World Series Red Sox-Cardinals Game 4 preview: Buchholz vs. Lynn

It's Lance Lynn vs. Clay Buchholz for Game 4.
It's Lance Lynn vs. Clay Buchholz for Game 4. (USATSI)

Game 3: Ends on obstruction call | Quick hits | Grades

ST. LOUIS - Now that the ridiculously wild Game 3 is in the books, it's time to immediately turn our attention to Game 4 of the 2013 World Series.

On the hill, the Cardinals will send Lance Lynn to the mound, while the Red Sox will counter with Clay Buchholz. It's pretty likely both are on a short leash and we see lots of both bullpens again like in Game 3.

Still, let's take a look at how the pitching matchups size up.

Lynn vs. Red Sox

The 26-year-old right-hander went 15-10 with a 3.97 ERA, 1.31 WHIP and 198 strikeouts in 201 2/3 innings this past regular season. He's had three appearances in the playoffs so far: A disaster against the Pirates, a good relief outing against the Dodgers and a decent start against the Dodgers, in which he gathered the victory.

The good news for the Cardinals here is that Lynn has generally been much better at home (9-3, 2.82 ERA) this season than on the road (6-7, 5.15).

As is a common theme in this World Series, Lynn has never faced the Red Sox. In terms of individual matchups, he hasn't faced a single Red Sox player more than four times, so that data is useless. Several, like Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz have never faced him.

Buchholz vs. Cardinals

The 29-year-old righty was unbelievable during the regular season when healthy, going 12-1 with a 1.74 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. He may have ended up a Cy Young frontrunner if not for only making 16 starts due to issues with his throwing shoulder. And those may be a concern going in.

In the postseason, Buchholz hasn't been good at all. In three starts he hasn't made it past six innings and has a 5.40 ERA. The Red Sox have won two of his three starts, though.

Still, he doesn't seem right and the fact that he was given an extra day -- he was slated to pitch Game 3 -- shows he's not 100 percent. And he admits as much.

"Given the couple of days that I've been out so far, not a hundred percent," Buchholz said in his press conference before Game 3. "I've said it a couple of times this year, I don't think anybody, especially at this time of the season, is a hundred percent."

Buchholz's home/road splits this year don't show anything glaring and he, unsurprisingly, has never faced the Cardinals. He hasn't even faced any member of the Cardinals at the big-league level.

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered the last six World Series beginning with the epic 2011 Fall Classic. The former Indiana University... Full Bio

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