While perusing through some statistics today, I chanced upon a little fact that I found rather interesting. This season the Cardinals have gone 27-12 against starting left-handed pitchers, giving them the best percentage in the majors against lefties at 0.692%. This could be a result of their concurrently National League-leading team batting average, on-base, slugging and OPS (On-Base + Slugging) against lefties. All very impressive numbers to say the least. On the flip side, they have gone a very mediocre 43-45 against starting right-handed pitchers. However, contrary to what you would think, their hitting statistics did not dip that much if at all when facing righties. They still led the NL in batting average and on-base percentage against right-handed pitchers, and are second to the Colorado Rockies in slugging and OPS. If the hitting statistics are similar against lefties and righties, what accounts for this discrepancy in winning percentage? Inferior Cardinal pitching on those days where their lineup faces a righty? Stronger Cardinal pitching on days when their lineup faces lefties? Pure luck?
The Bottom Line: The Cardinals have won a much higher percentage of their games against lefties than they have when they face righties. As they creep ever closer to the playoffs, it will be interesting to see how they fare against teams that trot out their lefty aces to the mound vs. righties. With two out of the next four starting pitchers that they face being lefties, we’ll see if they can continue their hot streak against these southpaws.