Lineup: Adam Frazier LF, Josh Harrison 2B, Gregory Polanco RF, David Freese 3B, Josh Bell 1B, Cutch CF, Jordy SS, Stew C & Gerrit Cole P. Stew must be feeling his oats with back-to-back starts.
|Stew & Gerrit are the battery (photo Chris Hartline/USA Today Sports)|
Pitchers: Gerrit Cole (5-6, 4.28) takes on Lance Lynn (5-4, 3.33). Cole Train's mojo appears to have found its way home; he's gone seven innings in back-to-back starts while winning both outings. Gerrit is 5-4/2.84 in 11 career regular season starts against the Redbirds. He's 0-1 in one start this year, losing a 2-1 decision to Michael Wacha at Busch Stadium in mid-April. Cole has been strong recently at Busch Stadium, slashing 2-1/1.89 in his last three starts with a 3.11 career ERA in Birdland. Lance has been his usual good self this year; despite laying an egg in his last outing, he's given up two or fewer runs in 10 of his 14 outings. Lance does leak homers w/16 in 78-1/3 IP and hasn't gotten through the sixth inning since mid-May. He's has been money at home (3-1/1.53) and on same side hitters (.167 v RHB, .252 v LHB). Lynn has battled the Bucs lots of times: he's 6-5/4.41 lifetime in 20 outings (18 starts). He hasn't seen Pittsburgh since 2015 after TJ surgery cost him last season, but LL spun seven innings of three-hit, shutout ball against the Bucs in April in a 2-1 Card win. So like Jamo-Waino yesterday, this contest shapes up to be a solid pitching match, with homers again likely the key.
- Mr. Clutch - Four of JJ’s five home runs have come in the seventh inning or later and four broke ties this year. As Clint told the beat guys last night “A lot of people get caught up in the hair, but there's a baseball player in there.”
- The Cardinals have lost four straight games for the second time this season.
- The Bucs are just kinda muddling along, but at least you can point to the roster churn - Jung Ho, Starling, DL visits by Jamo, Cervy, etc, and see light at the end of the tunnel. But if you're a Bay Area fan, whoa - the Giants are 27-49, the furthest they've been below .500 since the end of the 1996 season. As the noted SABR dude Einstein said, "It's all relative."
- RHP Josh Lindblom has been removed from the DL and assigned to Indy. Not much ado involved; he was already there on a rehab stint after an oblique injury.
- SS Cole Tucker is back for Bradenton after missing three weeks with a broken thumb.