October Confidential: NLCS Giants vs. Cardinals

October Confidential: NLCS Giants vs. Cardinals

The Giants will be in St. Louis to face the Cardinals in Game 1 of the National League Championship Series on Saturday at 8 p.m. ET on FOX. It's a showdown of two teams that have won three of the past four World Series.

What's the best way to beat each of these teams? To find out, we asked players from across their respective divisions to give the inside intel on how these clubs can be beaten. Our sources were granted anonymity in exchange for their candor.

SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS

Buster Posey
"He's got that catcher's mentality. He'll call the game in his mind as you pitch to him. He's a hard guy to fool because he's thinking along with you as a pitcher. It's key to not get into patterns with him, you've got to mix things up with him, so staying away from any regular patterns is very important."
-- NL West pitcher

  Date Recaps Highlights
Gm 1 Oct. 11 SF 3, STL 0 video
Gm 2 Oct. 12 STL 5, SF 4 video
Gm 3 Oct. 14 SF 5, STL 4 video
Gm 4 Oct. 15 SF 6, STL 4 video
Gm 5 Oct. 16 SF 6, STL 3 video

Hunter Pence
"Hunter is a difficult guy to pitch to. He's a guy who is able to hit bad pitches or what I call pitchers' pitches, pitches you shouldn't be able to drive. He reminds me a little of Vladimir Guerrero. You bounce a ball and he can still dig it out. I've thrown a fastball at his head and he's hit a home run off me. I think he's a guy you just got to execute your pitches and hope he gets himself out."
-- NL West pitcher

Pablo Sandoval
"He swings at a lot of pitches. You can throw him balls, strikes. He's a bad-ball hitter. If you throw him a curveball, it has to bounce. Watching him in the World Series, it seems he steps up in the big games. He's a hard out. He'll strike out a bunch but he'll have solid contact. You can make him chase. You have to keep mixing. He will barrel a ball. He'll hit opposite-field home runs.
-- NL West pitcher

Read the complete Giants October Confidential

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

Adam Wainwright
"You have to stick with your plan. He's a guy that's not going to make many mistakes. You have to follow the scouting report with him and try to execute your game plan. He's not going to give you too many pitches for you to drive the baseball. You especially have to avoid swinging at that cutter and make sure he works his count in your favor. What I mean is I'm trying to get to him in pretty good hitting counts. And be aggressive. He goes after you with everything he's got. He's got pretty good command of his secondary pitches, which makes him tough to hit also."
-- NL Central catcher

October Confidential
Team-by-team coverage
ALCS: Orioles | Royals
NLCS: Cardinals | Giants

Yadier Molina
"I think with Yadi, the hardest thing is he's such a smart hitter. He knows, most of the time I think, when we're going to attack him. He has such a consistent approach of really trying to hit that right-center gap. He stays inside the ball inside and stays on the ball away pretty well too. The best thing we've had success with, I think, is keeping the ball down and get him to hit it on the ground."
-- NL Central catcher

Matt Carpenter
"He's very patient, probably the most patient hitter I've faced this year. He doesn't swing at much junk. With him, I think you've got to get ahead of him and he'll let you have strike one. … He's not going to swing at it. So get ahead of him and use your strengths. For me, he had trouble with the curve so I kept trying to bury him with the curveball."
-- NL West pitcher

Read the complete Cardinals October Confidential