Breaking the early Cardinals-Cubs “tie”

As most who are reading this know, the St. Louis Cardinals invaded Wrigley Field to take on the Chicago Cubs two weekends ago and the two switched roles this past Friday through Sunday. These were the first six of what will be 16 individual battles between the two archrivals this season.

In each of these initial series, the home club took two of three (with the final of the original four-game Chicago series rained out and rescheduled to July 12). As a result, the clubs’ season series against each other is knotted at 3-3.

Not being totally satisfied with that, I decided to take a look at comparative stats over the six contests. Sure, some players have been out due to injuries on both sides, but this is an accurate representation of the results by those able to suit up.

The data is reflected in terms of hitting splits, yet some pitching conclusions are evident in this context, as well.

2009 thru 6G H2H AB RBI BA OBP SLG
StL hitters 203 34 0.271 0.359 0.483
ChC hitters 218 30 0.275 0.342 0.413
StL LH hitters 84 10 0.238 0.323 0.369
ChC LH hitters 91 17 0.297 0.356 0.451
StL RH hitters 119 24 0.294 0.384 0.563
ChC RH hitters 127 13 0.260 0.331 0.386
StL two outs 60 7 0.183 0.269 0.283
ChC two outs 68 14 0.279 0.380 0.426
StL RISP 70 25 0.271 0.338 0.414
ChC RISP 59 22 0.237 0.338 0.390
StL pinch-hitters 9 2 0.444 0.583 0.778
ChC pinch-hitters 8 0 0.125 0.300 0.125
vs. ChC starters 139 22 0.266 0.329 0.475
vs. StL starters 132 18 0.288 0.347 0.386
vs. ChC relievers 64 12 0.281 0.418 0.500
vs. StL relievers 86 12 0.256 0.333 0.453

The Cardinals hitters drove in more runs and accumulated higher on-base and slugging percentages. The Cubs’ left-handed hitters were more productive than were St. Louis’, but the Cardinals’ right-handed batters, who of course saw more at-bats, had a bigger edge in stats.

Though the Cubs two-out hitters were more productive, the Cardinals out-produced them with runners in scoring position. The weakened position of the Cubs’ bench is evident in the pinch-hitting results.

In terms of pitching, the Cubs starters yielded more runs than did the Cardinals starters, despite having better batting average and OBP against. Where the Cubs fell down is in slugging, where the Cardinals hitters had a significant advantage.

Looking at the relievers, the Cardinals group allowed the same number of runs as their Cubs peers, but they registered superior slash stats in all three areas despite facing considerably more opposing hitters.

To bring this point home, here is a summary of the respective pitching staffs’ results through the six games. The Cardinals pitchers clearly come out on top.

2009 thru 6G H2H ERA BB K
StL pitchers 4.77 22 54
ChC pitchers 5.67 25 45

Overall through two series, I would have to give the imaginary stats tiebreaker to the Cardinals. There are ten more regular-season games to go, with the next match ups coming on May 19-21 in St. Louis.