National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Wednesday, July 9
(All times Eastern)
Pittsburgh Pirates (47-43) at St. Louis Cardinals (49-42), 8:15 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Pittsburgh - Brandon Cumpton (3-2, 4.61)
St. Louis - Lance Lynn (9-6, 3.17)
(SportsNetwork.com) - The St. Louis Cardinals are having a flare for the
dramatic and all the Pittsburgh Pirates can do is watch.
The Cardinals target a series win over the NL Central-rival Pirates Wednesday
in the third installment of a four-game set at Busch Stadium.
Matt Adams belted a two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth of Monday's 2-0
victory, then it was Kolten Wong's turn Tuesday. Wong broke a 4-4 tie in the
ninth with a two-out solo home run for the hosts and finished with two hits
and three RBI.
"When I hit it, I knew it was gone," Wong said of his clutch hit off Pirates
reliever Ernesto Frieri. "For a moment I forgot to run. Just excited to get
home and be the guy jumping into the dog pile. It's something I'll always
Matt Carpenter, Jhonny Peralta and Oscar Taveras ended with two hits apiece
and helped the Cardinals pull within three games off the Milwaukee Brewers for
first in the NL Central. Pittsburgh is 3 1/2 games behind the Brewers, who
have lost three in a row.
Carlos Martinez started on the mound for St. Louis last night and was reached
for four and eight hits in six innings. Wong's home run made a winner out of
Trevor Rosenthal, who worked around a hit and a walk in the ninth.
The Cardinals, winners in five of seven games, announced that Jaime Garcia
will undergo season-ending surgery due to thoracic outlet syndrome (shoulder),
the same procedure former ace Chris Carpenter had back in 2012. The left-
handed Garcia went 3-1 with a 4.12 ERA in seven starts.
Lance Lynn is one of the healthy St. Louis starters and draws the start
Wednesday. Lynn threw 6 2/3 shutout innings in last Friday's 3-2 win over
Miami, struck out six and walked three. Lynn was blasted for seven runs (6
earned) in his previous start June 28 at Los Angeles.
Lynn has alternated results in the past six trips to the hill and is 9-6 with
a 3.17 earned run average. The right-hander is 5-2 in nine home starts and 7-2
in 12 appearances at night. Lynn has faced Pittsburgh 12 times (10 starts) in
his career and owns a 4-3 record with a 5.13 ERA. He lost at Pittsburgh back
on May 10 in a 4-3 setback, allowing all four runs in six innings.
Pittsburgh will try to avoid its first three-game slide since June 15-18 when
they gets back to work Wednesday.
Justin Wilson gave up Adams' home run on Monday and Frieri was the mound
victim in last night's loss. Vance Worley allowed four runs and nine hits in
five innings, while Pedro Alvarez and Andrew McCutchen each hit two-run homers
for the Pirates, who are still 12-5 in the last 17 games.
"It's not the first time we've had two tough losses and it probably won't be
the last time," said Pirates manager Clint Hurdle. "One swing of the bat
changed the game. You shower up and get ready to play tomorrow."
The Pirates have lost three in a row on the road and had prevailed in five
straight series as the visitor.
In the last 29 games, Pittsburgh starting pitchers have combined to go 15-6
and it will be Brandon Cumpton's turn in the rotation on Wednesday. Cumpton
was sent to Triple-A Indianapolis when Gerrit Cole was activated off the
disabled list, but is now replacing an injured Cole.
Cumpton pitched against Louisville on July 4 and was reached for four runs,
three of which were earned, and eight hits in six innings of a 7-6 loss in 11
innings. He is 3-2 with a 4.61 earned run average in nine starts this season
and unbeaten (3-0) in the past five outings. In a 3-2 win over the New York
Mets on June 27, Cumpton tossed seven innings of two-run ball in a no-
decision. He has allowed two runs over 14 innings in his last two games.
The right-hander won his only start against St. Louis last July 30, when he
fired seven scoreless innings of a 6-0 win at PNC Park.
St. Louis is 6-5 against Pittsburgh this season and each of the last five
games in this series has been decided by two runs or less.
07/09 10:49:48 ET