ESPN analyst Eduardo Perez talks 2014 NLCS with Redbird Rants


ESPN baseball analyst Eduardo Perez joined Redbird Rants for a brief Q&A preview the 2014 NLCS between the St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants.

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Redbird Rants: The Cardinals hit 105 home runs during the regular season and then hit 7 home runs during the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers. What should we expect to see from the offense during the NLCS against San Francisco?

EP: I expect their approach to stay the same – staying up the middle and using the big part of the ballpark. The Cardinals have capitalized on pitches over the plate and hanging breaking balls.

Redbird Rants: Matt Carpenter has had one heck of a postseason. What should we expect to see from Carpenter in the NLCS?

Eduardo Perez: More of the same. He’s such a good hitter, staying balanced on both right and left-handed pitchers. We saw how good he was last season. After a slow start to this season, he has been showing us what we were used to seeing last year.

Redbird Rants: Who will have the surprise impact in the NLCS?

Eduardo Perez: Jon Jay. Everyone talks about the big guys but at the end of the day, John Jay gives the Cards quality at-bats every time out. The surprise will come with a home run in a key moment.

Redbird Rants: In 2012, the Cardinals were up 3-1 against the Giants before losing the series in 7 games. Do you see any kind of revenge factor for wanting to make up for losing two years ago?

Eduardo Perez: Even though there are a lot of guys that are still in uniform for their respective teams, these two teams are too good to use revenge as a motivation. They will be motivated just trying to win the National League.

Redbird Rants: The Cardinals are playing in their 4th straight NLCS, an NL-leading 13th appearance since the NLCS started in 1968. What does this say about the organization as a whole seeing as how Mike Matheny replaced a Hall of Fame manager in Tony La Russa?

Eduardo Perez: It tells you that their Front office and scouting department are doing a fine job evaluating players to see who can play the Cardinal way – players with a high baseball IQ that are coachable and have an understanding of the game.

ESPN analyst Eduardo Perez will appear on SportsCenter and Baseball Tonight throughout the postseason. Baseball Tonight airs generally at midnight ET or following the final game of the day on ESPN2.