National League Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, August 5th
(All times Eastern)
Milwaukee Brewers (62-50) at Houston Astros (37-74), 8:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Milwaukee - Yovani Gallardo (12-7, 3.69)
Houston - J.A. Happ (4-13, 6.01)
(Sports Network) - Milwaukee doesn't seem to mind being in the midst of 18
consecutive games against National League Central opponents.
The division-leading Brewers will try to maintain their edge in NL Central
play when they open a three-game series against the Houston Astros tonight
from Minute Maid Park. The Brewers are 8-1 so far on this stretch against
Central foes and 28-18 in division action this season. They won a third
straight series by taking two of three meetings versus St. Louis, including a
10-5 drubbing of the Cardinals in Wednesday's series finale.
Randy Wolf survived six rough innings on the hill to prevail for the eighth
time this season (8-8) and was reached for five runs and nine hits with two
strikeouts and a pair of walks. Kameron Loe, LaTroy Hawkins and John Axford
each threw a scoreless inning of relief to hold the Cardinals in check and
keep them three games off the pace for the division lead.
Wolf was backed by three home runs from Casey McGehee, who finished with five
RBI. Corey Hart added a home run for the Brewers.
"They definitely picked me up today," Wolf said. "It was nice to see the way
they battled. It was really fun to watch Casey have a game like he did today."
Milwaukee is an MLB-best 41-15 at home this season, but just 21-35 away from
Miller Park. It hopes Yovani Gallardo can exorcise the road demons when he
takes the mound Friday night in Space City. Gallardo has alternated wins and
losses in his last eight trips to the mound and defeated Houston in Saturday's
6-2 triumph in Brew City. He allowed one unearned run over seven innings,
lifting his record to 12-7 in 23 starts with a 3.69 ERA.
Gallardo, who is just 4-6 in 12 road outings in 2011, has owned the Astros in
his career as evidenced by a 9-2 mark with a 3.00 ERA in 11 lifetime starts.
Houston recently won two of three meetings with Cincinnati and entered the
series with Reds having lost three straight and eight of 10 games. In
Wednesday's 5-4 victory over the Reds in the series finale at Minute Maid
Park, Jordan Lyles recorded his first major league win by tossing seven
innings of three-run ball.
"I haven't been nervous this year, but I was nervous in that dugout tonight
after I came out," Lyles said. "I'm not nervous when I'm on the mound at all,
but emotions were up and down."
J.D. Martinez homered and collected four RBI, while Humberto Quintero also
went deep for the Astros, who still possess baseball's worst record at 37-74.
J.A. Happ has one of the worst records in the league as well at 4-13 in 21
starts. He was able to slightly lower his earned run to 6.01 in his previous
outing and will take the mound Friday versus the Brewers. Happ has lost back-
to-back starts and was beaten by Milwaukee in Saturday's 6-2 road loss in
which he allowed five runs -- two earned -- and 10 hits in five innings.
Happ, a lefty, is 3-5 in 11 starts at Minute Maid Park this season and 2-1
with a 4.76 ERA in five games (4 starts) lifetime against the Brewers.
Milwaukee has beaten Houston six out of nine tries this season, with a 5-1
mark in games played at Miller Park.
08/05 10:39:20 ET
Powered by The Sports Network.