinals mustered just four hits on Sunday and two against starter Mike Soroka. In the past two games, their offense has scored one run.
Who are the starting pitchers?
Braves: Manager Brian Snitker wasn’t ready to name a starter, but he will likely give the ball to Keuchel (8-8, 3.75 ERA), who allowed one run over 4 2/3 innings in Game 1. Keuchel’s only previous postseason start on short rest was in the 2015 American League Wild Card Game. He allowed two runs over six innings in the Astros’ regular-season finale on Oct. 2. Four days later, he tossed six scoreless against the Yankees.
Cardinals: Hudson (16-7, 3.35 ERA) was the Cardinals’ most consistent starter this year. He led all rookie pitchers in wins, and in his last seven games of the regular season, he had a 2.43 ERA. Against Atlanta in May, Hudson worked into the seventh inning for the first time in his career and held the Braves to two runs. The key for Hudson will be limiting the walks, as the 25-year-old leads the Majors in free passes with 86.
How will the bullpens line up after the starter?
Braves: Closer Mark Melancon allowed four runs in the ninth inning of Game 1, but he has recorded a scoreless ninth in each of the two games that have followed. New bullpen weapon Max Fried threw 13 pitches on Sunday, but he should be available if necessary. Shane Greene has not pitched since Game 1, but given the recent workload of Melancon and Fried, Greene might be needed in this potential clincher.
Cardinals: Closer Carlos Martínez has allowed six of the 12 runs the Braves have scored this series, including three on Sunday in his first postseason save opportunity. While manager Mike Shildt said Martínez would get another chance, Giovanny Gallegos or Andrew Miller could be used in the ninth, too. Tyler Webb has also played a large part in the bullpen this series and has the ability to get the Braves’ powerful left-handed bats out. All hands will be on deck, including starters Miles Mikolas and Jack Flaherty available in the bullpen.
Are there any relievers who are unavailable?
Braves: The Braves should have everybody available. If Keuchel does start, Julio Teheran and Josh Tomlin could both serve as long relief options.
Cardinals: The bullpen has had plenty of rest over the last few days with Flaherty and Adam Wainwright pitching seven and 7 2/3 innings, respectively. All relievers should be available on Monday.
Who is hot and who is not?
Braves: Adam Duvall has provided value off the bench, going 3-for-4 with a homer in the series, including Sunday’s game-winning two-run single. Each of Dansby Swanson’s three hits on Sunday had an exit velocity greater than 100 mph. Freddie Freeman has gone 2-for-11, and Nick Markakis has gone 2-for-13 with four strikeouts.
Cardinals: Besides Marcell Ozuna (6-for-12) and Paul Goldschmidt (4-for-12 with a home run), the Cardinals’ offense has been limited this series. Dexter Fowler is hitting .083 and Bader is hitting .167. Bader was benched on Sunday, but he came in to pinch-run in the eighth and was caught trying to swipe third.