As far as rubber games go, it’s tough to beat this contest in Los Angeles with two solid young arms squaring off in the Cardinals, Dodgers series finale.

Despite the 17-8 record in Cardinals games Adam Wainwright starts this season, the profit margin isn't all that great. In fact, Wainwright has been a stagnant 0.00 at the pay window since May 26. Sorta' reminds me of Bluto's grade point average that one fateful spring at Faber College.

Meanwhile in LA, the not-so-distant future's so bright for Clayton Kershaw that everybody gotta' wear shades. But for the present, it's still a bumpy ride and his backers have been frustrated by his 12-12 record (-3.71 units) for his backers.

Something's gotta' give in Wednesday night's contest when Wainwright (17-8, 2.62 ERA) meets Kershaw (12-12, 2.91 ERA) with the two pitchers presently heading in opposite directions.

Wainwright has allowed no home runs, two walks and 26 strikeouts in his last five starts, a span of 34.2 innings. St. Louis is 4-1 over that span as one might expect, though the one loss was a painful one to the Astros a couple of Sundays back as -270 favorites. In that span, he blanked the Dodgers over eight innings in St. Louis on July 28, spreading out eight hits in 10-0 Cardinals win.

The Cardinals righthander has made two starts at Dodger Stadium, one very good and one very bad. In his career vs. LA (4 starts, 3 relief outings), he has allowed 11 eared runs in 30.1 IP (3.26), with eight of those earnies coming in a 2007 start at Chavez Ravine.

Like Wainwright in his last go against the Dodgers, Kershaw also tossed eight scoreless frames the last time he saw the Cardinals a few weeks back (July 29), leaving with a 1-0 lead. That game wound up going 15 innings with St. Louis coming out on top, 3-2. The southpaw held the Birds to just four hits, the only extra base knock a double by Albert Pujols who is hitting .571 (4-for-7) lifetime vs. the Dodgers youngster.

Matt Holliday, who saw Kershaw earlier this season while with the A's and also with the Rockies in previous seasons, is 4-9 lifetime, all singles. The rest of the Cardinals lineup has just four hits in 46 AB (.086) off the Dallas native.

The Dodgers are 0-5 in Kershaw's last five starts, dropping more than eight units to their followers, though only two of those can be directly attributed to him. The LA offense has scored just 12 times in those five games, another part of the problem as the Dodgers lineup has gone south of late in the grand scheme of things.

Fieldin Culbreth will be behind the mask this evening holding a slight (12-10) lean to the home team and an edge to the Under (8-12-2 O/U).  He’s also called seven 1-run games this season.

The teams split the first two games, St. Louis winning on Monday 3-2 behind Chris Carpenter’s arm and Rick Ankiel’s late homer before LA pounded out 14 hits to take last night’s game by a 7-3 count.  There isn’t going to be any trouble with the weather in LA as usual with clear skies, temps cooling into the 60s as the game progresses and just a slight breeze out of the SW (out to right)

St. Louis is 8-3 since the beginning of the 2008 season against the Dodgers, 3-2 in LA.  I simply like the Cardinals +115 tonight for the way Wainwright is pitching.

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