The Milwaukee Brewers could be staring at their last chance to climb back into the National League wild card chase when they visit the St. Louis Cardinals for a three-game series starting Friday night. To even talk about the playoffs seemed like a pipe dream 2 1/2 weeks ago, but the Brewers have won 13 of their last 17 to get within seven games of the Cardinals, who have pounded Brewers ace Yovani Gallardo – Friday’s scheduled starter – twice this season.
St. Louis is holding down the second wild card slot and trails Atlanta by 3 1/2 games, but it will hit a cushy spot in the schedule after returning from a seven-game road trip to San Diego and Los Angeles. The Cardinals will play nine straight games against bottom feeders Houston and Chicago, giving them a chance to gain ground on the Braves while keeping pursuers Pittsburgh and the Dodgers at bay.
Brewers Cardinals Betting
When: 8:15 PM ET, Friday, September 7, 2012
Where: Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri
TV: 8:15 p.m. ET, Fox Sports Wisconsin (Milwaukee), Fox Sports Midwest (St. Louis)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Brewers RH Yovani Gallardo (14-8, 3.79 ERA) vs. Cardinals RH Kyle Lohse (14-2, 2.81)
Gallardo was bludgeoned for seven runs and 11 hits in 4 2/3 innings against Pittsburgh last time out, snapping his six-start winning streak. He had permitted only nine runs and pitched at least seven innings in each start during the winning streak. The Cardinals have been a black hole for Gallardo, who is 1-9 with a dismal 7.05 ERA in 13 starts against them. He was battered for eight runs in two innings at St. Louis on April 27.
Lohse also took his lumps in his last start, allowing eight runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings against Washington. He did not factor in the decision, keeping his eight-game winning streak intact. Lohse has beaten the Brewers in both starts this season, tossing six scoreless innings against them on Aug. 5. Overall, though, he’s struggled against the Brewers with a 6-8 record and 4.53 ERA in 21 appearances (19 starts).
1. Cardinals LF Matt Holliday, who sat out Wednesday after leaving Tuesday’s game with back tightness, is expected back in the lineup.
2. Brewers LF Ryan Braun has hit safely in 10 of his last 11, batting .404 (19-for-47) with three homers and 14 RBIs in that span.
3. St. Louis has won five of six meetings with the Brewers at Busch Stadium this season.