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Cincinnati Reds to face Albert Pujols, Yadier Molina for one final series

It’s swansong season!

St. Louis Cardinals v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Albert Pujols has swatted 48 homers off of Cincinnati Reds pitching throughout the course of his illustrious career, and he’s surely salivating at the opportunity to add a few more to that tally when the Reds descend upon St. Louis today to begin a long-weekend series that will see them play five games in four days.

It will be the final time the Reds face Pujols and the Cardinals, as the future first-ballot Hall of Famer is set to hang up his spikes for good after the 2022 season. Given that the Reds have been officially (mercifully, finally...) eliminated from postseason play, this weekend serves as the end-all of the schedule between these two division rivals, and with Pujols inching ever closer to career homer #700, all eyes will be on his plate appearances against the Reds shell of a pitching staff.

Heck, Albert will even get to dodge Nick Lodolo, who just pitched yesterday as the lone, true vestige of substantiality the Reds rotation boasts these days.

I suppose it’s worth noting that Yadier Molina will be facing the Reds for the final time in the coming days, too, in some capacity. He’s been getting days off more and more this season than ever, and he and battery-mate Adam Wainwright just broke the all-time pitchy/catchy record earlier this week, so there’s a chance the Reds won’t get to face their other nemesis quite as often as in the olden days - surely, though, St. Louis will give him at least a few starts with which to terrorize Cincinnati pitching for a final time.

It’s nice to at least acknowledge the storybook nature of this St. Louis season, seeing as they’re once again playoff-bound with title aspirations. That sure must be something, the ability to field good baseball teams around the generational stars who are riding into the sunset, something Cincinnati hasn’t been able to figure out for, well, an entire generation. So, at least we can expect packed houses at #Bush all weekend long.

Tonight’s series opener is scheduled for a 7:45 PM ET start, with Chase Anderson on the bump for the Reds as a deliberate chance to let the Cardinals sock as many 1st, 2nd, and maybe 3rd inning homers as physics will allow. You’re welcome, Cardinals.

Go team.

Reds Lineup

Cardinals Lineup