Dodgers vs. Cardinals NLCS 2013: 5 Players That Need To Deliver

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5 Players That Must Deliver In The NLCS

5 Players That Must Deliver In The NLCS
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

In the NLCS series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals, there is so much talent between the two squads. Whether we talk about pitching staffs, bullpen or hitters, there is talent for both teams in each category. The majority of the talent stepped up for them in the NLDS, but now that they are one step away from reaching the World Series, those same players and even some new ones are going to have to step up.

For the Dodgers, their whole batting lineup was deadly except for a select few. Clayton Kershaw was stupendous in the NLDS by winning Game 1 and pitching a solid outing on only three days rest in the Game 4 clincher. Don Mattingly made some managerial decisions that some were very skeptical of, but regardless of all of that, the Dodgers managed to move onto the NLCS.

The Cardinals, on the other hand, were as lucky with their lineup. Carlos Beltran managed to hit a few home runs and bring in a couple runners, but his batting average as a whole was an eye sore. Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha were bright spots on the mound in the NLDS for the Cardinals.

Regardless of who wins this series, either the Dodgers or Cardinals are going to need some of their key players or even a surprising one to deliver. These are the five players who definitely need to help their team get out of the NLCS and into the World Series.

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5. Matt Adams

Matt Adams
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Adams has filled in nicely for the injured Allen Craig. He's going to have to continue giving the Cardinals solid play as well as some pop from his bat.

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4. Paco Rodriguez

Paco Rodriguez
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Jason Heyward got the best of Paco in the NLDS. Now this series, he's going to have to deal Matt Adams. When Paco is called upon, he's going to have to not only be ready, but finally step up.

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3. David Freese

David Freese
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Usually, the postseason is when Freese comes to play and he tends to be lights-out. So far this postseason, that hasn't been the case. If David starts swinging a hot bat, he'll be a hard out to make and the Dodgers will have to watch out.

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2. Hyun-Jin Ryu

Hyun-Jin Ryu
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Three innings is exactly how much Ryu has pitched so far this postseason, and it wasn't very good either. He's going to have to get his mechanics and intangibles together in order to be the solid third starter the Dodgers expected him to be in the postseason.

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1. Joe Kelly

Joe Kelly
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Joe Kelly is the Game 1 starter for the Cardinals. He may also be the most important pitcher for them right now. If Kelly can get a victory tonight, then the Cardinals will not only start out on the right foot, but they'll be tough to beat with Michael Wacha and Adam Wainwright going in Games 2 and 3 respectively.

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