Let the Jaime Garcia can only pitch at home narrative continue: The St. Louis Cardinals have tabbed their young left-hander to start Game 2 of the NLDS against the Washington Nationals following Game 1's heartbreaker ending. That's right: At Busch Stadium, where he's got a 2.82 ERA this year, and not elsewhere, where he's at 5.02.
We at SB Nation St. Louis are on the record as believing Garcia's home-road splits to be random chance, and not some sign that he's a secret headcase, but in Mike Matheny's defense the postseason is a bad time to make a grand statement about the media's misunderstanding of sample sizes.
Taken in aggregate, anyway, Jaime Garcia's had an excellent year, though his ERA didn't show it. For the third year in a row Garcia fractionally improved his strikeout-to-walk ratio, and his ground ball tendencies mean the seven home runs he allowed in 122 innings were less flukish than they might have been for any other starter. The shoulder strain and the batting average on balls in play made Garcia look a little unsteady in 2012, but for the most part—as he proved down the stretch, with four consecutive quality starts to close the season—we can expect him to be as good as ever in the NLDS.
And whether you think he can only pitch at home or not—well, he is. So there's that, too.