On Deck: Cardinals at Cubs, Games 3-4

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On Deck will be here all season to provide you with everything you need to know (and a few things you don't) about every postseason series during the 2015 season. 

The Teams: The Cardinals had baseball's best record, and the Cubs had the third best record. The second-best? Their NL Central mates, the Pirates, who the Cubs eliminated in the NL Wild Card Game.

Past 2015 Meetings: The Cardinals won the regular-season series 11-8, but the teams split the first two games in St. Louis.

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Pitching Matchups: Monday — Michael Wacha (17-7, 3.38 ERA) vs. Jake Arrieta (22-6, 1.77); Tuesday — TBD vs. TBD

What's Hot: It's been a nice series for Stephen Piscotty, who had an incredibly scary outfield collision in the final week of the regular season but is clearly over it as he's gone 3-for-8 in the first two games of the series with a double, a homer and two RBIs. Adam Wainwright returned as a reliever after missing the season and has pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings with three strikeouts.

In the Cubs' three postseason games (including the NL Wild Card Game), rookie catcher Kyle Schwarber has been on fire at the plate, as he's hitting .571 with a homer and three RBIs. Leadoff man Dexter Fowler is hitting .385 with a homer, a double and two RBIs with four runs scored. Arrieta, the likely NL Cy Young winner, tossed a complete-game shutout with 11 strikeouts in the NL Wild Card Game and has to have the Cubs riding high with confidence heading into Game 3.

What's Not: Matt Holliday and Matt Carpenter have each struggled through the first two games of the series for the 100-win Cards, as they're hitting .125 and .143, respectively.

Cubs rookie third baseman Kris Bryant, the power-hitting phenom, is now 0-for-11 to start his first postseason with four strikeouts. Shortstop Starlin Castro is 2-for-11 in those three games.

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